How Nicole Hutch Designs 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?
Hello there! My name is Nicole and I have been running my Etsy shop Nicole Hutch Designs since December 2014. I create and sell planner stickers for a variety of planners and calendars.
Back in the Fall of 2014 as I was preparing to go back to college, someone told me about the Erin Condren planner. It was exactly what I needed to keep myself organized in college! I was added to all different Facebook groups in the planning community and quickly discovered that planning with stickers was so much fun!
As someone who has always been into art, I thought to myself, this is something I could do! I bought a silhouette portrait, sticker paper, and used my printer I already had and opened my shop on December 4th, 2014 selling planner stickers.
Fast forward almost 7 years later, I have been running my shop as my full time job for 6.5 years. I started out with 1 silhouette portrait and 1 printer at a small desk in my bedroom to now having my own office with 6 printers and 8 silhouette portraits. I’m the sole person behind Nicole Hutch Designs and I absolutely love what I do! I design, produce, package, and ship everything on my own.
What are your favorite items? What makes these so special? Why do you think these items might be selling well?
My favorite items and also some of the top sellers in my shop are my typography stickers. They add a nice little touch to your planner and make things like doctor appointments or taking out the trash a little bit more fun.
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?
Within the first week, I had already made over 100 sales. I was one of the few sticker shops around at the time and I think I just got lucky with when I started my shop. The market is much bigger today with hundreds of planner sticker shops, if not more!
I have primarily only ever marketed on Instagram, but in the early days I posted in planning Facebook groups as well. I post on my IG stories daily and my feed a few times a week.
I also recently started a text subscription where customers can text me to sign up to receive alerts for new releases and promos.
Managing Nicole Hutch Designs
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?
I’m the sole person behind Nicole Hutch Designs. I use things like photoshop and silhouette studio to design my products, graphics, and listing photos. I’m a big fan of HP computers and HP printers for printing my items. The silhouette portrait has been the cutting machine that I’ve used since I started my shop and they are still going strong after almost 7 years!
I use SimpleTexting for a text subscription service and Instagram for marketing my products. All items that I sell are in stock and ready to ship so I package each order myself and use Etsy shipping labels to ship my orders out.
The future of Nicole Hutch Designs
What goals do you have for your shop in the future?
My goal is to keep designing products that make planning fun and functional for anyone who uses a planner. I want to continue doing this for as long as people want to use my products!
I have recently expanded a little bit into selling other stationary products and I may possibly expand further in the future, but I am very happy with where I am at and so beyond thankful for all of my customers allowing me to support myself and my family through my business.
Advice for new sellers
What’s your advice for a new seller starting an Etsy shop?
Just do it! No matter what you make or want to sell, just do it. I hopped right into this as a hobby nearly 7 years ago, not expecting much out of it at all.
To this day, I still can’t believe that I make stickers for a living. There are going to be ups and downs, slow periods and overwhelming periods, but just do it and keep going and you will achieve the goals you set for yourself.
I truly believe in the power of positive thinking, if you put positive energy into what you are doing and creating, you’ll get positive feedback in return.
Some sellers really get inspired by hearing numbers. Feel free to share these if you like.
What is your average profit margin?
Average 50-60% profits each year
What is your shop’s conversion rate?
Average 4% yearly