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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
In general I must tell you that I like the "For Dummies" books and have a number of them in my office and library. That being said though, there are good "Dummies" book and there are not so good "Dummies" books. Sometimes they hit the mark; other times....well, they should probably write a "How to write a For Dummies book for Dummies." Fortunately in the case of the book being reviewed here, "Starting an Etsy Business for Dummies," fall into the good category. As a matter of fact, it probably should be classified as a step or three above the just "good" category as it is probably the best of the series I have read so far.

The format is this book will be quiet familiar for those who have read other books in this series. It is extremely easy to navigate and it is set up so that the reader does not have to read it straight through cover to cover to be able to get anything out of it. Each section, while following a logical sequence, can never the less be read as a stand-alone. If you are interested in just one aspect of starting an Etsy Business, then you can go directly to that particular section.

Now I have read other books which attempt to guide you through the process of joining Etsy and opening up your own shop(s) and selling. To be quite honest, I found most of these books to be less than helpful as they were too general, too vague or more often than not, so far over my head that they might as well have been written by an advance alien culture from the planet Globigclx. I was glad I checked them from the library and did not lay down hard cash for them. Not so this work! Let me be more specific....

This book takes you step by step through from the beginning, including the reason you might want to open up your own shop, and covers each step of the way right on through. Reader take note: This is an extremely detailed book. Information simply drips off of each page. I have seldom read a self help book that was so detailed! As a relative beginner with Etsy, I found the book to be absolutely invaluable! Let me stress this once more...There is a MASS of information in this book. It is NOT a book that you can quickly skim through in a couple of hours and come out an expert. But the information is readable, understandable, logical and extremely helpful...A bit of work; a bit of study will pay big dividends in the long run. Remember - "There are no free lunches" folks. On the other hand, you can rest assured that if someone such as myself (semi-clueless) can navigate and understand this book, then so can you.

Who will benefit most from this book? I would say the beginner although the more experienced Etsyan will most certainly pick up some great pointers; things they either simply did not know or have things they already know clarified. I would say that anyone who has an interest in this area of creating and selling what they create will benefit from this book.

As far as Etsy goes, I rank myself as a novice. That being said, I have been running businesses for years and I can tell you that there was not one bad or misleading bit of information in this entire book that I could identify...it was all straight stuff here. I also have been selling on eBay and Amazon for quite a number of years now so I can testify that the information given in this work as to on-line selling is absolutely spot-on. After reading this book I can already tell you that my chances for being successful with Etsy have greatly increased and I do so wish I had had this work in my hand two or three years ago.

Do take note that most of the information found in this book; information dealing specifically with Etsy (which makes up the majority of the book), can indeed be found digging through the mass of information found on the Etsy site itself. But take if from me, it will take you days and days and days of research to dig this information up and digest it. With this book everything is laid out for you. It will save you many hours of frustration and the learning process using this book is oh so very much easier.
Etsy is a great idea, a great place and performs a wonderful service. To be honest, more people should become involved. While it most certainly does not come near eBay as to size, and probably never will, the corporate greed is not present with Etsy yet and it is a pleasure doing business there...it is more what eBay started out to be and is no more...a nice community and place you enjoyed hanging out in.

Don Blankenship
The Ozarks
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VINE VOICEon September 28, 2011
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
If you want to sell your work on etsy.com, this is the book you need. Starting an Etsy Business For Dummies takes you step-by-step through the process of signing up for an account, deciding what you will sell, creating listings, marketing your store, getting paid and shipping your items.

This is not a book filled with generalities, such as, "Take nice photos of the items you offer for sale." There is, for example, an entire chapter devoted to exactly how to showcase your crafts attractively in photos that will help them sell. There are also chapters on writing titles and descriptions, pricing, shipping and much more. If you have questions about selling (and buying) on Etsy, you will find the answers here.

The book is written in the style of all of the "for Dummies" books, so the tone is light and breezy and there are lots of lists, photos and screenshots. The book contains 25 chapters grouped into six parts. "The Part of Tens" (a fixture in the for Dummies books) includes Ten Terrific Tips for Etsy Sellers, Ten Strategies for Marketing Your Etsy Shop and Ten Pointers for Saving Money and Time as an Etsy Shop Owner.

This book will start you on your way to running a successful and profitable Etsy store.
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VINE VOICEon October 27, 2011
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I'm a real fan of the Dummies series. "Starting an Etsy Business for Dummies" is a pretty darn good book on the nuts and bolts of getting and started on your Etsy business.

I feel it gives you enough details in the basics of what it takes for you to realistically consider if this is a route you should take. The book goes into the basics of taxes and specific business law then references you to other Dummies book and resources. It goes into enough to give you an idea of what it takes to jump off the diving board.

To include everything you need to know about running your own business would make this a rather cumbersome book. It doesn't include Intellectual Property Law regarding Copyright or delve deeply into other aspects of the creative side of business. It does reference various aspects of running this type of business and gives you leads to explore and study the subject in depth.

Still, it does cover more of the business side of doing an online business than I had expected to see. There's a wealth of information that is valuable even if you decide Etsy is not for you and decide to take your business in another direction.

I found the information on Etsy Forums quite valuable. Reading the posts then referencing the poster's shop may give you a better idea of does and does not work. You must ask yourself:
1. Is there a need for this product? Sure, it's cute but is anybody going to buy it?
2. If a person is not successful selling their items, can I do it better?
3. Are my creations worth the price I need to set?
4. Am I willing to spend the time, money, and effort to make this business a go even if it fails?
5. What is the real reason this person is succeeding and this person is not?
6. When I start, how many or each item do I need to have in stock and how much should I be investing?
7. Do I really want to make art or crafts for a business or am I happy enjoying it doing it for myself, friends, and family?
8. Am I willing to be manufacturing, marketing, sales, IT, accounting, administrative assistant, receptionist, shipping, and customer service all rolled into one person?

You will be exposed to many other pros and cons discussed, things you may not have considered. Knowing what you are in for ahead of time can save you a lot of heartache and grief later on. It will also increase your ability to be successful.

The first step after considering an Etsy business is to buy and read "Starting an Etsy Business for Dummies." After that, all it takes is your own drive, determination, and dedication.
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on September 13, 2011
I have ordered other books on starting an Etsy business and was disppointed. This book certainly did not disappoint! It gives you all the information you need to start a successful business on Etsy. I found it especially helpful that the author didn't just vaguely describe what your store polices should say, but gave detailed descriptions. Very helpful book!
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on September 7, 2011
I have UPDATED THIS REVIEW:

Great guide to promote my two shops on Etsy (selling French items, home decor,Jewelry etc.. How I wish I had this book when I first opened my shop almost a year ago! I struggled so much, and often the Etsy admin is too busy too help.

I can tell you that it is a wonderful base to start with. Great for anyone starting a Shop on Etsy or who is lost in the "Etsy maze". I am now an experienced Etsian, and not surprisingly, this book also has unique and useful ideas for seasoned Etsyans as well.

The index is great, which is rare in books now days. It has about 17 pages of index, and is very useful and detailed. It also has a quick summary or overview for "contents at a Glance", and a detailed table of contents also.

It has great headlines and graphics. The book is very dense, as the type isn't too small, but not big either because there is so much info.

The time-tested formula of the dummies format is proven and wonderful. I am not surprised how well I could find everything, and even found new ideas.
There are lots of tips and icons to guide you along the way, warnings etc.

It is pretty basic though and you can pretty much find the same information on Etsy forums.. However, it would take a lot of your time and you would have to dig deep.

I found a couple of invaluable ideas and tips but generally it is pretty basic and applies mostly for new Etsyans. But again all the basics are there and will help a lot.

Pros: Very dense and full of information for new Etsyans

Cons: Maybe not as useful for the more experienced Etsyans but definitely will bring new ideas and tips.
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VINE VOICEon October 21, 2011
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
While this book did give basic step by step instructions for creating and maintaining an Etsy shop, I wished there had been more advice on marketing. I understand that the book is a general guide, but still had hoped for maybe some interviews with successful Etsy-ers on how they managed to turn their shops into careers. I don't feel like the book told me anything I didn't know or couldn't have figured out, but I will probably use it to refer to when I do actually get to start my own Etsy!
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on November 1, 2011
My advice: Don't set up an Etsy shop without reading this book FIRST!!! It's an awesome help for Etsy beginners. I had little idea what Etsy was before I read this book. I wanted to do an online Etsy business, but Etsy's online handbook was not specific enough, and everytime I wanted a question answered, I had to slog through their blogs and help file, and it was discouraging. Allison and Kate go through the whole COMPLETE Etsy process from beginning to end--in great and easy to read detail accompanied by screen captions. They've done a great job! I couldn't put this book down, and I read the whole thing from beginning to end. The format is so descriptive and simple, and VERY detailed. They also give great tips and warnings, and suggestions for topics like marketing and naming your shop--for instance, don't name your wedding jewelry and accessory shop "Dark Hearts" unless, of course, it's aimed at the goth market. Allison and Kate also give great advice on branding yourself and your product--something I didn't think of until I read this book! I plan to keep this book by my computer for ready reference as I set up and manage my Etsy shop. Every topic is carefully indexed and cross-referenced, so it's very easy to find all the answers to your questions. Thanks so much Allison and Kate for doing this!!!!
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The "... For Dummies" brand is usually one that works for me, I have a few. I don't have any other books for using Etsy (and an amazon search turned up several), so I cannot compare it to other books. However, I did find an answer for every question I came up with, and the index at the back of the book seems comprehensive.

Of neccessity, not everything is presented in full detail. For example, the book shows you how to enter a sales tax for your local sales tax collection, but otherwise, it leaves sales tax alone with the caveat to "check your local laws" and consult with an accountant. For a nationally sold book, it couldn't do much else.

As always in the For Dummies series, information is presented with humor. In particular, the section headings include a lot of puns, such as "Listful Thinking: Managing item listings".

Much space is given to marketing your Etsy shop, for good reason. Etsy is huge, simply huge. Getting someone to your page is the first hurdle.

A lot of information is given, and given succinctly. When a procedure needs to be followed, for example, to renew an expired item listing, this book gives you very simple direct step-by-step instructions, such as this step 2 of 5: "Click the Expired Listings link, under Items, on the left side of the page." That can't get much easier.

There are plenty of illustrations, including many screen shots, though all are in black & white, another For Dummies hallmark.

All in all, I think "Starting an Etsy Business For Dummies" is a comprehensive resource.

Happy Reader
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on October 25, 2011
I absolutely LOVE this book!!! I started etsy about 6 months ago and am still trying to figure out things. This takes you step by step how to figure it out. VERY informative!!! I think it's a must have for anyone starting out with etsy.
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VINE VOICEon February 16, 2012
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a very basic walk through of setting up a shop on Etsy. If you have bought or sold on Ebay, you really don't need this book. There are sections titles like "Choosing a Strong Password." Really? I can find that information without paying for it. There were a few good tips in the photography section, but that also had nearly insulting sections titles like "Focus People! Focusing your Image." My image needs to be in focus? Seriously? If you have worked in sales or customer service you already know what you need to do. If you are crafty and artistic, which I assume you are if you're wanting to sell on Etsy, you already know how to showcase your items in an artistic and creative way. If you're somewhat internet capable, Etsy's site has a wealth of information all right there, all free. They even have great newsletters with all kinds of great advice. For Free.
If you need to hold a book in your hands while you walk through setting up your shop, then this will be of some help.
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