Thank you, Sasha, for this amazing guest post and giving us great insight into your Etsy side hustle!
We hear about side hustles constantly now that we are living in a gig economy. As an individual following the Financial Independence Retire Early (FIRE) movement, I wanted to do my own side hustle.
Unlike other FIRE movement members, I don’t have cash lying around to “house hack” or buy real estate. It was defeating, so when I found that I could start a low overhead business in digital products through an Etsy side hustle, I dove right in!
My Etsy Side Hustle Journey
My name is Sasha and I am a wife, mother, accountant, and Etsy entrepreneur. I have worked in the field of accounting for ten years and am a Certified Management Accountant. I started my Etsy shop at the end of July 2019. The products I offer are personal finance, goal tracking, and habit of tracking digital printables and spreadsheets.
As of December 31, 2019, I have made $1,000 in gross sales from my Etsy business. I love bringing the power of spreadsheets to the world!
I was inspired to start my Etsy shop after I stumbled upon an Etsy printables shop in June of I am an avid Pinterest user and was searching for rotating meal plan ideas.
After clicking on a pin, it took me to an Etsy shop selling downloadable rotating meal planners. I had no idea this existed. I instantly thought that this was something I could do, but for the spreadsheets and printables, I had created for myself over the years.
Coincidentally, later that week I received an email from ChooseFI about side hustles. In the email, they discussed an Etsy printables course offered by Goldcity Ventures that was starting the next week. The course was at a great price point, so I pulled the trigger.
I never spend money impulsively on things, but I just had a gut feeling that it was the right thing to do, and I was right!
The course was laid out in bite-sized pieces. I learned about free products that I could use for the graphic design elements of my shop, how to use Adobe DC to make editable printables, how to sell on Etsy, marketing an Etsy business, and so much more.
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The only item I purchased for my business, other than the course, was an Adobe DC month to month license to make my printables editable. This is not a requirement of the course, but it was something I wanted to do to improve my products. I already had my spreadsheet content from years of budgeting, so I threw my logo on them and those were ready to go!
From inception to today, I have 52 product listings and spent $280 to get my shop up and running.
Current Challenges and Future Goals
The challenges I have found with starting and operating my Etsy business, as a full-time working mother, are the time commitment on the front end and marketing my tools. I currently use Pinterest, Instagram (@yourfrugalfriendblog), and my blog. Driving traffic to your shop is the number one pain point for every Etsy seller.
Starting my blog has helped tremendously with marketing my products. It gives buyers a chance to get to know you and what your brand is all about.
To start my blog, I used a blog course provided by Goldcity Ventures. I would have never been able to expand my business without this course as I am not technologically gifted. The online courses they offer have been such a great investment for me and I recommend them to everyone!
Tips I can give to anyone interested in starting an Etsy side hustle are:
1) Be passionate about what you want your products to be! If you love what you are doing it won’t feel like work.
2) Research your niche to see what others are doing and to see if there is a need for your idea.
3) Join Facebook groups related to others selling in your niche. I am apart of an Etsy digital products sellers group and it has been invaluable on my journey.
4) Take every free masterclass you can find on selling through Etsy. Some I like are provided by Jami Kind and Morgan Nield.
5) Have a support network to help you stay accountable to your dream!
Overall, I would say that my Etsy shop has paid for itself. I was able to cash flow for the first two years of blog costs with the money I made from my shop’s sales.
I plan to snowball the profits I make from my side hustles and use this cash flow to branch out into other ideas. My next side hustle will be an ebook and then an online course!
I hope you are inspired to get started on your side hustle today. Dream big but start small if needed! It is what I have done and it works!