What to do Before Opening an Etsy Shop | Checklist included

What to Do Before Opening an Etsy Shop

Thinking about opening an Etsy store? You came to the right place. 

Opening an Etsy shop is a detailed process that requires a lot of attention to detail. However, as complex as it may be, it’s still not that difficult - only time-consuming. However, if you know the correct steps, then you’ll be able to play the field much faster.

In this post, we will discuss the five most important steps you should take before launching your store. 

1. Competitor and Niche Research

This is the most important part of your pre-Etsy journey. We assume that you already know what your product is going to be, which is why you’re reading this Etsy checklist for beginners. 

Now, here’s what you should do next:

  • Search for products similar to yours on Etsy.
  • Choose 5-10 highest-performing Etsy stores to analyze.
  • Take note of their pricing - your product price should be competitive.
  • Check how many products they’re selling.
  • Check out the reviews and see what the customers liked and didn’t like.
  • Check their About Me page and look for keywords that are aimed at your product.
  • Take note of their branding elements - headers, footers, design elements.
  • Check their social media - how often they post, what they post, which posts are the most liked and shared.
  • Lastly, read Etsy’s Seller Handbook to make sure that your plans align with their policies.

Now that you’ve collected this information, try to analyze it and incorporate it into your own Etsy store strategy. This is a great place to start because it will give you a rough overview of what to expect. And, it’s always better to learn from others’ mistakes or successes.

2. Invest in Branding Elements 

Branding is an important part of your Etsy journey. It’s what sets you apart from the crowd and it’s what your customers will know you by. Important branding elements include a logo, color story, social media presence, and store design. 

Here are some general recommendations:

  • Use one color story throughout your Etsy store - decide on a theme and be consistent with it throughout other promotion channels as well.
  • Signing up to Alura website for free and downloading Etsy shop kit templates. Under Alura resource section you can find professional Etsy branding kits that can be instantly downloaded free of charge. These kits can be completely personalized with your shop name, text, and logo. 
  • Create a Pinterest board for inspiration.
  • Write about your goals, missions, and values on your Etsy profile.
  • Choose one font that you will use in your photos and social media promo posts. Use that logo everywhere - in your posts, on your packaging, and your product.
  • Create a logo in both black and white and color.
  • Print business cards.
  • Choose custom packaging for your products that fits your Etsy store’s theme.
  • Use the same filter for all your photos.

Free Etsy Shop Kit

It is important to choose a theme and stick to it. That doesn’t mean that you can’t change it along the way. But, in the beginning, it is important to stay true to your branding so that it would garner the recognition it deserves.

3. Do Product Testing Before the Launch Day

This is another important thing that, unfortunately, many sellers decide to skip. However, if you’d like to own a trustworthy Etsy store, then you should always test your products before the launch day. This will ensure that no issues arise and it will save both you and your customers a lot of headaches and unnecessary customer service chats. 

Here’s what you should do:

  • Get honest feedback from friends and family.
  • Find Facebook groups and forums where you can also ask for an honest, third-party opinion.
  • Test the quality and endurance of your product.
  • Ask for feedback about the design.
  • Test the product yourself.
  • Test your product in different environments.
  • If you’re bold enough, go to the streets and ask passengers to share their thoughts.

4. Take Advantage of SEO

Search engine optimization is a type of content optimization that aims to place your product or service in the top ten search results. This helps customers find your product more easily. You can achieve that by inserting keywords and optimizing your listings. You can also use third-party Etsy software which automatizes the whole SEO process. Or, you can find some tips on Etsy’s website

Here’s an Etsy SEO checklist:

  • Include the product category in your title.
  • Use long-tail keywords - keywords with three or more words which specify your customers’ needs - e.g. If you’re selling phone cases, use ‘’phone cases for Samsung,’’ or ‘’iPhone phone cases.’’
  • Use the most important keywords in the title.
  • Use synonyms for your product (e.g. beauty sponge, makeup sponge, beauty blender)
  • Use keywords in Etsy tags - Etsy allows up to 13 tags, 20 characters each.

5. Research Third-Party Etsy Software

It would also be smart to invest in some Etsy tools that can help increase your engagement and return on investment. Nowadays, you can find a wide variety of software solutions that automatize and help with a lot of daily tasks. 

Some types of Etsy software are:

  • Etsy business tools - tools that help with SEO, product research, and listing optimization.
  • Photo testing tools - tools like Fotofuze that help you choose featured images by testing them.
  • Etsy pricing tools - tools that help determine the price of your products.
  • Digital marketing tools - tools that help you achieve a larger social media presence.
  • Promotion tools - tools that incentivize customers to share your product, leave a review, or refer it by sending emails, discounts, coupon codes, etc.

Thanks to many modern tools and techniques, opening and running an Etsy shop has never been easier. You can also find this list in a printable format, and check off each item separately. Remember that success takes time, and that every endeavor has its ups and downs. Stay true to your goal, work hard, and your Etsy shop will thrive.

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