Etsy is one of the most genuine eCommerce platforms out there for artists, craft makers, and anyone else looking to sell their wares online to customers without too much work upfront. Because the platform is so simple to use, many of the sellers are individuals selling very unique products to a relatively small audience.
While the platform is great for helping users get up and running with an online store, many sellers stop there — relying on Etsy search results, word of mouth, and maybe some promotion on their social media accounts. While this is certainly a good start, there is a lot more opportunity to reach more buyers through promotional email marketing campaigns or cultivate stronger relationships with current customers by creating a regular email newsletter.
Even if you’re an Etsy seller using email marketing as part of your digital marketing strategy, there might still be more that you can do to optimize your email marketing strategy to continue growing your small business.
This article will go over the best practices for implementing a successful email marketing strategy on the Etsy platform and get the most out of your customer relationships in the digital era.
Growing your email list on Etsy
The first step to any great email marketing strategy is growing your email contact list. After all, emails won’t do you much good if you don’t have anyone to whom you can send them.
So how do you start growing your Etsy email list?
Sign up for an email marketing tool
If you don’t already use an email marketing software tool to send your marketing emails, you should sign up for one first. Many companies, such as SendinBlue, offer a free email marketing plan for senders who maintain a low email sending volume.
Once you have an account, you can create subscription forms or landing pages to start collecting contact information from new subscribers.
Gather contact information and build your list
Now that you’re set up with an email marketing account, it’s time to actually start growing your email list. There are countless ways that you can do this, but I will cover just a few of the most effective techniques for Etsy store owners in particular:
Promote your subscription form or landing page
This may seem obvious but bear with me.
The goal of growing your email list is to get as many quality subscribers as you possibly can. This means that you need to find as many chances as possible to include a link to your subscription page and encourage signups. A few examples of places you can do this are:
- Etsy store homepage: Including a link to your subscription page in the homepage of your store is a must. This is the first place that potential subscribers will look, and it’s also where you get the most traffic.
- Transactional emails: Order confirmation messages are automated through the Etsy platform, but you still have the ability to customize the message to buyers. Including a link here is a great idea because it will go to people who have already seen the value in your offering and are thus much more likely to subscribe to receive promotional emails from you in the future.
- Social media: Social media is a great place for interacting with your customers and fans, but you can deepen your communication and relationship with customers by promoting your email list in your social media profiles as well. Include a link to the subscription page in your profile and schedule recurring posts to remind followers and fans that you have an email list for even more promotional offers.
- Promotional or regular marketing emails: You might be thinking, “if they’re receiving my marketing email, doesn’t that mean I already have their email address?” This is true, but including a link to your subscription page in your emails makes it easier to gain new subscribers through word of mouth. Simply encourage your current subscribers to share your emails with friends, colleagues, or family who might also be interested in your products. When they receive the forwarded message from your subscriber, the link will make it easy for them to sign up for your list as well.
Encourage word of mouth sharing
As I mentioned in the point above about including a link to your subscription page in your promotional emails, growing your list through word of mouth can be a very effective tactic.
This is especially true for Etsy sellers because the products tend to be much more personalized and unique. This means that if a customer refers somebody to your store, it’s likely because they saw unique value in what you offer and referred it to someone who probably would have no other way of knowing that this product or offering existed.
Word of mouth is also more effective in general because it comes with a certain level of social proof. If you receive a recommendation from a friend versus seeing an ad for the same product on Facebook, which would be more compelling? Most people would likely answer with the former, hence the value of this style of promotion.
The best way to promote word of mouth sharing for your email list is to simply ask subscribers to share your store with friends and family. You can do this on social media or in the promotional emails that you send out.
You can take this a step further and create a referral program that includes extra incentives (e.g. discounts or free swag) when somebody refers a friend to your email list.
Collect contact information in-person
For many entrepreneurs, Etsy is simply one of many channels through which their products are sold and promoted.
If you have a physical store in addition to your Etsy store, or you attend events or markets to sell your goods, be sure to provide these in-person customers with the option of providing their contact information to sign up for your newsletter at the time of purchase. You can even segment these subscribers based on the fact that they signed up in person if you want to tailor your email content for a more personalized and targeted experience.
Optimize for more signups
Putting links to your subscription page in the places mentioned above is a good start, but there’s more you can do to increase the conversion rate for your email list signups. Whenever you promote your email list, there are a few things you need to do:
Clearly state your value proposition
First and foremost, you need to make a very clear case for why your visitors should give you their personal contact information — they need to know what’s in it for them.
You can do this by clearly stating exactly that: whether it’s occasional discount offers, unique web content, timely updates, or something else, you should let visitors know what they’re signing up for.
People are generally more likely to perform a task for you if they know that they’ll receive something in return. Leverage this by providing a “signup bonus” to new subscribers. Usually this is a discount offer for making a purchase in your store, but it could also be a piece of content or something else. As long as your potential customers get value, it will be an effective incentive.
Test different landing pages and form fields
While CTA’s are great for getting your store visitors to click on the link to visit your subscription page, that doesn’t mean they’ve actually signed up yet. Plenty of users change their mind after viewing the subscription page. Some things that could lead to this are:
- Visitors mistakenly clicking on the link
- Too many form fields
- Visitors getting distracted or bogged down by too much content on the landing page
It’s always a good idea to test out different landing pages and subscription forms to find out what works best with your audience.
What types of emails should you send to promote your Etsy store?
Now that you have an optimized strategy for acquiring new subscribers for your email list, it’s time to actually think about the emails themselves.
There are several approaches that you can take with email marketing for your Etsy shop, but here are a few types of messages that can give you an idea of where you might want to start:
Newsletters are one of the most effective tools at building a strong relationship with your customers over time. They’re essentially an email campaign sent on a regular interval (daily, weekly, monthly, etc.) that includes updates about your business and products, upcoming releases, links to content that you produced, or other articles that are relevant to your product and audience.
While you can discuss product-related topics in your newsletter, these campaigns tend to be less promotional in nature. The ultimate goal is usually to drive traffic to relevant pages on your site, while simultaneously building credibility and trust among your readers.
You can see in the example above, they include articles related to the utility of an upcoming product: a heart rate and sleep cycle monitoring watch. This is a great way to build trust with readers and generate excitement about a new product.
If you’ve ever shopped online, you’ve probably received a promotional email from an online retailer. These are the classic marketing messages that are used to promote a seasonal sale, special limited-time offers, exclusive discounts, and more.
While the content may sound too salesy, these emails are actually very effective at driving conversions and cultivating customer loyalty. The key is to make sure that you are always providing something of value to readers while also ensuring that you’re not sending them too frequently (thought the proper frequency will depend on your business and customers).
New Products or Inventory
Using email to announce a new product line is another excellent way to keep your customers happy and engaged with your business.
These messages can also be very effective at generating sales because your email audience will have a much higher purchase intent than a new visitor. This is because they’ve already demonstrated a higher level interest in your brand by signing up for your emails, and they may have also already purchased a different product from you, meaning they are familiar with the quality of your products.
If you have products that sell out frequently, you can also use emails to notify subscribers when you’ve replenished your inventory. This is extremely effective, particularly if your products are highly unique (which is pretty common on Etsy 😉 )!
As mentioned earlier, events can be an excellent place to gather new contacts for your email list, but they can also be excellent for driving sales and meeting fans of your business. Using email to announce upcoming events can help you provide your customers with the opportunity to come meet you in person — and maybe even make a purchase while they’re at it!
With these tips, you should be ready to elevate your Etsy store and build stronger relationships with your fans and customers using these email marketing tips. Remember to focus on what value you’re providing to your readers. Contacts should never have to ask themselves “why did I receive this message?”
Additionally, email marketing is an ongoing process. Be sure to monitor your email marketing KPIs to understand what’s working and how you can continue to improve.
Ready to launch your own Etsy email marketing strategy? Sign up for SendinBlue and start sending up to 300 emails per day
Inbound Marketing Manager @SendinBlue. I love helping SMBs and eCommerce businesses reach a larger audience by writing on digital marketing best practices and advanced techniques. In my free time, you can probably find me skateboarding or tinkering in an overly-complex spreadsheet. 😉