Tips on How to Start an Etsy Vintage Shop

Feel like you are ready to finally open a vintage shop on Etsy? You have to check out these tips first before you do.

An item is considered vintage if it’s at least 20 years old. Vintage shop owners on Etsy sell everything from 80’s jewelry to decorative brass objects. It isn’t easy running and managing a vintage shop, but it is definitely rewarding and fun!

Here are some tips on how to start your own vintage shop on Etsy:


Define Your Brand

This is probably one of the main challenges you’ll face when starting your Etsy vintage shop. You have to think about whether you’ll have a certain aesthetic for your vintage shop or sell items from a particular era.

You can express your branding with your photography as well. For instance, your items are on the fun and eclectic side, you can photograph them with a colorful backdrop and props. If your focus is more on the items themselves and curation of your collection, a minimalistic approach is a way to go because this will make your items stand out more.

Curate the Things You Love

When it comes to stocking your store, trust your instincts. Remember that no one else can be you, so make the aesthetic of your shop your own. If you love every item in your shop, you are on the right track! Sell items that you find fascinating and you personally love.


Get Organized

Don’t forget to organize your studio and inventory. You don’t want to ship an item with missing parts – it could break your shop. Being organized from the start will save you lots of hours in the future, believe me. Make sure your items are complete and stored properly and safely before listing them.

You can also find your items quickly if they are well-organized. This will also save you time in shipping and a huge help when it’s tax time when you provide unsold inventory estimates.

To maximize productivity, your workstation must be organized as well. Set up a space that is dedicated to photographing your items.

Become an Expert

It will really pay if you become knowledgeable about anything vintage. One tip is to set small goals for yourself – learn to fix buttons and zippers next week, buy props for photographing your items, research about different fabrics, or whatever you have to do to help your vintage shop.


Utilize Social Media

When your Etsy shop is already up and running, share it on social media. It is crucial that you’re on many networks so you can reach more potential customers for your shop.

Account for Your Time as Well When Pricing

When you are pricing your items, consider the price you paid for the item, Etsy fees, and the time you spent on repairing, cleaning, photographing, and listing them. You also have to consider if the item is rare and one-of-a-kind or is in high demand.


Provide Shoppers Everything They Need to Know

When taking pictures of your items, include shots from different angles and settings. This will help your shoppers to imagine displaying your item in their home or wearing it. If the item has a brand or tag, include it in the photos.

Use keywords and tags that are relevant to your item and make them simple. You also have to be honest about the condition of your items – if they are in mint, excellent, good, or fair condition. Providing the overall condition of your items will help customers to understand if the pricing is fair. You can also include a photo of certain flaws if any.

Here are some of the terms you should be aware of:

  • Mint – No signs of wear or age.
  • Deadstock or New Old Stock – New old stock that was never opened or worn. No signs of age and tags often still attached.
  • Excellent Vintage Condition – Item has been worn or used but no flaws.
  • Great Vintage Condition – Structurally sound item or garment but with a cosmetic flaw or two.

Complete your About Sections and Policies

When you’re just getting started, you have to complete the Shop Policies and About section to show that your shop is professional. You can add care instructions as well to your FAQs.

In your About section, you can tell a story of how passionate you are about vintage. Show your face in the Profile Section because people love to buy from people on Etsy.


Research Your Shipping Options in Advanced

Your items may have different rates for shipping because of size, weight, and each of them is one-of-a-kind. You can set up multiple calculated shipping profiles so the shipping calculation would be accurate. You can also use shipping upgrades which will allow your customer to pick between first-class, express, priority, and global express.

About Charles Curry

Charles founded his Etsy shop Wall Decal Source in 2012. He opened his decal shop and decided to create a nursery decal for his sisters new baby. Funnily enough he published the decal as an item for sale on his Etsy shop and people really liked it. Well a few years later and his shop has been almost completely taken over by nursery wall decals. He must still be a kid at heart. As Charles tested and tried all sorts of methods to expand his shop he stumbled upon a few simple formulas for consistently growing Etsy sales and views.
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