Go big or go home.
Am I right?
I’ve spent the last 6 months getting my shop up to spec (it’s been open for about three times that but 6 months ago I found the Etsy UK Sellers Networking Group and Etsy UK Sellers Help Groups – run by the fiendishly clever and incredibly lovely Fliss Hill and Jennifer Dodd*.
(*contractually I have to say this as an admin of those groups, but it also happens to be true).
In those 6 months I’ve learnt enough about SEO to be dangerous, I’ve expanded my product range to just under 50 items, my conversion rate is sitting at about 1.5% which I’m happy with (more on this later) and I’ve adopted a continuous improvement approach with the rest of the listing quality. I’m also front page ranked for ‘birthday cards’ (which is a 230k+ category).
But, I’ve only made a few hundred £ in sales. That’s ok for a hobby, or a sideline, and my profit margin is pretty decent, but I’m not buying a classic Miura any time soon.
But what if I wanted to make decent money (even if we’re not in Miura territory).
What if I wanted to turn over £75k in a year (to stay within the VAT threshold). If my average greeting card sells for £2.50, then I’ll need to shift 30000 of them. If I had a 1.5% conversion rate then I’d need 2 million views (Views x 0.015 = 30,000 therefore Views=30000/0.015).
That’s a lot of views. Roughly 40,000 for each of my 50 cards. Each day of the year, each card would need to get 109 views….
Hang on, is that right? Because 109 seems….almost achievable. It’s a realistic number, not a laughable one.
Modelling numbers for fun and terror
I set up a quick spreadsheet in Google Docs to check this and form the basis for a model. Once we have the formulas in place, we can play with some numbers and see what result they have.
Here’s the model for the example I walked through above:
Confirmed: 109 views per product per day.
On a whim I wondered what would happen if I increased the number of products in my shop from 50 to 250:
This drops us down to 21 views per product per day requirement. This is actually achievable.
How about if I make some of those products more expensive – I have some posters and notebooks already, and I can start selling multipacks, so what if that pushed the average price per sale up to £4.00, and got my conversion rate up to 1.7% which is an average for my non-christmas months?
This brings us to twelve views per day per product. That’s definitely achievable. It’s certainly a realistic target to aim for.
Remember that that these have to be organic views. If you drive fake traffic via networking games, you’re only kidding yourself.
Another point worth discussing here is that 18,750 sales will take me 18,750 minutes to pick/pack/dispatch (since I print up batches in advance). That’s about 6 hours a week over 48 weeks, and is doable with a full time job as well.
So there we have it:
- Objective 1: Come up with 200 new products (some of which can be multi-buys)
- Objective 2: Make some of these higher value to push the average up
- Objective 3: Maintain a 1.7% or better conversion rate
- Objective 4: Work out how to get 12 views per product per day (hint: SEO, social media, blog posts)
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