Zazzle Newbie: Is my store ok like that? 2 pages: [1] 2
zoomingjapan
Posted: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 5:14:11 PM

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Joined: 6/16/2013
Posts: 86
Hello!

I'm quite new. I opened my first store just about a week ago.

I spent a few days setting everything up (e.g. all the templates) and reading tutorials as well as this forum.

Before I continue adding more products and finally introducing the store to my blog followers, I'd like to have some feedback from experienced users.

What do you think about my shop in terms of:

- organization / arrangement
- quality of products / choice of products
- prices
- description / title

What would you change about it?



Thanks a lot in advance for your advice and feedback.
It's really appreaciated! Smile
Quidama
Posted: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 7:04:19 PM
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Joined: 2/21/2012
Posts: 333
Nice shop! I especially like the image with Mt Fuji and the pagoda. I think you're off to a great start - just keep adding products. The only thing I could say is maybe to enrich your descriptions a little. Easier said than done, I know, and they're good as is but I think you might be able to "beef them up" a bit. I like your "about me" too. I always think it's interesting to read about the shop owner, but maybe I'm just nosy?

Best of luck!
Gothic Toggs
Posted: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 7:23:57 PM
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Joined: 11/5/2008
Posts: 2,382
Location: Johnstown
Shocked

What beautiful photography. I am definitely a new fan.

You shop looks great and I think you are off to an awesome start.

Like Quidama said, keep adding products and promote everywhere you can and those sales should start rolling in. Smile

(I've tweeted and pinned a couple of products to for you, hope you don't mind).

*and Quidama, can I just say your "doodle" shop is awesomeLove

I really like your dahlias and the treble clef too.

Best of luck to you bothLove

Tabz
Quidama
Posted: Tuesday, June 25, 2013 7:44:30 PM
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Gothic Toggs wrote:
Shocked

*and Quidama, can I just say your "doodle" shop is awesomeLove

I really like your dahlias and the treble clef too.

Best of luck to you bothLove

Tabz


Wow, THANKS! I like your shops too, but OMG, I see you have FIVE kids? How on Earth do you manage to find time to Zazzle? You're superwoman. Love
bartonleclaydesign
Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 1:38:29 AM
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Posts: 505
Tidy looking store but i wouldn't carry on doing too much as there changing store customisation soon so your store will look different.
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 3:42:12 AM
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Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
Hello!

I'm quite new. I opened my first store just about a week ago.

I spent a few days setting everything up (e.g. all the templates) and reading tutorials as well as this forum.

Before I continue adding more products and finally introducing the store to my blog followers, I'd like to have some feedback from experienced users.

What do you think about my shop in terms of:

- organization / arrangement
- quality of products / choice of products
- prices
- description / title

What would you change about it?



Thanks a lot in advance for your advice and feedback.
It's really appreaciated! Smile


Hello, and welcome.

Though the changes to the stores are coming, and if you want to wait, I still suggest that you use sub-categories. You have lots of products that feature the Tunnel of th Red Shrine Gates, but shoppers have to search the page of various items in hopes of finding something like a mug. If you had a sub for mugs, one for plates, one for mousepads, the shoppers would know right away that you have these items with this theme, and they would find out by clicking on "Tunnel of the Red Shrine" and then on "Mugs" under that theme. Your store is like a department store. If you were looking for garden pink roses, you'd go to the garden (or home decor) department and look for flowers, then look for roses, then look for pink roses. You'd have all those items, but in one section of the department as they fall into one theme.

Work on your tag words. I'll use your poster under the "Tunnel/Red Shrine" category.
You could add some like - Kyoto Japan (no comma as it will divide the words), Japanese themes, Japanese structures, Japanese architecture, red shrines, red, red walls, red and black walls, red and black Japanese themes, etc.

I also agree about the descriptions. Example (one of your mousepads) -

Pink cherry blossoms and blue sky

Spring in Japan is very beautiful thanks to all the white and pink cherry blossoms that bloom literally everywhere! Unfortunately they don't last very long. Usually after 2 weeks it's all over. If you're like me and can't get enough of cherry blossoms, then you can have them now all year round with this beautiful sakura product!


You're telling us a bit of history about the blossoms growing in Japan, but you haven't described the actual design/theme/artwork.

Hope that helps.
Good luck.
zoomingjapan
Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 7:13:24 AM

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Posts: 86
Quidama wrote:
Nice shop!
The only thing I could say is maybe to enrich your descriptions a little. Easier said than done, I know, and they're good as is but I think you might be able to "beef them up" a bit.


Thank you so much!

Do you have any advice how to optimize the descriptions. What are things you would add?
I know so far I've only explained where and maybe when the photo was taken.
I guess I should browse through the stores of a few pro sellers to read their descriptions and get a better idea of how to write good ones.

Gothic Toggs wrote:

What beautiful photography. I am definitely a new fan.

(I've tweeted and pinned a couple of products to for you, hope you don't mind).


OMG! Thank you so much! ^_____^
I really appreciate your nice words! Love
And of course I don't mind. I don't know what to say! Thanks so much! ^_^


bartonleclaydesign wrote:
Tidy looking store but i wouldn't carry on doing too much as there changing store customisation soon so your store will look different.


Thanks. That's exactly what I've been thinking.
I wonder when they'll change things.
I put working on the design on halt for the time being, but I think it's ok to work on improving the arrangement, tags and description of products as well as adding new ones.

As far as I understand only the look of the stores will change, not the content, right?


dreamNwish_Photo_Art wrote:


I still suggest that you use sub-categories. You have lots of products that feature the Tunnel of th Red Shrine Gates, but shoppers have to search the page of various items in hopes of finding something like a mug. If you had a sub for mugs, one for plates, one for mousepads, the shoppers would know right away that you have these items with this theme (...)


I thought that's what the "Department" tab in the sidebar is for. There's a link for all the items.
Of course I don't know yet as I'm too new, but it sounds a bit too "crowded" if I add another "mug" category ...

Maybe I just didn't understand exactly what you wanted to tell me. *g*

Quote:
Work on your tag words. I'll use your poster under the "Tunnel/Red Shrine" category.
You could add some like - Kyoto Japan (no comma as it will divide the words), Japanese themes, Japanese structures, Japanese architecture, red shrines, red, red walls, red and black walls, red and black Japanese themes, etc.


I see. So I need to add more tags. I just find it hard to come up with tags that aren't so obvious .. at least not to me. I guess that needs some experience as well.

Quote:

You're telling us a bit of history about the blossoms growing in Japan, but you haven't described the actual design/theme/artwork.


Could you give a rough example of how you would write a description for that item instead? Smile

Quote:
Hope that helps.


Great advice. It really helped a lot.
Thank you so much! Love
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 7:49:27 AM
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Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:


dreamNwish_Photo_Art wrote:


I still suggest that you use sub-categories. You have lots of products that feature the Tunnel of th Red Shrine Gates, but shoppers have to search the page of various items in hopes of finding something like a mug. If you had a sub for mugs, one for plates, one for mousepads, the shoppers would know right away that you have these items with this theme (...)


I thought that's what the "Department" tab in the sidebar is for. There's a link for all the items.
Of course I don't know yet as I'm too new, but it sounds a bit too "crowded" if I add another "mug" category ...

Maybe I just didn't understand exactly what you wanted to tell me. *g*

Quote:
Work on your tag words. I'll use your poster under the "Tunnel/Red Shrine" category.
You could add some like - Kyoto Japan (no comma as it will divide the words), Japanese themes, Japanese structures, Japanese architecture, red shrines, red, red walls, red and black walls, red and black Japanese themes, etc.


I see. So I need to add more tags. I just find it hard to come up with tags that aren't so obvious .. at least not to me. I guess that needs some experience as well.

Quote:

You're telling us a bit of history about the blossoms growing in Japan, but you haven't described the actual design/theme/artwork.


Could you give a rough example of how you would write a description for that item instead? Smile

Quote:
Hope that helps.


Great advice. It really helped a lot.
Thank you so much! Love


Hi.

I'll try to break it down a bit to hopefully make more sense for you.

The "Departments" section that's already on your store, made by Zazzle, divides by category of item type. You have images of temples, images of flowers, etc., but they're not listed in plain view and by theme under "Departments". This is why you make your own categories by theme/design. Some of us (like myself) don't even use the "Departments" setup that's provided. I'm not sure of how all will look once the new changes take place.

When you add subs, in many cases it actually decreases the clutter and crowded look of a store because you don't see as long of a list on the front page. You see the main categories which may only be a dozen, but under those (out of sight until clicked), you may have half a dozen subs. Altogether, that's eighteen which if all listed in plain view can look crowded, but out of sight at first glance, not so much.

Though it still needs work, take a look at my wedding store and you'll see what I mean. I have a category for brides, one for grooms, one for the wedding party, etc. Under each, I have subs. If the bride wants a shirt, she clicks on "Bride", then looks at the subs to see if I offer shirts. Since I have about two African themed shirts, I could make a sub for that. Bride>Apparel>Shirts>African and the bride will see them without having to scroll through all the other shirts.

dreamNwish Wedding Designs

When it comes to tags, sometimes the "obvious" tags are the best ones. When people look for things online, they may not look in the same way that you would. For instance, someone may want a photo or peach blossoms, while someone else wants one of cherry blossoms. If one types in "blossoms" and the other types in "cherry blossoms", chances are higher that your "cherry blossom" items will be showing up for the person who typed that in. They're being specific as you have to be online.

Describing the cherry blossoms. You could try something like - This item features a photo of cherry blossoms in a rich shade of pink. The bright blue of the sky makes an beautiful background for the clustered blossoms. Try for something even better. LOL!

I hope that this is of more help.
zoomingjapan
Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 7:59:59 AM

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Posts: 86
Ok, I think I understand a bit better now.
Thanks so much for taking the time to explain in detail! Grin

I browsed through your store and when I understand that correctly, it should be as follows:

I have a few main categories based on the theme of the photos (e.g. castles, cherry blossoms, shrines etc.).
What you suggest is that I use sub-categories for these main categories, so that somebody can browse for mugs within the "cherry blossoms" category, so they can find mugs that feature various cherry blossom photos.

You do NOT suggest that I add a sub-category to each sub-category, right?
So, let's say, that I have to add a "mug" sub-category to the "pink cherry blossom and blue sky" sub-category. After all I have only one mug in there, so it doesn't make any sense.

I saw that in your store you also have a few items as main category (e.g. cards). It will make the overview in the sidebar more crowded, but on the other hand I think it makes sense.
Not all items would make sense for my store, but maybe "photos", "cards" or something like that. I'm not sure yet.

I'll probably wait with any changed like that until they updated to the new "store look".


As for the description, I found people who wrote in fat and big letters and loooon texts: That you SHOULD NOT MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY and it's the BEST THING EVER ... blah blah ...
To be honest stuff like that turns me off. I'm quite sure that's not the recommended way of doing your descriptions, right?


Thanks so much for all the great advice. It really helps me a lot! ^^
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 9:00:34 AM
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Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
Ok, I think I understand a bit better now.
Thanks so much for taking the time to explain in detail! Grin

I browsed through your store and when I understand that correctly, it should be as follows:

I have a few main categories based on the theme of the photos (e.g. castles, cherry blossoms, shrines etc.).
What you suggest is that I use sub-categories for these main categories, so that somebody can browse for mugs within the "cherry blossoms" category, so they can find mugs that feature various cherry blossom photos.


Yes. They can look under "cherry blossoms" and find your mugs, shirts, etc., with images of those blossoms on them.

zoomingjapan wrote:
You do NOT suggest that I add a sub-category to each sub-category, right?
So, let's say, that I have to add a "mug" sub-category to the "pink cherry blossom and blue sky" sub-category. After all I have only one mug in there, so it doesn't make any sense.


No, you don't have to, but if you're planning to make more mugs with the same image, but with a different sizes of the image, text with the image, the image tiled, etc., then you may want to consider a sub-category for mugs under that main category. I wouldn't worry too much about the mugs for that category for now since you only have one.

zoomingjapan wrote:
I saw that in your store you also have a few items as main category (e.g. cards). It will make the overview in the sidebar more crowded, but on the other hand I think it makes sense.
Not all items would make sense for my store, but maybe "photos", "cards" or something like that. I'm not sure yet.

I'll probably wait with any changed like that until they updated to the new "store look".


As I mentioned, my store (actually both stores) still needs work, but when it comes to my having "cards" listed instead of a particular theme, it's because sometimes there isn't a particular theme. With the cards, they're general cards for weddings that people may give to the bride or groom or to both. I have a similar setup for "Totes" and just very recently moved a category for them under "Bride" for totes just for the bride, though the category appears to be empty. [sigh] Not sure what's up with that.
There's still a listing for "Totes" on its own that I need to sort out, and I think I'll try the same for the cards as some could go under "Family" or "Thank You", I think.

When it comes to listing by product type, it's really not needed as Zazzle already provides a drop-down menu for us on each page that has the product type listed.

When it all boils down, there may be a moment of trying to decide which way to go with the categories; main or sub because not everything fits under a particular category, and that's fine. If you can lessen the clutter of a list by using subs, then that's good. If not, and it's the best you can do, it's not a horrible thing, either.
Lots of people have fractal designs and it's very hard to try and divide them up by categories like colors as there are so many, so they may just put "Fractals" and leave it, or they may try to pick out the color that stands out the most and use that as the category theme. I think it's easier to go with "Fractals", and then list the products under as subs. Though the product types will be listed, they won't be listed individually as main categories, so it'll be neater.


zoomingjapan wrote:
As for the description, I found people who wrote in fat and big letters and loooon texts: That you SHOULD NOT MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY and it's the BEST THING EVER ... blah blah ...
To be honest stuff like that turns me off. I'm quite sure that's not the recommended way of doing your descriptions, right?


Oooh, descriptions like that are not the best. No, indeed.
Also, they're breaking etiquette by "shouting" when they use all caps. Sheesh. I have a post on the forum under "Everything Else" about how people shouldn't use all caps on the forum and how they shouldn't use a single word like "HELP!" as the topic when they actually have a question about how to link a photo or something. I think the same rules for "shouting" should apply when it comes to descriptions, especially if you're shouting and it's not even a description. LOL!
When I first started on Zazzle, I wasn't shouting, but I wasn't that great with descriptions as I didn't know how much we could say. I found an old one last week, and it was really bad. I had to laugh and quickly make it better. LOL!

I think you're on the right track, so don't worry. Smile

zoomingjapan wrote:
Thanks so much for all the great advice. It really helps me a lot! ^^


You're welcome, and I'm glad I was able to help you to understand what I was saying or trying to say.

Marian Cates
Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 10:29:55 AM
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Joined: 11/7/2009
Posts: 1,638
Location: Portland, Oregon Metro Area
You've made the mistake I made with showing various cases and covers. Your design is horizontal but the product is showing up vertical.

When you create the product, there is an option to have it horizontal or vertical. Look for it when you create your next product. I'd give you a screenshot, but I'm not feeling too well, so I'll leave it at that. You've certainly made a good start on your shop.

Marian
zoomingjapan
Posted: Monday, July 01, 2013 4:55:32 PM

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OMG! I can finally use the forum again! Crying

It was driving me crazy, that I couldn't thank you guys for your help thus far. Love

I wanted to continue working on my store, but had so many questions, that I didn't.

I hope you can help me out with this.

I decided that rather than browsing by theme, I want to orgaize my store by product as for my kind of store that should work better.

Right now I'm thinking of something like this:

Category: Art Prints
- photos
- posters
- canvas

Category: Calendars

Category: Cards
greeting cards
postcards

Category: Clothing & Accesories (not sure yet)
- t-shirts (not yet)
- bags (the cheap tote bags maybe)

Category: Furniture
- pillows
- clocks

Category: Games
- playing cards
- puzzles

Category: Kitchenware
- mugs
- coasters

Category: Mousepads

Category: Phone & Tablet Cases
- iPhone cases
- iPod cases
- iPad cases
- Samsung Galaxy cases

Category: Stationary
- buttons
- magnets
- stickers
- notebooks
(- stamps)


unsure about: travel tags and where to put them



I also thought that maybe items I should kick out for now are:
necklaces, speakers, gift boxes, stamps (only for flower motives ok), laptop bags, sleeves, tiles

This is based on a poll I ran among my blog's readers. I don't want to have TOO many products, so I want to limit it down to the ones that make most sense for my photos.


What do you think? What would you improve?
I already started working on this, but have the categories and products hidden for now.
zoomingjapan
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 5:39:12 AM

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I wanted to search the forum for answers, but as all non-prosellers were locked out of the forum for almost a week, I couldn't.
I will try to search for it now, but I think I've already made up my mind.


Thanks a lot for the response. Love


Anybody care to comment about the sorting of categories and sub-categories I chose? Would you leave it like that IF I decide to sort by product? Smile
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 7:28:09 AM
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Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
I wanted to search the forum for answers, but as all non-prosellers were locked out of the forum for almost a week, I couldn't.
I will try to search for it now, but I think I've already made up my mind.


Thanks a lot for the response. Love


Anybody care to comment about the sorting of categories and sub-categories I chose? Would you leave it like that IF I decide to sort by product? Smile


I had mentioned to you earlier that it's best to list by design/theme, rather than by product. You can go back and read about how I said Zazzle breaks everything down by product, so we don't need to do that for our main categories.

I explained about less clutter with sub-categories, and gave you the link to my wedding store for an example.

People may know that Zazzle sells phone cases, they may see that you offer them, but what about making it easier for them to look under "City Scenes" to find one, rather than searching through thousands under "Cases" as you may list in your store?
zoomingjapan
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 7:42:53 AM

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Of course I remember what you told me.
I understand your point.

People who use Zazzle often might know about all this, but what about the customers who come from my Facebook Page or my blog? I'm sure they don't know.

I noticed that you can search a store, so you could also just type in what you're looking for and the designs featuring it will pop up.

Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but as far as I see it, there have to be more sub-categories and thus more clicking if I order it by design:

Mountains - stationary - buttons

vs.

Stationary - buttons
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 8:50:37 AM
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Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
Of course I remember what you told me.
I understand your point.

People who use Zazzle often might know about all this, but what about the customers who come from my Facebook Page or my blog? I'm sure they don't know.

I noticed that you can search a store, so you could also just type in what you're looking for and the designs featuring it will pop up.

Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but as far as I see it, there have to be more sub-categories and thus more clicking if I order it by design:

Mountains - stationary - buttons

vs.

Stationary - buttons


Still, you'd be listing "Stationery" which is a product type. Zazzle already lists by product type and they can be searched in the main marketplace or in your store.
If someone was searching on Google for "pink rose stationery" and typed it in that way, it's more likely that there may be a connection to your theme listing of Pink Roses>Stationery, than just "Stationery" as there are millions of links that would come up with that standard search.

Examples - I typed in "pink rose stationery" in the Zazzle marketplace search box and got these -
http://www.zazzle.com/pink+rose+stationery

I typed in "stationery pink rose" in the Zazzle marketplace search box and got these - http://www.zazzle.com/pink+rose+stationery

Each one shows pretty much the same listings, but they're at least showing what I searched for.

I typed in "stationery" and got these -
http://www.zazzle.com/stationery

This would be basically the same way with your store's search box. People will be directed to your stationery, but will have to search through the dozens or thousands that you have in order to find one with pink roses when you could simply list that as a design from the start.

Like I've said before, even with subs, they're out of sight until someone clickes on them. If you don't have any main categories that interest me, I'm not going to bother with clicking to see what subs you have, so I won't even see them. It's like going into a women's boutique and asking if they sell baby clothes, and if they say 'no', I'll move on because I need a dress for my daughter. No need in continuing to look around the store.
If you went shopping in store that only sells items for your favorite college or university, it's probably unlikely for them to have items for your rivals, and people will know right from the start that this is a store strictly for that particular college, whether they have mugs or not.

If you list the hundreds of items offered by Zazzle, that's a lot of scrolling to deal with in hopes of finding phone cases, when it's easier to find the theme and look under it for the cases.

You wouldn't have your categories listed as -
Mountains - stationary - buttons

Stationery and buttons should be separated.

Mountains
>Buttons
>Stationery
>Postcards

Rivers
>Mississippi
>Postcards
>Shirts

Even if you didn't list the product types as subs, you'd still give the customers a list of your themes so they can see if any are interesting to them.
zoomingjapan
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 9:08:33 AM

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I guess I can't use product types as sub-categories if I organize by design as it will be too crowded.

Giving it a second thought it would look more like that:

Statues of Japan:
- Funny monk statue
- Buddha statue in Kamakura
- XY statue in XY
- Stationary
- Mousepads
- Cards
- Product type XY


I have soooo many photos that I'll have a lot of sub-categories, one for each photo / design. In that case I can't use product types.


What's your opinion about my worries that people will be turned off if they click on a sub-category with one photo and then see like 30 products all featuring the same photo.
Some of my blog readers said it will look like it's okay to put the photo on just anything just to make money.
I don't want to come off as cheap or anything.

Thanks so much for taking the time and discussing this with me. It really helps me a lot! Grin
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 2:18:46 PM
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Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
I guess I can't use product types as sub-categories if I organize by design as it will be too crowded.

Giving it a second thought it would look more like that:

Statues of Japan:
- Funny monk statue
- Buddha statue in Kamakura
- XY statue in XY
- Stationary
- Mousepads
- Cards
- Product type XY


I have soooo many photos that I'll have a lot of sub-categories, one for each photo / design. In that case I can't use product types.


What's your opinion about my worries that people will be turned off if they click on a sub-category with one photo and then see like 30 products all featuring the same photo.
Some of my blog readers said it will look like it's okay to put the photo on just anything just to make money.
I don't want to come off as cheap or anything.

Thanks so much for taking the time and discussing this with me. It really helps me a lot! Grin


You're welcome.

You keep saying the categories will be too croweded. If you feel that subs aren't for you, then don't worry about them.

Look at the DC Comics store and see how they've listed by character/theme. They may not have subs specifically for shirts, caps, etc., but at least all of the same themes are together. People don't have to scroll through Superman Courage in order to find Superman World Hero.

Statues of Japan:
- Funny monk statue
- Buddha statue in Kamakura
- XY statue in XY
- Stationary
- Mousepads
- Cards
- Product type XY


I'm still not sure that you're understanding how the main and subs work.

If you were to put a main category up for Statues, your sub could be Buddha in Kamakura. Only if you have mousepads with Buddha in Kamakura, should you put a sub under Buddha in Kamakura for mousepads. If you have posters, put them in their own sub, but still under Buddha in Kamakura. When I click on Buddha in Kamakura, that's the only way for me to see the subs, so if Buddha in Kamakura was the only main category you had, it can't possibly look or be crowded. If you added a second main category to feature temples, it's still only two main categories showing, which is still nice and neat and no subs show until clicked on.

What's your opinion about my worries that people will be turned off if they click on a sub-category with one photo and then see like 30 products all featuring the same photo.

Again, this falls into the category of how I mentioned how people would have to scroll and search through dozens or hundreds of products in hopes of finding one in particular. It's not a good thing as they will lose interests. Think of looking through a clearance bin at a store. You want a DVD of your favorite movie, and the bin is full of DVDs. It would be easier for you to visit the DVD section of where they're on shelves, but if it's only in the bin, you may end up standing there for an hour.

If you had thirty products with the same image, then that's fine, but if they're jumbled up as if in a bin, it'll cause some people to give up on the clutter and leave.

I had mentioned before about the one item standing alone and said that you could leave it as it is, without a sub, until you have enough that are similar to put together.

Of course you want a nice store, but there are some things that cannot be helped and will never be perfect.
zoomingjapan
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 5:39:45 PM

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Joined: 6/16/2013
Posts: 86
dreamNwish_Photo_Art wrote:


Of course you want a nice store, but there are some things that cannot be helped and will never be perfect.


It would be so much easier if they just allowed to put a product in more than one category.


Thanks for your patience! Smile

I totally understand why a Comic store like that organizes its products by characters and thus by theme. I would do that, too.
I think it depends on the type of products you sell. Sorting by design might not work for every store.

Ok, so right now I have it like this:

Statues of Japan (main category):
- Buddha Statue in Kamakura (sub-category featuring products with only ONE AND THE SAME photo)
- Funny monk statue (same as above)
- XY statue (same as above)

As Zazzle offers the "see on 26 products" link, I don't think I need to create a sub-category for each photo.

Instead, how about something like this:

Statues of Japan (main category).
- mugs (sub-category feat. all mugs that have photos with Japan statues on it)
- phone cases
- mousepads

Of course I have many, many photos. However, if I group them in main categories like that, there won't be too many photos anymore.
So, if I click on mugs under the "Statues" category, there will only be a handful mugs that pop up.

If somebody likes a certain photo, they can click on the "see on 26 products" link.

If somebody wants to look for mugs in general, they can click on it under the "Department" tab.


One thing I'm worried about is that I might lose selling options if I do it like that. A friend of mine said something that sounds very true to me:
" I want a mug with cherry blossoms *clicks on mugs*
OMG that pagoda looks so great with Mt Fuji! *buys a second mug with Mt. Fuji*"



This is really the most essential part before setting up a shop and it's giving me a headache, but I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Thanks again. Love
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Tuesday, July 02, 2013 10:41:10 PM
 Zazzle Proseller
Groups: ProSeller

Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
dreamNwish_Photo_Art wrote:


Of course you want a nice store, but there are some things that cannot be helped and will never be perfect.


It would be so much easier if they just allowed to put a product in more than one category.


Thanks for your patience! Smile

I totally understand why a Comic store like that organizes its products by characters and thus by theme. I would do that, too.
I think it depends on the type of products you sell. Sorting by design might not work for every store.

Ok, so right now I have it like this:

Statues of Japan (main category):
- Buddha Statue in Kamakura (sub-category featuring products with only ONE AND THE SAME photo)
- Funny monk statue (same as above)
- XY statue (same as above)

As Zazzle offers the "see on 26 products" link, I don't think I need to create a sub-category for each photo.

Instead, how about something like this:

Statues of Japan (main category).
- mugs (sub-category feat. all mugs that have photos with Japan statues on it)
- phone cases
- mousepads

Of course I have many, many photos. However, if I group them in main categories like that, there won't be too many photos anymore.
So, if I click on mugs under the "Statues" category, there will only be a handful mugs that pop up.

If somebody likes a certain photo, they can click on the "see on 26 products" link.

If somebody wants to look for mugs in general, they can click on it under the "Department" tab.


One thing I'm worried about is that I might lose selling options if I do it like that. A friend of mine said something that sounds very true to me:
" I want a mug with cherry blossoms *clicks on mugs*
OMG that pagoda looks so great with Mt Fuji! *buys a second mug with Mt. Fuji*"



This is really the most essential part before setting up a shop and it's giving me a headache, but I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Thanks again. Love


We're going in circles, here.

Let's say that I want to buy your sticker that has Buddha Statue in Kamakura, Japan on it. First, I click on Statues of Japan, and then I get to the page of statues. I saw the sticker, but I had to scroll all the way down to the bottom of that page. "Oh, they do have a sticker. I almost gave up and left because I had to scroll through all the other items."

If you had listed "stickers" directly under Buddha Statue in Kamakura, Japan so I could see it as a sub-category, I could have clicked on that, saved about thirty seconds, and gotten right to the sticker with the theme I wanted. If you add more and more products, I'll have to continue to scroll and I'll get tired and go to another store.

You can click on links under Departments (I never used that on my stores before the new changes...still not a fan), but when I see Toys and Games, I have no idea of what themes you have. Do you sell cards with images of spiders on them? Do you sell dartboards with images of robots?

Even if you listed by product type -
Mousepads
Plates
Napkins
...people will still have to scroll through hundreds of those items in hopes of finding one plate with a purple flower on it because you haven't listed that you do indeed sell such an item. If in one of the most famous shoe stores in the mall, you'll see that the tennis shoes are together, but sorted by brand. The basketball shoes are together, but sorted by brand. Sometimes they're even sorted by color. They're all still shoes, but the customers know exactly where to go and as they know what's offered as they can see it in front of them.

One thing I'm worried about is that I might lose selling options if I do it like that. A friend of mine said something that sounds very true to me:
[i]" I want a mug with cherry blossoms *clicks on mugs*
OMG that pagoda looks so great with Mt Fuji! *buys a second mug with Mt. Fuji*"


You're bound to lose sellers no matter what you do. It's totally impossible to please everyone, so there's no use in trying.

If your friend wants to buy that type of mug and clicks on "mugs", how are they going to easily find one with cherry blossoms on it unless you add a sub-category? How are they going to navigate from the cherry blossom mug to the Mt. Fuji mug w/o having to search through others, unless the themes are separate and easier to sort through?

Like I said before, even if you listed by product type, you'll still have people losing interest if they have to search through hundreds of items in hopes of finding just one.

Though these posts are old, maybe reading some will help to decide one way or another, for yourself.

From "Your Zazzle Store" - -

http://forum.zazzle.com/gallery/best_way_to_organize_your_store_by_product_theme

http://forum.zazzle.com/gallery/my_store_product_or_design_your_opinion

http://forum.zazzle.com/gallery/are_your_stores_organized_by_product_or_by_design
zoomingjapan
Posted: Wednesday, July 03, 2013 6:40:17 AM

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Joined: 6/16/2013
Posts: 86
Ok, thank you so much again.

I guess I'll sort by design then.
I did a looooot of reading and I think I already read a few of the threads you linked here.
I also browsed through MILLIONS of stores of prosellers to see what they're doing.

So, now the question is how exactly to set the categories and sub-categories up to make them as easy to browse as possible.

I have no idea how many designs / photos there will be in the end in each category. All I can say is that I've taken BILLIONS of photos here in Japan, so who knows.

So, let's say I leave the main categories as they are right now (of course more will follow as I create more designs), e.g.:

Castles of Japan
Statues of Japan
Japanese Shrines
Japanese Temples
Mountains / Volcanoes (of Japan)
Cherry blossoms
Autumn colors
etc.

What would be the best option for sub-categories?

I've seen most people just split it up so that the tiniest category (mostly a sub-category or even a sub-sub-category) displays only that one design.

A few others had it set up so that after clicking on one of the main categories they splitted it up by product. I remember that's something you suggested as well, but with the Department navigation I'm not sure if that makes much sense.


Possible scenarios:

Main Category: Cherry blossoms
Sub-Categories:
- cherry blossom photo #1
- cherry blossom photo #2
(........)
- cherry blossom photo #200

Each of these sub-categories is only displayed on one product, so there's only one mug with that design, only one mousepad etc.

If I have a lot of photos with cherry blossoms, I'll end up with millions of sub-categories like this shop here: http://www.zazzle.com/theartofpamela/gifts?cg=196329634661923355



The only other possibility I see is to do it like that:

Main Category: Cherry blossoms
Sub-Categories:
- product type #1 (e.g. mugs)
- product type #2 (e.g. mousepads)

First a customer can choose they want something with a cherry blossom theme and then they can look for a product type. If they see a certain design they like, they can always click on the "see on 25 products" link.

On the other hand the product type sorting can be done through the "Department" tab ....


I have no clue which one is the better option for my kind of store.
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Friday, July 05, 2013 6:59:48 AM
 Zazzle Proseller
Groups: ProSeller

Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
Ok, thank you so much again.

I guess I'll sort by design then.
I did a looooot of reading and I think I already read a few of the threads you linked here.
I also browsed through MILLIONS of stores of prosellers to see what they're doing.

So, now the question is how exactly to set the categories and sub-categories up to make them as easy to browse as possible.

I have no idea how many designs / photos there will be in the end in each category. All I can say is that I've taken BILLIONS of photos here in Japan, so who knows.

So, let's say I leave the main categories as they are right now (of course more will follow as I create more designs), e.g.:

Castles of Japan
Statues of Japan
Japanese Shrines
Japanese Temples
Mountains / Volcanoes (of Japan)
Cherry blossoms
Autumn colors
etc.

What would be the best option for sub-categories?

I've seen most people just split it up so that the tiniest category (mostly a sub-category or even a sub-sub-category) displays only that one design.

A few others had it set up so that after clicking on one of the main categories they splitted it up by product. I remember that's something you suggested as well, but with the Department navigation I'm not sure if that makes much sense.


Possible scenarios:

Main Category: Cherry blossoms
Sub-Categories:
- cherry blossom photo #1
- cherry blossom photo #2
(........)
- cherry blossom photo #200

Each of these sub-categories is only displayed on one product, so there's only one mug with that design, only one mousepad etc.

If I have a lot of photos with cherry blossoms, I'll end up with millions of sub-categories like this shop here: http://www.zazzle.com/theartofpamela/gifts?cg=196329634661923355



The only other possibility I see is to do it like that:

Main Category: Cherry blossoms
Sub-Categories:
- product type #1 (e.g. mugs)
- product type #2 (e.g. mousepads)

First a customer can choose they want something with a cherry blossom theme and then they can look for a product type. If they see a certain design they like, they can always click on the "see on 25 products" link.

On the other hand the product type sorting can be done through the "Department" tab ....


I have no clue which one is the better option for my kind of store.


I don't know how soon you plan to add the billions of photos, but let's just focus on what you have in the store at the moment. As you said, you have no idea of how many there will be, so there's no need in setting up anything for all of them at this point, when you may not even use them all or may want to make changes after you get used to working with what you have in the store so far. Small steps. Don't overthink things.
You're concerned about the billions of photos. Think of being a customer and having to go through ten billion items on your store, none in any particular category because you've added the billion photos to hundreds or thousands of products.
Ten billion vs one billion.

Let's try this. If you don't want to break the sub-categories down by each product, why not combine a few.
Example - -

Main category = Cherry Blossoms
>>Sub-category = For the Home
>>>>Sub-sub = Clocks/Placemats/Ornaments

If you have only two plates, five placemats and one ornament at this time, you'll at least have a halfway decent collection of items with cherry blossoms on them without worrying about only having one item with the blossoms alone in a category. Maybe this will also help you to stop worrying about having too many sub-categories listed.

As for the "Department" setup, we were able to remove it before the update, and I don't know about that, now. I didn't like it, so I removed it and that's why it wasn't a big deal for me. I've seen a couple of stores where the owner made their sub-categories in the "Departments" section. Maybe you could ask someone about that. If I recall correctly, Gina Lee Manley had at least one of her stores set that way, so maybe you could post a question for her.

I looked at that other store, and even if you did end up with several sub-categories things will still be less "junky" they're still out of view from the start. The point is to keep the storefront as clean as possible, and by having a shorter list of categories (main or sub) in view, it's less junky. When I first opened my variety store, I didn't know any better and listed by categories for each product. The list was ridiculous, and I found it annoying, but thought I was doing it right. When I was told by others that I was on the wrong track, I was actually happy to hear that because I knew that I could make my store look a little less clutter and save a few of my own nerves. It didn't matter about how many sub-categories I may have had. It was the fact that I had far too many main categories and it was annoying to fellow Zazzlers and they told me they wouldn't stick around to shop in such a place. I got what they were saying, and now each time I see a store like my old one, I cringe. All all this time, I still haven't taken time to set it up as I'd truly like it, but I knew that new changes were coming for Zazzle/us, so I wanted to wait a little longer. Still, it's better than it was.

zoomingjapan
Posted: Friday, July 05, 2013 7:15:42 AM

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Joined: 6/16/2013
Posts: 86
Today I noticed that for my smartphone the "Department" section doesn't even show up.
I don't know if that's a bug or not, but if not, then customers using a mobile device can only browse our stores by using the categories.

If that's the case then breaking down the sub-categories in products rather than further themes might be a good idea.

Right now I have it set up so people will only be able to browse by theme.

Thanks so much for the insight. Very interesting indeed.
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Friday, July 05, 2013 7:33:53 AM
 Zazzle Proseller
Groups: ProSeller

Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
Today I noticed that for my smartphone the "Department" section doesn't even show up.
I don't know if that's a bug or not, but if not, then customers using a mobile device can only browse our stores by using the categories.

If that's the case then breaking down the sub-categories in products rather than further themes might be a good idea.

Right now I have it set up so people will only be able to browse by theme.

Thanks so much for the insight. Very interesting indeed.


You're welcome.

I don't know if that's part of a glitch they're working on or not.
I recall reading something about people not being able to do/see certain things on their phones, but I'm not sure of the details.

A while back when they added "Departments", there was some discussion about how products only showed up if you actually had them in your store and categorized in a certain way.... I don't know. Like I said, I didn't like it, so I didn't deal with it.

Past discussions about "Departments" and some of its issues.

This is from March of this year. http://forum.zazzle.com/tools/department_links_show_no_products_and_are_messed

http://forum.zazzle.com/gallery/anyone_else_having_products_not_show_up_in_the

Infinnite
Posted: Friday, July 05, 2013 5:55:56 PM
Groups: Member

Joined: 2/18/2012
Posts: 156
What a neat idea for a shop! I love your banner, and your
photography is wonderful. I'm also a newbie so I can't advise
-- but I love what I see.
zoomingjapan
Posted: Friday, July 05, 2013 8:31:43 PM

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Joined: 6/16/2013
Posts: 86
I added a few more products.
Am still not 100% sure about the organization of my store.
Can somebody test it and tell me if it's a hazzle to navigate?

The fullest category is the "Cherry Blossoms" one, so that's a good way to test.
Right now everything is solely sorted by theme / photo, but I might consider having the sub-categories as product types not as single photo / design.

Also, what do you think about the product types I chose for my photos? Is there anything that you'd rather delete / hide?
Anything missing, but you think it should be there?

How about the descritpions, tags and titles?
I tried to listen to the advice I got earlier in this thread.



@Infinnite: Thank you so much! Grin
Oconnart
Posted: Saturday, July 06, 2013 12:28:14 AM
 Zazzle Proseller
Groups: ProSeller

Joined: 12/23/2010
Posts: 920
Location: Scotland
Your store looks perfect. I'd just keep organizing the way your doing, really easy to navigate by following the images, with all the products under one image.

Your tags are OK but could be improved. e.g "autumn colors" add tags like "autumn leaf", "Japanese tree", "fall colors","maple leaves", nature,

"buddhist statue" - "japanese buddhist statue","buddhist shrine",

You don't need your shop name as a tag as it will show in searches anyway and is a waste of a tag especially a power tag.

Good luck with your store!
zoomingjapan
Posted: Saturday, July 06, 2013 9:00:27 AM

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Joined: 6/16/2013
Posts: 86
I updated my header. The previous one was just something I was playing around with. As they mentioned the header size might change again, I didn't want to work on it until now.
I hate the way the header is cropped when not shown in full size. It makes the image quality look horrible.
I hope they'll fix that. I remember seeing it in the "bug list".

I added a hint "browse by product type" and "browse by theme", though as I might change the way I organize my store, I might also have to get rid of it, but I thought it's good to have that extra space for whatever kind of message I currenty have for my customers.


As for the "Cherry Blossoms" category, I'm still not sure if sorting the sub-categories by theme / photo makes sense.
Only 12 sub-categories will show up (and thus only 12 photos).
As there's no way I can find a unique title for each photo, it's going to be difficult.
Customers will have to use the sidebar to see all the sub-categories and will see something like that:
Cherry Blossoms:
- Pink cherry blossoms and blue sky
- Beautiful cherry blossoms and light-blue sky
- White cherry blossoms
- Raindrops on cherry blossoms
- Pink cherry blossoms with blue background
etc.
Not useful at all!

I guess that category is special, so I was wondering if just there I should organize by products instead.
I've already added new products (not yet out) in that category, so I'll reach the 12 sub-categories very soon.

@Oconnart: Thank you so much for the feedback! Grin

Great suggestions about the tags.
The reason why I included my store's name as tag is because I read that you should do it somewhere here in this forum.
I don't remember where, so it might have been a rather old thread.
dreamNwish_Photo_Art
Posted: Saturday, July 06, 2013 10:15:22 AM
 Zazzle Proseller
Groups: ProSeller

Joined: 9/24/2009
Posts: 5,518
zoomingjapan wrote:
I updated my header. The previous one was just something I was playing around with. As they mentioned the header size might change again, I didn't want to work on it until now.
I hate the way the header is cropped when not shown in full size. It makes the image quality look horrible.
I hope they'll fix that. I remember seeing it in the "bug list".

I added a hint "browse by product type" and "browse by theme", though as I might change the way I organize my store, I might also have to get rid of it, but I thought it's good to have that extra space for whatever kind of message I currenty have for my customers.


As for the "Cherry Blossoms" category, I'm still not sure if sorting the sub-categories by theme / photo makes sense.
Only 12 sub-categories will show up (and thus only 12 photos).
As there's no way I can find a unique title for each photo, it's going to be difficult.
Customers will have to use the sidebar to see all the sub-categories and will see something like that:
Cherry Blossoms:
- Pink cherry blossoms and blue sky
- Beautiful cherry blossoms and light-blue sky
- White cherry blossoms
- Raindrops on cherry blossoms
- Pink cherry blossoms with blue background
etc.
Not useful at all!

I guess that category is special, so I was wondering if just there I should organize by products instead.
I've already added new products (not yet out) in that category, so I'll reach the 12 sub-categories very soon.

@Oconnart: Thank you so much for the feedback! Grin

Great suggestions about the tags.
The reason why I included my store's name as tag is because I read that you should do it somewhere here in this forum.
I don't remember where, so it might have been a rather old thread.



Cherry Blossoms:
- Pink cherry blossoms and blue sky
- Beautiful cherry blossoms and light-blue sky
- White cherry blossoms
- Raindrops on cherry blossoms
- Pink cherry blossoms with blue background
etc.


You don't have to be that specific in breaking up images with the same subject.

Just like I mentioned about combining items in a category, you can keep the pink cherry blossom images listed in the same category. I thought I even said to keep all the pink blossoms together, but I'm not sure.
The main subject of the image would be pink cherry blossoms, right? That's what you should focus on, even if there's a blue sky in one image, a gray sky in another. It's about the blossoms. When it comes to tags, then you can break it down even more by using more subjects in the photo.... cherry blossoms and gray sky, cherry blossoms and blue sky, etc.
zoomingjapan
Posted: Saturday, July 06, 2013 4:57:10 PM

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Joined: 6/16/2013
Posts: 86
But you still would break them up into sub-categories, one for each photo, right?

What would be your suggestion for titles for the sub-categories then?
I think Cherry Blossoms #1, Cherry Blossoms#2 etc. would sound even more horrible. *g*
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