Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Upcoming August Holidays!

As we near the month of August, I like to know what holiday's are approaching. This way I can gear my tags, treasuries and listing to fit the monthly themes people will be searching! Here is a list of August holidays some might seem wacky but just might get the attention of Etsy and Etsy shoppers!!!

National Golf Month and S'mores Day are my two favs!! how about you??

August, 2013 Bizarre and Unique Holidays

  • Admit You're Happy Month
  • Family Fun Month
  • National Catfish Month
  • National Eye Exam Month
  • National Golf Month
  • Peach Month
  • Romance Awareness Month
  • Water Quality Month
  • National Picnic Month
Weekly Events:
  • Week 1 National Simplify your Life Week
  • Week 2 National Smile Week
  • Week 3 Friendship Week
  • Week 4 Be Kind to Humankind Week
August, 2013 Daily Holidays, Special and Wacky Days:

1 National Raspberry Cream Pie Day
2 National Ice Cream Sandwich Day
3 National Mustard Day first Saturday
3 National Watermelon Day
4 Friendship Day - First Sunday in August
4 International Forgiveness Day - First Sunday in August
4 Sisters Day - First Sunday in August
4 U.S. Coast Guard Day
5 Work Like a Dog Day
6 Wiggle Your Toes Day
7 National Lighthouse Day
8 Sneak Some Zucchini onto Your Neighbor's Porch Day - now that's nasty!
9 Book Lover's Day
10 Lazy Day
10 National S'mores Day
11 Presidential Joke Day
11 Son and Daughter Day
12 Middle Child's Day
13 Chinese Valentine's Day/Daughter's Day - 7th day of 7th Lunar Month
13 Left Hander's Day
14 National Creamsicle Day
14/15 V-J Day - which date do you mark the end of WWII?
15 Relaxation Day - now this one's for me!
16 National Tell a Joke Day
17 National Thriftshop Day
18 Bad Poetry Day
19 Aviation Day
20 National Radio Day
21 Senior Citizen's Day
22 Be an Angel Day
22 National Tooth Fairy Day - and/or February 28
23 Ride the Wind Day
24 Vesuvius Day
25 Kiss and Make Up Day
26 National Dog Day
26 Women's Equality Day
27 Global Forgiveness Day
27 Just Because Day
28 Race Your Mouse Day -but we are not sure what kind of "mouse"
29 More Herbs, Less Salt Day
30 Frankenstein Day
30 Toasted Marshmallow Day
31 National Trail Mix Day

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Growing Your Twitter Following!

Many people have asked me over and over how I got my Twitter following so high. I recently hit 37,000 followers and it keeps growing. My secret? 1 website and working it at least 1 time per day!

I use the site justunfollow.com it's a very user friendly site that can help you grow your followers and at the same time get rid of non-followers. They offer a FREE service which will limit you to following 50 new people and removing 50 non-followers every 24 hours. This was ok for me at first but to truly grow I needed more. So here is what they offered me:

I chose the Premium for $4.99 a year. I started with 3500 followers and it has only been 8 months and I am at 37k! So basically after you grow for 1 year ($5 investment) you can go back to the free version just to monitor if you want. I personally wont be happy til I hit 100k!! :-)

Now once you login via twitter you will get this screen:

I always start with my FANS, these are people who followed you but you do not follow yet. Make sure you follow them, becuase chance are they are using a site like this and will drop you fast if you don't return the favor! Just click the blue FOLLOW buttons all the way down!

Now it is off to WHO UNFOLLOWED YOU! these are the meanies! they followed you to gain your follow and than dropped you like a hot potato! Remember you have a limited # of people you can follow and there is no room for these guys!! Click the red buttons all the way down and make room for newbies! Justunfollow separates these people by day so you can see when it happened!

Now the Fun Begins!!!!

The next place I go is COPY FOLLOWERS! here you can input a twitter name and copy their followers. So you are gonna ask "WHO DO I COPY??" What I did was search tags I use in my tweets #jewelry #vintage etc. and I looked at people until I found someone who had 5k or 10k followers! I plugged their name in and started copying. I figure if they are gaining followers and talking about items like mine hey they might follow me! And they DID!!  Once you enter a twitter name a list of recommended people to follow will appear and you can click away on the follow button! These are people that justunfollow via some magical formula would be most likely to follow you back.

And as you see in the first image, the site keeps track of people you recently copied followers so you can go back and copy more later!! :-)

IMPORTANT: Even though when you pay the $4.99 you get unlimited follows/unfollows Twitter will stop you at 1000 follows per day! Also DO NOT do this all in one sitting. follow roughly 100 new people every 2 hours or so. Otherwise Twitter Police will shut the account down and cause you a headache and a half (i know they did it to me!!)  So shoot for following 300-500 per day and unfollow roughly the same. do it throughout the day while working your other social networks.

Now the NON FOLLOWERS! If you are just starting off leave this alone for 5 days at least. Since you just followed these people they will all show up as non-followers at first. When you click on non-followers it will give you the OLDEST (meaning the people you followed first) so you can clear out those you followed a few days ago. If you come across someone you want to follow like a celebrity or business and you DONT want to unfollow them CLICK WHITELIST this will keep them safe and you won't accidentally unfollow them.

So once you are ready you can simply go through and unfollow 100 people in a couple clicks and leave the rest in case they decide to follow you in the next few days. The NON FOLLOWERS I personally work every 3 days or so, this allows people time to follow me back.

This is the key to growing Twitter followers, you follow a ton of people and hope they return the favor! that's it. And those who don't return the favor get dropped and you start again.

Now you might ask is it worth the $5 and time? My answer is YES! Since growing my twitter following my views nearly doubled. I have tweets set up on dynamic tweets and I tweet regularly and it gets people in my shop. So for one day when I joined I sacrificed my Starbucks coffee and joined justunfollow.com and LOVE IT!

Now those who have small followings remember twitter has limits on how many people you can follow until you start growing

here are twitters FOLLOW LIMITS: https://support.twitter.com/articles/15364#
this will explain how many you can follow
  • Following (daily): The technical follow limit is 1,000 per day. Please note that this is a technical account limit only, and there are additional rules prohibiting aggressive following behavior. Details about following limits and prohibited behavior are on the Follow Limits and Best Practices page. 
  • Following (account-based): Once an account is following 2,000 other users, additional follow attempts are limited by account-specific ratios. The Follow Limits and Best Practices page has more information. 

Bill Guest

Saturday, July 13, 2013


               PIN TO WIN EVENT LINKS:
                    PromoFrenzy on Pinterest
                              Christmas in July Contest Rules
                   Email us Here

Win One of These Fabulous Prize Packages


Visit our Pinterest Christmas in July Board

Email us here

***No purchase Necessary***

Contest beings 07-11-2013 at 12:00AM EST and ends 07-21-2013 at 11:59PM ESTEligibility:
Must be 18 years of age or older, and a resident of the United States
Not a member of the Promotional Frenzy Team (PFT) on Etsy, or an immediate relative (parent, spouse, sibling, child) of a PFT member.
Must follow the entry rules beow
Contest is void where prohibited by law.
To Enter:
During the Entry period, you must:
1.  Log into your Pinterest account, and click "Follow All" to follow the Promotional Frenzy Team on Pinterest http://pinterest.com/etsypromofrenzy/
2.  Create your own Pinboard titled "X-mas in July"
3.  Pin at least 15 pins from the Contest board
    http://pinterest.com/etsypromofrenzy/christmas-in-july-2013/ to your own board.
        a.  Do not pin all 15 at once
        b.  Feel free to pin from other sources as well, to make your board dynamic and interesting. Please be  sure you have the right to share any items you are pinning.
4.  Email us at pft_pin2win@yahoo.com with a direct link to your Contest board (Mode of Entry)
5.  Limit one (1) entry per person.  Multiple entries, entries submitted from different Pinterest accounts, and all other attempts to gain multiple entries will result in automatic disqualification.
6.  Any entries that do not comply with Pinterst.com TOU or with the rules set forth above will be   disqualified.

 Winner Selection:
Winner(s) will be drawn at random and will be announced no later than 2 weeks after contest ends. All selected winners will be notified via email.  If you are a potential winner, we may require you to sign an Affidavit of Eligibility, Liability/Publicity Release within 5 days of notification.  If you do not complete and return the required forms as instructed, we may disqualify you and select an alternate, randomly selected winner.
If the notification we send is returned as undeliverable, or you are otherwise unreachable for any reason, we may award the prize to an alternate selected winner.
Winners can expect to receive the prize within 2-3 weeks following verification of eligibility.
If you are confirmed as a winner of this contest:
You may not exchange your prize for cash or any other services. However, if for any reason the advertised prize is unavailable, we reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value; and you may not designate someone else as the winner. If you are unable or unwilling to accept your prize, we will award it to an alternate potential winner; and If you accept a prize, you will be solely responsible for all applicable taxes related to accepting the prize; and If you are otherwise eligible for this Sweepstakes, but are considered a minor in your place of residence, we may award the prize to your parent/legal guardian on your behalf.

Odds of winning?
Your odds of winner this Contest depend on the total number of eligible entries we receive.

By entering this Contest you agree:
• To abide by these Official Rules; and
• To release and hold harmless The Promotional Frenzy Team and its members and agents from any and all liability or any injury, loss or damage of any kind arising from or in connection with this Sweepstakes or any prize won; and
• That PFT's decisions will be final and binding on all matters related to this Sweepstakes; and
• That by accepting a prize, The Promotional Frenzy Team may use your proper name and state of residence online and in print, or in any other media, in connection with this Contest, without payment or compensation to you, except where prohibited by law.

There are 4 (four) prize packages of approximately equal available.  The total retail value of all prizes combined is $775.20  Available prizes are shown on the contest board in the “Win This” pins.  Prizes include handmade items such as jewelry, knitwear, sewn items, photography, woodworking, bath and body products, graphic designs, candles, fragrances, and food items.

Everyone who enters will also receive a special coupon code at the end of the contest, available for use in participating Etsy shops!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Writing Policies for your Etsy shop!

Who here has asked at a retail store, "What is your return Policy?" I know I ask that anytime I shop somewhere new, make a large purchase, or am uncertain of the item I purchased.  How about when you shop online yourself, aren't you curious about how long it will take to arrive? Or will they ship to my location.

While we Etsians are not big box retailers, our customers are expecting a similar experience and will have the same questions we all have. It is our duty as shop owners to give the customer all the information and knowledge they can get in order to feel safe and comfortable purchasing from our shop.

Etsy has a great section that sadly many seller neglect to fill out. the POLICIES PAGE.

You can get to your policies page by hovering over YourShop on top and clicking on Info and Appearance. Like so:

This will open your edit page click the tab that says POLICIES and you will have several boxes to fill in, these include:

Welcome Message -  Here is a chance for you to do a quick blurb on your shop. What do you sell, do etc? a 3-5 sentence story should suffice

Payment Policy - It's as easy as it sounds. How and when do you want to get paid? I personally only use Direct Checkout now and I state that here. I also want payment at time of purchase. (nothing irks me more than when someone buys and waits 3 days to pay!!) Many including myself also offer info on layaway, custom order etc. many people require a deposit for customer orders that info should go here.

Shipping Policy -  When and where do you ship? are your items ready to ship next day, or orders made at time of order and need extended time? Also include info on international shipping. We have all gotten that email from overseas, "where is my order? it's been 5 days!" Check the link to my policies below I have some good international information there. Many countries take 3-4 weeks, and the USPS will not open a case until such time has passed. Let your customers know this! Another things that shocks international buyers are duties and taxes. I have this line in my shipping policies:

**International customers are responsible for duties, taxes, and other fees incurred on international packages. Also, please be advised that I will NOT falsify customs documents by marking a package as a "gift" or changing the monetary value of the contents.**

Feel free to copy and use it! Since I deal in vintage jewelry, many buyers have asked me to say it's a gift, and lower the value. I refuse to do that since I insure most orders, and if I lie on the customs form I won't get my full value that I insured it for! Also I am not a fan of making bogus documents especially US government ones!!

Refund Policy -  Now here like big box stores is where we will all have the most variety.  Be upfront and honest on how you will handle returns. If your policy is NO REFUNDS state that. However if you accept Paypal it is meaningless and they can still return and Paypal will zap your money and give it back. So I personally suggest a friendly return policy.

I would set a specific # of days they customer has to contact you after getting their item and to ship back (at their expense: include this is you want them to pay return shipping!) to you.

Many shops myself included require a reason for return that must be more than " I changed my mind." If there is no reason many shops have included a restocking fee which will be subtracted from the refund given.

I deal with a lot of international orders and have had people refuse a package becuase they didn't want to pay the duties and than I have to wait 2 months to get the package back if it doesn't get lost. I got this line from another seller of vintage goods:


I am all for refunds on legitimate cases, for example the item broke (hence insurance) item wasn't what I promised, etc. So please don't think I want to scare customers from returning, but i want to cover my behind from people who take advantage. So COVER YOUR BEHIND, list what you will do in cases of returns, or unhappy customers and always strive to give 100% the best customer service. But just like the big chain stores, being able to show your policies in advance will deter those who are not on the up and up!

Additional Info - What else does your customer need to know??? I use this spot to explain how I describe my jewelry (good, fair, excellent etc) but you can leave this spot blank or add information you want to help your customer make educated purchases.

Seller Info - mine is blank.  etsy notes: Some countries require seller information such as your name, physical address, contact email address and, where applicable, tax identification number. See this FAQ for more information.

AFTER you write all this in you MUST CLICK SAVE!! than you are good to go!

If you would like to check out my policies feel free to check it out here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/PaganCellarJewelry/policy

Etsy also tackled this topic on their blog with some other pointers that might help: http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2012/service-tips-for-sellers-creating-policies-that-work/

Bill Guest

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Ruby - July's Birthstone

The Ruby is the birthstone for the month of July. It is also the Wedding anniversary gemstone for the 40th year of marriage 

Zodiac Sign: Cancer 
Cancer dates: June 22 - July 22 
Cancer - The Third Sign of the Zodiac: The sign of the Crab 
Ruling Planet of Cancer: Mercury  
Alternate Birthstones of Cancer: Emeralds, Sardonyx, Pearls and Moonstones 

Spring Infinity Scarf
Lovely Spring Handmade  Infinity scarf, circle scarf, cowl scarf,  Womens Rose colored

The word Ruby is derived from the Latin word "ruber" which means "red" reflecting the color of the stone. 

Dicroic Fused Glass Candle Holder
Dichroic Fused Glass  Candle Holder Poppy Red with Golden Turquoise Interior and  186

Like diamonds, gemstones are graded by color, cut, clarity, and carat weight. Rubies are extremely hard, second only to diamonds. It is a red crystallized variety of corundum. The Ruby is a member of the Corundum (aluminum oxide) family. 

A few rubies have been found in the U.S. states of Montana, North Carolina, South Carolina and Wyoming. Recently, large ruby deposits have been found under the receding ice shelf of Greenland. 

Hand Knit  Scarf  Ruffle Scarf - Raspberry Wine - Pink Burgundy

The Colors of Rubies
Rubies come in a wide range of natural colors and shades of red. The color range includes pinkish, purplish, orangey and brownish red depending on the chromium and iron content of the stone.  

Brass Ruby Necklace
Long Brass Ruby Necklace with seedbeads,bali spacers-statement necklace rubies and diamonds - Columns of Grace

Cancer Characteristics 
Cancer is very patient. Cancer feels all moods to the fullest, joy, sorrow, compassion, horror and sadness. Family is important to Cancer. Cancer will always forgive, but has a good memory. 

Ruby Red Teddy Bear
Ruby Red Teddy Bear July Birthstone Crochet

Cancer can love long and strong. Cancer is a giver and can be taken advantage of by those who are takers. Cancer says, "I feel."

Swarovski Cosmic Necklace Sterling Silver Ruby Swan
Characteristics and healing powers of the ruby:
Devotion, integrity, courage and happiness 
Vitality, confidence and strength 
Used to enhance energy, generosity and to bring success 

Brought to you by Linda Blatchford, Jewelry Designer