The Etsy Blog

From Etsy’s Merchandising Desk: November 2011 handmade and vintage goods


November marks the official start of the holiday shopping season. Our aim with Etsy merchandising is to create a healthy balance between promotions for traditional holidays, seasonal changes, cultural events, and lifestyle trends. If you’d like to stay engaged with the impending merchandising themes, use them in your own artistic voice as you add to your shop. They can be translated in your listings, photos, shop announcements, descriptions, tags, titles, sales promotions and more.

Promotional Opportunities for Sellers:

  1. Holiday Tip: Etsy’s seasonal Gifts Email has relaunched for the holiday season. Now is the time to list your full holiday line with clear seasonal tags.
  2. Shopping Pages: We are delighted to introduce four new ways to shop and explore Etsy: FashionHome and GardenKids, and Holidays. These new pages are a blend of curated content and category-based searches, changing frequently to represent trends in the Etsy marketplace and beyond. Following appropriate guidelines for tagging, use matching keywords on your relevant item listings to appear within search results linking from these new pages.
  3. Treasury tip: Create and label treasuries fitting seasonal themes for a chance to have your collection featured on Etsy’s homepage or linked from promotional emails and new shopping pagesWe’ll be looking to highlight specifically themed gift guides throughout the holiday season. If you’d like to create a gift guide encompassing a full theme throughout your treasury, be sure to use the term “gift guide” as one of your treasury tags, along with the overarching theme of your guide (using the “gift guide” term with several smaller themes is not the ideal use here).
  4. Black Friday through Cyber Monday Weekend: Black Friday and Cyber Monday are shopping holidays gaining a reputation as the best days of the year to find sales. Etsy will be supporting sellers’ site-wide promotions throughout the 11/25 – 11/28 weekend. All sellers are welcome to participate with any and all special promotions you may be running on these dates. Etsy will be promoting sales via three universal predetermined tags that will be promoted from featured areas of the site.
  5. How to Get Involved: Sellers conducting a promotion during these dates may use these tags to be included in the site wide promotions: 1. Black Friday Etsy, 2. Cyber Monday Etsy, and 3. Free Shipping EtsyUse one or all of the appropriate tags for your sale items and specify the details of your promotion clearly at the top of the item description for each item. Note: Please do not use these designated tags unless you are promoting a sale during the 11/25 – 11/28 weekend, with the details clearly laid out in the item description. Please only apply the Free Shipping Etsy tag to listings that have already been adjusted for free shipping.
Holiday Canvas Reusable Wine Bags - 3 Pack


Holiday Canvas Reusable Wine Bags - 3 Pack

Stay Engaged in November

Our central merchandising themes will focus on autumn, winter, entertaining, and the holidays. While emphasis will be placed upon the seasonality of the Northern Hemisphere, it’s important to remember that the Southern Hemisphere is preparing for summer. Maintaining seasonally appropriate options year-round is good practice for boosting international and overall sales.

  • Movember: An annual month-long event involving the growing of moustaches during the month of November. Charitable events are held to raise awareness and funds for men’s health issues. Think moustaches!
  • Entertaining: The season for holiday parties begins. Think invitations, hostessing, hostess gifts, table settings, accessories, food, cocktails, recipes, seasonal decor, lighting and favors.
  • Holidays: The holidays consist of two central themes — decor and gifting. Shoppers are already planning and searching for holiday-themed gifts: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. Major gifting categories include price, recipient, and type of gift. Think in terms of the following groupings: under $25, under $50, under $75, statement gifts, women, men, teens, children, babies, coworkers, friends, the person who has it all, pets, personalization, eco-friendly, cards, calendars, gadgets, jewelry, fashion, one-of-a-kind, gag gifts, decor, DIY options, and parties & entertaining.
  • Thanksgiving: Entertaining, family, food and football. Classic Thanksgiving symbols include the turkey, cornucopia, Pilgrims and Native Americans, seasonal food, and fall foliage. Hostess gifts, table settings, and hearty treats are all items shoppers will be looking for.
  • Black Friday & Cyber Monday: Recognized shopping holidays — see promotional opportunities section above to find out how you can participate in site-wide efforts.
  • Winter Fashion: Shift in materials, colors, and layers in the categories of clothing, accessories, and jewelry. More specifically, key basics, layering elements, the introduction of winter accessories and outerwear components, thick fabrics and rich leathers, autumnal tones, vintage boots and heavy-weight all-weather bags. Tagging Tip: Try adding the term “fashion” to appropriate items to reach a broader shopping audience.
  • Autumn & Winter: Home decor, entertaining, food and recipes, seasonal activities, woodland motifs and nature’s symbols.
  • Weddings: Late autumn and winter weddings are currently underway; take advantage of seasonally-themed gift ideas, guest attire, as well as any final details that last-minute buyers may still need to purchase. Don’t forget to stay a step ahead for brides currently planning and shopping for 2012 spring and summer weddings.
  • Birthdays: November’s birthstone is Citrine and astrological signs are Scorpio and Sagittarius (October 24 — November 22: Scorpio, November 23 — December 21: Sagittarius).
The Tachinator - Movember Glitter Moustache Fascinator


The Tachinator - Movember Glitter Moustache Fascinator

November’s Trends:

  • Wizardry, magic, owls, and mysticism with the DVD release of the final chapter of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
  • Vampires: They’re back on the radar with November’s premiere of Twilight: Breaking Dawn.
  • Moustaches & Beards: In honor of Movember.
  • Personalization: Gift ideas with monograms, initials, text, numbers, zodiac, constellations, portraits, custom labels, stamps, fingerprints and family trees.
  • Sports: Football, college basketball, and horse racing (in Australia) are in focus this month.
  • Weddings: Handmade and vintage variations on the wedding dress, engagement rings, creative invitations, save the dates, and signage are on the rise.
  • Fashion: Fall and winter accessories, vintage boots and patterned leggings. Sheer layers, lace sleeves, brocade, trenches, tailored jackets and blazers. Bright solids paired with black, platform pumps, cocktail rings, tribal and native references.
  • Colors: Pantone’s color trend report for fall 2o11 includes quarry, cedar, and teal greens, nougat and coffee browns, orchid and phlox purples, bamboo mustard yellow, honeysuckle pink, and ember-glow coral. We’re also noticing interest in scarlet, golds, pale hues of gray, pink, and lilac, classic neutrals and nudes, rustic fall colors, jade greens and mustards.
  • Culinary Trends: DIY culinary kits are on the rise. Classic cocktails, home brewing, beer and wine accessories, herb infusions and kits, garden to table.
  • Designer Vintage: Authentic fashion, collectibles, bikes, and auto accessories.
  • Letters, Numbers, and Symbols: Large vintage signage letters, letterpress blocks, monogram housewares, and typewriter keys.
  • Natural History: Woodland forest themes and animals, namely birds, owls, squirrels, hedgehogs, chipmunks, bunnies, butterflies, feathers, nests, eggs, acorns, leaves, trees, branches, woodgrain, and natural colors.
  • Lockets, secret hiding places, skeleton keys, arrows, diamonds, paper cuts, silhouettes, fortune cookies, wishbones, constellations, fortune telling.
  • Creative gadget cases, docking stations and accessories, especially geared around the iPhone 4S and iPad.
  • Large scale vintage and handmade paper maps, botanical and anatomy charts.
  • Upcycled lights, lamps, exposed bulbs, and chandeliers.
  • Vintage cameras, especially polaroids with film.
  • Bike caddies, baskets, and creative accessories.
  • Cottage chic decor and accessories
  • Video game-inspired references
  • Writable chalkboard surfaces
  • Wall and laptop decals
  • All things steampunk
  • Mermaids
  • Peacocks

If you make items that would fit well with the themes outlined, try stocking up and listing them in advance to take advantage of potential shipping deadlines and site features. Do you already have items in your shop that meld well? That’s great! Now it’s time to revisit those items to make sure your tags, titles and descriptions reflect keywords that shoppers might be looking for during this time of year. This is also a great opportunity to revamp your item photography with a new look. Check out some great how-to’s for item photography to get started. For those of your who enjoy making Treasury lists, we’ll be looking to highlight lists that interpret these themes in a creative and cohesive way throughout the site. Please tag your treasuries accordingly.

Paper Ribbon in Red Necklace design


Paper Ribbon in Red Necklace design

Upcoming Dates to Remember

  • November is known as Real Jewelry Month, Peanut Butter Lovers Month, Aviation History Month and Movember.
  • October 12 – November 5: Spring Racing Carnival (Australia)
  • November 1 & 2: Dia de los Muertos
  • November 1: All Saints’ Day
  • November 1: Emirates Melbourne Cup Day (Australia)
  • November 5: Guy Fawkes Night a.k.a. Bonfire Night (UK)
  • November 6: Daylight Savings time ends gain one hour of sleep
  • November 6: Eid-Ul-Adha
  • November 11: Beginning of German Carnival season  & St. Martin’s Day, children parade with paper lanterns
  • November 11: Veterans Day
  • November 11: Remembrance Day, Canada
  • November 24: Thanksgiving
  • November 25: Black Friday
  • November 28: Cyber Monday

Have a date to remember that you don’t see on the list? Let us know in the comments section below.

Read Past Merch Desk Articles