How PSbyKim 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?
PS.byKim is a Dutch webshop that sells handmade and outsourced planner supplies and stationery. The PS in the name stands for Planner Supplies and for the fact that I almost always forget something in my letters (I love making happy mail and sending snail mail), so I have to use PS and write the rest of what I wanted to say. I started selling on Etsy after a severe burnout and a tough pregnancy. I am a pharmacist, but I decided to be a stay-at-home mom, and after a couple of months, I needed some time for myself and thought, "Why not try to sell products that I love to use myself? I have always loved paper crafts and have been a planner for quite some time now. There aren’t many European shops that sell planner products, so this was a good niche too! I also wanted to create products that were unique to Etsy and found ways to create those by hand (planner covers, dashboards, and sticker pouches for specific planner types). For other specific products, I either outsource them (ex. washi tape) or buy the materials and make something out of them (ex. planner charms and beads).
What are your favorite items? What makes these so special? Why do you think these items might be selling well?
My favorite products in the shop are the personalized storage pouches:
You can use these for budgeting, storing stickers, receipts, etc. These are my favorites because it was something I missed for these specific planners, and I figured out a way to make the items. Plus, they have been a popular item in the shop since the beginning. As well as the planner covers, which are hard to come by! I also love my planner charms.
Because it combines my love for crafting and spicing up my planner. I love a good decorated planner, and it’s so much fun to see photos of people using your creations in their planner! I even came up with a hack to attach these charms to your planner since there isn’t always a good spot to attach them to:
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?
As many Etsy sellers can agree, the first sale almost always comes from family. That was also my case. My mom bought a planner elastic band to put on her agenda. After that, it took a bit of time and a lot of advertising on all kinds of Facebook pages and my Instagram page. Slowly, the number of sales was increasing to as high as 20–30 orders a week. This is also the most I can do at the moment with the kids. I can only work in the evenings and during the weekend since my kids don’t go to school yet (I have a 3.5-year-old and a 4-month-old baby). Most customers found my shop through Etsy, so I always try to fill all the title space with relevant keywords and use all 13 tags in the listing. As much as I tried to attract customers through my Instagram page, it wasn’t really working. I took some time off and put the shop on holiday mode (December 2022–May 2023) for the pregnancy and post-partum period. I just recently reopened the shop, but traffic is slow. I am afraid that I’ll have to build momentum again, but we’ll see.
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 am the owner of PS.byKim, but I am also the creator, maker, photographer, customer service person, social media person, and I pack the orders. Yep, it’s just me. Except my husband is helping with tax work. I use the Etsy sellers app on my phone to get notified quickly about new orders or inquiries. I currently don’t use any other tools, but I might check out Alura to increase my visibility on Etsy using the right keywords and such. I handle shipping and fulfillment by setting realistic expectations and being transparent with the customers. I have set my processing time to 1-2 weeks, as this works best with the time that I have. So if I can’t get the work done that I planned for that day, I can easily reschedule and don’t get too stressed about deadlines.
The future of PSbyKim
What goals do you have for your shop in the future?
I hope to get back on track soon with my shop. It seems I have to regain my position in the Etsy search algorithm after the shop’s holiday. Furthermore, I hope to increase the revenue since a lot of it is going to Etsy and taxes. It would be nice if we could pay for the monthly groceries with money earned through PS.byKim. On top of that, I am planning on opening a second shop focused on handmade craft supplies like bead and sequin mixes, embellishments, and papercrafts.
Advice for new sellers
What’s your advice for a new seller starting an Etsy shop?
Take your time to get familiar with Etsy. Do research on the right keywords. Believe in your products and don’t give up. Celebrate each sale. But above all, have fun!
Some sellers really get inspired by hearing numbers. Feel free to share these if you like.
Question: What is your average profit margin?
Question: What is your shop’s conversion rate?