Tuesday, October 6, 2015

An Interview with Elisheva Manekin from Loop Design Studio

I'm excited to introduce Elisheva Manekin from Loop Design Studio to you today. She is a fellow shop owner on Etsy and has also opened a beautiful shop with Shopify. She graciously accepted my invitation to answer some questions about her businesses on each e-commerce platform. I appreciate her insight and tips and hope you find them helpful in deciding if Shopify is a place you want to use to establish your own website outside of Etsy and/or open your eyes to some great ideas that are bringing her success in her business.

An Interview with Elisheva Manekin from Loop Design Studio



Tell us a bit about yourself, how you got started as a Maker and when you opened your Etsy shop
 
Hi, my name is Elisheva and I'm an industrial designer and maker. I'm also a Mama of two (very soon three). I live in a really small town in Southern Israel with my husband and kids.
I studied Industrial Design and never really planned on being a maker as well. In my studies mass production was considered a more serious route, and we never really talked about the option of a handmade business. It was considered more of a hobby, and not inline with the design world. After deciding to pursue my passion and go into home ware design, I found it nearly impossible to find small scale manufacturers to help me out with my designs, and I had to compromise a lot of ideas and details just to be able to manufacture. This moved me towards manufacturing things myself, but only after diving deep into Etsy did I realize this was something that could be celebrated and actually be good for my brand. I stopped hiding the fact that it was me doing all of the making and everything about my business became a lot more personal.
Elisheva Manekin from Loop Design Studio

At what point did you decide to also open your Shopify shop and how did you come to that decision?

I had another website from the get go, first on Big Cartel and then later on Shopify. Selling on Etsy is great, and it's still where most of my sales are coming from (even though that is slowly changing) , but I don't think it's enough when you're looking to build a sustainable brand with a clear calling to your ideal customer. When someone buys something from me on Etsy and gets asked where he made his purchase, I'm pretty sure most of the time the answer is Etsy and not Loop Design. I love having control over the look and feel of the site, and being able to change things around. I look at my website as a place to really explain who I am and what I'm all about, and build a community around. I can also check what's working in terms of conversion rates, and what I can be doing better with the sites design and flow.
Felt Storage Bins | Loop Design Studio

Felt Storage Bins | Loop Design Studio

Are both of your shops carrying the same merchandise or are you selling some of your items exclusively on Shopify?

I'm actually selling one design exclusively on Etsy! It's a holiday ornament which I feel isn't exactly on point and cohesive with my collection, and Shopify is kind of like a showroom for me in that sense so I'd rather be really precise with what I list there.
What Shopify app is your favorite or that you've found to be most helpful?

I've actually just discovered a new app which I absolutely love! It synches any reviews you have from your other selling platforms with your site, so if you're just starting out or haven't gotten around to setting up a review app (like me) your customers still have the chance to see reviews from Etsy. This has been really helpful with conversion (something you can check on Shopify as opposed to Etsy - another reason to open up shop:) since people don't see you as a newbie and you get a chance to prove yourself before you've made any sales.The app is called eRated and the free version is great for when you're starting out. I also like Klaviyo for automated emailing.
What is your best tip for attracting customers from Etsy to your Shopify shop? Or how are you attracting shoppers to your Shopify shop?
 
I send a coupon code with every order that only works on my site, not on Etsy. This has really proven itself - I have a lot of repeat buyers and this way they have an incentive to go to my site rather then buy from Etsy again. Once they purchase I also can try getting them on my mailing list, keeping them as customers.
I use my website url exclusively in all of my social media, and any marketing I do. Etsy is only for inside traffic on Etsy, I don't push any traffic there.
Plant Hangers | Loop Design Studio

Wall Hooks | Loop Design Studio

Other business building tools that you'd like to recommend: podcasts, books, websites, etc. 
The shopify blog is really great and has a ton of tips and lessons, and you can sign up for updates even if you don't have a website. 

Because I'm in a different country with a completely different set of holidays etc, I find it really helpful to be a part of seller Facebook groups, Etsy teams, anything to get me in the mindset of working in a US based year and calendar.
Handmade Tray | Loop Design Studio
You can visit Elisheva's website at www.loopdesignstudio.com
and follow her here:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/loopdesignstudio


If there are other questions you'd like my guests or me to address on this topic I'd love to here what they are. I'd also appreciate your feedback about how helpful this was for you. Thanks so much everyone .... and thanks again Elisheva!!

8 comments:

  1. Brilliant and refreshing

    Thanks Elisheva, and Laura too!

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  2. I always love reading about other makers and learning about their journey to becoming a handmade artisan. Truly inspiring, Elisheva! Your Shopify shop looks so beautiful and your home a true creative sanctuary! Thank you for sharing Elisheva and Laura!

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  3. Wonderful! And yes, so inspiring! Fascinating how you've built this life for your self! Thank you for sharing it!

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I am so glad you stopped by. I always appreciate your comments!