Etsy Goes to Market in Chico

Last night kicked off the first Etsy Craft Entrepreneurship training at the SBDC in Chico as the second part of our Go-To-Market program in Chico. The first was our specialty foods conference in April. Everyone came with their products – jewelry, Christmas ornaments, greeting cards, quilts, children costumes, wood pallets, leather goods, pet products, ceramics, water colored paintings, clothing, and tea. There was even a cattle rancher who owns goats and sheep and makes wool (for knitting, including adding colors) from shearing her goats and sheep. According to SBDC Director Sophie Konuwa, “It was a great training and everyone was able to set up a shop.”

The Etsy class is a focused pathway for artistic individuals who make products themselves or add value to an existing product such as clothing, jewelry, or wood crafts. They have to apply and be selected into the program. Those selected are serious about their work. Some are already in business and want to grow; some have tried to make a business work, but stalled; and some want to turn a hobby into an income-producing business.

The classes are customized toward Etsy businesses. Participants can get help and advice from teams in their geographical area or craft specialization and they have access to mentoring services. Topics include:

  • Taking clear, quality photos (ultra important to a web-based business!);
  • Writing a good ‘About’ page, for the business owner and the product;
  • Describing a product, the what and the why;
  • Identifying your target market and reach customers;
  • Using social media to market products;
  • Providing excellent customer service; and
  • Implementing best practices for shop policies, i.e. payments, exchanges, returns, packaging, and pricing.

The 5-week class has 32 registered participants and a waiting list for the next class. Learn more about the Etsy Craft Entrepreneurship program in Chico.

Big thanks to Shufina for spearheading this program!