Every Saturday, I do a detailed analysis of how my Etsy jewelry shop is performing. I'll take note of what people are looking at when they visit my shop and how they found out about my shop (in other words, what were the referral sources). The majority of the time, they find my shop through organic Etsy searches. That makes sense to me because I've never paid for Etsy promotions and I don't advertise on Google. I advertise my standalone jewelry website through FB ads and Instagram engagement, but I leave everything else up to search engine optimization (SEO) and word of mouth.
Last week, however, I noticed a huge spike in referrers from a website called popsugar.com. POPSUGAR is a media company focused on pop culture. They have tons of articles about the hottest trends in beauty, fashion, fitness, and more. I won't pretend to be a cool girl. I had never heard of the site until I saw it on my Etsy dashboard as one of the primary sources of my shop traffic for that week.
My first reaction was pure delight and excitement. This explained why I had seen an increase in orders earlier in the week. Then confusion set in. Why didn't I know about this feature beforehand and how could I find the actual feature (the only source information I had was popsugar.com)?
In a matter of no time, I was searching the popsugar.com website for any hint of my jewelry or shop. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. Google searches also didn't return anything useful. I went back to my stats and realized that the spike in views came on Tuesday, so that gave me a narrower time frame to search the POPSUGAR website. Eventually, I found the article, "25 Flawless Gifts for Beyonce Fans". Bingo. I immediately knew that they were featuring a hand stamped bangle that has been a top seller for me. And there it was - photo 19 of 26!
That's something I made! Yes, I took screenshots. Wouldn't you?!?
Was this how I planned my first large media feature to turn out? Hardly. For starters, the product is a mantra band. But I'm not complaining! After many failed attempts at media kits this past year, this unexpected feature in the midst of the holiday shopping season was a welcome surprise.
I wish I could have titled this article, "How to Intentionally Land Your First POPSUGAR Etsy Jewelry Feature," but I'm not there yet. This experience is an excellent example of how random a first year in jewelry making and selling can be. So many in the jewelry industry share stories of how they made it to the top, but far fewer are willing to talk in detail about the years of hard work, rejection, and random-luck occurrences that it took to get their jewelry in big name department stores. My hope in sharing this story is that encourages other jewelry designers.
It's also a good reminder to me of why Jewelryosophy 360 matters. There is no neatly defined path in this industry. Everyone's experiences are unique and we can all learn so much from each other- even when things do happen on accident. If we're all willing to give a sneak peek behind our studio curtains, then we can truly become accountable for the success of our businesses. We can take daily steps towards living our passion.
Any piece you make can speak to anyone at any time. Your next accidental feature may be just around the corner too. Stay encouraged and keep making!
P.S. If you haven't already, be sure to join our little jewelry maker community. We encourage each other in our businesses, discuss our jewelry making adventures, and talk shop!