Podcast Episode 32: Why you NEED to build an email list from your Etsy shop

etsy podcast Mar 16, 2022
Why you NEED to build an email list from your Etsy shop

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Hey my friends! I hope you are well and thriving and growing with your small businesses. This week, we are on spring break, so I’m bringing you a shorty little episode on a super important topic: Why you need to build an email list and HOW to get started.

I think one of the most important places to start on this topic is with Etsy’s rules around communicating with customers. Although most of us communicate with our customers via Etsy’s Conversations feature, you’ve probably discovered that Etsy provides us with the customer’s email address given the off chance that they don’t respond to us in Convos. (If you didn’t know that, you can find it within the customer’s order by clicking the little down arrow next to their name. A menu will populate and their email address will be near the bottom of it.)

But just because they provide it, doesn’t give us permission to save it or use it at any time. Etsy’s rule is this: during an Etsy transaction, you have every permission to email the customer about transactional stuff. But once it is over, you cannot continue communicating with them unless you have their permission to do so. This is why we want to invite them to keep in touch with us via our email list.

So—let’s go deeper and to dive full force into the why as we get started today!

If you’ve been around me for a while now, you’ve heard me tell you guys that you shouldn’t put all your eggs in the Etsy basket, right?

We love Etsy—it provides an incredible marketplace, it brings in lots of shoppers for us. It pays sales tax for us (at least in the US). It does all the tech for us. It’s a GIFT—especially for someone new to being in business.

Etsy gives us the space to figure out the product, SEO, photography, and customer service side of business before we need to learn web design, intensive marketing, and the more technical side of running your own website.

There’s always another side of the coin, though, right? Nothing is perfect. So in exchange for all that goodness--- which I still firmly maintain is worth it—we do pay fees, we have to play by Etsy’s rules which are ever-changing, we can get shut down, AND we don’t have an automatic way to get back in front of our previous customers. (Because they are technically Etsy’s customers.)

Because of all that, I generally recommend that people who are brand new to running their own business should start with an Etsy shop but also build an email list. And long term, if you want to really grow—get your own site too.

Side note for those of you who are at that stage—as someone who has built a ton of websites over the years, I think Shopify is the easiest place to start because they, like Etsy, keep the ecommerce tech to a minimum and take care of a ton for you—of course without owning your customers. But you will pay for it in the monthly fees.

But truly---- from the earliest point possible in your business—you need to start building an email list. It’s going to help you do two things:

1) It will allow you to keep in contact with the customers who already expressed interest in you and your products! They already know, like, and trust you and have given you some of their hard-earned money.


These people, only excluding Karen customers, are your most qualified leads to buy from you in the future. So it would really help if you could send them a note here and there to remind them that you exist and show them what’s new in your Etsy shop.


2) You need to have an asset—a customer base that you can take with you if you move on from Etsy.

God forbid your shop gets shut down or there’s some other urgent reason you need to jump the Etsy ship--- you’ll have a great start wherever you land if you have an email list you can continue to market to.

I think we’ve laid some really solid ground here with the why—so let’s spend some time talking about HOW to go about building your email list.

There are tons of great email services out there and, especially if you’re experienced with running an email list, you can definitely use something like Mailchimp or Aweber, or ConvertKit, or whatever you like.

Within that software you can create an email sign-up form and offer your shoppers and customers on Etsy a coupon code if they join your list.

You can put an invitation in a number of different places throughout your shop to attract people to your list:

-In your shop welcome message

-In your listing descriptions

-Create a graphic for your photo galleries

-In your about section

-As a signature message in your conversations

-On your social media


OR--- you can use CraftKit which I highly recommend because it will streamline A TON for you.

Craftkit is a tool that compliantly integrates directly with your Etsy shop. When you get an order, it’s going to pull over your customer’s email address and then   automatically communicate with them with messages that you set up ahead of time. So it will autosend certain messages as different milestones occur in the order process, and it’s also going to start inviting them to join your email list. It makes it super easy.

Another way this helps is that your customers are going to get used to receiving communication from you this way and open the door for future communication. AND it’s checking that box of Etsy’s rule that you’re getting the customer’s permission up front to stay in contact.

Once you do the setup, it’s super streamlined. You can set up all of your standard messages to go out automatically and you can set up a drip campaign going forward so when people join your list-- the system will keep sending them emails that you set up ahead of time to keep your shop top of mind with the customer. Then they’re much more likely to think about you and come back and shop from you. 

This is a great place for me to mention—if customer service—and writing professional, friendly responses to people on Etsy is NOT your strong suit—it’s something I’m SUPER good at and I have the reviews to prove it. So if you could use help there—I have a super affordable product called “Customer Service Templates” which will give you over 20 pre-written responses to the most common stuff that comes up on Etsy (including the hard conversations). And you’ll also get a 20 minute mini-course on my customer service strategy.

I know it’s not super sexy, guys, but it’s so important. The happiness of your customers and frequency and quality of your reviews makes a huge difference in the Etsy algorithm. It matters for more than just warm fuzzy feelings. I’ll link the Customer Service Templates in the shownotes in case that’s a tool you could really use!

The one other thing I’ll mention about Craftkit as we’re winding down today--- is the nuance that Craftkit doesn’t currently have a feature where you can send an impromptu message to your list. They’re very focused on their Etsy integration, so currently all emails to your list have to be built in as a drip campaign. So if you decide you want to send a special message about Mother’s Day or Christmas products or something brand new—you’ll need to import your contacts from Craftkit into one of the other email services to complete that function. But it’s not rocket science. I promise. 😊

In my opinion—the HUGE advantage that Craftkit gives us is that it’s training the customer to receive emails from us, it’s automating things for us, and it’s prompting them to get on our list without you having to send a special, manual message asking them.


If Craftkit has hit your curiosity button—I made a Youtube tutorial that I’ll link in the shownotes so you can see a back office sneak peek of how it works.

They offer a 14 day free trail AND if you use my coupon code SMILEY all caps—you’ll get 50% off your first 3 months. So I’ll link that for you as well.



My YouTube Tutorial for CraftKit:

So—I think it’s an amazing tool. I’m like—anything you can take off my plate and automate—DONE DEAL. Lolll

But my bottom line message is--- as early as possible, one way or another, start building an email list. You will be so so so so so glad you did.

And that’s what I’ve got for you today, my friends! I hope you’re having a wonderful week--- and until next time—go make something awesome.





One of the most important things you can do to build an asset for your business and prepare for the future, is start building you email list as early as possible. Today we’re going to talk about why this is so important and how you can get started.

**“How to Sell Your Stuff on Etsy” is not affiliated with or endorsed by


“Customer Service Templates”:


My YouTube Tutorial for CraftKit:


Get a 14 day free trial.

Coupon Code: SMILEY   (for 50% off your first 3 months)



FREE PDF DOWNLOAD: “4 Strategies I Used to Grow My Etsy Shop from $25 to $6000k/month”:

Grab my Course “Etsy Listings that Sell” and learn how to skyrocket your Etsy business:   

Find me on Instagram and TikTok @HowtoSellYourStuff






*Some of the links above are affiliate links which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you. You can see my affiliate disclosure here:


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