People like buying things from people they like. People don’t like buying things from people who seem unprofessional. Yeah, I know that’s obvious. But, I am finding more and more sites where the owner doesn’t appear to understand this.
If you are selling your crafts to strangers, you are a professional crafter. So, please remember that your About Me page is your introduction and your one chance to make a first impression. When you meet a prospective customer in person, do you really want them to know that you just threw that necklace together out of bits and pieces you have left over? Or do you want them to be dazzled by your skills?
Be Young, Be Bold, Be Professional
So many of the Etsy shops that people ask for reviews of are made by young people. They are making absolutely amazing items. Their shops look great, the pictures are first rate, and their prices are appropriate (read truly representative of the work involved rather than nickel and dime); then they ruin all that hard work with their bios. Drives me crazy!!!
About Me – the interview
Think about what you would say on a job interview. Would you tell a prospective employer, “I just do this to get a bit of pocket money while I’m going to school.”, “I really want to be a biologist, but I make this stuff in my spare time.”, or my personal favorite and one I actually saw on a site “I make this stuff to get some beer money.”? None of those would be likely to get someone hired.
Start thinking of your About Me page as a place a potential employer might go to learn more about you.
Customers as Employers
Stop a moment and consider the differences between customers and employers. Both pay you for a service. Both expect something in return. Both hope they get their money’s worth. One purchases something you have already made, the other pays you to make/produce/do something for them. Are you beginning to see that they are not all that dissimilar after all?
It’s About You
So what should you tell them on your About Me Page?
These are good starting points.
- Welcome them to your site. You would welcome prospects who visit your physical booth or shop, why wouldn’t you welcome them to your online shop?
- Introduce yourself and your company. This is where you begin promoting yourself – yes, indeed the About Me page of your site is a major part of your advertising and where you begin to identify your unique selling points.
- Brag a bit. Tell them how long you have been making what you make. Talk about any schooling you have had. If Grandma taught you how, then say so.
- If your things are special – say so. If you use superior supplies, do put things like, “I only use 14k gold for my earrings.”, “I only use 100% cotton for ….”, “Every garment is reconstructed from other garments and is truly a one of a kind.”
- Leave age-related comments out. Unless you are some sort of wunderkid or prodigy – youth can work against you. If you are an experienced artisan with 20 years in the business, that is worth repeating.
- Charm and humor are good, immaturity and disrespect are not.You are asking people to give you their money and hoping they will actually get what they think they are ordering. If you tell them you are immature and show disrespect on your ‘interview page’, they may opt to take their business elsewhere.
- Build a following If your items are being sold somewhere – say so. This effectively says that there is a shop owner who believes your products are quality and worthy of shelf/floor space in their shop. It tells the prospect where they could see and touch your things. If you have upcoming fairs/shows, mention them as well. Invite them to come to where you are.
Most importantly, whatever you do, Don’t Lie!.
Someone who is buying something you made from your online shop or website is making a leap of faith that you are actually going to send it to them, it is really 14k, and it won’t fall apart on the first wearing. Remember, they can’t touch the item, hold it in their hands, or look you in the eyes first. You have to convince them you are everything you say.
Use your About Me page to convince your prospects that you are the professional artisan that we both know you are.
Now go back and review your About Me page and begin to start selling yourself as well as you sell your items.