Handmade business failing

65 replies
Hey guys,

I started a handmade business a while back while working as a caregiver. Recently, after relocating with the house, getting a job seems to be a herculean task and I thought that maybe, just maybe, I can actually make some sales.

I make handmade jewellery from recycled materials, mostly wood: rings, necklaces, etc. - the products are high quality and priced low - the profit margin is quite good as I don't pay for materials, just my work.

I have a lot of experience in internet marketing, but we are taking a few years back when I was running CPA campaigns but what I used to do apparently does not work with selling physical goods.

What I am doing now:
1. Instagram followers - 1500+ mostly interested in handmade products
2. Facebook Page - used as a shop and updates - 400+ followers
3. Building an email list through a giveaway - 400+ entries UK 25-55 years real people
4. Networking and actually talking with other people about my products.
5. Products in Google Merchant, No Ads (too expensive)
5. NO BLOODY SALES! )

Please keep.in mind that I do not have a big budget for all this as I still have to keep up paying the bills for the house.

Anything to add or any ideas how to actually put to good use what I am doing now?

I live in UK.

Kind regards,
Robert
#business #failing #handmade
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  • Profile picture of the author DABK
    Why are you not on etsy.com? ebay.com?


    Those are platforms where people go when they're in the mood to buy.


    400 facebook followers is meaningless... it is too few.


    1500 instagram followers, the same.


    Why are you not on groups in facebook that people interested in buying handmade jewlery are and making friends there and, every now and again, throw a link to something you're selling.


    Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

    Hey guys,

    I started a handmade business a while back while working as a caregiver. Recently, after relocating with the house, getting a job seems to be a herculean task and I thought that maybe, just maybe, I can actually make some sales.

    I make handmade jewellery from recycled materials, mostly wood: rings, necklaces, etc. - the products are high quality and priced low - the profit margin is quite good as I don't pay for materials, just my work.

    I have a lot of experience in internet marketing, but we are taking a few years back when I was running CPA campaigns but what I used to do apparently does not work with selling physical goods.

    What I am doing now:
    1. Instagram followers - 1500+ mostly interested in handmade products
    2. Facebook Page - used as a shop and updates - 400+ followers
    3. Building an email list through a giveaway - 400+ entries UK 25-55 years real people
    4. Networking and actually talking with other people about my products.
    5. Products in Google Merchant, No Ads (too expensive)
    5. NO BLOODY SALES! )

    Please keep.in mind that I do not have a big budget for all this as I still have to keep up paying the bills for the house.

    Anything to add or any ideas how to actually put to good use what I am doing now?

    I live in UK.

    Kind regards,
    Robert
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  • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
    As DABK says, you should be on Etsy - that's probably the best market for handmade items.

    Also..

    Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

    the products are high quality and priced low -
    If your products are high quality and unique, why price them low? You're just inviting comparison with any other mass market product. A higher price suggests exclusivity, especially with jewellery, and would allow you the margin to test advertising.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jeffery
    Selling homemade jewelry offline to the public these COVID days is tough. A few of my friends learnt that selling the jewelry as the sole product was putting them in the poor house. They changed the sole product from jewelry to t-shirts during the summer months, to light weight jackets during the fall months and are making a sales on the jewelry again.


    You might want to research compulsory sales and suggestive selling.
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    In the minute it took me to write this post.. someone died of Covid 19. RIP.
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  • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
    @DABK - I am on other groups but all I get is more competition, if an interested person actually lands in one of those everyone are jumping them with low ball offers that are just too low.

    @frank-donovan - I am on Etsy, but the traffic is just not there, same problem as the website. I price my rings low as I want people to actually afford them ) there is not that much work and the profit is 400% at least.

    @Jeffery - I don't have the means nor the money to invest in other products, I have to find a way to sell what I have. 10 - 20 sales a month is my target. It's not much, I don't want to make thousands, I want hundreds first

    My website is clondir[dot]com - please have a look and let me know if you have any improvement suggestions. Please don't take this link as advertisment, I know better than that
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    • Profile picture of the author Matthew Stanley
      saw your responses after posting mine. How long have you been selling on Etsy?
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      • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
        About a month or so. Tried their ads but only brought 60 or so impressions with one click. I know my images are not pixel perfect but they are not that bad either to blame that on delivery.

        I will definitely try to up the prices a bit, even thou I think it's not fair towards my non existent clients )

        Thanks!
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        • Profile picture of the author savidge4
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          I will definitely try to up the prices a bit, even thou I think it's not fair towards my non existent clients )

          Thanks!
          There is nothing FAIR about making Money. IF you feel guilty, you should have the ability to contact your current buyer base and offer them discounts.

          BUT here is the greater issue.... I get the materials for nothing.. its just my time.... But what is your time worth? what is the SKILL worth? YOU are looking at the value through a warped lens. Whats worth more... a mold created gold ring or a handmade one of a kind treasure from upcycled materials hand crafted by this lovely chap in some cute little town. Forget the time and the materials etc... its the STORY that holds the value of what it is your are selling.
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    • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
      My website is clondir[dot]com - please have a look and let me know if you have any improvement suggestions.
      Honestly, I don't know why you'd expect any sales from a site that's basically just a few pages of bland product images. Where's the story? Who are you, and why should anyone care enough to give you their money?

      You need to create a narrative behind your brand. For example, you could make a lot more about the fact you use recycled material. Post videos showing details of the creation process. Tell your visitors about yourself and why you decided to make jewellery. What stories can you relate about the pieces? Show people wearing your products in a range of situations.

      Make your prospects feel involved, and they'll buy in to you as much as your jewellery.
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      • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
        I get that now... You do have a point. Do you have some sites as example for design or story or brand, please? That'll be really helpful. Thank you!
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        • Profile picture of the author savidge4
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          I get that now... You do have a point. Do you have some sites as example for design or story or brand, please? That'll be really helpful. Thank you!
          The absolute epitome of this ( https://www.popcornindiana.com/ ) ( the company is based in the NorthEast somewhere ) Notice if you goto "Our Products" and click on an item... what color is the background on the image?

          My idea of an ideal ecommerce site would be ( www.gap.com ) THIS is the model that I strive for, for myself, and my clients... and again the color of the photo backgrounds?

          This starts to get there ( https://northwoodrings.com/ ) and again goto products and the backgrounds are? LOL

          Another getting there ( https://jewelrybyjohan.com/collections/wood-rings ) and again background color?

          Lets go large ( https://corporate.walmart.com/our-story ) Walmarts story is a big part of what and who they are - and do I dare say it again... background color on product?
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          • Profile picture of the author Matthew Stanley
            Savidge4 - what a great mini masterclass on multiple aspects of selling! I know I for one will be re-reading..

            One site/story I'd add to the list: wrist watch brand Daniel Wellington (danielwellington.com). Check out the "about" page, as well as the product descriptions and images (which maintain savidge4's white background theme). Imo a great example of turning every painstaking detail of craftsmanship into selling point that further reel you in...
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          • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
            The popcorninsiana website theme looks an awful lot like Avada. I think I have it stashed somewhere from the olden days.
            I tried this image as is very lite, too lite, as you made it perfectly clear x)

            How does this sound for a complete overhaul:

            1. Make a static Home page with story and About, inserting a carousel of products
            2. Big chunky category images.
            3. A full page video background - I have top learn how to make a video )

            I really like the popcornindiana website, amd I thik I can use the same framework for my rings, as they are a small company as well

            I started taking pictures with white backgrounds!
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            • Profile picture of the author savidge4
              Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

              The popcorninsiana website theme looks an awful lot like Avada. I think I have it stashed somewhere from the olden days.
              I tried this image as is very lite, too lite, as you made it perfectly clear x)

              How does this sound for a complete overhaul:

              1. Make a static Home page with story and About, inserting a carousel of products
              2. Big chunky category images.
              3. A full page video background - I have top learn how to make a video )

              I really like the popcornindiana website, amd I thik I can use the same framework for my rings, as they are a small company as well

              I started taking pictures with white backgrounds!
              I would not use a video background. I would however do a 360 rotation video about 30 seconds long. On the low end you can use something like this ( https://www.walmart.com/ip/360-Degre...RoCafYQAvD_BwE ) inside your new white lightbox or you could get out of hand and look into this ( https://www.amazon.com/Orangemonkie-.../dp/B01M0VUDAC ) The more expensive option has some benefits... it has software that stitches still images so probably no camera investment on your end or new skills to learn.

              All you would need to "learn" is how to create an intro, an out and how to load these upto youtube. You can use the youtube existing library of music and in terms of editing could use the options available stock with a PC or Mac - if not your phone.

              Oh by the way... products with video have an advantage in selling than those that don't.. just saying!

              Didn't pay attention to theme you wee currently using but I would consider using the WooCommerce Storefront theme. I realize its a bit unfair for me to say this but that theme could easily be turned into the look you want. and its probably the least expensive option in terms of themes. For me professionally ( and I am not soliciting business here ) I Use this and Divi almost exclusively.

              Hope that Helps!

              And congrats on entering the boring world of white backgrounds LOL!
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

      I am on Etsy, but the traffic is just not there, same problem as the website. I price my rings low as I want people to actually afford them ) there is not that much work and the profit is 400% at least.
      If the part time wage in the UK is 10.39 British Pounds an hour... you are suggesting that the materials are a zero in terms of expense... so the item takes 30 minutes to make? But what about sand paper and drill bits and saws and this and that and the other. It sounds far fetched but you need to consider about 5 British Pounds per item for consumables and tools. At the end of the day you might be doubling... but no where near 400%.

      Read any of the material on this forum that I have written... I am BLUNT... your website is doing more harm than good in a whole lot of ways.

      Do you have an Instagram / Facebook store? You have Etsy. do you use eBay? There is literally no reason for you to have a website of your own. USE THE PLATFORMS - if you insist on a website it should be filled with YOUR STORY - NOT your product. You live in some cute little UK town. You use recycled materials ( explain how you obtain them ) The Symbolism of the Rune symbols etc etc.. then if they want to buy.. you offer the many platforms you are selling from. People will have preferences.

      You need to grow your Instagram acct by a minimum of 10 fold Look up Gary Vaynerchuk's videos on his $1.80 Instagram Strategy.

      Using platforms is a numbers game. If you have 100 items listed on eBay as an example ( my prefered platform ) you will sell on average 3 items per day. 3% sales with 100 items listed. If you only have say 10 items listed.. you MIGHT sell 1 item every 10 days or 3 a month. Quantity matters.

      Same with Etsy.. the magic number is somewhere in the 70 item range before you start seeing the Etsy Algorithm starting to work in your favor.

      Your photo(s) are ok... Issue number one is there is only ONE. using 6 images ( or more ) to sell the item will increase your sales by 15%. You want you primary image to be on a white background.. again this will provide an increase in clicking on your item, and creating conversions. There is a reason Amazon mandates white backgrounds and eBay more than suggests it.

      Look up " Peter McKinnon product photography " and start watching videos. His style of photos will not be your primary click image ( this will be the solid white back ground ) but can fill in towards that 6 images per product.

      Any questions? just ask!

      Best of luck!
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      • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
        Finally some actual constructive ideas. I'm sitting here with pen and paper and taking notes.

        Is it a good idea to use an automated poster send my products straight to ebay and Amazon handmade? I am a one man band after all and I am not good at taking pictures
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        • Profile picture of the author savidge4
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          Finally some actual constructive ideas. I'm sitting here with pen and paper and taking notes.

          Is it a good idea to use an automated poster send my products straight to ebay and Amazon handmade? I am a one man band after all and I am not good at taking pictures
          I personal do not employ any automated posting. Not that its right or wrong, it creates an amount of hmmm... looking for a word(s) here... It negates the less than subtle nuance of each platform. The words you would use to describe an item on say Amazon, will be far different than they would be on Etsy. You want your "Voice" ( words ) to match who will be reading them.

          As an exercise, go look up a type of item on each of the platforms you are using and read descriptions... They WILL read VERY differently. It took a whole lot of practice on my part to learn how to write like an Artsy hey man hippie type when posting on Etsy. ( I have a engineering degree and am far from artsy or hippie ) It took a whole lot of discipline to throttle back the words when posting on Amazon, and on eBay it comes down to ( for me anyways ) in giving as many item details as possible so the end user has little to no questions as to what they will be getting.

          In regards to "not good at taking pictures"... GET BETTER... of all the things you can do in eCommerce, photos is probably the #1 variable that will create success. Binge watch Peter.. look for others that with product photography videos. If memory serves me correct Etsy has some good material to read on the subject. BUT first and for most invest in a small light box ( https://www.amazon.com/s?k=small+lig...f=nb_sb_noss_2 ) something like these... get one that has the LEDS already built in and trust me, You WILL feel better ( more confident ) about the photos you will get with something like this.
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    • Profile picture of the author DABK
      I know. I am on a bunch of groups where people do that. It does not matter what they (those competitors do), it matters what you do.


      You have three options:
      1. do not participate
      2. do what the others do, with the same low results
      3. do something different. I suggest you take this option. It will take some effort, but should you be providing useful or entertaining info, interspersed with sale pitches, you have a good chance of getting sales.


      Are you a member of the Warroom? There's a guy Addams there, has a great guide to making money with affiliate marketing... Covers how to use facebook groups (and other media).



      Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

      @DABK - I am on other groups but all I get is more competition, if an interested person actually lands in one of those everyone are jumping them with low ball offers that are just too low.

      @frank-donovan - I am on Etsy, but the traffic is just not there, same problem as the website. I price my rings low as I want people to actually afford them ) there is not that much work and the profit is 400% at least.

      @Jeffery - I don't have the means nor the money to invest in other products, I have to find a way to sell what I have. 10 - 20 sales a month is my target. It's not much, I don't want to make thousands, I want hundreds first

      My website is clondir[dot]com - please have a look and let me know if you have any improvement suggestions. Please don't take this link as advertisment, I know better than that
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  • Profile picture of the author Matthew Stanley
    Yep - Etsy the place to be for this stuff (and love Frank's suggestions re: pricing differentiation versus race to bottom).

    This Marketplace report is imo helpful. Etsy provides trends by season as well as examples of top sellers by category, including jewelry. https://www.etsy.com/seller-handbook...s/925709481071
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  • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
    Try a ad on Facebook Market Place, free to advertise there, a little different than running paid facebook ads or promoting to your facebook group. Have you also tried Craigslist another free site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jamell
    Are you producing content that's relevant to your audiences need .There are several other people in the market with hand made crafts l.What makes your products unique and much more valuable than the others .And you are having to lower your prices which indicates to me 1 You trying to lure people in to buy 2 You products are superior to the others in the market.

    How many times a day do you post tutorials meaning demonstration videos?
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  • Diamonds are rare.
    Diamonds are forever.
    Diamonds are a symbol of love.

    That wasn't always the case.

    Diamonds, at one stage were selling for practically nothing. No one wanted them until De Beers created an advertising campaign centered around Diamonds being a symbol of romance; a symbol of love. They made them exclusive. Hiked up the price. Targeted men buying engagement rings. BOOM! Now look at them?

    The product is only as valuable as the perception created in the mind of the ideal prospect. Diamonds aren't even a brand. It's a 'thing'. Doesn't matter.

    It's not YOUR story. No one really cares about you or your story. Not saying it doesn't have a part to play. However, it's THEIR story that matters. How can you tie your 'thing' into their thing? What desire can you tap into? Be creative.

    If more traffic was the answer, you would have made at least a few sales already. More of nothing is still nothing. Marketing is about tapping into people's desires and tying your product at the hip.

    It's Xmas now. How can you make your product the perfect Xmas gift? Not just another piece of jewellery, but something unique; different? If I buy your jewellery how will it tell the person I give it as a gift that it means something special? That the gift itself is a sign of my____ for that person.?

    Just spitballing. But something to consider, or mess around with.
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    Saying you are overwhelmed because there's too much information,
    is like saying you're fat because there's too much food.
    Bad information = overwhelm. Bad food = overweight.
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    • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
      It makes a lot of sense, start with me, how I make them and the process and shift the narrative towards the client. Thanks a lot!

      Do you have by any chance a website as an example? An idea starts to form, buy I still need a framework

      Really helpful stuff guys!
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  • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
    As Frank mentioned, rather than just a few pages of pictures, tell your Website Visitors more about yourself and -- more importantly -- your jewellery. You could even consider adding some Direct Response Selling. For example:

    "How Would You Like To Help Protect The
    Environment ... And Look Super-Fashionable To
    Your Friends And Family?"


    We live in a time where it's important that everyone does their
    part in helping to protect the environment ...
    [Then talk about the "problems" and "concerns" of using traditional
    materials -- like diamonds, gold, and precious metals -- to make
    jewellery. Then the benefits of People buying jewellery made
    from recycled materials. And anything else about your jewellery
    that you think People would be interested in.]

    [Then do a "30-Day Hold Offer"]
    "For a limited time I will send you this ring -- For FREE --
    and if you don't absolutely love it ... [Cancelling Instructions] ..."
    Don't copy any of that word-for-word, it's just an example of what to consider.
    HTH
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    "Each problem has hidden in it an opportunity so powerful that it literally dwarfs the problem. The greatest success stories were created by people who recognized a problem and turned it into an opportunity."―Joseph Sugarman
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    • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
      I was working on something like that to send to the users in the email after, but it's a good idea to add it to the website as well. This thread is gold. All the pieces of information I got. Some of them I already started applying.
      Thanks a lot!
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  • Profile picture of the author beachberry
    Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

    Hey guys,

    I make handmade jewellery from recycled materials, mostly wood: rings, necklaces, etc. - the products are high quality and priced low - the profit margin is quite good as I don't pay for materials, just my work.
    First, don't give up fast, you seem to love what you do and have skills and a passion, this is more than enough for a good success.


    2nd: not all handmade products are sellable, unfortunately, not everyone out there may like jewelries from wood for example, you are in VERY specific niche, it is all about finding someone that like handmade products and value them, again, it is not easy to find these customers, specifically when you are working in fashion that keep changing every month.
    Your business may not be failing, there maybe no demands for the type of handmade business you are in, you need to do research and see what people are buying and what they like and adopt to that, not every hobby can be a profitable business, so you shouldn't think your business is failing, the whole concept maybe not what you thought it would be.


    I know this answer may not be what you would like to hear, I still feel that you can do what you like and turn your passion into something profitable, can you post pics of what you have done. This way, we can get a better idea of what you are doing and possibly find some solutions.
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    Business Consulting -https://linatwaian.net

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    • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
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  • Profile picture of the author Fnstraka
    You have a very practical physical product that I think can do well when with the right platform.

    Have you tried the Pinterest platform? As it has a lot of crafty, project type of product selling. You can find all kinds of inspirational ideas on how to attract buyers.

    Innovation is the era we live in now and have the ability to create something like that from recycling materials is a great mindset. With these holidays coming, many people will be greatly interested in your product if you put it out there right. I admire your creativity.
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  • A gift as an anniversary present has been done a million times already. You need to create demand, not chase it.

    If I have a friend (I have none) who is mad about saving the environment, and I give them a piece of jewellery hand crafted from environmentally friendly material; that's a nice gift.

    Not enough though.

    You want that ring to be accompanied with a special booklet. Inside it tells a powerful story about how the ring was crafted from environmentally friendly materials. And the person who bought it as a gift for you, loves that about you.

    The gift is not the ring. It's not the environmentally friendly story. It's the fact that the person who gave you the gift appreciates that about you. Both parties get something from this.

    If I give you a gift on your birthday, well that's expected. Nothing special about that. If I give you a random gift on a plain Tuesday, well that's just weird. But if I give you a gift on a random Tuesday, that has special meaning to you; something I came across that made me think of you because of what you believe, or stand for; that does mean something.

    You are now selling the story, not the jewellery. The buyer is now purchasing status (a considerate friend), not just an object. The receiver is not just getting a piece of jewellery, they are getting something much more, a personal gift specifically chosen with them in mind, from a friend, or partner, who cares about their beliefs. A gift with deeper meaning. A gift worth talking about with their other friends, which in turn helps you sell more.

    This only works if the story is one that elevates the status of the person buying the gift, and makes the receiver think that it's more than a piece of jewellery.

    You see now why YOUR story is irrelevant?

    Each piece of jewellery could have a certain word, or phrase engraved that encapsulates the meaning behind the object; a story if you will. A story that speaks to the character of the person wearing it. They wouldn't buy this for themselves by the way. But when it is given as a gift, it has much deeper meaning.

    A story of passion. A story of wealth. A story of respect. A story of strength. You could list out 5 different stories that say something specific about the person who receives the gift, and a message with meaning from the person who is giving it to them.

    You sell the story. You don't sell the object.

    As a positioning mechanism, you ONLY market the product as a gift someone buys for the person in their life who has a SPECIFIC character trait, or belief that they want them to know they appreciate.

    Or you could just sell a piece of jewellery like the millions of other people around the world.
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    Saying you are overwhelmed because there's too much information,
    is like saying you're fat because there's too much food.
    Bad information = overwhelm. Bad food = overweight.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
      Originally Posted by Declan O Flaherty View Post

      You sell the story. You don't sell the object.

      As a positioning mechanism, you ONLY market the product as a gift someone buys for the person in their life who has a SPECIFIC character trait, or belief that they want them to know they appreciate.

      Or you could just sell a piece of jewellery like the millions of other people around the world
      Hi Declan: I just had to say "Thanks" for the great post/advice. I learned something about Marketing/Positioning. You know what you're talking about. : )
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      "Each problem has hidden in it an opportunity so powerful that it literally dwarfs the problem. The greatest success stories were created by people who recognized a problem and turned it into an opportunity."―Joseph Sugarman
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    Check out the site 4ocean it's a 'cause site' but the approach is amazing and they have sold a LOT of products.

    It's the story that sells - not the little bracelets made of cord and beads (there are 4 of them hanging on a vase in my office). It's a charitable site but every product sold has a heart tugging story to it. When I look at the not-very-pretty bracelets I have - I think helping remove THAT piece of trash may have saved a dolphin. It's a 'feel good' purchase. That accounts for two of my bracelets - it's also a feel good gift which accounts for the other two.

    I think your products are much more attractive - but you need a story or a cause that you can articulate. You also need some pics of your product ON people. I have small hands with long fingers - don't wear 'clunky' and hard to tell the size of something without another object to relate to it.

    You might consider rotating the 'stock' rather than showing every version/color of what is basically the same ring style. Or make up a story for each of your products - to give each product a personality of its own.
    Keep the story endings upbeat - people will buy what makes them feel good - not so much what makes them feel guilty. Just a thought.

    I'm not advising you to 'go do something' - but to sit back and think your way through the process. WHY you want to do this - what your goals are - what you have to offer that might capture and hold a visitor's interest...how you want buyers to FEEL about your products.

    As for 'raising your price' - that's not the point. Your price should realistic. The cost (if any) of supplies, the usage/depreciation costs of any machinery used, the value you put on your time spent ....are your base and then you decide your profit margin.

    I had a good friend years ago who sold handmade items on ebay. She was a co-worker and was so proud of her every increasing sales I was happy for her. Then one day she said her husband told her she had to 'quit my business'. Turns out every handmade purse she sold for $15....cost her $24 to MAKE. This is a true story - she was so happy with 'sales' and working so hard to keep up with the sales...she totally lost her connection with the idea of 'profitability'. She could have lowered her production costs easily - raised her prices drastically - with the quality of her products she would have had fewer sales, less stress, and real profit. Instead, she quit. SHE did not believe her products were worth more than bargain basement prices.

    Keep in mind when pricing that not everyone is looking for 'a deal' - some are looking for beauty - for a unique item - for a product with a story that will impress their friends. And you can always offer a 'closeout' section with deals as well.


    RE: PopcornIndiana - yes, there is a township named 'popcorn' - likely one of the small towns with only a few homes that dot the midwest. It's south of Indianapolis and about 2-3 hrs from where I live. BUT - that is a food item and, though the site doesn't mention brokers, that product has a big reach.can be found in walmart, kroger, walgreen, cvs, target, amazon. One stat site claims the company has 37 employees and generates almost 64 million in revenue. Not a one man shop but the 'hokey' sells!
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    • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
      Awesome! Now I am in the process of reframing the whole website with the advices already in this thread, which tend to have a common base. I will try to implement every advice given here, including yours. Thanks a lot!
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    • Profile picture of the author Matthew Stanley
      Darn it, Kay ... because of this post I am now the proud (?) owner of a not-especially-attractive braided bracelet and utensil set
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    ....what did I tell you? You feel GOOD about the purchase, don't you? You can imagine a dolphin swimming freely with a smile on his little face....and you (yes, YOU) did that!


    If you can make a person feel good about himself or herself - you can sell them anything they can afford to buy...and a few things they can't afford.
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    • Profile picture of the author Matthew Stanley
      Yup. Nice little dopamine hit of the day (that feels much better and longer lasting than the more fleeting ones provided by the empty calories of social media).
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  • Profile picture of the author moganna
    Hi, with your handmade business, you can make the cool cash from it if you can harness it very well. You have a good number of social media engagement but what i'll suggest is to do a video tutorial as you're making your beads and share on social medium especially YouTube. People engagement more with video before you know, you'll starts getting subscribers and with that, you can earn from adsense. You can also do facebook ads to target the right audience that'll patronize your business. If you can implement these tips, you wouldn't need any job offer from any big company.
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  • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
    As some of you have suggested, I have done this:

    1. completely changed the site design
    2. added a small story on the front page
    3. white background for the photos (still a few to take)
    4. Tweaked the site speed (it's a heavy theme, can't do more without spending money)
    5. Gathered ~1000 emails from the giveaway (remains to announce the winner on Instagram)

    If anyone want to see the site, please leave a message (can't post it here because it's advertisment)

    Any constructive criticism, as always, welcome.

    Thank you!
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

      As some of you have suggested, I have done this:

      1. completely changed the site design
      2. added a small story on the front page
      3. white background for the photos (still a few to take)
      4. Tweaked the site speed (it's a heavy theme, can't do more without spending money)
      5. Gathered ~1000 emails from the giveaway (remains to announce the winner on Instagram)

      If anyone want to see the site, please leave a message (can't post it here because it's advertisment)

      Any constructive criticism, as always, welcome.

      Thank you!
      I hope you don't mind... We can use this as a lesson for all of those reading this. The site being discussed is clondir.com. The first variation was a page full of products. And here we are with variant #2. Is it better? by all means. Is it going to be more effective in selling at this point? and the answer is no.

      I would set the bar at gap.com. THIS is in a lot of ways the goal. You can read The Gap's quarterly and year end reports and realize they spend a kick ton of money with consulting to optimize their multiple sites. Their spend becomes our gain, IF and only IF we pay attention and understand what it is they are doing. I visit this site OFTEN.. to see any minute changes and in some cases some more drastic ones. The site is ever changing. And this means they are testing testing and testing.

      So compare your home page to theirs... Do they have images? or do they use images and words to convey a message? They are setting a tone... AND in the center image ( presently as of today ) there is a call to action, "Shop New Arrivals". Do you have a call to action above the fold? and the nav bar does not count - so the answer is no.

      Because you are using a slider... on the image the rune jewelry you will want a call to action that presents your rune jewelry. on another one you would want to present "The perfect gift" and send them in that direction. On another one you want to present an offer such as @Declan O Flaherty has mentioned.. and yet another one an offer to those seeking a 5th anniversary gift.

      This is an added section here because right now I want the focus to be on the home page but this is absolutely worth noting. The links from the above slider images should not go to a page full of images. They should goto static page that are designed for each specific selling point. IE Holiday, 5th Anniversary, @Declan O Flaherty "Thinking of you", New Arrivals, etc etc etc These newly created pages become LANDING PAGES that you can specifically target an audience and drop them to a page that is consistent with your message - vs dropping them to a wide catch home page

      So back to the home page. next down is some little known facts... looks great but which is more important.. fact or selling? Very simple rule here... when you are building a page and I mean ANY page for a website, you have to understand the information needs to literally be stacked from top to bottom based on its importance. TOP most important, BOTTOM least important. So looking at GAP as the model.. right now "Gifting" is important... the COZY.. then Christmas, and then back into basics. Over the next few weeks you will be able to watch "Importance" change, and Christmas will gain. Your site is suggesting that facts about Romania are more important than product.

      I get the Romania reference... but think about how the page is read... Facts about Romania.. and then the text follows that giver reference to why the Romanian trivia is there. these will need to be flipped.

      As a whole how I would lay this page out:
      • Navigation
      • Images with messages and links
      • banner of Christmas idea products
      • who WE ( ill get into this in a moment ) are.
      • Trivia
      • Another banner Thinking of you
      • Where you get your upcycled/ recycled materials
      • Another banner with Runes
      • Text that ties your heritage to runes and have links to a page that have meanings for each etc.

      Hi my name is Robert is a start. but is it YOU Robert that is the BRAND or is it "CLONDIR" that is the brand?

      Thank you for visiting Clondir.com. The Owner Robert, grew up In Romania and had watched years of deforestation in his home country. The Mission of Clondir is to create a natural resource based product, in an environmentally friendly manor. Through a network of sources we collect bits and pieces of material to create our hand crafted products.

      We are currently based in the UK, but the owners heart is still with his home country Romania. Natural resources need to be replaced. In an effort to do so, we donate 10% of our earnings to a non profit organization in Romania that plants trees.


      Some things that you will want to work on... You really need an "About US" page. #1 Google really likes it when this page is present. #2 it will give you a better opportunity go in depth with your story. #3 It will give you an opportunity to talk more Romania and its forestry industry - along with the environmental impact of managed forestry is needed.

      You will need to implement the lander pages. Home pages are great, but ULTIMATELY this is not a page you want to send traffic. People may search "5th anniversary gift ideas" or the like and landing on your home page is not going to help them. People may type "Oak wood rings" and again, your home page is not going to help them. Same with "Wood Rune Jewelry" ( which by the way is going to be your product keyword set with the least amount overall competition - just saying )

      In your efforts on social media you will then be able to transition from "we sell hand crafted wood jewelry" to one post being "We sell wood Rune necklaces" and then link to that specific lander. or "We sell 5th Anniversary wood rings" and then send them to that lander. and so on.

      I hope this helps you, as well as anyone else reading this!
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    @odo13tz

    I see you have been busy... What do you think of the changes? Do they make sense to you? Are you starting to see the greater mechanism that is what a website should be to actually produce sales? The pine tree image is striking... Love it!

    If you have questions by all means ask. I will forever help those that are helping themselves! Keep up the good work, it will be worth it!
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  • Profile picture of the author Medon
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  • Profile picture of the author Stephen Floyd
    My suggestions are as follows:

    1) Clean up the homepage. Nothing about your mission statement, the forests of Romania or your offer to plant a tree. The focus should be only on why wearing your rings is a positive experience for the customer. The rest can follow after people have decided to buy.

    2) Craft jewelry that's representative of Romanian culture and pick evocative names, not simply lists of materials. The goal would be for wearers to feel a connection to the region without being there. My initial inclination is mahogany with a red band called "Transyllvanian Nightmare." This may be an irreligious suggestion, but nerd stuff sells (I'm currently wearing an aerospace-grade titanium wedding ring wth a band of polished T-Rex bone, and I bought it primarily so I could nerd out about it to others).

    3) Eliminate the blog. You have two entries that haven't been updated in a year.

    4) Use photos of people wearing rings, not just the rings themselves. Again, the focus should vividly illustrating consumer experience.

    Otherwise things look good. Ring sizing instructions were straightforward, as was check-out. As far as user experience, you have a good website. Your messaging just needs to be strengthened and brought into focus around how the customer will experience owning your products.

    Best of luck.
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by Stephen Floyd View Post

      My suggestions are as follows:

      1) Clean up the homepage. Nothing about your mission statement, the forests of Romania or your offer to plant a tree. The focus should be only on why wearing your rings is a positive experience for the customer. The rest can follow after people have decided to buy.
      Have to agree with this... Story and mission are 2 different things. You have to pick a USP ( Unique Selling Perspective ) Is it rings from upcycled / recycled materials, or is it your Romanian heritage?

      Being a woodworker myself ( in my down time to relax haha ) I understand there is a bit more to the process. I am guessing you have a ring press of sorts to size the metal etc... or you are full on machining the metal... I keep fighting the "want" to buy a metal lathe...

      All of that aside there is a next level satisfaction from making something new from "Old" materials - THIS also plays in the buyer experience... Within your item descriptions adding something like the material for this ring came from X ( an old door from my neighbors 75 year old house as an example ) adds a whole other aspect to the "Experience" that Stephen brings up.

      I think the issue is you live in the UK... so we can only assume your materials are coming from there vs from Romania. But, as noted in the next section your heritage can play a part n the story but, should probably not be the main story. Make sense?

      Originally Posted by Stephen Floyd View Post

      2) Craft jewelry that's representative of Romanian culture and pick evocative names, not simply lists of materials. The goal would be for wearers to feel a connection to the region without being there. My initial inclination is mahogany with a red band called "Transyllvanian Nightmare." This may be an irreligious suggestion, but nerd stuff sells (I'm currently wearing an aerospace-grade titanium wedding ring with a band of polished T-Rex bone, and I bought it primarily so I could nerd out about it to others).
      Throwing the heritage in along with the material coming from the neighbors 75 year old door and no one in the market space is competing... Nerding out is good as pointed out.


      Originally Posted by Stephen Floyd View Post

      3) Eliminate the blog. You have two entries that haven't been updated in a year.
      I am going to disagree here... I agree 2 posts is not enough, but do not agree it should be wiped... it needs to be expanded. With your Rune pieces in particular you should have a write up for each letter ( as in a separate post for each ) and link over to products for that specific letter. I personally am partial to the letter "L" being very earth and wood by nature, needing water for balance. The one and only tattoo I have is "Laguz".

      Originally Posted by Stephen Floyd View Post

      4) Use photos of people wearing rings, not just the rings themselves. Again, the focus should vividly illustrating consumer experience.
      This is a tough one. When you go out and look at mainstream jewelers this is not a so common image. Looking at the big boys ( Kays and Zales ) and I am looking at these because they are going to be the ones with the budgets to optimize their sites for sales. One has a ONE image per product, and the other has none at all. ( I will note all images are on white backgrounds LOL )

      If I had not looked, I would have assumed the above statement to be true... but not so sure of that. That being said... let me say this. The images you have on your site or platforms to SELL are one thing... the images you might share on Instagram or Facebook will be different... THESE, I would suggest, the use of people. Advertising - illustrate the consumer experience. Selling - focus specifically on the product.

      Stephan GREAT insight.. thanks for sharing - and welcome to the WF!
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      • Profile picture of the author Stephen Floyd
        Thanks for the welcome, and the analysis. I"m new to marketing, but have been in copywriting in some form or another for the last decade. I look forward to picking up tricks of the trade from fellow forum members
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        • Profile picture of the author savidge4
          I think as marketers, and I think specifically within this eco system (WF) there is this very straight and narrow path in terms "Sales" or a "Sales Page". All of these ideas that we see floating around on the probably millions of pages of WF that follow that path to one degree or another work. However, it only works if there is a specific single item being sold, that can be targeted to a single specific buyer.

          E-Commerce is none of this.. it is actually the opposite end of the spectrum. odo13tz's website is a GREAT example of this. He sells rings ( I understands he sells more but for simplification I will drop it down to rings only ). There are a plethora of reasons why someone would be in the market for a ring. And for every reason there is a variant of targets within each reason.

          Anyone that has read any number of my posts here will understand I am very much a fan of the one page one purpose principle. So here we are discussing a "Home Page" and it's purpose. So lets not reinvent the wheel here and look at some examples. Can you go to Gap.com and BUY an item directly from the home page? Can you go to Zales.com and BUY an item directly from the home page? Homedepot.com? Amazon.com?

          There is an overwhelmingly consistent answer to the question. Now we have to keep in mind here, that these companies between them are spending Millions if not Billions of dollars to optimize selling product. So what is the purpose of the homepage?

          FORM follows FUNCTION right? One page one purpose... Is a home page a sales page or is it an opportunity to allow traffic to determine its path? 5th anniversary rings... there should be a link for that. Wedding bands, there should be a link for that. Transylvania Nightmare rings, there should be a link for that.

          I am going to side track a bit here and suggest the Transylvania Nightmare Ring idea is KILLER. odo13tz, I understand because you are actually from Romania and understand its culture.. you are missing how the rest of the world would look at things. Go do a search for "Gypsies" and images of women overloaded in Jewelry is prevalent... not realistic I understand, but CULTURE IE movies Etc.. has drawn a different image in most peoples minds

          So lets break down User Experience... I get the communication here about communicating with the end user... but as a web developer User Experience or UX is a whole other thing... Its the efficiency of the use of a website to find what it is you are looking for so that "In Theory" you could buy it.

          In many cases UX can and will start OFF PAGE.. say on Instagram... Images of the Transylvania Nightmare Ring should have a little text line on the image that has the URL say condir.com/transylvania creating a direct path of SEEING, having interest, and acting on said interest. Notice the home page is not included in this path.

          In advertising for E-Commerce... the Home Page should NEVER be the landing page of choice - ( unless you get BIG like the companies listed above ) You advertise to sell, One Page on Purpose, the traffic should be directed to a page that sells what it is being advertised.

          The #1 failure in a sales funnel is the gap between the link to getting a visitor to your site, and the page they land on. If the end user clicks on a link or image about the Transylvania Nightmare Ring, they EXPECT to land on a page that is about that. Anything less than... and way more often than not, they turn right back around ( bounce ) and go on their merry way. Sending someone interested in the Transylvania Nightmare Ring to a Home Page that is designed to segregate non targeted traffic and expecting them to track down that item is simply failure.

          SO I can hear the voice in most peoples head right now.. "For the love of God man, that is a lot of work!!!" And YES, yes it is... However, this is the advantage that small retailors have over large retailors. We can afford the time to build out a blog post for each item we sell. More specifically we can create a post with different targets in mind for the same item. We then also have the actual sales page.

          So using the example "Transylvania Nightmare Ring" A post for the ring using direct response.. a post for a men's Transylvania Nightmare Ring, and a post for a woman's Transylvania Nightmare Ring. We then have the 2 product sales pages ( men's and woman's ) Play this out 30, 40 100 times and you all the sudden have this wealth of content that starts doing work on the likes of Google. Add a consistent effort on the likes of Instagram and other social media platforms, and traffic and sales start to become consistent.

          THIS IS NOT a get rich quick strategy... this is a long play... this is a commitment to consistent execution of content... THIS is what success looks like in the Crafty handmade handcrafted world. anything less ends up as a "failure"

          Hope that Helps!
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          • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
            Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

            THIS is what success looks like in the Crafty handmade handcrafted world. anything less ends up as a "failure"
            Just out of curiosity -- how can you be certain of that? Because most "eCommerce" sites follow the same design/approach? Would something like/similar to my Homepage idea combined with yours (for other Pages etc.) work? Thanks. : )

            P.S.
            I suppose a good question to ask would be "What is odo13tz really selling?" (It's not just jewellery.) My approach would be that he's selling:
            "Helping to protect the environment (which is a feel-good experience) and to look fashionable."

            However I'm only a Student of Marketing and Copywriting so I could be wrong.
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            • Profile picture of the author savidge4
              Originally Posted by Jonathan 2.0 View Post

              Just out of curiosity -- how can you be certain of that? Because most "eCommerce" sites follow the same design/approach?
              how can I be certain? #1 I am involved in this space ( Hand crafted, Home Made, etc ).

              #2 The thing that I am best at, is selling product. - and build websites.

              #3 You are trying to compete with a subconscious expectation of what a store home page looks like. This is REALLY a big deal actually. - think of it this way.. if you are driving around town in a 2019 BMW... outside looking in, the expectation is you are well off. If you are driving in a beater 1986 Toyota that expectation disappears. You can look and act like a Big corp online.. or you can be artsy and different and have to deal with the increased need to building trust, for someone to buy from you.

              #4 again... you cant think you are going to go out and reinvent the wheel here... "Because most "eCommerce" sites follow the same design/approach" is a pathway to what success looks like... Success on their part that has come at great expense through trial and error and massive amounts of testing. The adage of finding something that is successful and replicating it comes to mind.

              Originally Posted by Jonathan 2.0 View Post

              Would something like/similar to my Homepage idea combined with yours (for other Pages etc.) work? Thanks. : )
              this starts to get a bit deeper... is this the USP? ( Handcrafted environmentally responsible products ) is that really such a Unique Selling Perspective? Can it be introduced on the home page - without question, and then followed up on the about us page would probably be the most appropriate path to take... and then some follow up content on the blog about said topic would never hurt any.


              Originally Posted by Jonathan 2.0 View Post

              I suppose a good question to ask would be "What is odo13tz really selling?" (It's not just jewellery.) My approach would be that he's selling:
              "Helping to protect the environment (which is a feel-good experience) and to look fashionable."
              Being end user centric I would suggest the question more in line with actually selling should read something like what exactly is being searched that odo13tz is selling? In a previous post I dropped a not so minor tip that given the overall amount of search vs pages ratio for a term like rune jewelry would be somewhere I would focus.

              But lets look at some numbers... numbers for me help identify things like this and they are readily available. So lets do a few Google searches and all we need to look at is the "About X results" in the upper left corner.

              List of terms:
              • Rings - 3,560,000,000 pages
              • Wedding Rings - 421,000,000 pages
              • Wood wedding Rings - 106,000,000 pages
              • Eco Friendly Wedding rings - 13,200,000 pages
              • Upcycled Wedding rings - 4,650,000 pages

              So here is my theory on this <wink>, The greater the number the greater the competition. The greater the number, the greater the work in terms of SEO becomes. It is my suggestion that beginning or starting from nothing you are looking for a subniche that has 1,000,000 results or less.

              Terms like:
              wood rune jewelry - 2,010,000 pages
              wood rune necklace - 2,630,000 pages

              The number is above the wanted 1,000,000 but, go in and look at the serp listings. Etsy, Pinterest, and a couple of Amazon pages... Let me just say that having an Etsy page ranked in the top 10 let alone #1 is a super human result... OR there is no content created to unseat such a listing. THIS is the weakness in this niche. This is what someone could use to their advantage to start creating traffic in probably pretty short order.

              Kinda rule #1 in selling.. is there has to be someone on the other end to sell to.

              The question really is more in line with its not what they are selling but HOW they are selling. Buying a ring is the initial thought... search as it were... buying eco friendly is an added bonus, and probably not the one specific reason. Planting trees is a bonus, but probably not the reason. But you get into the ring is "wood", and it is handcrafted with upcycled materials starts pushing How the item is sold and blending it with what specifically is sold. make sense?

              So let me point you towards what I would deem a "failure" but in this case I am sure it sorts itself out.... if you look at youtube.com/watch?v=wTBld8AIupw - a guy I watch Alec Steele. Right about the 1:55 mark he starts in on his new product he is selling. Look at the information block on the video and you see all kinds of links but NOT one directly to the purchase page of the product ( trousers ) THIS is a e-commerce fail. So the end user then has to go to his website alecsteeleshop.com ( home page ) in order to find this product.

              This site is getting there... but is not all the way there... Using the site is clunky, the home page is clunky. Minus Alec's obvious traffic advantages.. the 2 pages are very similar at this point. Many Many Many fall flat on some of the more basic less spoken principles of e-commerce.
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              • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
                Thanks savidge4. I appreciate the response. You know your stuff. : )

                Admittedly, I don't have any experience in this Niche. That said, I would love to see a split test done for my "Direct Response Approach" and your "Store Front Approach." I would create the page for odo13tz because I think it's a great cause ... However I simply don't have the time at the moment.

                Anyway, thanks for sharing your experience.
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              • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
                @savidge4 Your input did not go past me. Today I made 5 wood rune pendants, minimalist and we'll made - I can make them in less than 5 minutes. First went on Etsy today. Tomorrow I will list the rest and make some more.

                FFS, I will flood Etsy with those damn things Price them low because they are nothing to make and cut the competition hopefully I will see some results.

                You are right, the competition for rune pendants is not great, but the demand is low as well, anyhow I am working on them. £13 - free shipping UK - £2 worldwide.
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                • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
                  Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

                  @savidge4 Your input did not go past me. Today I made 5 wood rune pendants, minimalist and we'll made - I can make them in less than 5 minutes. First went on Etsy today. Tomorrow I will list the rest and make some more.

                  FFS, I will flood Etsy with those damn things Price them low because they are nothing to make and cut the competition hopefully I will see some results.

                  You are right, the competition for rune pendants is not great, but the demand is low as well, anyhow I am working on them. £13 - free shipping UK - £2 worldwide.
                  I live just a few miles from the headquarters of SIGNET JEWELERS, and know many people who work there. One of the areas largest employers, or was.

                  They are in the process of closing hundreds of stores and shifting all that retail spend to E COMMERCE. The millions spent on the stores are being shifted to "owning" ecom, in several areas, including fashion (costume) as well as bridal and fine.

                  My point, the 2021 competition is going to be fierce, but, the DEMAND for personalization, customization and hand crafted fashion jewelry will skyrocket.

                  Yes, watch what these guys do, but, as a little David with your homemade sling shot, you can hit Goliath in his eye, with blinding speed and personal service.

                  If you can get your "thing" figured out, you are in a great position...but there is work ahead.

                  GordonJ

                  PS I've seen small fortunes (for one man biz) made in the off beat, fringe, outer areas of jewelry...be it in astrology, mythology, religion, or charms, amulets and "health". You have a lot to work with, except TIME.
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                  • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
                    I will keep and eye on those guy to see their evolution and strategy. Thanks!

                    I have modified the title of that listing and added a new - custom designed rune:

                    (cannot link to sales page in forum post)

                    What do you think about the idea?

                    I have listed a ring on eBay, now I wait for the results
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        • Profile picture of the author savidge4
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          I started a handmade business a while back while working as a caregiver. Recently, after relocating with the house, getting a job seems to be a herculean task and I thought that maybe, just maybe, I can actually make some sales.
          Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

          Third, you are WOEFULLY underpriced for your work. 11.99 low end to 75 upper? NO. Take that Buffalo Horn and Mahogany at 75 and move it to 225.00. I would advise you at least double all of your prices.
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          I can make them in less than 5 minutes.
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          anyhow I am working on them. £13 - free shipping UK - £2 worldwide.
          The above snippets are in order as they were posted... I have obviously bolded some text here... You admitting you are accustomed to having a "Job" ( and I am oh not one to bash this concept in the slightest. ) Then someone ( Sorry Gordon, you are a "someone" right now ) suggesting you need to increase your prices. We then have you reverting to the idea you have a job, and that TIME is the value in your product. And lastly, you lowballing YOUSELF.

          Where is the disconnect? - and there is indeed one here. I will suggest... to absolutely no fault of your own, you have been conditioned probably from birth that you will get a job.. you will retire and then you will die. YOUR value within this frame work is the 40 hours a week you work... and the hourly wage you earn. THIS is inherited thinking. This is NORMAL thinking.

          YOU have to break this pattern... you have entered the world of NOT the employee.. but YOU are now the employer. VALUE is no longer in time, value is in the notion of WHY. watch this: ( youtube.com/watch?v=IPYeCltXpxw ) to start to have a better understanding of the principle.

          Above you suggest you will sell your items for £13 - free shipping UK - £15 worldwide. I would suggest 1 price and 1 price only... £15 - free shipping. With every UK purchase.. you pocket an extra £2 right?

          BUT if you pay attention to @GordonJ and INCREASE your prices, your not making £15, you are making £45? £75? per 5 minutes of work. THIS happens when TIME is no longer the factor that determines value.
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        • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          I started listing my stuff on Etsy as people are going there with the mindset of a buyer.
          Originally Posted by Nazrul3201 View Post

          Please make an account on etsy.com. It is very helpful for selling. I work here and I get too much benefit from the site. There is a lot of customer on this site.
          Actually if you read the thread, you would know the OP is on Esty. Also if you read the thread you might have learned something.
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    • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
      @Stephen Floyd - I had my website like that. Some said that it's too clean
      Romanians, from history don't really wear jewellery, playing the dracula card is a bit on the nose and a lot of the materials that I use for my rings are not really "romanian".

      The Blog is there because "everyone has one" factor and its expected. I do write from time to time - this time was only 2 times - as I AM NOT a copywrighter and I really have to squeeze my brain for a new article

      We seem to be on the same wavelenght when it comes to the simplicity of the site, but as some mentioned in this thread, I, somehow have to come up with a story, otherwise I can use Etsy or Amazon Handmase for my sales - which I wouldn't mind if I would have some traffic ON ANY OF THEM

      The site was more like a hail Marry to see if I can actually get some traffic, but still nothing.

      Thanks for the input, really appreciate it.

      @savidge4 Hey there again!
      My rings are from recycled materials - the antlers are for Romania, Buffalo horns from Nigeria and the wood from whatever. The steel bars are from someones skip as they were redecorating their house It's not about heritage, it's about "being green" as a point of view, but I am willing to drop that, as I will still plant trees even if people don't know about it, as I did until now

      I will try to make more articles for the blog, even if no one is readind them, but maybe for the SEO side of them. I don't know the meaning of every rune but I can study.

      I make my rings "the proper way" no corners cut . I measure and cut the steel, fit the inlays and put a finish on, then polish them to hell and back.

      Don't get a metal lathe unless you want misery brought into your hosehold x) They are fiddly and the tools will cost you and arm and a leg.

      I use a small proxxon lathe, beautiful machine.
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      • Profile picture of the author Stephen Floyd
        You do somehow have to come up with a story, but it should be the client's story. Walk them through where they are now, what your product does to improve their life, and where they will be after they make a purchase. If no such story exists yet, invent something. The cultural connection to Romania does not need to be literal, in the sense that the materials came from the region or the jewelry is what Romanians wear. People wear jewelry so they can talk about it, so just make up a memorable talking point.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
      Originally Posted by Stephen Floyd View Post

      1) Clean up the homepage. Nothing about your mission statement, the forests of Romania or your offer to plant a tree. The focus should be only on why wearing your rings is a positive experience for the customer. The rest can follow after people have decided to buy..
      Hi Stephen. Welcome to The Forum. : ) You provided some good advice however I have to disagree with that above. In fact I would make odo13tz's Homepage into something of a "Direct Response Page" ... Including:


      1. [A compelling and relevant headline]
      2. [Information about what's happening and the importance of protecting the environment]
      3. [A picture of odo13tz and his story/ "Mission Statement"]
      4. [Information about odo13tz's jewellery including how they're made of out recycled materials and what that means for the environment]
      5. [Pictures/offers of some of his most popular products]
      6. [Testimonials ― about how the jewellery made them feel]
      7. [As a bonus a "Special Booklet" telling the story about the piece of jewellery]
      8. [More offers/risk-reversals]

      I would be very surprised if that approach didn't increase odo13tz's sales when compared with how his Website is now (and the traditional "store front" approach).

      Just my opinion.
      : )
      Signature
      "Each problem has hidden in it an opportunity so powerful that it literally dwarfs the problem. The greatest success stories were created by people who recognized a problem and turned it into an opportunity."―Joseph Sugarman
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      • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
        Good points! The problem is not increasing the sales, is GETTING ANY SALES because there is NO traffic. I now remember why I gave up CPA a few years back - the traffic just stopped
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        • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
          Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

          Good points! The problem is not increasing the sales, is GETTING ANY SALES because there is NO traffic. I now remember why I gave up CPA a few years back - the traffic just stopped
          First, experience with jewelry? Yes, a couple of decades, wrote a lot of direct response promotions for a 200 M dollar a year company, and jewelry brought in millions. Plus, I've sold rings from a kit I carried in my pocket.

          Second. You need a sale. You have rec'd a lot of GOOD solid advice for building your business for the future, but I don't see anything to help you make a sale TODAY, BUT I could have missed that.

          Third, you are WOEFULLY underpriced for your work. 11.99 low end to 75 upper? NO. Take that Buffalo Horn and Mahogany at 75 and move it to 225.00. I would advise you at least double all of your prices.

          The best thing you've got at your site is the story of trying to make your wife a ring, but there is some confusion, because it reads as if you reached 5 years then you didn't, clean that up, get the story right, and I would advise to lead with it.

          Now, as for the advice, I like what savidge4 has told you, and especially, ONE PAGE ONE PRODUCT and make that a landing page for whatever you are trying to sell.

          It appears, and I only have this thread to go on, is that you are CONFUSED about what to do, how and in which order to do it, but I could be wrong.

          As for a story, here is one example of a story used to sell a ring at eBay (no association) only for example sake:
          https://www.ebay.com/itm/The-Secret-...p2047675.l2557

          The story of St. Benedict.

          What is the story behind that low priced (75) Buffalo Horn and Mahogany ring.

          Where did the horn come from? In USA and in most of Africa, these are managed animals, providing food in N. America, and the horns are hard to come by. What is the story of Mahogany? How is it different from Oak, Cherry or Maple.

          We know it is harder, and has different properties.

          What is the FEELING the wearer will get when wearing this ring (picked because it is your highest offer, currently).

          I think GREAT CONFIDENCE, the fierceness of an African Buffalo, one of the most dangerous of big game. Endurance, since Mahogany wood has been found which is centuries old.

          When I put on this ring, for those special occasions, it becomes a touchstone, which fills me with confidence at the big meeting, having had this made just for me, and knowing I won't see anyone else with anything like this, I know I will ... make the sale, win the day, get my way.

          I suggest you put your most PROFITABLE thing up for sale, and write (or have written) a good story about it, and then put it up on eBay for a test. This, after upping your prices.

          I would think a short video of you at work, cutting the wood or metal, shaping, sizing it, showing the CRAFTSMANSHIP behind it, would go a long way too, plus, these sort of videos get a lot of views at YouTube, which should be a part of your future too.

          But, you need to sell something TODAY.

          It is fine to plan, and change things, but as you are seeing, NO selling. Go to eBay, put one THING for sale and keep hammering on it until it is sold, and set a much higher price, cause you can always go down.

          But like I say, it is only my two cents and you've already rec'd big dollars worth of advice, fair enough?

          GordonJ
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          • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
            @GordonJ I definitely need to do some sales today. It's been 2 week of work and chasing traffic but nothing to show for the effort. I started listing my stuff on Etsy as people are going there with the mindset of a buyer. All I got here is good advice, but honestly it's a bit over my skill set - I did try to implement what @savidge4 said and I feel that something is missing, I got the idea behind it all but I am limited of what I can do and that creates a bigger mess

            Can you give me an idea on how to bring traffic on this item, for example https://www.etsy.com/uk/listing/9089...l-pendant-rune

            Thanks a lot for your input and I will definitely try eBay, even thou I have no experience with that platform
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            • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
              Do you track the most popular searches on etsy? What are they in this area?.

              What do they offer in key word searches?

              It appears to me you've picked the most fierce platform online to sell handmade jewelry, with a lot of competition and some with years of selling. Tough nut to crack.

              As to the item you linked to, it is bland, boring and nothing special...although it doesn't have to be. See, on most selling platforms, you, like 99% are chasing TRAFFIC, as you say. The secret (and the how to) is to let them chase you. How?

              You must be different. You must do SOMETHING to separate from the herd. You can do this via:

              Being exclusive, unavailable, having a year waiting period, being the best, or any number of "branding" strategies. Unique, one of kind, attitude, disposition.

              Opposite of those serious types, are the FUN guys, the Warhols of the world. The witty, the insane, the irascible, the anti, or which ever AVATAR makes you feel comfortable.

              With your birth background, you might examine any number of personas to use. Maybe a lore master, a keeper of the tales of the crypt, the myth guy, man of mystery types.

              This woven in the story of WHY you started creating this stuff in the first place.

              As to this piece and your use of Geto Dacian as the first two words, how do you think that helps in searches? Tons of people searching for Geto or Dacian??? I think not.

              But there are a lot looking for LUCKY CHARMS, and...LOVE PENDANT...

              this Ancient Charm used in the times of Werewolves and Vampires in the Old Country (Transylvania), a Celtic Rune that led to good hunting is a perfect gift for that man or woman hunting for love.

              See, that is a bit of a different take on the piece than what you have. But it is only one. And whichever way you go, there should be a match between YOU and your art. And that might be one of the biggest obstacles for you, if you choose not to separate yourself from the competition, then you must learn from those that chase the traffic and catch it...and that's not me. But good luck if you do that.

              GordonJ


              Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

              @GordonJ I definitely need to do some sales today. It's been 2 week of work and chasing traffic but nothing to show for the effort. I started listing my stuff on Etsy as people are going there with the mindset of a buyer. All I got here is good advice, but honestly it's a bit over my skill set - I did try to implement what @savidge4 said and I feel that something is missing, I got the idea behind it all but I am limited of what I can do and that creates a bigger mess

              Can you give me an idea on how to bring traffic on this item, for example https://www.etsy.com/uk/listing/9089...l-pendant-rune

              Thanks a lot for your input and I will definitely try eBay, even thou I have no experience with that platform
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            • Profile picture of the author savidge4
              Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

              I did try to implement what @savidge4 said and I feel that something is missing, I got the idea behind it all but I am limited of what I can do and that creates a bigger mess
              A "website" is without question the HARDEST element in online sales. There are MORE ways to screw it up than you can shake a stick at, and the optimal percentage of success is closer to zero than most people are willing to admit.

              Wix and WordPress / WooCommerce and Shopify among the others make it sound like HEY.. plop some products in here and be a millionaire in the morning... UH NO... not even close.

              Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

              Can you give me an idea on how to bring traffic on this item, for example https://www.etsy.com/uk/listing/9089...l-pendant-rune
              If you go back to my very first post in this thread, I answered this question ( https://www.warriorforum.com/main-in...l#post11632532 ) You are going to have to hit Social Media hard. I left some resources to look at to maybe get that effort up to speed and working for you.

              go watch this real quick ( youtube.com/watch?v=lNuRoXag-0c ) A pretty cool back story as to why a couple of guys would start a coffee company. They started with a 1lb roaster on the back of a humvee for "Brothers"

              So in my thread on eBay, this post( https://www.warriorforum.com/warrior...l#post11497271 ) I get into what a listing should look like. I didn't get into this there but I will here. There is an expectation of what a sales page should look like in E-Commerce. The layout given in the link follows that pattern. I feel like I keep saying this over and over again in this thread but if you go look at the likes of GAP or Home Depot or Amazon, you will notice consistencies in how product pages are laid out. THIS becomes a subconscious requirement that has to be met to decrease any amount of "Friction" in the sales process. If you provide information out of the conditioned norm... you will actually increase friction, thus making it harder for someone to buy from you.
              • Product Description / overview
              • Product Specifications
                • Dimensions
                • Details

              Looking at your Gato Dacian necklace with pendant you are not following this structure.

              Start with a description of the item:

              ************************************************** ************

              The Dacian stag rune it is said to bring luck when hunting and represents wealth and skill. The pendant is handcrafted from upcycled / recycled mukwa wood and finished in a manor that the materials luster shows through without the need of a chemical finish. This process also allows for the woods natural aroma to remain present. With the concept of an eco friendly product, even the paint used is ecologically friendly.

              The Dacian Geto people inhabited an area West of the Black Sea that is now Romania, and surrounding areas that include the Ukraine. There is a very close connection of the Dacian's to nature and specifically to wolves. Similar visual language can be found the world over to include petroglyphs - very similar to The Native American's Kokopelli.

              DIMENSIONS:
              Pendant Height: 15 Millimetres ( just under 5/8 of an inch ) - If you are selling to the "World" keep in mind the American market consists of 330,000,000 potential customers, include the conversion.
              Pendant Width: 15 Millimetres ( just under 5/8 of an inch )
              Kevlar String Length: Need a number here

              DETAILS:
              Handcrafed Item
              Materials: Kevlar String & Mukwa Wood - ( Include here where the material was sourced - Mukwa wood is found in the South Central African Savanna woodland region. The wood has a very distinct reddish pinkish tone ( colour ) and a distinct fragrance. )
              Style: Minimalist / Tribal
              Can be personalized: Yes
              Natural ( what color? ) colours ( Natural red tone colour )
              Hand carved
              Hand applied Eco paint

              I hope you'll enjoy this minimalist / tribal powerful rune pendant. Hopefully it will help you in the adventure that is your life!

              About Us
              My name is Robert. I started Clondir as a way to put to good used materials that are usually discarded. A cracked chopping board, a measure of steel pipe, all collected from construction sites, friends and donations, cleaned and disinfected and turned into something that can be appreciated as a meticulous piece of hand crafted jewelry.

              I make rings from a variety of materials: wood, steel, bone, and carbon fiber, etc, that lost their main purpose for some and would end up in a landfill.

              ************************************************** *****************

              Originally Posted by odo13tz View Post

              Thanks a lot for your input and I will definitely try eBay, even thou I have no experience with that platform
              Everything you need to know, and the guy that wrote it, actively willing and able to answer questions ( https://www.warriorforum.com/warrior...days-ebay.html )

              Hope this helps!
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      • Profile picture of the author Stephen Floyd
        When I started reading the current webpage with stats about Romanian forests and the seller's connection to the country, I wanted to visit Romania more than I wanted to buy his jewelry. Unless he opens a travel business, that kind of copy does him no good.

        Using the homepage to gab about yourself is like going on a blind date and spending the whole time talking about yourself. There's not going to be another date. If you want to court the customer, talk about your business in terms of what's in it for them. It's less about saying, "You need my help," and more about saying, "I care that you get help."
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        • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
          Originally Posted by Stephen Floyd View Post

          When I started reading the current webpage with stats about Romanian forests and the seller's connection to the country, I wanted to visit Romania more than I wanted to buy his jewellery. Unless he opens a travel business, that kind of copy does him no good.
          Hi Stephen. Good point. : ) Maybe that part could be revised/improved.

          Originally Posted by Stephen Floyd View Post

          Using the homepage to gab about yourself is like going on a blind date and spending the whole time talking about yourself
          That's what I do anyway. : P (OK just kidding) ...

          Seriously though many times I think you're right however it really depends on the Website. Sometimes the approach I used works well. An example would be: "Gary Halbert's Weight Loss Ad" ... He mostly talks about the the Authors' weight loss struggles and not much about the customers' results (relatively speaking). And although it was focused on him -- People read it because it appealed to them.

          Many People are concerned about the environment so I think there's a good chance they would read the Direct Response Approach.

          Ultimately testing would prove the winning strategy.
          : )
          Signature
          "Each problem has hidden in it an opportunity so powerful that it literally dwarfs the problem. The greatest success stories were created by people who recognized a problem and turned it into an opportunity."―Joseph Sugarman
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  • Profile picture of the author odo13tz
    @savidge4 - sorry for copying you text straight on the front page, but I was soo good, you can't blame me
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