Sunday, September 12, 2010

Selling Online --- Top 10 Ways To Promote Your Business on a Shoestring Budget

One of the main things to remember when you are selling online is you need to promote your shop/items. Adding things to your etsy or artfire shop does not equal sales, you have to get  the items out there for others to see.

You don't have to have a huge budget to get yourself noticed. There are a lot of ways to market your items that are absolutely free.

I've compiled my top 10 list of places that I use to promote my things on a regular basis.

1. Facebook/Twitter... Show off your stuff to your friends by using social networks. There are others besides facebook and twitter, but those are the two I use most. (hint: don't post your links only... be social and talk about other things too)

2. Banner/Link Exchanges... Trade links or banners with others that sell online. Most are happy to exchange.

3. Forums... If you are a member of a forum, and the forum allows for it, show off your things once in a while. As with social networking, you can't use a forum for solely showing off your things... you have to be social and talk about other things too.

4. Topsites... Topsites are FREE to join and they get seen by many. There are many many topsites out there, choose one that is in your market.  We have several topsites for different venues and sellers, I will list those at the bottom of this post.

5. Groups... Join an Etsy group or an ArtFire guild and connect with others that sell things too. Most groups are set up to help promote each other.

6. Blogs... Blogging is a great way to feature your items so others can get to know you and see your items. Set up a blog and make friends with other bloggers in your area of expertise. You can exchange links with them.

7. Online Marketplaces... there are many many online marketplaces. Most will be themed to a certain genre such as primitive crafting, or boutique clothing. Most of these marketplaces are very inexpensive to advertise on.

8. Online Magazines... Craft magazines have popped up all over the internet and are a perfect place for crafters to advertise. You can purchase ad spots in the magazine or sometimes even on the magazine's website. is one of the original online craft magazines. They have many readers too!

9. Business Card/Flyer Exchange... Ask your crafty friends to do a business card exchange or a flyer with you. When they sell something, they include your flyer or business card in their outgoing package and you do the same for them. Bette and I have been exchanging flyers for quite some time now.

10. Advertise Locally... Hang up a flyer or packet of business cards on community bulletin boards. I've seen this type of advertising at the grocery store, post office and laundry mats.

As I mentioned before, Bette and I have several topsites that are free to join. They also have some paid spots that are very low cost. Here is a list of our topsites...
Top 100 Etsy Shops
Top Printables and Graphics Sites
Top 100 Pattern Sites
Top 100 Handcrafter Blogs
Top 100 Artfire Shops (this one is BRAND NEW)

And finally,  here are three busy websites that are free to advertise on.

If you have other ideas for promoting on a budget, please post a comment. We'd love to hear from you.

Thank you for joining us!
Deena Davis