After analyzing my last couple of earnings reports, I have considered the status of my wall decal business on Etsy and I think about what I can do to get my business to earn more.
Of course, my decal business is marketing to mostly moms looking to dress up their child’s room with a little wall art. They are not necessarily veteran Etsy shoppers. Many of them are newbies on Etsy who sign up prior to purchasing at my store. It does seem to me, at times, that it is a narrow market. But, then I see some of my competitors’ consistently soaring shop sales, and then I’m not too sure any more.
Diversify Your Vinyl Decal Business
The great thing about the decal business is that you can diversify and try out so many different things that it would blow your mind. On Etsy alone I can expand to include wall quotes for many different genres: Love Wall Quotes, Family Wall Quotes, Friendship Wall Quotes, Religious Wall Quotes, Inspirational Wall Quotes, Office Wall Quotes, Sports Wall Quotes, Kitchen Wall Quotes, Laundry Wall Quotes, Bathroom Wall Quotes, and on and on…
Or, I can begin catering to automobile window signs. I can do “Just Married” and “In Memory of…” type of signs.
Of course that would require me to purchase the appropriate vinyl for outdoors. For me, I would first try Oracal 651. Oracal is just the brand that I use for walls and which I trust. So I would start there to see how well 651 would work for me.
But then, having outdoor vinyl on board, I could cater locally to DIY folks who need someone to cut them a nice sign for their auto or business window. I can provide them with an online “how to” video. Or I can send a message out on Craigslist to see if there is a vinyl sign installer looking to work with a guy like me with a vinyl cutter and a small warehouse of vinyl supplies.
It sounds easy enough. But, you have to try in order to see what market is going to work for you. More importantly, which market you are going to feel most dedicated to. Maybe your ultimate goal is to own your own shop to offer car wraps to local businesses. Who knows?
You Must Do Your Research
Hopefully you are in a situation in which you are looking to learn and take in as much as you can from sources like YouTube, blogs and forums in order to make your most informed choices. But you have to do your HOMEWORK FIRST.
Remember, my personal motivation is not to quit my day job to go into the vinyl sign business full-time. What has always driven me is the idea of starting something that earns me a nice little part-time income while I do something fun and creative right from my little studio at home.
Many of you have a larger motivation. You are looking to become your own boss in the vinyl sign business. The fact is a lot of folks make good money in the vinyl sign business. You can read many of their stories in places like T-Shirt Forums. Part of my education in this business came from these forums. I found many of my questions already answered there and I was inspired by what a lot of people were sharing about their personal successes while others were looking to find their’s.
To learn more about the business, you should have already looked around online sign supply shops. While perusing their sites, you may discover other areas of interest related to the vinyl sign business. Some of my favorites sign supply stores are: USCutter, Signwarehouse, and BestBlanks.
As for me, I think I’m going to concentrate a little while longer on building a more solid Etsy shop (i.e. reviewing/updating descriptions; improving keyword tags; re-thinking prices, etc.). I’m also going to continue to improve my Etsy shop’s Google ranking by continuing to send increasingly more referral traffic from my Youtube channel. I think that has helped a lot, especially if the traffic keeps on growing, which it has done so, gradually.
I love that my shop still has a pulse and still earns me a little money. But I am encouraged to find ways to bring up my shop’s online traffic and sales. I think it is interesting to see how I can play with it and try to effect sales and earnings.
For now, that’s just fine with me and I am happy to learn as I go. I think my success in the sign business will be based on how much I learn about my products and how well I can optimize my sales online.
Where I am going with all this next? Who knows? But, I am enjoying the journey.