If the golden rule of real estate is “location, location, location,” then the golden rule of Etsy selling is “branding, branding, branding.” Potential customers usually come to Etsy when they have something in mind, so the key for your Etsy shop is to make sure it stands out as exactly the resource they might want.
There are myriad ways to ensure that your shop looks like somewhere a consumer might want to shop, including your products themselves and your product photography, but without a name that’s easy to remember and that at least hints at what it is you’re selling, all of the cute logos and great prices in the world won’t mean a thing.
In her CreativeLive class, Etsy 101: Launch Your Handmade Shop, jeweler and teacher Marlo Miyashiro explained the somewhat confusing conventions behind naming an Etsy shop, and gave a few tips on how to pick the perfect name.
Once you’re ready to design a captivating Etsy Banner, head on over to Canva’s Etsy Banner Design Tool and create a header image that makes your shop pop!
As we get started naming your shop, it’s important to clarify which name we’re talking about — because when it comes to Etsy, you’ve got more than one name.
–Your username is the name you sign into Etsy with, and you can’t change it.
–Your full name is just your name. It’s optional, but it’s very useful, Marlo says, if you already have a client base who may come looking for you.
–Your shop name, which you can only change once and which dictates the URL of your shop.
And remember this: If you do decide to change your shop name, you can’t have the old one back — and neither can anyone else!
“If you change your name into something else, that old name is gone forever. Every shop name that’s ever been created is not available to use again.”
When in doubt, just be consistent — have your username and your shop name be the same. Or, you can chose to have your username be your actual name, and name your shop something different.
Once you’ve got some ideas for names and know the difference between the three names, it’s time to look on Etsy to see if any of the names are taken, and to see which might be a little too similar to yours. To do that, just search through Etsy itself.
“I just did this thing where I searched for what I thought were really common words that were in shop names,” explains Marlo.
For example, there are more than 29,000 shops with the word “designs” in them, and more than 15,000 with the word “creations.” Which doesn’t mean you can’t use them, but does mean it might be a good idea to think of something else.
“I’m not saying you can’t use these words,” Marlo notes “just know that you’re in this big pool of people that have a similar name.” Which means that if a customer is searching for your name, they’re going to have a lot more to wade through to try to find you.
To come up with a name that’s unique and telling, try this branding exercise:
–Make a list of words that relate to your brand and your goods.
–Now, do a word association with each word, and add three more words.
–Try to combine some of the words to make a shop name.
–Search for that shop name.
Even if you don’t pick any of these names, generating the list will get your creative juiced flowing and might help you land on exactly what you want.
Another naming option is to look at the things that are important to your life and your brand itself. For example, if you make high-end dog accessories, consider naming the shop after a beloved family pet and folding that into the story of the brand. Consider how your name factors into your brand story itself, and how it tells a piece of that story.
If the name you want is taken, you may be tempted to try an alternate spelling — but that’s not the best bet, according to a blog post from the Etsy Success Team.
“Pick something that is easy to pronounce and spell,” they write. “The former helps people remember your name, the latter makes it easy to find you again!”
Another great tip from Etsy? Ask around.
“Ask others who are in your target market what they think about your name,” suggests the Etsy Success Team. Ask your friends, your current customers, or people on Twitter what they think. Shopping the idea around can help you ensure that the name really sends the message you want — and tweak it before it’s too late.
To get more tips on how to get your Etsy shop off the ground and driving the sales you know you’re capable of, check out, Etsy 101: Launch Your Handmade Shop and Turn Your Etsy Shop in to Sales Machine.
Are you ready to start selling your handmade craft projects?
Download our free PDF: Etsy 101: A Guide to Getting Started! This comprehensive collection of notes, worksheets, and slides from Marlo Miyashiro’s class, Etsy 101: Launch Your Handmade Shop gives you the tips and insights you need to launch a successful Etsy shop!