By being an artist and creator myself I have a HUGE respect for others that do the same and I really want to bring people I admire forward into the spotlight. When I started this Blog I decided I was going to dedicate many posts to my fellow Etsy sellers to highlight what a great place Etsy.com is and also to show my appreciation and love for these owners and creators. I know there is a lot of hard work behind it, but more so – love and passion!
Let me introduce you to my first Featured Seller: Becky, the owner of Good Neighbors Candle.
Becky’s shop is filled with handmade soy candles and note cards that would fit anyone’s need at one point or another throughout the year. Candles are a great gift for anyone, even without it having to be a special occasion. We all love scented candles that fill our homes with warmth. Becky’s beautiful note cards are inspired by nature with vibrant colors and would go very nicely with her candles if you were to give them away as a gift.
When asked what item she sells the most out of Becky said: “I would say that a very popular item on Etsy is the Baby Shower Favor. They are so much fun to make and I have enjoyed making them in neutral colors as well as a custom order for a giraffe themed shower. Every day there are multiple searches for baby shower favor so this is an area I am actively working to expand.
Outside of Etsy one of my most popular items is the hot chocolate mug. I make so many of these in the fall and winter months. It is so fun with the little soy marshmallows and the hot chocolate scent is very real and lasts through the whole candle.
The number one seller all around is the nine ounce hexagon jar. Very, very popular with my fundraiser and Etsy customers.”
Tell us about your Etsy Experience
“I was pretty clueless when I started on Etsy. I put up my first listings and then began exploring the rest of the Etsy site. I stumbled upon teams and found a home in the CAST Team. Through participating in the forum I began to get an order here and there. As the positive feedback grew so did my sales. Just before the Christmas season last Fall I offered a deal on Heartsy. While this actually cost me a LOT of money in shipping fees, it gave me a lot of exposure, sales, feedback and repeat customers. Another thing that stirred up sales for me initially was a trade I did with a team mate. She loved the candles and talked them up in our chat thread. Another team member was looking for melters, which I had not done to that point. She became a tester for me and is now a regular customer. Giving her free product in the beginning as it was in development allowed us to build a relationship that is now a very lovely friendship.”
Since Etsy is filled with amazing artists how do you try to stand out from the rest?
“I make every effort to stand out by offering top notch candles. Using quality fragrance oils, pure soy wax and natural wicks I do my best to provide the best candle on the market. I also work hard at the photography aspect of it. While everyone else is chasing the photos on white trend I have backed off to just taking pretty pictures that are clear and attractive. I went through trying to take them on white but it just looked harsh and took so much effort that I didn’t end up getting around to it as often as I needed to list things. Sometimes you just have to be an individual. It is working for me. Since I also offer my own photography on note cards this style doesn’t detract from a unified look in my shop.”
What was it that got you started selling Candles?
“In 2005 my next door neighbor had retired from her full time job and was looking for part time work. I knew that she enjoyed making candles and suggested that she might enjoy starting a small business. I was working in finance at the time and suggested I could keep the books. That was the beginning of a very fun and intense time of learning. i often feel that I should track down those customers from the first year or so and offer them replacements….we had so much to learn. However, in the years since then the candles have improved to put it mildly and most of my business comes from repeat customers. I love making new friends and creating fresh, quality candles for them.”
Every artist gets inspired by something, what is your biggest inspirational source?
“Much of my inspiration comes directly from my customers. This is how we got the baby shower favors. One of my repeat customers contacted me and asked me to come up with something she could give to her guests at a niece’s baby shower. Other customers ask for specific fragrances. Sometimes my inspiration comes from a container. It is so much fun to create custom items in bowls, crocks and other containers I spot here and there. This bowl candle has been a favorite of those who take a chance on ordering it.”
Some feedback that came in last week on the citrus infusion bowl candle….”OKAY, this is my FAVORITE of the candles I ordered. The bowl is adorable, the candle is BIG, and it smells so danged good! Wonderful fresh citrus scent — and the scent is so well infused in the soy wax that the candle scents our sunroom beautifully even when it is not lit. I had a plumber come by the other day, and he remarked on the wonderful scent — and was amazed that the candle was unlit and still smelled so great. I thought that was pretty impressive! Thanks, Becky — there are more of these in my future, as gifts and for myself.” — Cass
If you had to buy something from your own shop what would it be and why?
“My favorite item changes all of the time….but at this very moment….I enjoy the Peach Smoothie scent in any form. Tea lights, jar candles….whatever! This scent makes me happy.”
What are your tips to fellow Etsy sellers?
“There are two things that I believe are key in selling on Etsy. Number one is your photos. If you have to spend money to have someone else take them, do it. Your product must be well represented because first impressions are everything. The second thing I would recommend is to find a team that you fit comfortably into and invest time and energy in promoting others. Make friends. Etsy is a big place. Your effort has to be in making those first 10 – 20 sales to receive positive feedback which allows others to feel comfortable taking a chance on you. It should go without saying that you must offer quality products. Never, ever sell anything that you wouldn’t be thrilled to purchase yourself.”
Becky’s passion and dedication is truly visible in her words! And last but not least she has offered a Free Give Away!!! This Irish Moss 6 oz Tin Candle and her Monarch Note card is up for grab!
This is how you win it:
For every action you take your name get’s put in the hat (so more action = more chances) – just make sure you comment on what you do and include links if applicable.
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The winner will be announced on Saturday June 16th right here.
Thank you Becky for sharing your experience as a business owner and Etsy seller with us. I am sure many of us have learned a few things we can work on to improve our outlook on becoming even more successful.
Check out Becky’s Etsy Store: Good Neighbors Candle