10 Steps to Take When Opening An Etsy Shop


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Are you looking to earn passive income or simply just looking to unleash your creativity?  These days nearly everyone is getting into the market of having a small online business.  If you’ve always dreamed of running your own online shop but have little money to invest, selling on Etsy might be the best way to go.

Etsy is a great way to earn passive income and I do it myself with my Etsy shop Kendra Annette Design that I opened in 2016. 

People often ask me how I got started selling on Etsy, and to be honest it isn’t very complicated however it does take a few days of commitment, a small amount of money and a vision for getting started.

Here are my 10 tips for opening an Etsy shop for passive income:


By definition, passive income is a stream of income that you can make with little to no effort.  Some say you can even get it done in your sleep.  If you truly want your Etsy shop to be a passive income stream you need to figure out what types of products you are going to sell where you need little to no effort in order to keep producing it.  The best types of passive income shops I’ve seen on Etsy are shops that sell digital prints, resumes, digital art/worksheets, and mugs.  You will also want to focus on figuring out what you can produce easily.  If you have a shop where you are creating each order by hand, you will have a ton of inventory and overhead. When your orders increase you will have a lot to produce in a short amount of time for shipment.  Therefore you should sit down and brainstorm where your skills lie and what product you would be proud to give to your customers.  Originally, I myself wanted to create a shop where I sold t-shirts and art prints, however I quickly realized that I would need much more capital to get this done and my graphic design skills are still being molded.  In the end, I ended up designing a few mugs and making this my main product to sell.


Now that you have an idea of what you want to sell, you need to focus on your shop’s vision/branding.  A great way to do this would be to focus on your overall style.  Are you funny, quirky, stylish, dark, happy?  Write down some adjectives that speak to you about what kind of vision you have for your store.  Also, I would suggest picking out 2-3 colors that represent your shop.  How do you envision your shop looking?  Do you want your shop to be glamorous, silly, quirky, light and airy or clean and simple?

My shop actually didn’t originally start out at KendraAnnette Design.  The name I used in the beginning was Inspired Truth.  I had a vision of creating art prints and mugs that were truthful yet inspiring.  How bland right?  My colors were black and white and to be honest it was pretty boring.  It wasn’t until I visualized my own style and then made a mood board on Pinterest where I realized that I was in love with soft pinks and watercolors.  I favored light and airy as opposed to stark colors and so I then began to visualize my theme for my brand.  I wanted people to see my mugs as an addition to any stylish and feminine room.  Thus, I rebranded the shop to Kendra Annette Design and gave it a more feminine vibe.



This should be the easy part, but I’ll admit it can be difficult to create that perfect name.  After you’ve gotten your overall vibe/brand established for your shop you will need to name it.  My best advice would be to pick a name that conveys the theme of your shop.  If you sell resumes you don’t want to have a shop named Coolkicks23, you will want something that flows like SavvyResumes.  Pick a name that you are also proud to serve as your brand and that isn’t too over the top or too immature.  If you need some help use this Etsy name generator .   


This is where you will create your designs for your shop.  I have used Indesign, Illustrator and Photoshop to create my files for my shop.  If you aren’t equipped with how to use these programs I suggest you watch some Youtube videos or learn graphic design on Udemy to help you improve your skills.


If you are looking to outsource your products for maximum passive income status, you will need to choose a print shop that you create your products and ship it to your customers.  Two that I recommend are The Printful and Stationary HQ.  They both ship and manufacture your designs and within a few days they are sent directly to your customers so that you don’t have to have any inventory in your home.  This makes my life so much easier because when I get a sale I just press a few buttons and my job is done.  My shipping company takes care of the rest.


This is ultimately where you will begin your process of getting started to begin selling on Etsy.  Once you create a username and login you will begin to enter information about your store such as your shop name and then you can begin to list your products.


The most successful Etsy shops have their own photography.  However if you aren’t skilled with creating your own photos, you can superimpose your designs onto stock photos using pictures that you buy from creativemarket.com.  Make sure your photos are clear, high quality and crisp so that customers are able to see the products in a clear way.  Additionally, you’ll want to include several photos if you want customers to see your product from different angles.



At this point you will want to get started with the finances for your shop.  After all, you are creating this shop to make money.  As an Etsy seller, you set your pricing for everything and that includes shipping.  You will need to calculate how much you need to charge for both the product itself and the shipping in order to make your profit.  Especially if you are dealing with an outsource company where you will need to put up the money first in order to get the sale through.  Calculate your upfront costs vs. your take home cost once Etsy deposits your money.  Keep in mind that Etsy does take 3.5% of each sale you make.


A logo is very important to the overall look and brand for your shop.  I got my logo created by a designer on Fiverr.com and you can too.  This is a great website to find people that will do anything you need on the internet for just $5.  Another great site where you can create a logo for your shop for free is Canva.com.  There you can create your own logo from some pre-formatted designs.  I love Canva because they are easy to use and have high quality images.


Last step is to figure out how you want to promote your shop.  Etsy is such a large site that naturally people will be able to find your shop through various key words they type in the search box when looking for a product.  But there are other ways you can promote your shop as well such as Facebook, Pinterest, Reddit, YouTube, and direct email marketing.  Create a plan for people to find your work and see the numbers roll in!

  • Etsy does charge seller fees monthly
  • Etsy has the option for you to print shipping a shipping label if you ship from home
  • You will also have to think about whether or not you would like to ship international, domestic and your return policy
  • If your sales are over $500 a month you will have to pay taxes as a small business

Hope this was helpful to you future Etsy shop owners!




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Kendra Annette is a lifestyle blogger, Yelp elite, wanderlust and personal development junkie.

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