In the end, we’ll look back and say, getting the boot from Craftsy was one of the best things that ever happened. …In the mean time, I know it’s throwing your for a loop.
What do you do now?! Here is my suggestion: get a website, and run an ad that runs in the background for a few cents a day. And direct all your traffic THERE instead of Craftsy, or Etsy. (My prediction is that Craftsy as we know it will completely shut down, and they’ll take all their patterns in house.)
Here are some stats:
2% of people (cold traffic…people searching for a pattern on Etsy, Craftsy, Ravelry, or your own site) will convert (make a purchase). The other 98% of people leave, and never return. You have a few options: hope they return (not likely), hope that they follow you (still not a guarantee that they’ll return to make a purchase), or have a pixel set up on your page so you can retarget them.
I am a creative person, just like you. I was able to figure it all out…it’s REALLY not that hard! You may think it’s daunting…but it’s because you don’t know what buttons to push, and have been thrown for a loop. That’s ok. If *I* can figure this out, you can too!!
Here’s how a pixel works: It’s a little bit of code that runs in the background, that tracks what pages your potential customer has clicked. Then you can use that pixel to move them through a sales funnel, and get them to purchase.
There is ONE ad that MOST businesses (creatives, retailers, etc) OUGHT to have, but they don’t. This one little ad is a ‘set it and forget’ ad: set it up, and let it run in the background. Here’s the beautiful part – this little ad runs for pennies a day! You don’t have to have a huge ads budget in order to make this ad work! It will run on Instagram and Facebook, in games, and articles…it will kindly follow them around until they buy. I call it my “Blondie” ad (One way or another…I’m gonna find ya…)
Why don’t more pages use this ad, you might be wondering? Because they don’t know about these magical ads…or because they don’t know how to write the ads…or they think that ads don’t work for them…or they think that they have to spend lots…or they think that other ads are better.
With this ONE little ad, you can have the GREATEST return on investment. How much would you spend if you knew that for every dollar spend on ads, you’d get back $5, $14, or $28? This really isn’t a pipe dream. 14 was my average with my boutique. With the agency I work with, we have a crafting client who gets about $28 back for every dollar spent.
Not everyone who starts an ad gets this ROI. There are numerous factors, but it almost always boils down to the page not giving good value. Facebook LOVES to send traffic to pages that give good value (not dollar value, but good content). This is where creatives SHINE! We are naturally sharers. “Let me show you this tip I learned!!” “Here is how I organize my sewing room.” THESE things are what Facebook looks for…so if you are already sharing great content on your IG and FB, these ads are going to be a natural fit for you!! Here’s the caveat, if you don’t share valuable content or all your posts are “buy, buy, buy”, these ads are not going to have as high of an ROI right off the bat. Have no fear though…I started out my boutique page with “buy, buy, buy” and was able to turn it around.
What makes me qualified to tell you how to do this? I work for a digital marketing agency. In fact, I work for my marketing coach from when I owned a boutique. I owned a boutique for 4 years. I closed up shop because I didn’t follow my own rule: outsourcing the things I didn’t need to do…so I burned out. I love quilting, and sewing, and being creative. There isn’t a visual art that I don’t love (ok, tatting isn’t my favorite).
I learned ads because I NEEDED to. To hire an agency is costly. It was not feasible to me. So I took classes, joined the paid groups that agencies are a part of, and learned it myself. Turns out, ads are actually very creative. You have to understand social and buying psychology (for example, if you have ever experienced an over zealous sales person, you’ll appreciate how grating it feels. We apply these same social mores to social media…we don’t ask for the sale, right off the bat – remember the 2% conversion rate??) There are many agencies, and “gurus” who can tell you how to set up ads…many don’t teach strategy…many are really not experts…many are also not creatives.
You don’t have to have a huge social presence to be successful with ads. You don’t even need to be techy. I may work for an agency, but I am the LEAST techy person…I can’t figure out my iphone most days, or gmail. But I can help you with ads!
Why so cheap for the ads class? A few reasons: I want you to implement it. If I gave it to you for free, you likely wouldn’t implement it. If I charged what it’s really worth, you wouldn’t buy it.
Originally, I had 2 different prices for this course. But for sake of ease, it’s only $7 for a limited time.
How it works: After you purchase, you’ll receive a link to a private facebook group where all the videos are. You’ll be able to ask all your questions.
What you need for these ads: You will need a website. I use WordPress in my tutorials, so each step shows inside of WP. If you use Shopify, the steps are similar. I use WP because it’s the least expensive, and most customizable option. Shopify is outrageously expensive, and NOT customizable at all. I had them for 4 months, and HATED every moment. There are 2 WordPress options, only one will work with ads. It cannot be a free blog, it must be a paid WordPress site.
If you need help figuring out what you need for hosting, and a website, I’m happy to help! Just ask.
Why you need your own website: There is a lure to posting your patterns to a 3rd party site…they have the traffic, right?!! It’s like a shiny object!
1. With these sites, your competing with other vendors, instead of people looking at ONLY YOUR patterns (and projects, for makers).
2. You have very few options to get them to return! With Etsy, you can lure them back with a coupon IF they favorite your item…but what if they are just looking??
3. The potential customers also has shiny object syndrome.
4. What if they are just looking, but really want the pattern (or item), and can’t return, because they don’t remember your shop….and have only a vague recollection of your product?
5. If you have good sales with a 3rd party vendor, IMAGINE how much more you could grow by being able to show your products to your potential customer?!
6. The most necessary: you are at the merchant’s mercy. You have NO control over where your item is placed. No control over merchant fees. No control over whether you get booted or not. I’m not even a big fan of Facebook groups for selling or FB shops….again, they are a 3rd party. A few years ago, my FB account was shut down because someone reported my name as fake 🙄. I had to jump through hoops for TWO WEEKS to get my page back…had to create another profile so I could continue to run my business. I was foolish. I knew better. I KNEW not to put my eggs all in the FB basket!! I KNEW that the only 2 things you have control over are your email list and your website. That’s it. The worst part: I had to prove my identity was what I ACTUALLY HAD listed. It really put a wrench in my business. This can happen to anyone, on any platform.
With the recent Craftsy patterns slimming down, EVERY seller is affected. That’s NO WAY to run a business. By taking everything in house, and relying on that, YOU remain in the drivers seat.
7. Biggest reason: Etsy, Ravelry, and Craftsy do not run these ads. They are missing out, big time!
If you don’t already have a website, they are NOT expensive. (Shopify IS). I pay $500 for a year for my hosting – I have unlimited pages. (I own about 10 😳 so I went for the big daddy hosting). When I had 1 site, I paid about $10 a month for hosting. That’s it. Super affordable.
You’ll need a domain – less than $20 for a year.
And merchant fees: currently I use paypal, but I prefer square. I just haven’t set up square, since I closed my boutique.
All that being said, I’m keeping my Etsy site…I’m just not RELYING on it. And if you’re a clever fox, no, you can’t put the pixel on your Etsy page. 😭 THAT would be smart. YES, you COULD drive traffic there, but you can’t retarget them…
I hope I’ve answered all your questions, and haven’t overwhelmed you. If you have any questions, please let me know!