How DoubleArrowDesigns got started

Introduce your Etsy shop and tell us your story. How did you begin and decide on what to sell on Etsy, and how do you create your products?

Hi! My name is Susan, and I am one of the original creators of my shop, Double Arrow Designs. I have been a children’s wear designer and graphic artist for over 20 years. My shop was originally created in 2014 with my sister Nicole as a way to sell our creative products, which were mainly repurposed furniture and etched glassware. When my sister moved away, we stopped selling on our site. Then in 2020, during the pandemic, I reopened the shop and pivoted from selling physical products to digital products, using my creative skills and graphic knowledge. It was the perfect platform for me to use my artistic ability to create stencils and printables that people were looking for.

Favorite items

What are your favorite items? What makes these so special? Why do you think these items might be selling well?

My favorite and most popular items in my shop are my "Open When" labels for college students. I originally created these for my daughter, who was going off to college. It was a way to stay connected and engage with her for the first few weeks or months of her new experience. What is so special about these is that the buyer can create their own packages, and no two will ever be the same. I have received so many messages from people who have created these, and the bond and responses have been priceless and heartfelt. Below are some of my favorites:

"Open When" labels for college students

I then created a series of open long-distance relationships with friends. This enabled people to send to a loved one the whole concept of small gifts through letters.

open long-distance relationships 

I have also started to create care package labels because I am getting requests for them. Customers were looking for that extra-themed label when sending a package. My most popular care label is for Halloween. I have created care package labels for other holidays as well as life moments.


Getting sales on Etsy

How long did it take for you to earn your first sale and how do you currently attract customers to your Etsy shop?

When I first opened my shop in 2014, it took a while for our first sale, probably about a month. When I reopened my shop in 2020, it took about the same amount of time. What was more exciting than my first sale was when my listing became popular and I received multiple sales in a day—now that’s a lot of fun! I attract my customers to my Etsy shop in a few ways.

  1. Make sure I use good keywords so people searching for these specific products can find them.
  2. Using Pinterest to pin my listings so that people on Pinterest can be directed to my Etsy shop while searching
  3. By adding as many videos as possible, since videos attract more attention than static photos, a buyer can see how something is assembled using my digital products.

Managing DoubleArrowDesigns

How do you manage your shop? Are you running solo or do you have any team members? What tools or services do you use to run your shop and how do you handle fulfillment?

Since I am selling digital products, I am able to run my shop solely on my own. I make sure that I am always adding new listings, that my current listings have enough in stock for buyers, and that I review what is doing well to make sure that I continue to supply the customer with useful products.

I use a few tools to create my printables and stencils.
Illustrator CS:
I create all of my work using this software. I am able to draw using my Wacom tablet and pen and draw directly onto my document. I love all the font capabilities, which enable me to design one-of-a-kind graphics for my printables.

Photoshop CS—I use this software to create all my listing images. It enables me to layer images onto stock backgrounds, use type, and add filters to enhance my listing photos.

Canva: Even with the above knowledge, Canva is a quick way to make videos or content images to support my Etsy listings.

The future of DoubleArrowDesigns

What goals do you have for your shop in the future?

My goal in the future is to continue to add listings that resonate with my customers. To listen to feedback and make changes where needed on something that a buyer may see that I didn’t. My Open When has done so well that I have added a whole section to it for other life events such as people moving away, long-distance romances, and new parents. This year, I plan on growing this category by adding more life events. I am always doing market research to make sure that I am up to date with what is needed in my area of printing. What related trends might be a good idea for new printables?

Advice for new sellers

What’s your advice for a new seller starting an Etsy shop?

My advice to new sellers would be to sell what you do best. Don’t pick a product you think will just make money; pick one that you believe in. People like to see expertise and passion, and it shows through your products. Like any business, this takes time. This past year (2022) was my highest revenue year. My goal is to continue to increase sales this coming year with new listings, using keywords, and researching what people are looking for. There is no get-rich-quick secret to this. Take good photos! Make sure that they are clear and bright and show multiple angles. Also, add all the information you want to say about your product in these photos. Many people scroll through the listing photos and skip over the paragraphs of description information you may add on the side. The photos will sell your product.

Some sellers really get inspired by hearing numbers. Feel free to share these if you like.

Question: How much is your monthly revenue?
Answer: Monthly revenue varies. My highest revenues are in the months of July and August, which are back to school months. For example, in the month of August, my revenue was about 1800.00; however, in November, it was only 145.00.

Question: What is your shop’s conversion rate?
Answer: Last year my Shop’s conversion rate was 4.6%