Selling Handmade ~ Product Branding and Etsy Banners

Welcome back!  If you are joining us for the first time today, you can catch up by meeting the guest bloggers in yesterday’s post.

Today we’re tackling the whole “graphic design” aspect of selling online.  I’m no graphic designer ~ although it fascinates me a lot!  Right now I’m trying the DIY design method with Photoshop.  {It’s a slow process sometimes!}  As long as we’re on the subject, I’d like to thank Heather at Sewing Daisies for graciously giving me permission to use that cute bird graphic used in the button below.  She’s from Australia, and her blog is full of handmade goodness!  Thanks, Heather.

Now, on to today’s question.

Day 2:  Product Branding {Graphic Design and Online Store Banners}

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Question:  One of the first steps in setting up an Etsy shop is to put up a store front banner.  Do you do your own graphic designs, or do you hire someone to do that?  In addition to the Etsy banner, are there other “branding items” – like tags, business cards, or thank you notes – that you use?

Gina's Banner Gina from Shabby Creek Cottage

In the beginning I did all my own graphics using InDesign that was on my work computer at my old job (with their blessing.) Now I have a wonderful graphic designer, Kristen at AhoyGraphics.com. Although I come up with the ideas of how I want things (because I’m a control freak!), she does all the actual work behind making my blog & shop look polished & professional, from the banners to business cards, she does it all for me.

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jami's banner  Jami from freckled laundry

I do most of my own graphic design and created my Etsy shop banner using Adobe Photoshop Elements.

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The program costs around $100 but just last week, I discovered that if you purchase the Bamboo Capture (an electronic drawing tablet) for $99, Adobe Photoshop Elements is included for free. I’m so bummed that I didn’t find that deal myself but at least you know!

If graphic design isn’t your cup of tea, no worries. There a plenty of graphic designers with shops on Etsy that offer custom design work as well as more affordable pre-made designs and packages that include things like shop banners, icons, business card templates, etc. Just do Etsy searches for “Etsy banner” or “Etsy template,” etc.

Branding 101: Whatever you choose to do, having a consistent, professional looking brand will take you further. Image is everything especially if your products overlap with other shops. My blog, banner, buttons, and all other marketing materials echo the same logo, fonts, colors, and look.

In addition to my Etsy banner, I have custom business cards, tags, hair pin cards, and customer appreciation coupon cards. I handwrite my thank you messages on the backside of my business card.

freckled laundry business tags

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Although I have a background in advertising and marketing, my graphic design training is a good 12 years old! Ancient. I only had tags and business cards at first. When I finally earned enough from Etsy sales to invest in professional services and other marketing materials, I worked with Reni at Bliss & Tell for my new business card and hair pin card designs. I still print my own tags on my home printer and punch them out with a craft store die cutter.

 

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Lisa's banner Lisa from The Pennington Point

I do my own graphics.  My son does some graphic work for his computer animation business, so he purchased Photoshop.  I added it to my computer and there it sat for about a year until I asked him to sit down with me one day and show me how to use it.  It can be complicated, but eventually I got the hang of it.  If I don’t know how to do something I will Google it until I figure it out.  I also have stickers, thank you notes, business cards and tags that I use in various ways.

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aimee's banner  Aimee from My Pink Life

I create my own graphic designs for my business. I’m far from a graphic designer and am always learning in this area. I mostly use Microsoft Word for my graphics. I also create tags and business cards for my shop.

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Thanks, again, Ladies.  One of my favorite things to do is to study graphic designs (is that weird?), and I just love to learn how to  get all those neat looks.  But, sometimes, I get very frustrated trying to figure it out myself.

I just discovered for myself what Jami mentioned.  If you are looking for someone to design an Etsy banner/template for you, you can find some beautiful work with reasonable prices right on Etsy!  That could be an amazing time saver.

See you tomorrow when we discuss where we create…

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4 Comments

  1. Do any of these programs work well with Mac’s? I really am rather inept when it comes to computers…. in fact just recently I accidentally hit a button on my computer and now all the lettering is tiny. Far too tiny for my somewhat middle aged eyes to see…. (henceforth the decrease in computer time which really is a good thing because it is causing me to do some much needed work around the house! haha!)

  2. You remember I told you in my email that I just had someone do my banner and a couple of buttons, Ritajoy? Well, I should have told you it cost me all of $8.00! I’m a true believer in that if something is going to take me longer to do because I have no idea what I’m doing, it sometimes pays to pay someone who knows what they are doing. For $8.00 it was worth it to me and I found her on Etsy!

    I was purchasing “thank you” tags and tags with my Etsy shop name on them, but I’ve since figured out how to do simple text on a graphic, so I’ve been making my own right now.

  3. My brother suggested I would personally possibly this way web site. He used to be absolutely right. That distribute actually created this morning mutui per ristrutturazione casa. You can not think about precisely how a lot period I had put together used due to this info! Thank you so much!

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