How To Start An Etsy Shop As A Stay At Home Mom

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How to Start an Etsy Shop as a Stay at Home Mom

Making a side income can become essential even for stay at home moms. This could be for various reasons. Today, we are going to walk through the step by step process for how to start an Etsy shop as a stay at home mom. 

lady working on laptop

By starting your own Etsy shop, you get to enjoy expressing your creativity in a way that fits you just right, plus you get to start a side hustle to help earn a bit more income. Beginning with opening your own Etsy shop is a great place to begin with a side hustle. 

Why I Started Selling on Etsy

I chose to start an Etsy shop, as a stay at home mom because it is a great way to earn some extra money through their online marketplace. Another great reason why I decided to start with an Etsy business is because you have a market already built in with potential customers. There are many people that come to Etsy every day looking for items to purchase. All you have to do is fulfill the need of an item they want to buy. 

Starting your own business on etsy is easy. There are a few basic steps you will need to follow in order to set up your Etsy shop the first time. Then once your online store is active, it is simple to maintain. 

Another great reason why I recommend selling on Etsy is that you can work on your Etsy shop during nap time. Keep in mind, this may depend on which specific niche you choose, and how much hands on time it requires from you. Once your shop is up and running, the actual tending to the shop takes very little time out of your day. 

The best advice I can give you if you are just starting out, is to not be afraid to give it a try! Choose a niche you would like to sell in, then pursue it. After a while, don’t be afraid to make adjustments if needed. 

Business Ideas For Your Shop

Choosing what type of business you want your Etsy shop to be is very important to determine before you start out. There are two main categories to choose from first, before you niche down. The two main types of etsy shops are ones that sell physical products and ones that sell digital products. Let’s look at these two options in detail, and give you some business ideas based on those two types of shops. 

Physical Products 

When choosing to sell your own products on Etsy, the first main category is physical products. These are real items that you usually will prepare and ship to your customers. There are a wide variety of physical products you might sell in your Etsy shop, including handmade items, repurposed items, vintage items, or supplies. Let’s explore some business ideas that would include selling physical items. 

Physical Product Shop Ideas

Some of the most popular things to sell on Etsy are physical items. The most popular product categories include: 

  • Craft Supplies
  • Jewelry
  • Paper & Party Supplies
  • Home & Living
  • Weddings
  • Clothing
  • Accessories
  • Bath & Beauty
  • Art & Collectibles
  • Toys & Games
  • Pet Supplies

Now that you have an idea of the broader categories, let’s niche down a little bit, and get your creativity going to see what resonates with you. 

Niche Specific Etsy Physical Product Ideas

Craft Supplies. Let’s take craft supplies first. This would be items that you would sell for your customer to make something. For example, you could sell a sewing kit, with fabric pre-cut to make a specific item, then package it nicely with step-by-step instructions for how to make that item. Or it might be a kids craft. Where you have all of the supplies packaged in a kit, ready to be made. 

Jewelry. Another popular category is jewelry. If you love to create jewelry, then this might be just the shop idea for you. There are so many different ways you can make jewelry. You might make your own beaded jewelry designs, have engraving tools, or work with leather to make amazing jewelry. There are so many options, if jewelry is a category that appeals to you, make sure to choose a type that you enjoy. 

Clothing. Just like jewelry, there are many options when it comes to clothing as well. One of the most common items under this category is to make your own custom designed t-shirts or sweatshirts. Perhaps you have a cricut or silhouette machine, then this is a great way to put it to use. Another option, if you prefer more of a hands off approach, is to select a from the many print-on-demand services to use. With print-on-demand, all you have to do is design the item of clothing, then list it in your shop. The service you go through will print and fulfill the orders for you, so that you never touch them. 

With this method, you will likely make less profit per item, because the costs are more expensive. However, you don’t have to print, and create each shirt, then mail it either. To choose between the two options it depends what your preference is. 

Weddings. The wedding industry is another great area to get into with your Etsy shop, if you enjoy all things weddings. There are a lot of different options you might offer associated with weddings. You might enjoy making, designing, printing, and shipping wedding invitations or thank you notes. Another option is to create floral arrangements to sell for weddings. This could be pre-made, or available by custom order. Again, there are many different options when it comes to weddings. 

Now that your ideas are going for physical products you could sell in your Etsy shop, let’s move on to explore digital products. 

laptop notebook and flowers

Digital Products

Creating and selling digital products in your Etsy shop is a great way to enjoy some passive income. Don’t worry, you do not have to be a graphic design professional. When you design digital items online, it’s a great way to give yourself a creative outlet, that will still be a nice way to earn some extra cash. 

Digital products are something that you design on your computer, either using photoshop suite, or another great program to use is Canva. Canva is an online program that has a free tier. It allows you to make fun designs that can then be downloaded and sold in your Etsy store. 

Digital Product Ideas: 

  • Planners 
  • Calendars
  • Business Cards
  • Invoice Templates
  • eBooks
  • Worksheets
  • Digital Invitations 
  • Clip art
  • Patterns
  • Resume templates
  • Wedding
  • Checklists
  • Thank You Cards
  • Journals

These are just a few of the basics to give you ideas. Let’s look more closely at how you might niche down a bit. 

Niece Specific Etsy Digital Products

While the categories above are fairly self explanatory, let’s look at a few more items in detail to help you get going. 

Planners. When it comes to planners, there are a ton of different kinds. There are weekly planners, monthly planners, yearly planners, event specific planners, meal planners, cleaning planners, and many more. To give yourself some more ideas, try searching for planners both on Google, and Etsy and see what stands out to you. 

Cards. There are many different occasions where a person might needs cards. Think event related especially. For example, graduation invitations, bridal shower invitations, wedding invitations, baby shower invitations, anniversary invitations, and birthday party invitations. Plus thank you cards for all of the occasions. For each of these different occasions, you can create card templates that are editable, and sell them in your online store. 

Patterns. Another fun area to get into if you are crafty at all is to create and sell patterns. These can be patterns for sewing, quilting, embroidery, cross stitch, knitting, or crocheting. Make sure to provide a clear pattern with step by step instructions. This way your customer can print out the pattern for themselves, and make the item you have described. 

girl working on laptop

How to Get Started

When you make the decision to start your Etsy shop, here are the basic steps you will want to follow for getting started.  


Before you start your shop, or even start making things for your shop, it is very important to do some research. In this first round of research you will want to gather ideas that are appealing to you to create and sell in your new shop. 

To do this research, I like to search Etsy, Pinterest, and Google to get inspiration for what niche seems to hold the most promise. There are many options to choose from, so make sure you find something that will be appealing to you for a long time to come. 

Choose your Shop Niche

After you have a few items selected, it’s time to narrow down your niche. Remember, you might want to add additional offerings to your shop later on, but for now, you want to master the market on a specific niche. 

When you have your shop niche chosen, here are a few questions to ask yourself to make sure it is a good fit for you, both now, and for the long run. 

Do you have some experience in this niche?

If not, is it something you can learn quickly?

For example, I would not recommend starting a shop that sells knitting patterns, if you have never knitted a day in your life. You want to choose something that you can pick up quickly or that you already know how to do. 

Can you see yourself doing this same thing for the next 10 years or more?

As long as you have some experience or can pick it up quickly and can see yourself doing this same thing for the next 10+ years, it’s time to get started setting up your Etsy shop in this niche. 

Set Up Your Etsy Shop

Now that you have your Etsy shop niche selected, it’s time to open and set up your shop. To do this, you will go to You will then walk through the basic one-time steps you need to complete the initial set up of your shop. 

These steps will include choosing a name for your Etsy shop, setting up your payment details for how you want to be paid, then setting up the appearance of your shop. You can find Etsy’s instructions for this process Here.

Make sure to add a shop icon picture, this can be your picture, or a shop logo. You will also want to add a banner image for your shop. Here you can find all of the image sizes you will need, under image size requirements. 

Before you are finished setting up your Etsy shop, make sure to add a short shop title, this will appear under your shop’s name. Usually this will be a brief description of what your shop specializes in. 

If desired, you can add your approximate location. This is helpful for your customers to know what time zone you are in. For safety reasons, though, I would suggest limiting your location to state, not city. 

Below that, you will find a section for your shops announcements. There are a variety of things you can include in this section of your Etsy shop. It is a great place to announce any sales or promotions you have going on, or any other information you want your customers to see right away. 

Before you are done setting up your shop, it is a good idea to create an automated thank you message that will be sent after a customer makes a purchase from you. To do this, you will want to go to settings on the left hand side of your etsy seller desktop > info & appearance > scroll down to the bottom where you see “message to buyers” and “message to buyers for digital items”. Enter the messages in these boxes, then make sure to save your changes. 

Your shop is now set up, and you are ready to do some keyword research so that you can begin making and listing your products to sell. 

young woman working on laptop

Search Engine Optimization

It is highly important to use keywords to optimize your Etsy listings for search engines. Many of us would love to simply show off our item for sale, but unfortunately if you don’t use keywords, your listing is not likely to even be found. 

I would highly recommend once you have the general niche you want to focus on, begin your keyword research before you even create the products you intend to sell. In order to do the keyword research there are a few different programs you can use, which are specifically tailored for Etsy. 

The two programs I would recommend trying out for your keyword research are Marmalead and Erank. I personally have had more success using Erank, but I know of many people who enjoy using Marmalead with success. Both of these programs will help you find long tail keywords that you can use to make sure your listing is search engine optimized. 

After you have used the program to come up with a list of appropriate long tail keywords that will fit your niche, it’s time to start creating your products to sell, and then listing the items for sale. Be sure to keep your keyword research handy, as you will need it when you list the items in your Etsy shop. 

Create Your Products

The process of creating your products to sell, will look different depending on what niche and keywords you have selected. Make sure that your items will fit the keywords you have pulled for your listing. 

Don’t forget, if you are stuck, you can use Google, Pinterest, and Etsy for inspiration in creating your item. Remember, you don’t want to copy something that is already out there, just gather things you like from various other products, then use that information to create your own unique product. 

Now it’s time to let your creativity fly and start making your products to sell!

List the Items for Sale

After your products are created it is time to list them first, make sure to take really good pictures of your products, and a short video if you want. Then open your shop dashboard, and select listings on the left handed side. Select “add a listing” in the upper right hand corner. 

The information you need to be sure you include in the Etsy listing consist of the title, this should include the long tail keyword phrase you researched. Upload your pictures. Add any relevant information depending on if your item is physical or digital. Then add your description. 

When you are writing your description, make sure you accurately describe your product in detail. Also, if it makes sense, add any additional keyword phrases that relate to your item. Be careful that you don’t stuff the keywords, only add them if they flow and make sense without forcing it. 

As you go down the page, you will also want to fill in the price, quantity, and other details Etsy requests. 

When you get to the tags, make sure to fill in all of them. These will also help your product get found. Erank has a section where it suggests keywords you might include in your tag section. 

After your listing is completed you are ready to publish it!

lady on laptop at the beach

Create Sales and Discount Codes

Another great tool I have found helpful is Etsy’s sales and discount feature. To locate this, you will find “marketing” on the left hand side of your desktop. Then click on “sales and discounts”.

In this area, you can set up sales for whatever dates you want them to run. Simply select “run a sale” and then enter your details. 

I would also highly recommend that you set up the section where it says to “automatically send offers to interested shoppers”. Under this section you can set up promotional codes as “thank yous” for people who have already purchased from you. This will encourage them to come back. 

You can also add promo codes for shoppers who have placed your item in their cart and forgot about it. This will help encourage them to come back and complete their purchase. The last one is for favorited items. If a potential customer has favorited your item, they will automatically receive a promo code, encouraging them to complete the purchase. 

Utilizing the sales and discount section helps to boost your sales, and have customers finish their transaction.  

Etsy’s Advertising Platform

Another tip I would give to you, if you are just starting your Etsy shop, is once your shop is set up and running, make sure to take advantage of Etsy ads. This is best when you have multiple listings already in your shop. 

Using Etsy ads will help promote your products to people who are already searching for similar items to what you have to offer. If people are looking already, then you are much more likely to get them to buy. 

You can also do personalized advertising through your own blog or your own website if you have them. Etsy ads are great for customers who are already on Etsy’s site looking for an item to buy. 

Utilize Social Media Platforms

Another great resource that I would recommend you consider using to stay connected with your customers is through using your social media accounts. You can create business pages or accounts, so that it’s not your personal one you are using to promote your business. 

By creating a strong social media presence, you can attract new potential customers if they are interested in your products, but most importantly you get to stay in touch with those who have already purchased from you. That way they don’t forget about you, and you get to communicate with them directly, reminding them to come back and buy from you again. 

women home office

Resources to Help You Get Started

There are many resources online to help you if you get stuck. Don’t feel like you have to sit there being frustrated or confused by something. Seek help, and get your shop on track. I am happy to help you if I am able to, but often the best resources are to search online. 

Google your Question

When you have a question about your Etsy shop, or what you should do, one of the best resources is to Google your question. When I do an online search to answer a question, I usually look for the Etsy search result. I usually figure they know best how their sight works, so I’d rather listen to them. However, you can also find helpful answers from other sources or even YouTube videos.  

Join Facebook Groups

Another great resource when you are starting out is to join online groups. There are a lot of Facebook groups that are helpful in answering questions. One of the best that I have found is when you subscribe to Erank, you can join their facebook group, and ask all kinds of questions. 

Online Courses

There are also creators who offer online courses. One of the main ones I have found is Gold City Ventures, but remember, there are many more available. So do your homework and see who you think would be best to learn from. 


Another resource that might be helpful to you, is to check out Etsy related podcasts. Remember, not everyone is actually helpful, or knows what they are talking about. But there are many free resources that are helpful through podcasts. Do your research and find some good sources to learn from. 

young mama and baby

FAQs for Starting your own Etsy Shop 

How soon will I get my first sale?

When you first open your shop, it’s so exciting to get that first sale! Sometimes this can take a while to happen, and likely will. The exact amount of time it will take depends on what niche you have selected. Don’t lose hope if your first sale does not happen right away. 

Can I start selling on Etsy, even if I have a limited budget?

Yes, the great thing about Etsy is that it is not super expensive to get started. Etsy does have a listing fee, that they will charge you to list or publish your items. This is a minimal cost. There are also fees that will come out of your purchase, so be prepared for that.

When you have a limited budget it is a good idea to keep your product costs low. That way you don’t have a ton of money wrapped up in items that you don’t know yet if they will sell or not. 

Can selling on Etsy be considered a legitimate work-from-home opportunity that can provide an extra source of income?

Yes, it absolutely can. You may need to adjust your business plan a few times, and that is okay. However, once you get in a groove and your items are selling constantly, running your small business in the form of an Etsy shop is definitely a legitimate work from home source of income. Some Etsy shop owners have turned their shop into a full-time income, so nothing is stoping you from doing the same as a stay-at-home parent.

Can I start a business on Etsy even if I have no prior experience or crafting skills?

Yes, there are many different things you can sell on etsy. They don’t all have to be handmade craft items. There are a ton of different options, so make sure to see what is appealing to you, both now and in the long run. 

What are some effective strategies for generating passive income on Etsy?

When you are looking to generate passive income, the best way is to be careful what you create. For passive income, you will not want to make items that require a lot of hands-on time. Rather think of doing printables or using a print on demand service.  

mom holding baby in the air

How to Start a Home-Based Etsy Business

Starting an Etsy store makes a great side job for stay-at-home mom and homeschool moms. It is one of the best jobs because you get to set your own schedule, and be your own boss. It’s not always easy to figure things out, and get started. With a little bit of determination, you can do it, and will be happy that you did. 

Just don’t forget to practice a bit of time management so that you are not completely overwhelmed. Also remember that it does not all have to happen in one day. Establishing your new Etsy shop will be a process and may take a little time. But it will be worth it in the end. 

Thank you so much for stopping in to learn how to start an Etsy shop as a stay at home mom. I hope that this information has been very helpful to you, and now you are ready to start your own Etsy shop! I wish you all the best!

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how to start an etsy shop as a stay at home mom
About the author
Thank you for stopping by! My name is Faith, and I am the author behind It is my hope that you will find some inspiration here for your journey of being a Stay at Home Mom.

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