Seller Handbook

Advice and inspiration for successfully running your Etsy shop

Seller Handbook

Add More Items to Make More Sales

Increase your chance of getting found by shoppers by adding more listings and variety to your shop.

By Michelle Spaulding Apr 16, 2012
Photo by MilesOfLight

You want more views, and you want more sales. So what's the number one thing you can do to work toward that? Add more items. Luckily, it is also the most fun — get back to the studio or the estate sale! Here are the whys and hows of stocking your shop.

Why Stocking Your Shop Is Important

Items help you get found. The most common way that someone will find your shop is via one of your items. Customers may find an item in search, or see it featured on Etsy or on a blog. Once they get to an item, they now have access to your shop. The more items you have out there, the more ways you have to be found.

Make more sales to one customer. If you have a well-stocked shop, you're more likely to sell multiple items to one customer, since there is more for them to choose from. Plus, for many types of items, the customer may want to buy multiple items from one seller to save on shipping. In this case, they will find a well-stocked shop that will allow them to do that. Make sure you benefit from this by offering free secondary shipping if it doesn't cost you extra.

Fresh merchandise keeps shoppers coming back. If you add new items regularly, fans of your shop will want to check back often to see what's new.

Tips for Stocking Your Shop

Renew sold items you can make again. You've already done all the work of taking the photos and creating the listing. If you can make this item again, relist it when it sells! You can also set your listings to auto-renew. Successful sellers tend to sell items they can make over and over again.

Thiefandbandit designs a line that allows her to sell many versions of her style.


Focus on what's doing well. If you're figuring out what to sell, take note of what people seem most interested in. What sells the most? What gets the most favorites and views? What do you enjoy making or curating the most? What items do you make a nice profit on? These can give you good direction on what to sell more of.

Keep it cohesive. Having a cohesive shop is what makes having a well-stocked shop so beneficial. If a shopper comes in on one of your items, and the rest of your shop appeals to that same customer, there are now a variety of items he or she might buy. If you've ever seen something cute in a shop window and then gone in and bought something else, you know how this works. This is a major way sales are made on Etsy. If you have this, great! However, lots of new shops start out selling a wide variety of things. This is fine if you're getting started and want to see what works, but you'll probably want to create a cohesive line at some point. If you're in the "testing the waters" phase, you may not want to go as wild with adding lots of items — after all, you don't want to do a lot of extra work if you are going to narrow it down later. Pay special attention to what's popular and make more of that as you stock up.

ForStrangeWomen is a perfumery with a distinct style. She has close to 80 items:


Add more styles. Sometimes I see a new seller with, say, one skirt made up in 20 colors. When you're stocking your shop, focus more on making more styles rather than a lot of extra colors. Why? People are unlikely to buy two of the same skirt, but they might buy a miniskirt and maxi skirt, or a skirt and a dress. Plus, you'll get found by people who are looking for all of those things. Create a chart of your options and put it into your listings. Yes, it's great to see something made up in your various color options as separate listings with their own photos, but you can do this as time goes on. Consider photographing and listing separately any custom orders in colors that you wish to carry.

MudPieStudioNC has a great example of a color chart:


Common Questions

How many items? This depends on what you are selling and your personal preference. In general, shops with higher-priced and more labor-intensive items tend to have fewer items. Those selling jewelry with commercial components frequently make a goal of having 100 items in their shop. Look at successful sellers of similar items whose shops are where you want your shop to be and see how stocked their shops are.

Should I wait until I have a lot of items to start selling? No! Start with what you have. You can add items as you go — perhaps create a weekly listing goal for yourself. Having an Etsy shop is fun, and getting views, favorites, and sales while you stock up will keep you motivated!

How many items do you keep stocked in your shop? Share in the comments below.


Michelle Spaulding from HeyMichelle

Michelle is currently working on solving a mathematical mystery that is thousands of years old, and discovering amazing and beautiful things.


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