How To Create An Online Store Using Etsy & Pinterest (Steps)

How to create an online store step-by-step

I got this question from a reader the other day and decided to write it as a blog post so that other people with the same question can find it as well.

Example of an online store

Example of an online store

Question: How To Start An Online Store?

Hi Meelad,

I am interested in starting my own online store to sell a unique plant. I’m not sure if it would be best to sell through Amazon, eBay, Etsy, or my own website. What would you recommend looking into? Also, do you know of the best way to start conducting market research?

Appreciate your help.



Hi Allison,

Thanks for your message. I'm excited for you to start your ecommerce journey. Here’s what you should do to start an online store step by step.

I don't know much about your product, but assuming that your target demographic is women with disposable income who would impulse purchase a cute plant decor while browsing for home decoration ideas online, I would say you can use Etsy and Pinterest. These would be your 6 steps:

  1. Search google for "how to successfully sell on etsy". Go down the rabbit hole and read everything you can on the subject, at least the 10 results on google for that search term plus all the resources that are linked out from those articles.

  2. Search google for "pinterest marketing guide" and read everything you can on the subject.

  3. Sign up to sell on Etsy and list your item for sale. Add pictures, craft an accurate title with keywords you know people are searching for, write a well detailed description, etc. Don't leave any fields blank. You will revise your listing many times over time so don't feel like it has to be perfect.

  4. If you haven't, sign up for a Pinterest business account and start building boards, pinning pictures, etc., or convert your personal Pinterest account into a business one. The business account includes analytics and data that the personal one doesn't. You can also sample purchasing ads using the business account.

  5. Take creative photos of your plant (using your phone is okay!) and graphic design eye catching pictures to pin on Pinterest. You can also hire someone on or to design the Pinterest pictures if you're not comfortable with graphic design.

  6. When you pin a picture of your product to Pinterest, add a link so that when people click on the pin it goes to your storefront on Etsy

If you can add videos to your Etsy store, shoot a cute video of your plant and add it to Youtube, then embed the video into your Etsy listing. Making videos is really fun. I usually do everything on my iphone. I shoot the video, edit it on the imovie app, and upload and add music to it using the youtube app.

Example of Pinterest marketing

Example of Pinterest marketing

That's it to create an online store step by step! Right? Not exactly, don’t stop putting in effort! I've noticed that it takes about a year to get an ROI when starting a new online venture from scratch. You have to keep pinning, researching keywords that other people are using to sell plant decor, optimizing your Etsy listing, etc.

It could take a while to get your first order, but don't quit cause patience pays off! Just keep focusing on Etsy and Pinterest and don't get distracted by things like building an instagram profile. Making an instagram is fine, but it's difficult to break through the noise on instagram and you can get discouraged and lose focus on the important part, which is Etsy and Pinterest.

Why Etsy and Pinterest? Using these websites will kill several birds with one stone. If people buy it, it will validate your product. You will also do a lot of market research when you're browsing Etsy and Pinterest, when you look at related products you'll start to get ideas. And by creating an Etsy account, you will be creating a storefront for free instead of spending time and money creating a whole website.

Plus Etsy and Pinterest already have millions of users per day. All of the organic traffic on those sites means that people can find your product easier when they're searching around, but you gotta be there, be active, and you have to use the right keywords. Amazon is great for organic traffic too. Amazon has list ideas just like Pinterest and there's even a handmade section that you can join when you're ready.

If you create a website, you have to figure out how to get traffic to your website, for example by paying for ads, learning SEO, writing blogs, doing social's not easy! After you use Etsy and Pinterest to validate the fact that there are people interested in purchasing your product (6 months of increasing orders), then I would suggestion working on your own website and exploring other avenues. You have to perfect one channel first before moving on to other channels.

Hope that helps, Allison, have fun! -Meelad

Do you have a question about e-com or digital marketing? Would like help or coaching?

About The Author

My name is Meelad Mashaw and I’m a digital content marketing consultant and editor in chief of EXSPLORE. I specialize in content marketing, blogging, optimization, and monetization. I’m originally from California and currently traveling through South America.

Are you going to start an online store? Let me know in the comments below.