Hello TPT sellers,
We’re often given the impression that we should be ‘doing it all’.
Creating products alone has so many facets and is full of learning curves. But despite product creation being the biggest thing that will bring you sales (hello, you can’t make sales without products!), there is still this overwhelming pressure to do a million other things in the world of TPT.
Facebook groups, podcasts, Instagram, and blog posts are full of other TPT sellers telling you what you ‘need’ to be doing to increase your sales. There are hundreds of things you could be doing, so these sellers are not wrong. But that does NOT mean you should be doing them all. Especially not when you’re a new seller.
I’m writing this blog post to alleviate some of the pressure. I’m going to outline the important things and when you should be taking new things on. But before you go any further you need to take in what I’ve been saying so far –
YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DO IT ALL.
I repeat. You do not have to do it all. Don’t let the pressure get to you.
So, what are the most important things to focus on as a TPT seller?
When you’re brand new (less than 3 months):
Product creation first and foremost. 90% of the other ‘stuff’ you’re told to do involves marketing. But you can’t market products that you have not made.
Spend your first few weeks/months on TPT exploring the website. Understand everything you need to know in order to make and upload products. Learn how to make successful products. Work hard making them and then learn how to upload them.
Build up your store. Ensure that you have a good 20 products. That’s just a rough number but I’m basically saying that you shouldn’t be trying to tackle Pinterest ads when you only have 1 product.
Real world comparison? It’s like worrying about the décor of the new house you just bought. Buying pretty flowers for your dining table to impress your dinner guests…when you haven’t bought the dining table yet.
You can start marketing in your first 3 months if you’re making a lot of products in that time and feeling ready to tackle the next thing. However, if you’ve been on TPT for 3 months and you have 4 products, then marketing isn’t for you yet.
When you’re new (3-6 months):
Product creation should still be your focus. You may have heard people say, “sales started picking up when I got to 50/100 products”. They’re right, so keep creating.
However, now that you’re building up a store full of products, I suggest you start marketing. The best TPT marketing platform for me is Pinterest. Spend your first year learning how to use Pinterest to promote your products.
Explore the site and familiarize yourself with what good pins look like. Spend time creating stunning pins after you make each product. Put the work in now, so that you have Pinterest sorted!
What about social media?
Personally, I focused on product creation and Pinterest for my first few years and it worked. They are the things that I believe truly matter. I never felt stressed or overwhelmed. However, that’s not to say you can’t be doing social media from the early days. It’s your choice.
Securing your store name as an Instagram handle/Facebook page isn’t a bad idea. Setting up your accounts and getting used to them is harmless. But if you are feeling stressed right now it’s probably because you took too much on. I can’t imagine trying to figure out Instagram AND Facebook marketing when I first started. Because I barely understood TPT.
I didn’t start Instagram for a while and I’m so glad. I now have product photography that puts my products in their best light. To be honest, I shudder to think of what my Instagram account would have looked like if I started it in my first month. Those products were not ready for the gram.
My advice is this:
- Do things when YOU are ready. If you feel excited and want to start an Instagram, do it! If it’s because someone else said it’s good for marketing and now you’re feeling stressed, don’t.
- Do things ONE at a time. Maybe work on Pinterest in months 2-4. Pick up Instagram at 6 months and play with that for a while. Join Facebook at the end of the year when you’re ready to learn something new. That’s just an example of taking things on one at a time.
Do I need a blog?
Blogs are awesome and yes, I encourage TPT sellers to have one but…
Here’s the thing, you don’t need a blog in your first month. You don’t need a blog if you hate writing. You don’t need a blog if you’re time poor and the thought makes you want to curl up in a ball and cry.
But if you do like writing and you want one, that’s great! Wait until you’re ready and then ease yourself into it with a manageable amount of posts. Maybe just once a month and then if you have time, once a week. Building a blog and being consistent isn’t easy. It’s taking me ages to write this! So, be sure you have the time to commit.
What about an email list?
If you are a seller who has been on TPT for only a few months, please don’t worry about creating an email list yet. That’s running before you can walk. But if you’ve got loads of products and you feel comfortable with all the other marketing platforms, go for it.
People often say, “I wish I had started an email list sooner!” I agree. I started TPT in late 2015 and only started my email in the last year. Of course, I wish I had started it sooner. Like maybe a year before, but definitely not 2015. 2015 Alex would be curled up on the floor in tears with that kind of overload.
Do I need a website?
Having a website where you can host a blog or even sell products is great. But that’s a big investment of time and money. Don’t worry about building a website as a new seller. A free blog is a great start. When you’re an established seller, a website is something to consider.
In summary TPT sellers,
YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DO IT ALL.
Do things when YOU are ready.
Do things ONE at a time.
If you’re a new seller, focus on product creation and tune out the noise. Don’t be pressured.
P.S – I hope you’ve found some useful tips in this post! Sign up to my email community HERE or follow me on Instagram for MORE free advice. If you want all the answers in one place, check out my TPT Seller Course!