Off to a good start!

So, yesterday was my ‘grand opening’ as such on my Etsy site! Today I had my first sale! I had a rough day at my ‘day job’ yesterday so I didn’t have a chance to post here. This has been a fun but busy week. I’ve been busy crafting and planning and as you know, designing my new logo!

Vase logo

Here’s what I’ve learned this week: Starting an online business is a LOT of work! I have a lot more crafting to do to get more items uploaded to the shop. Oh! I almost forgot to tell you! I’m on Facebook here and on Twitter here! Join me! Like, and follow and all that stuff!

As I said, I’m up to my ears in crafts so check the Etsy site often! I’ll be back here tomorrow with just some random blogging tips!

Thanks for stopping by! Please leave a comment and let me know what you’d like me to talk about! Blogging, Etsy, marketing yourself…anything that has to do with starting and running an online business!

Pretty it up a bit!

Well, I’ve had this blog and Etsy shop  for a month now. Time to make them fancy. I signed up and got them going before I did all the research I wanted. I’m still doing some but I want to get everything ready for a big Grand Opening of the shop! I have big plans and I’m crafting like crazy to get it all ready.

To that end, I’ve decided to do my own branding. I’m so excited about this! I want it to look professional! I really can’t wait for you to see it. I’ll let you know a few days in advance of when I do the grand opening. I’m also on Facebook but there is nothing there yet. I’m waiting to get the graphics package done. I’ve actually done a few logos, etc in the past and considered doing it for a living but it’s kind of stressful for me so I put that aside

This has been such a fun process.I think when I have my first sale in the shop or advertising on here I may lose my flippin’ mind!

Everything I’ve read suggests a professional designer for  your branding. I was hesitant to to spend the money but I did seriously consider it and even contacted a designer. I really want the shop and blog to be successful so I vacillated on this a lot. I finally decided to give it a try and came up with one I liked. But not enough. So, I tried again. I came up with this: Vase logo

I love it. I think it’s perfect! It’s exactly what I wanted!

Now, I have to say, I wouldn’t suggest trying it on your own if you’re not comfortable with the idea. There are a lot of great designers on Etsy who would be happy to help you create your branding package!

***I have to say as a disclaimer, I wrote this on Monday and scheduled it to post today. At that time I was sure I was going to go with a designer and that’s what this post said when it went live today. This is the edited version! ***

I’m glad you’re here following along on my adventure. Please subscribe or follow me to keep up!

Happy blogging!

~Nancy

Yes,You Have to Pay Taxes on Your Etsy Shop

Thinking about opening an Etsy shop along with your blog? Or even separate from that, for that matter. Well, don’t think you’ll get away from the government wanting their share! Etsy is a small business and as such, it provides income. Income=income taxes!

I know taxes evoke fear in the hearts of the strongest of men (and women) but it doesn’t have to be a scary thing.The first thing you need to do is to be sure you keep good records. The most basic way would be an old fashioned ledger. Track what you spend on your materials, as well as how much you make per item. An Excel Spreadsheet would do the same thing, just higher tech. From there you could try any number of financial apps or websites. Since I’m just starting my shop, I’ve been looking into this. I came across a site that looks interesting and I plan to check into it more. It’s Craftybase. Worth checking into. No, that’s not an affiliate link. It’s just a suggestion. No money being made right there!

The following is just information that I’ve learned. I don’t guarantee it. I’m not a financial professional in any way. The main thing I’ve seen in my research is just about everyone suggests you find an accountant to handle your taxes. This is one place you don’t want to cut corners, especially if your shop is making some serious money.

The Nitty Gritty

First off there are Federal Income Taxes. You know about those! Your Etsy income is considered ‘self-employment income’ and therefor you will need to file a Schedule C: Profit or Loss From Business. You may also be subject to self-employment tax and required to file a Schedule SE Self Employment Tax. Don’t let all that scare you. The IRS website is very user friendly. Just as your employer pays your taxes throughout the year, you will also need to do this. Check out Estimated Taxes on the IRS website for more information and help with keeping your small business tax-legal with the fed. Also, there is great advice in the seller handbook on Etsy. That’s been a great help to me so far. State income tax and the rules and requirements vary by state so check your state department of taxation for your specific area.

You’ll also need to deal with sales tax, of course. Generally, you need to collect sales tax from buyers who live in the state where you have a presence. For example, I live in Ohio. I will need to collect sales tax from any buyers who live in Ohio. For more information on this, you could check out Sales Tax Institute. Also, another good place to find sales tax info specific to Etsy is the Etsy sellers handbook. I can’t say enough about that. There’s a lot of information there.

I didn’t delve into a lot here but I hope I helped you out some! Remember, I’m not a financial professional so I don’t want to steer you wrong! None of the links on here are sponsored or affiliate links. I received no payment for any of them.

I would love to hear from you! I’m planning to talk about disclosures on your blog as my next topic. Please give suggestions on what else you’d like me to cover!

The next few days will be spent crafting new items for my shop as well as a baseball game on Saturday! Yay summer! I’ll be back on Sunday! Happy weekend everyone!

~ Nancy

Calculator

How Not to Set up Your Blog

Oh the past week has been so fun! Sense the tone.I found out a week ago that my blog isn’t hosted on Host Gator, like I thought it was. And like I paid for. I called them to try to get that straightened out and they advised me I needed to contact WordPress. Nothing against WordPress. It’s the best there is. To contact them you have send an email. I wasn’t the least bit happy about that. I’m a ‘talk on the phone’ kind of person. Anyway, I emailed them and heard back really fast. Totally impressed. What I didn’t realize is that when you purchase a domain you can’t move it to another host for 60 days. That’s not a WordPress rule. It goes for every domain host. WordPress advised I could ‘point my name server’ to Host Gator. I tried that. It didn’t work. I’m not sure why exactly but here’s my theory. I’m posting this here so that you can avoid this in your quest to set up a blog.

When setting up the blog, I went to WordPress.com and purchased a domain name. I then went to Host Gator and signed up for hosting, not knowing about the 60 day rule. I went through the process of setting up a WordPress blog on Host Gator. It was a few days later that I realized the two things were not linked and the domain name had nothing to do with the blog on Host Gator. (Are you still with me?) I think this is why I wasn’t able to point the domain name there. It was already there. Half set up.

So, I pointed the name servers back to WordPress and that’s where I’ll be for another 4 weeks or so. Live and learn, I suppose! The bottom line is my web address won’t change.

So, that’s the blog side of my business! In the meantime, I’ve been playing around making things and planning what will be sold on my Etsy store! Check it out here! There is very little there so far but more to come soon, I promise! I’ll have a lot of nice gift items for home, children, and babies, too! Please favorite my shop so you can check back easily.

In the meantime, is there any part of setting up a blog and an Etsy business that you would like me to address here?

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Moving right along…

This morning I’m working on my logo (which you’ll see on the front page) for this site as well as Etsy. I’ve gone back and forth between just the name and the name with a thumbprint. So far, I’m sticking with just the name. All the articles and books I’ve read have said simple is better. It is easy to read and understand. Easier to remember. Think of Nike, Apple, etc…they’re simple logos  you’d recognize anywhere.

This is a much more daunting process than I expected. I want to do it right. Take my time and set this blog and my Etsy shop up to succeed. I’ve heard of people getting their wares on Etsy and barely being able to keep up with the orders! I hope that happens soon after ‘official launch’!

In the meantime, check out mgthumbprints on Etsy!