Your baby is done. And I’m not referring to a pregnancy (although that baby might be ready too). I’m talking about your other baby. The one that you have thrown all of your creative prowess into for the last few days, months or even a year. Your new product is ready. You listed it in your shop a few days ago. And all you hear are crickets. No sales. No customers viewing it. Nothing.
Listing new products are an important piece to growing your business. Some even say, if you have an Etsy shop, Etsy rewards you with more traffic when you create a new listing.
Although you might set up your shop in the beginning with many beautiful things, customers demand new products if they’re expected to return frequently. New designs also keep your shop fresh and interesting.
Think about the leading home decor and clothing retailers. They release new designs based on seasonal changes. Each season there’s a set of new products to choose from based on the current trends. Large retailers do this model to keep their customers returning to buy more each season.
But back to the problem at hand. Now that your new product is listed, why aren’t your customers beating down your door to buy it?
Most likely it’s because they don’t even know it’s there. For you to simply list a new product or design and walk away, you need to have hungry customers that stop by daily to check if there are new products in the first place.
Most online shops don’t have that kind of traffic. Not even stores at the mall have that traffic any more. If you’re lucky, customers may check back every once and awhile. Or they won’t check back at all. Not without some reminders.
You need to tell them directly that you have listed new designs. It’s important to capture your audience’s attention with your new product. Don’t rely on foot traffic that online businesses (and many brick and mortar businesses) tend not to have these days.
So here are 13 things that you can do after you list your new product to create some “buzz” or excitement around it.
Give a sneak peek
I know this one doesn’t quite fit the title of “after”, but most likely a new design or product collection takes time to be birthed. The creative process is not a speedy one.
You don’t want to lose your audience during this process. So while you’re working on it, give them a sneak peek of your progress. You could show the tools you’re using, a snapshot of the design elements or even provide a close up of the process.
One game I like to play on social media when I’m designing a new party collection is “Guess the Theme”. I take some close-ups of the graphics, party accessories and other elements you could use in the theme. Then, I ask the audience to guess what theme I’m designing. I usually include a small prize to the shop – a free item or discount coupon – for the person who guesses closest.
This type of game creates excitement about what’s coming up in the shop and builds lots of engagement. I usually use Facebook to post these contests where the engagement is most important to keep you relevant.
Take amazing photos
Although your new design or product looks amazing on your computer screen or workbench, you need to communicate its awesomeness with the world. Images are the way that we communicate with others these days.
Your audience will probably get more excited about your incredible pictures than your written description. Photos are also easier to share and have a better chance of going viral.
Once you have completed your new design, it’s time to take stellar photos of it. Find the perfect backdrop and add some coordinating props to your product. Consider the many angles and photo set-ups that could present your product at its best. Then, take some pictures. Lots of pictures. You want to have many different image options for sharing your work.
Social media announcements
Let your audience know about your product where they hang out. It’s like going to your favorite café to debut your new song and none of your groupies are there. You can still play your song, but not many people will care (or share about it).
Most likely your audience is scattered throughout social media networks on the internet. Using the photos taken above, craft creative posts for each of the social media networks that you are active on.
Note, I said active on. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to post your new product to networks that you aren’t. Your audience stopped paying attention a long time ago.
Schedule your post and variations of your post to run for about two weeks after you announce your new product. Most importantly – don’t over do it. Announcing your new products a few times over two weeks is enough for your audience to get exposed to it.
Each time you announce the new product, be sure to do so in different ways. Remember the art of selling is not to sell (at least directly). Integrate the item into a lifestyle post. Showcase ways your customers are using your new gem. Share the blog post you wrote about it (more below). Whatever way you choose, do not just post a photo and say buy me. At least not more than once. That’s a great way to turn off your current audience.
You can also directly share your new listing with your audience through Etsy. Open the Marketing tab and click on Social Media. Here you can select a listing and write a caption for it. Etsy will also come up with a sample caption for you (in case you’re having difficulty writing your own) and hashtags to include in your post. You can share this listing with your different social media audiences by selecting the channels you want.
It’s important to note, though, when sharing this way that you are simply sharing the listing photo as it appears in your shop. You have not created a unique post and photo to showcase your item.
This can be a great way to announce that you’ve listed a new product, but you might want to create a more creative follow-up post to capture your audience’s interest.
Write a blog post
I’ve seen blog posts about new products done in many different ways. Some e-commerce bloggers like to just write a public relations type post announcing that they have a new product. Although this does put your product out there, it isn’t the best way to make it go viral.
When crafting a blog post about your product, you need to share the product in an interesting way. Some blog posts ideas to launch your product include:
- A round-up post including your product (and other vendors products too – sharing other small businesses is good karma).
- A post sharing the process you used to make the new product.
- A write up about how customers are using the product. For example, I love to write about how customers have used our designs at their celebrations.
- A set of ideas that would go with your product. For example, if you make jewelry, you could include clothing pieces that would complete the outfit.
Whatever kind of blog post you choose to feature your new product, make sure it tells a story. Customers buy products they connect to. Your blog post is a chance to tell your story and help them connect to your design.
Craft an email
Since you have reached out to your social media followers and blog audience, you don’t want to forget to share your product with your mailing list. If you haven’t reached out in a while, it’s best not to just send a sales email announcing a new product.
Ease your subscribers in a bit. Maybe send a series of emails about the process to develop and make your new product. Or some decorating ideas integrating your product into a final look.
Whatever you choose to write, make sure that it isn’t overly salesy. Just like the blog post, tell your audience a story. At the end of the email, you can include a link to purchase your product in your shop.
If you choose to send a second announcement about your product, write it as an exclusive sale. If your audience was on the fence about checking it out before, saving a little bit of money will help steer them over.
Showcase at your local craft market
If you’re looking for a new audience for your product or need to build an audience in the first place, your neighborhood craft market might be the perfect place. From the fall through the holidays, these craft markets become a staple of the holiday shopping experience. Unfortunately, many of them are expensive to participate in and I hear that sales are down across the board.
Setting up a booth can be a great way to establish a local presence in your community. Lure in customers by offering a one day sale at the craft market. Try a buy one get one 50% off or something similar. This is a great way to push your product into a crowded marketplace.
Also, make sure you have a way for shoppers to sign up for your mailing list when they visit your booth. New customers might not be ready to purchase that day, but agreeing to be on your mailing list will start to build a relationship. You can then continue marketing to them via email.
If participating in local craft markets becomes your thing, you can also announce that you will be certain places on social media and your newsletter list. Then your local customers know where to find you in person. This can create an organic buzz about you and your products.
Create a postcard
Another way to announce that a new product is to create a promotional postcard about it. You can include this postcard in the packages you ship. Consider adding a limited time introductory offer for the product though – an exclusive sales code with an expiration date. This way customers are encouraged to purchase it in a certain time frame.
You can feature some of your amazing product images and create the postcard using Vistaprint. Include the postcard every time you ship an order out. The great part is that you are marketing a new product to customers who are already interested in your products. The chances of sales increase exponentially.
Announce on Etsy updates
If you run an Etsy shop, one marketing tool that I always forget about when I am announcing a new listing is the Etsy updates section. This is a free tool offered by Etsy that puts your listing in your shop’s newsfeed. There is some debate on the success of this marketing tool, but since it’s free I like to keep it updated.
One reason Etsy updates is a tricky tool to use is that Etsy has not made it easy to access. You need to go through your Etsy Sellers app on your Android or IOS device. Go under the Social Media section at the very bottom – Shop Updates.
To be absolutely honest, I haven’t seen a huge benefit to using Etsy updates from a sales perspective. Sometimes, there is an uptick in views for about an hour afterwards. I have never made a sale directly through one of these updates.
I’m not sure that’s the goal of Etsy Updates, though. I think, instead, it’s a great way to get your products and shop seen. Your Etsy update is sent to all of the people who have favorited your shop. They see them (at least they used to) on their Etsy.com and app home page. Your Etsy update is also shoppable, which means that past customers can click on it and shop for that product. You can also share the update within all of your social media channels if desired.
The most important part of your Etsy shop updates is that it keeps your shop looking fresh. Your Shop Updates section appears right below your reviews section. The more you update this section, the more current your shop will look. And customers want to feel like you are running a business, not just sitting back and taking orders passively (even if you are).
Plus, this section is more active real estate to draw customers in. Each post is clickable and can feature another product of your shop that there isn’t room for at the top.
Add to promoted listings
Although it’s great to let your current audience know about your new product, you also want to try to sell your product to new customers. Sadly, with the new Etsy algorithm, your product could take months to get in front of new shoppers.
Instead of waiting, you can introduce your product to new shoppers by adding it to your promoted listings. To add your product, go to the promoted listings section of your Etsy shop. The listing should be at the top if recently listed. Click the Status button to ON.
Make sure to use a budget for your promoted listings that you’re comfortable with. I usually keep this around $4 to $5/day, but extremely successful shops have it as much as $50/day. It just depends how much you want to invest.
Run a sale
One way to get customers really interested in a new product is to run a limited time sale on it. Maybe 25% off or buy one/get one. Anything that will get some buzz going about your new listing.
Announce your sale to your audience on social media, Etsy updates, email newsletter and in your ads. People are more likely to purchase anything when it’s on sale.
Most importantly, make sure your sale is for a limited time. This will create a larger demand for your new product and a need for customers to get it “now”.
Create a Facebook Ad
One of the most effective marketing tools that I’ve used to get sales is Facebook ads. You can create a Facebook ad directly from your Facebook business page or if you have an Etsy shop, Etsy allows you to make the ad directly through your shop.
Select your new product listing in your Etsy shop and write a compelling caption. Then, you can connect to Facebook to finish crafting your ad and set your budget. This is a great way to get your product, sale or an entire collection in front of a new audience.
Double check your SEO
I know when you wrote your new title and product description, you did the correct keyword research…. In case you forgot this step, double check the SEO keywords that you used for the listing. You can look up popular keywords and other SEO search terms to make sure the ones that you used in the listing are the most searched today.
Don’t assume that you have done your SEO research. I recently posted a new invitation and baby shower set. They didn’t have any views for the first three months. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. When I went back to the listing, I discovered that I hadn’t used the correct SEO terms to help the listing get found. And I’ve been in business awhile.
It happens to all of us. So, just make sure that you are using the right words. You will increase your chances of bringing in new customers and having the old ones find the listing.
Tell the world AGAIN
You’ve completed many of the suggested marketing tasks listed above. Your job is done and you walk away letting the new listing wallow in the online universe. A couple of months later, you realize that the listing has not sold and is up for renewal. You start to wonder what you did wrong. Was it really that awful of a design?
NO! I promise you, it isn’t that. Creating a new listing and selling it is all about finding the right person to buy it. You can market it and share it with others, but if that one person who is supposed to buy it took a day off of social media that afternoon, they will miss it.
It isn’t enough to go through the above processes just once. These should be things that you are consistently doing in the weeks and months following your new listing.
Remember the marketing Rule of 7 when you are creating content. Prospective buyers need to see your offer, new product or shop at least 7 times before they will purchase.
Just posting and forgetting about it will not lead to a very successful product launch. Work on getting your new listing in front of your audience multiple times in many different formats.
You might want to showcase the product in two different blog posts AND mention it on social media in various posts. Then, you could write a follow up email to your mailing list with an exclusive sale.
Just make sure you keep telling the world about it in creative ways. Eventually, your new product will get more traffic. It will just take time.
It doesn’t really matter which marketing method you choose, just make sure you choose at least one and aim to get your listing in front of your audience many times.
Most importantly, don’t create the new listing and walk away. This is a surefire way for your new product (and all your hard work) to fall flat.
Always remember that the right buyer is out there somewhere. You just haven’t connected with him or her yet. Keep trying. You never know when he or she will click into your shop.
You can do this, I promise.