Monday, August 17, 2015

Rebranding and a Second Etsy Shop

So, you may have noticed, I'm no longer Stitchy Impressions.  I'm now Sixth and Durian.  I'd like to take the time to explain the reason behind the change, why I chose Sixth and Durian and some fantabulous suggestions if you ever choose to rebrand and/or start another Etsy shop.

First of all, even though Stitchy Impressions was a cute name, it was something that was decided on in haste during a moment of frustration.  Goodness knows I carried that name for five years.  Marketing, promoting, listing stuff, growing my inventory, ordering business cards, ALL with the intention of making the name Stitchy Impressions into a great empire of handmade and vintage goodies.

It didnt happen.  Meh, sometimes things just don't work out.  But I decided it needed to work out.  I wanted my Etsy shop, not to replace my day job, because seriously I love my day job, but I wanted the supplemental income of it and that's what I didnt have.

So I dug in and did my research.  I discovered that I like whimsical names, but that doesn't necessarily make them successful.  Names have to also be memorable - Stitchy Impressions doesn't roll of the tongue.  Weirdly it was hard searching Etsy for inspiration in a new name, so I turned to Instagram and looked at the names of shops that I liked and I noticed that the majority had a This and That name - Otter and Fox was one, Pen and Thimble another, so I thought that may be something to actually look into.

Here's the part that took some doing though, in addition to wanting a This and That name, I also wanted something that had meaning to me.  And was representative of me in a way.  Stitchy Impressions didn't have that.  I also felt it limiting because really, who's going to go to a store called Stitchy Impressions and hope to find vintage items?

My first step was to tap my aunt, Robin, for ideas.  She's the really creative one in the family, for sure.  No such luck though, however, it did give me the ability to easily brainstorm which led me to Sixth and Durian.

So obviously Six is a number, but what the heck is a Durian?  A Durian, and despite the meaning behind the name which you'll find out in a moment, I did have too Google it, is a smelly yet very tasty fruit.

So why would a number and stinky fruit matter? Well, it just so happens that the corner of Sixth and Durian is the closest intersection to where I grew up.  And by grew up, I mean it.  We moved to that intersection when I was in the first grade and my parents are both still there.  And since my Mom is one of the makers for my Etsy shop, the name Sixth and Durian made perfect sense.

After deciding on the name I made a series of mistakes trying to get everything all set up and then a couple days later made the decision to separate out all of my vintage stock into a secondary Etsy shop - was born!

But, like I said, I made a series of mistakes.  So, in an effort to assist those of you Etsy sellers out there who may be interested in changing shop names or opening a second shop, I've got a checklist here of stuff you ought to keep in mind for it:

  • Make a list.  Ironic right?  The first item on my checklist is telling you to make a list, but seriously do it.  List out everything you need to do to make this transition and then date every item.  That way, if you're busy you have a good schedule put together for it and you wont feel under the gun.
  • Pick your name and dont settle on anything.  Give it your all.  This step may take several days even.
  • Google search your new shop name and also search on Etsy.  You dont want to get accused of trademark infringement
  • Create your banners and logos.  Whatever program you choose to use for it, that's your next step.  Take care of your graphic design right away, you'll need it later.  I did a shop banner and a square image with my new name centered on it - its important for further steps
  • Change your shop name.  You're more likely to do it and not suffer from cold feet if you take the time to make your banner and logos first.
  • Update ALL of your shop announcements, Etsy About page (and if its a secondary shop, take the time to create your About Page), shipping notifications, coupon codes etc.
  • Upload your banner.
  • Now, take your square shaped logo and hit the rounds on all your other accounts - Facebook, Twitter (you may end up needing to create a second account), Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, your blog etc.  And dont forget to go updating your bio for all of these too.
  • Shop photos - if photos for any of your items have your old shop name in them, whether it be watermarked or a picture of your packaging, you'll need to re-shoot. This though wont happen over night so again put a date on it.
  • Start printing - any of your tag labels that have your name on them are going to need to change. That's everything from the tags showing your fiber content to thank you notes you include.  This is another time consuming process (at least for me) so put a date on this.
  • Tagging - most Etsy sellers will use their shop name as a searchable tag.  I used 2 forms of it myself - StitchyImpressions and Stitchy Impressions.  All that is going to need to change BUT not anytime soon.  I started just including the new shop name on new and relisted items because people dont know Sixth and Durian yet, but they know Stitchy Impressions - this way my buyers will still find me and by the time everything has the correct tag people will know of the new shop name
And one final step for anyone who's creating a secondary shop - make at least 20 draft listings first.  I made 3.  Then I listed one.  And I had a lot of Shop Views come in and not as many Item Views.  So while that first item was bringing people to my shop, they had nothing to look at while there.  I suggest starting with 10 on the first day and then one or two items a day after that.  

Welcome to Sixth and Durian - Handmade and Vintage Goods!

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