What am I doing wrong? Why isn't this selling? Why am I not a millionaire yet? Okay, I haven't actually seen that last question yet, but the others are asked seemingly every hour at Etsy. I assume the same thoughts swirl around at DeWanda, ebay, icraft and all the other handmade marketplaces online. We, as a culture, have been infected with the, 'if you build it they will come' mentality. This, I'm afraid to tell you is a fallacy, a lie, complete untruthiness.
Let's explore why it might be that no one is buying your goods. Without even looking at your shop, the first thing that pops out to me is your product. It actually might not be worth buying. Harsh, you say, but perhaps it's the truth. Are you making jewelry in the same style as a hundred other people with the same beads? Are you knitting dish clothes with the pattern off the back of the yarn label? Are you making candles or soap from a kit you found at the craft store? I could go on, but you get the point. If you are doing these or dozens of other simple and unoriginal things, you have your answer. Unless you do these things with amazing skill and flair, they are not worth buying for most people. Don't take other sellers word for it in the forums either, they are not likely to tell you the truth. They are simply too nice and too supportive. Most of them honestly want everyone to succeed even when they know not everyone can.
If you've past that first test, then you're ready for the analogy portion of my diatribe. Imagine if you will, a mall with 10,000 jewelry stores. I really shouldn't have to go on, it should be clear where this is headed, but for arguments sake, I shall continue. If you were to walk into that mall,with no preconceived agenda you are probably only going visit the first few stores you see. So that's 9995 unseen stores. Maybe you're an organized shopper so you check out the directory. You're looking for stores that stand out in some way, a great name, a description that includes exactly what you're looking for, or something familiar and you're still only going to visit a few stores.
Here's the lesson in all this. If you want to be one of the first stores they see, you need to list or re list often enough to see seen easily. You don't need to go crazy, just once a day could help a lot. If you can't do that, then you need to catch the organized shopper. To do that, you need to use all your tags wisely so you come up in all relevant searches. Ah, tags, the illusive grail of shopping. You know that they are the key and yet you can't seem to use them right. I have a tip, pretend you're a shopper and searching for something that you sell. What words do you actually use in a search? I've looked for formal jewelery, casual jewelery, beautiful, elegant, simple, unique, soft, bright, dark, etc. Are you using those kinds of words to describe your pieces. This is how you can use all your tags without resorting to tag abuse, which doesn't help your cause at all.
I hear a lot of people responding to these "why" questions with the horrible phrase, "You just need to wait for the right buyer". This akin to telling the needle in the haystack, "you just need to wait for the guy with the magnet." What you need to do is make that needle so cool and easy to find that people don't even have to try to look for it. There are plenty of buyers out there for everyone making a quality product, but most of them are not looking for an expedition. They want stuff to fall in their laps, so make sure you're throwing it out there where they can find it!