My intention was to leave in the middle of HeyMichelle's shop critique and grab a treasury, but it wasn't to be. Instead, I was once again transfixed on the savvy marketing advice that can be so crucial to Etsy selling success. Three points stood out enough that I wrote them down.
Between actual shop critiques, Michelle actually told one seller quite strongly: Take those watermarks out of your pictures! They lower your chance to be featured and it's a turn off to customers. Remove them all together or move them to the bottom where they can barely be seen.
The next point is related to the above. One of the critiqued shops had beautiful jewelry with her shop name displayed in almost every photo. Michelle said to take the shop name out, you don't need text in the photos.
In one of the last critiques a 2D artist was featured. Some of the work was shown framed. Michelle said she liked this because it gives a buyer an idea of what it will look like hanging on their wall. She added that personally, she likes framed work for the gift guides because it shows better and sells better. She qualified that by adding that it may not be as important in the searches.
I take these tips pretty seriously, as Etsy admin obviously has information/stats and insight that the average Etsy seller doesn't have. Sometimes it takes some ego adjustment and a willingness to try something different to change the way we do things. I know it did for me. Whether you agree or disagree with Etsy's ideal of how to present your work, the point is that those who take the advice and run with it have a better chance for more success.
Please visit the Etsy Virtual Labs for great discussion. They usually have shop critiques once a week. They are well worth the time!