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5 Types of Product Photos Handmade Sellers Should Capture

Want to show prospective customers that your products are unique, high quality, and created by a real, live person? Wish you could show how much tender loving care goes into creating the items you sell?

The best way to accomplish this is to photograph the details that make your products great. The following 5 types of product photos can help convince customers to buy:

Detail Photos

Detail-Photo

Customers who buy handmade products love the fact that the items were created by an artisan, not mass produced by a big-box retailer.

The following are some examples of detail photos that you could capture:

  • If your items are hand-sewn, capture close-up photos of your stitching.
  • If you sell handmade aprons, capture photos of the bows, the buttons, and the pockets.
  • If you sell handmade jewelry, capture photos of the clasps, and feature the embellishments that make the jewelry pieces one-of-a-kind.
  • If your products are created with wood, capture close-up photos of the wood grain and any joints where pieces of wood are fastened together.
In-Process Photos

In-Process-PhotoRetromama

Customers love to see the time and effort that you put into creating your items, and nothing shows that better than in-process photos.

What materials did you use to create the product? Needle and thread? Glue and paper? Paint and canvas? If your product requires a multi-step process, photograph a few of the steps (without divulging your exact process, of course).

Let customers take a look at your creative process, and that will strengthen their desire for a handmade product even more.

Custom Item Photos

Customize-PhotoSew Happy Girls

Do you create custom products for customers? If so, show customers examples of previous custom orders so that they can see what customizations are possible. Customers love the ability to request an item created specifically for them. Showing photo examples of previous special orders lets your customers know that customized products are available for them too.

Artist Touch Photos

Artist-Branding-PhotoLoveLee Soaps

If you sign or initial the products that you create, photograph that personal touch as well! If you include a label on your products, photograph that! If you can’t attach a label to your product, photograph your product beside some of your shop branding (see the example from the LoveLeeSoaps Etsy shop in the photo above). Isn’t that a smart way to display the business branding?

In-Use Photos

In-Use-PhotoRetromama

Help customers imagine themselves using your product, and they’ll be more likely to buy. Photograph your product on a model. Stage it with a complementary product. Place it in its after-purchase “home” to show customers how the product can improve their life.

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Do you capture all five of these types of product photos? While not all of these photo types would be appropriate to use in your product listing, they could be very appropriate on your business blog, your Facebook fan page, Instagram page or your Twitter page.

Ask yourself what sets your products apart from the run-of-the-mill products found in an average local retailer. Now show your prospective customers those unique selling points with your product photography.

What other types of product photos do you capture? What product photo techniques have you found to be successful?

Juliebio

Julie Corbett – On The Dot Creations

On the Dot Creations features handmade creations and shares biz tips with those who sell them. Check out Julie’s free video series3 Reasons Your Product Photography Might Be Turning Customers Away, or her brand new online workshopDIY Product Photography.

Make the Most of the Holiday Rush

HappyHolidayRush_TotallyDesign-01

As shop owners, I know “the most wonderful time of year” is also the busiest time of year. They don’t call it holiday rush for nothing! But as crazy as it can be, the holiday season also brings with it an incredible opportunity for you and your shop. And I’m not talking about all the sales you’ll make (which, don’t get me wrong, is totally awesome).

It’s great to see all the holiday orders roll in, but after the rush dies down wouldn’t it be even better to start out the new year reaping the benefits of a new group of happy customers, anxious to bring you more business?

Here are a couple things to keep in mind as you’re serving your customers this holiday season.

STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD

With the increase in traffic, sales and customers there’s no better time to set yourself apart from other shops. Now, more than ever, is the time to put your best foot forward and provide an incredible shopping experience for your customers that leaves them feeling excited to come back for more. Friendly communication, prompt shipping, and expressing your appreciation are all ways you can make your customers’ experience with you memorable.

GIVE THEM INCENTIVE TO COME BACK

Including a discount offer or coupon code with your product is an excellent way to express your appreciation and also to encourage repeat business. Another idea I’ve heard mentioned by other shop owners is holding an after-holiday sale. Include an announcement (and bonus coupon code!) in all your holiday packages.

SPREAD THE HOLIDAY CHEER

Consider adding some festivity to your package or even shipping box. People appreciate and respond well to being treated like more than just a customer. And most people notice when someone takes the extra time and effort to add a special holiday touch to their packaging. Knowing that most shoppers are actually shopping for others at this time of year, you could even offer to gift wrap your products for them!

I’d love to hear what you’ve done in the past or are planning to do this holiday season to make your shop shine. I wish you all a wonderful holiday season and much success to follow!

Sincerely from my shop to yours,

Anne

annewashibio

Anne McOmber – Totally Design

Hi, I’m Anne! I’m a wife and mom with an obsession with modern design, a passion for customer appreciation, and an inherited love for beautiful packaging. I spend my days playing cars, going on walks and helping my fellow business owners create lasting impressions and genuine relationships with their customers. Life is good!

Follow Anne on Pinterest and Twitter!

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Getting Back in The Swing of Things Through Painting + Play

pumpkinpainting

We had family stay with us from out of the country all last week. We had a ball being tourists in Arizona and really enjoyed the lovely weather. The end of their visit was bittersweet though. We had been planning their visit since last May so it was hard to believe it had ended. But it was also nice to get back into a routine. That can be hard. I really felt out of sorts after a week of excursions, eating out and late nights. In an effort to switch gears, my little boys and I pulled out fall colored paints, went outside and started painting pumpkins. That lead to painting on printer paper and mixing colors together on our cardboard palettes. I just loved how much fun were having! We started out with a purpose and then just started having fun. I even ended up with inspiration for November’s desktop calendar. It was so nice to have a playful and creative way to transition from time spent with company to getting back to business as usual. It also allowed us time to pause and reflect on the fun week we had with our family. After a fun afternoon spent together we were left with inspiration, art to hang and pretty pumpkins to put on our front porch.

This activity reminded me of Deanna’s post last week about unsticking your creativity. Did you start using Deanna’s little “getting unstuck” worksheets from last week? I just shared my first one on Instagram and Twitter yesterday using the hashtag #gettingunstuck.

Do you have a creative outlet or activity to get you back in the swing of things? Please share in the comments. I would love more ideas! Also, I just linked my personal Instagram account to Handmade Success so click here and follow along. Most of my photos are about enjoying a moment or capturing something that helps me get creative or unstuck. If you are on Instagram share your username in the comments so I can follow you!

Cheers to you and finding those fun moments that create transition and creativity!!!

New Site! (kind of)

hscardsHello! How do you like the new look of the site? I started working on this during The August Break. The site was “Under Construction” yesterday while I worked on switching themes, adding new images and running into problems (like not being able to add the cool chevron background!). Of course, there are still some tweaks that need to be made but if I focused on all of the little details the site would have been down for days!

I will be rolling out some new features in the coming weeks and months and they all benefit you. Here is what you can be looking forward to:

Reply to Comments:

I love being able to reply to individual comments on blog posts and hope that will be up and running by the end of the week.

Detailed Categories:

I have spent a lot of time going through all of the posts on here and organizing them so they will benefit you the most. Coming really soon!

Contributors Page:

I am working on a page that will include a photo of each contributor and link to all of their amazing posts!

Newsletters:

I am going to start a monthly newsletter that will share advice and also hopefully get a conversation started about building a stronger community through this site..

Submissions Page:

I receive emails from people wanting to contribute so I am going to put all of the information and guidelines right here on the site

I am still working on the site so if you notice any issues PLEASE let me know! Feel free to let me know if you have any tips for the site as well. My email is kerry@handmadesuccess.com.

Also, be sure to check out the winner from the Mols and Tati-Lois giveaway!

Stayed tuned for more awesome guests posts too!

XO,

Kerry

The One Thing to Know About Selling on Etsy

Success Print via Contrast Designs on Etsy
Success Print via Contrast Designs on Etsy

 

Today’s post is by Jordan Moore, an internet marketing consultant. She helps empower artists and creative entrepreneurs to grow their businesses online, has authored the best-selling ebook, “The Etsy Kit” and she founded the marketing blog Handmade Success. Today she offers some valuable advice on creating a powerful and profitable online business with some simple steps.

As someone who seems to play well with others but considers herself shy and a bit of an introvert, I saw creating an online business as an appealing option. I was sure it was the antidote to the annoyances of the traditional workplace.

I could communicate when I was in the mood and filter out uncomfortable and unwanted interactions when I wasn’t. Add to that the perks of doing business within the confines of my own comfy domain — and in my own comfy attire — and I was sold.

Unfortunately, that was about all that sold in the beginning.

My reality check arrived (or rather, was returned for insufficient funds) after I quietly opened my doors for business and (surprise, surprise) nobody online came looking for me or my services. My first attempt at marketing involved taking some traditional measures — pay-per-click advertising, emailing all of my friends and family, doing giveaways. None of it made a bit of difference (no matter how many times I refreshed the page). Maybe this online gig wasn’t as simple as it seemed.

Forging Genuine Relationships

Something was missing, so I turned to introversion’s kissing cousin: slightly obsessive research. I studied hard, hired consultants, scoured the web for advice, and it all led to the same idea: connecting with other people.

Though not what I’d envisioned, it was simple enough. I could not be an online wallflower, not if I really wanted to enjoy the big dance.

Not only could I not be shy or introverted, I would need to communicate, connect and share even more than I would with an offline business. I had to have a voice, and most importantly, I had to seek out friends and colleagues online.

I got brave and applied these principles to my little business. I started conversations, answered questions and raised my virtual hand. Guess what? It worked quickly. My business gained momentum at a speedy rate, and three years later, it has not let up.

Here is my wonderfully simple formula for finding success online:

[real & meaningful relationships]

+ [valuable & interesting content]

=   [clients & referrals galore]

This formula will work whether you handcraft jewelry, make soap, write novels, build websites or even fix cars. It will work for any type of business because these are the same principles that guide every successful business — online or off.

How to Find Your People

There are many methods of finding and connecting with the people you are looking for online. Here are some of my favorite ways to connect with new friends and clients:

  • Participating in the comments sections on targeted blogs
  • Chatting it up on Twitter (no spamming, please!)
  • Answering questions on listserves or forums
  • Offering mailing list subscribers a free digital file (podcast, recipe, tutorial, ebook, etc.)
  • Engaging in a collaboration with a different type of business that shares a similar customer base
  • Becoming a guest contributor on relevant blogs (ahem)

 

Creating Value

Sharing valuable insights and information with the people you encounter online is the most effective way to gain access to and kick-start relationships in cyberspace. It quickly establishes trust and solidifies your reputation as an expert in your field. Here are some real-world examples of how you can apply this part of the formula:

  • Do you create wedding invitations? Design a free, printable PDF wedding calendar that people receive for subscribing to your mailing list.
  • Are you a CPA or bookkeeper? Put together some helpful tutorials and pitch those to popular small business bloggers for publication.
  • Do you have a children’s clothing store? Find some mommy blogs and contribute a monthly column on children’s fashion trends.

 

The Big Reward

In building my ideal workplace, I’m now energized and fulfilled by what I’d wanted to avoid. Surrounding yourself with people who are excited about what you are doing offers motivation and inspiration. The similarities that bring you together make it likely that you will want to share anecdotes, talk shop and see vacation snapshots. And you can do it all wearing your slippers.

***

Are you looking to sell more on Etsy?  Click here to learn more about Jordan’s methods.

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