First Person: I Spent $350 Starting Up My Etsy Shop

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According to a blog posted on Esty.com in January 2013, the website and its users sold $117.8 billion in goods during December 2012. The revenue came from the 6,001,420 items sold during that same month.

In February 2013, I opened an Etsy shop to sell the crocheted pieces I've created. Later in March 2013, I launched a website to accompany my Esty shop. I decided that if I was going to try my hand at this business that I needed to go all the way.

Of course, there have been some financial implications to all of this. I had to buy a entire array of things just to get started, and there were fees associated with the website. Here is what it has cost me to start my crochet shop on Etsy, and what my financial goals are.

The supplies

To make one crocheted item you don't need much more than a skein of yarn and a crochet hook; however, running an entire shop requires significantly more. To date, I've had to buy around 14 different size crochet hooks to meet the needs of different patterns. I've also had to build what is referred to as a "yarn stash." You never know what a client might ask for, or how fast they will need it, so you have to have multiple yarns on hand. Just three months in I've spent around $250 on these supplies alone.

I also had to purchase items for my listing photos like a few child toys, and a photo backdrop. In addition, I needed packing and shipping supplies. Together these things cost me around $80.

That's a total of $330 spent on the basic supplies for my Etsy shop.

The website

Some people will say that a website isn't necessary to run a successful Etsy shop, and I have to agree. However, when you are just starting out, and do not have a customer base, you need something to help bring traffic to your shop. Investing in a website was one way I planned to accomplish that goal. I created all the site graphics myself, and was about to get the setup site up and running on my own, so I didn't have to pay any one to do those times. So far, the only expense I've had related to the site was the cost of the domain name and for a host. I found a sale on a popular hosting site, and was able to get my site up and running for a little over $20.

My financial goals

My goal for my shop in 2013 is to simply find a way to break even. I'm working toward earning enough money to cover what I've already spent, and any profit I make will be reinvested into my shop.

All told, I've spent around $350 getting my Etsy shop up and running. I know it seems like a lot, but I believe in the old say; "nothing ventured, nothing gained." I'm hopeful that I can turn this hobby into a full-fledged money making venture, but only time will tell if I will succeed.

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