[169] Key Takeaways from the Etsy Search Update [Premium]

Have you seen the news?

Etsy released a detailed update on how their search algorithm works – while holding on to a few trade secrets.

There were some BIG pieces of news in this update! Since the details will strongly influence your search rankings on Etsy, I wanted to make sure you had seen and digested this information.

So, in this Thriver Circle members-only episode I highlight the key takeaways – because in this update, Etsy have answered questions that we’ve wondered about for YEARS, including – does renewing increase your search ranking?


>>Become a member of the Thriver Circle and listen to the full episode right now.<<


Listen to the Intro:



[168] Check out my NEW podcast – The Business of Making!


So, I’ve been working on a secret project… you may have seen me mention it on social.

The time has come to let you in on it!

I’m so excited to introduce you to my NEW podcast… and I’m not doing it alone.

I’m launching The Business of Making Podcast with my friends and co-hosts Mikaela Danvers of The Makers Collective & Deborah Engelmajer of Tizzit (and the Maker’s Biz Summit).

(Before you worry, no, the Create & Thrive Podcast isn’t going anywhere – you’ll just have 2 chances each week to listen to me chat about all things handmade business!)

Each week, Mik, Deb & I will bring you an episode where we chat about what it REALLY takes to run a successful handmade business. No BS, no sugar-coating – just the honest, nitty-gritty reality of the challenges (and joys!) that handmade business entails.

And… just a little hint… but this is just the beginning. We have a few bigger plans percolating – but you’ll have to wait until next year to find out more about that!

Today, we’ve got 3 episodes for you – click below to listen in to each of them.

Oh! And make sure to join our FREE Facebook community, too!






[167] Art & Travel with Alice Tams


In this episode, you’ll find out how a joke turned into a micro-niche… and then into a successful full-time business for artist Alice Tams!

Alice sells prints of her iconic birds in hats, as well as doing custom artwork, and currently, painting murals in public spaces as she travels around the world.

In this episode, she shares how her art career evolved from drawing funny pictures for friends into a successful business over a period of 5 years.

We talk working in your pyjamas (and why she’s not a fan); how to grow slowly by re-investing into the business; why word of mouth is so important; and much, much more!




Quotes and highlights from this episode:

  • “It is really good to have a project, no matter how small it seems, to begin with” {Alice}
  • Chipping away with a project allows you to really quickly build up a body of work.
  • As soon as you can separate your work space from your home space.
  • A change of scenery can help energise, focus and refresh you.
  • “There is a different energy when you get out of your own space” {Jess}
  • Alice utilises a fulfilment business to check and packs orders. This allows her to work remotely, spend more time on the creative and travel.
  • It took five years from Alice’s first sketch to illustrating full time. She started with weekly markets and reinvested all her profits straight back into the business.
  • At the end of the day word of mouth is a keystone to marketing. Recommendations help build a strong following.
  • “Everyone makes mistakes, everyone feels really unpopular. They just don’t talk about it that much” {Alice}
  • It is essential to get your accounts in order no matter how small or large your business is.
  • “It is better to put your prices up to an amount that is fair for you and have less orders. You’re going to do less work for more money and that makes sense” {Alice}
  • Carve out time and space for your creativity.
  • “Your work will stagnate if you are stagnant” {Alice}
  • Find Alice on her website here.


[166] Pricing & Branding with Megan Auman


My friend Megan Auman has been running her eponymous jewellery line for over 12 years. She also, like me, teaches makers how to craft successful businesses.

It was a pleasure to chat with her in this episode – we talked pricing, branding, marketing & more!

We highlight the difference between the ‘one to many’ and ‘1000 true fans’ marketing/business growth strategies; why you don’t need to manufacture problems to sell handmade; and, why social media may just be one of the lowest return-on-investment marketing strategies.

Listen now:


Highlights and quotes from this episode:

  • The myth of the starving artist mindset is unrealistic.
  • “Sell for an amount of money to sustain your business and sustain your life” {Megan}
  • Makers can’t compete on price so we need to compete on other things.
  • “We are not a commodity and we need to compete on something other than price” {Jess}
  • “There is a lot of fear around raising prices – you just have to be brave about it” {Megan}
  • Jess and Megan share anecdotes about their fears of raising prices – and the strong payoffs.
  • “My most valuable people are the ones that have been on my (mailing) list for years and buy” {Megan}
  • Consider what marketing strategy will best fit your business:
    • One to many strategy – one core product with limited repeat customers, get new customers again
    • One thousand true fans – build a core audience, keep giving them new things
  • “Some people are going to love my work, some people are going to hate my work, but I’m not going to manufacture a problem just to get those people who don’t love my work to suddenly feel like they need my work” {Megan}
  • “If you are selling a physical product or object, you should be spending 80% on your photography and 20% on that writing” {Megan}
  • “You need to have beautiful photos – it is what will stop the scroll when they see a beautiful image” {Jess}
  • Put some personality in your images and brand them with a consistent photographic style.
  • Social media is probably the lowest return on investment of your time and energy.
  • Pinterest marketing and SEO are great ways to direct traffic but don’t forget a blog!
  • Blogging your content can be easy – take the Instagram image, add some keywords, add a couple of sentences and publish. Then share this information on Pinterest etc.
  • “A brand is an emotional connection built over time” {Megan}
  • Make sure every photo you post supports the core emotions your brand is about.
  • What stories can you tell that help communicate the emotion of using your product.
  • Find out more about Megan Auman on her website.


[165] 10 Things I’ve Learnt in 10 Years in Business


This month marks my 10-year business anniversary!

I wanted to celebrate the milestone by sharing 10 of the many, many lessons I’ve learnt over my 10 years in business.

From the importance of self-motivation; the natural waxing and waning of enthusiasm and passion; the non-linear march of progress; and the joy of self-direction, I discuss the things about being self-employed that I love – as well as the things that are an endless source of challenge.

I hope you enjoy this look at my own personal business journey, and that you might see some of your own experiences reflected in what I have to share.



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