Summer Project - Making my Etsy shop more searchable

It has been a busy summer and I am afraid I have neglected my readers! Back in early June I discovered a site called Etsy Ranks which connects to Etsy and gives you all sorts of useful information to help you improve your shop and search potential. It pointed out simple things like spelling errors as well as more complex things such as whether you are using enough of the given characters in your title and if you are using your tags efficiently in the first paragraph of your description. It was a real eye opener for me and even though I found for the most part that my shop was ranking high, it made me take a closer look and I was astonished to find that some of my listings which hadn't been edited in years, frankly, had terrible titles, descriptions and tags. So I rolled up my sleeves and went through the Curious Portraits shop listing by listing which took me the better part of the summer.

I thought it might be a good idea to take a look at the listings of other successful sellers whom I admire and let them guide me in making my own items more marketable.  I began with my titles which are the most important searchable part of a listing and tried to think like a buyer and what terms they would likely use to search for an item. For example I changed the title Spiritualist Fox Brooch to Fox Portrait Brooch, Fox Pin, Victorian Fox, Oval, Spiritualist Fox, Gothic, Steampunk, Halloween. By doing so I was listing all the information in order of importance as well as keeping it clear and descriptive. Next I tackled the item descriptions and tried to clearly describe the item as well as suggesting ways it could be used and who it might appeal to. My original descriptions, albeit charming, were more like stories and were lacking in searchable keywords. I also made sure all my related products were shown in the photos and had proper links. Last but not least I up-dated all the keywords, making them more specific and adding in style tags such as Gothic, Victorian and Steampunk if appropriate. This was indeed a formidable task but one that clearly needed to be done and in plenty of time for the busy Christmas season. I am happy to say not only are hits to my shop steadily increasing but sales as well! Below are some of the new items I've recently added to the shop.

New Victorian Animal Notebooks feature an allover print using my favorite portraits.

New Victorian Animal Notebooks feature an allover print using my favorite portraits.

For the new 2017 calendar I up-dated the look using new animal portraits and put the dates in a grid which many of you requested for the 2016 calendar.

For the new 2017 calendar I up-dated the look using new animal portraits and put the dates in a grid which many of you requested for the 2016 calendar.

New Victorian Writer Portrait Notecards featuring Arthur Conan Doyle, Edgar Allen Poe and Jules Verne, three of my favorites.

New Victorian Writer Portrait Notecards featuring Arthur Conan Doyle, Edgar Allen Poe and Jules Verne, three of my favorites.

New Victorian Animal Necklaces.

New Victorian Animal Necklaces.

New Dog Adventurer Notecards just in time for Halloween.

New Dog Adventurer Notecards just in time for Halloween.

Don't forget to follow me on Instagram @lisa.zador  and Facebook for daily up-dates!

Curious Mood Boards

I have been busy this summer freshening up my Etsy shop Curious Portraits in preparation for the holiday season. I make a habit of reviewing the product shots in the shop from time to time which I find has a similar effect of re-arranging the art on the walls. It makes everything look new! I have been very inspired by the many beautiful Mood Boards I see on Instagram and have discovered how much I love putting together cherished, vintage objects from my collection.  The result of all this is an on-going project of styling some of the items from my shop in with the vintage collectibles. They make a pleasing display and a gentle advertisement all in one!

Animal Portrait Brooches from  www.CuriousPortraits.Etsy.com

Animal Portrait Brooches from www.CuriousPortraits.Etsy.com

This is the latest in the series featuring some of my favorite vintage jewelry arranged with my Animal Portrait Brooches. I often use my own textile designs printed out as the background, this is one of my original damask stripes.

Lisa-Zador-Portrait-Miniatures

I thought that some of my vintage buttons and notions made a pleasing display when arranged with some of my Victorian inspired Portrait Miniatures. (You can read more about the inspiration and making of these here)

I used one of my favorite vintage alarm clocks in this one along with a few writing notions. I thought the soft grey of my Daisy the Squirrel Portrait Miniature complimented the color scheme.

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My dog Bingo also got his paws into it and created this one featuring his own portrait miniature with one of my original dog themed textile designs in the background!

Etsy Shop Facelift

As an Etsy seller I always find January and February to be a good time to review the items in my shop, Curious Portraits. I have learned to keep track of things that I notice need improvement during the holiday frenzy when there is no time to address them. Then when things slow down I can tackle them one by one. Two weeks ago a spike in Halloween themed sales had me up-dating item descriptions for all of my goblins, pumpkin men and skeletons. This week I've been looking at my Christmas ornament listings. I have been feeling the need to re-photograph them for awhile and realized while doing so that if I photographed the non-Christmas themed ornaments in a non-Christmas setting that I could re-list them as wall decor instead of Christmas ornaments. This was very timely as Etsy recently re-vamped their categories and I had to re-evaluate my old ones anyway. I also re-titled them as Portrait Miniatures instead of Christmas Ornaments. Since I am in the process of designing a new, higher end line of Victorian inspired Portrait Miniatures for the shop these can now act as ambassadors for the new product! As soon as I get my hands on some holly or red berries I will re-photograph the Christmas themed ornaments as well since I do like a little Christmas cheer in my holiday listings! Here are the before and after shots, let me know what you think!

New Portrait Miniatures Listings

New Portrait Miniatures Listings

I used a damask stripe that I had designed for another project and printed it out in soft, neutral tones for the background.

New Portrait Miniatures Listings

New Portrait Miniatures Listings

Former Christmas Ornaments Listings

Former Christmas Ornaments Listings

For the new Christmas Listings I will keep the red ribbon and add in some greenery and red berries (if I can find any in February) but put them on a cleaner background, perhaps the same damask stripe that l used in the Portrait Miniatures of which I am so fond.


Revisting The Well Bred Dog & The Well Bred Cat

I've been busy working on the new website and today realized that I neglected to include my two books, The Well Bred Dog and The Well Bred Cat! I pulled them out to scan and arrange them for presentation and was reminded of that wonderful year when my dear friend James Waller and I were working on them together. It was such an exciting project. Sometimes I would do the painting first and he would come up with a clever biography for the dog or cat and sometimes he would have an idea for a story and I would then compose a portrait to accompany it. It was a truly wonderful experience to be collaborating with someone I felt so connected to both personally and creatively.

Some of the subjects were dogs and cats who belonged to friends or who lived in my neighborhood and some were eagerly waiting to be adopted at the Humane Society of NY. Here are a few of my favorite portraits:

Bellboy-Cat-Lisa-Zador
Dog-Dandy-Lisa -Zador
Yellow-Labrador-Lisa-Zador
Pug-Portrait-Lisa-Zador
Triple-Cat-Portrait-Lisa-Zador

Copies of the The Well Bred Dog can be purchased here and The Well Bred Cat here.

Dog-Portrait-Maltese-Lisa-Zador

Of course I had to include the portrait I did of my two dogs at the time, Toby and Bingo. Bingo was less than a year old at the time!

Two Wonderful Blog Posts about Yours Truly

I want to mention today how honored I am to have been featured on two wonderful blogs this week!

The first is by Evelyn Pelati, a talented jewelry designer who has a knack for finding interesting artists, craftsmen and designers to write about on her blog.  Just click the image to read more of her post about yours truly! You can see her beautiful jewelry on her website: evelynpelati.com

evelyn-petali-curious-portraits

The other one is called Papoose Clothing by Ashley Duggan Smith who makes the most adorable and charming children’s clothes. Just click the image to read more of this wonderful post. You can find her unique clothing line in her Etsy shop Papoose Clothing.

papoose clothing-curious portraits

Thank you Evelyn and Ashley for your very kind words about my work!