Toronto Etsy Street Team meet-up

The last TEST meet-up of 2012 that took place on October 19 had a great turnout and was terrific in terms of information-sharing  and engaged discussion.

More frequent meet-ups in 2013:

There will be more opportunities to meet face-to-face next year, as the meet-ups are set to happen monthly, with a rotating schedule of weekday/weekend and day/evening meeting times around the third week of each month. Hopefully, this will give all our team members the chance to attend a few meet-ups that fit their schedule best! 

The suggestion to alternate discussion, social, and workshop meetings, as well as holding a Spring and a Winter TEST craft shows was also enthusiastically greeted. Keep your eyes open for announcements of meeting dates and topics starting in January 2013.

Some of the workshop ideas which we discussed are:
photography (Nada is working on a photography workshop for Etsy Canada)
SEO (search engine optimization and how to get noticed on-line)
Getting noticed in Etsy Browse
Tips for participating in craft/art/vintage shows
Accounting/small business information
Work/life balance
Carolyn of SproutsPressDesigns volunteered to run a bookbiding workshop!

Have more suggestions? Let us know below!

Team tag:

The official tag of the TEST team is "Toronto team". Adding this tag to your Etsy listings helps us promote each other by making it easier to find team members' products and shops for treasuries, referrals, etc. 

An additional advantage of using the "Toronto team" tag is that people searching for "Toronto" as a keyword will also find your listings, as individual words within tags are searchable on Etsy.

Mobile payment solutions:

There was a lot of information sharing around seller experiences with mobile payment solutions, such as Square, Kudos, Payd, and others. A blog post detailing all of these is coming soon!  For now, you can refer to the TEST team forum on Etsy, as there are at least two discussion threads with recommendations on this topic.

Team showcase widget:

Kevin of BetaRays has created a great tool to help us showcase the team's products in one place. It is a widget you can add to your website or blog that loads a random selection of products from the TEST members' shops.  You can see it in action below, as well as on this blog's new TEST Team Showcase! page.

The random selection of products is a fun way to browse team member's shops, put together treasuries, and stumble upon surprising new creations by TEST sellers. To quote Michelle from Thunderpeep: "It's like a loot bag!".

You can get the code needed to add the TEST Team Showcase to your own blog on Kevin's site here: 

TESTy Showcase

Other topics
We also discussed funding opportunities for committee-based arts organizations, like the TEST Handmade segment of our team. We would love to hear any ideas about increasing participation amongst our almost 500 member strong team. Last, but not least, we highlighted the opportunities for members to volunteer for the team. Would you also like to be a team Leader? Blog or tweet for the team? Post to our Facebook pages? Participate on the team's pinterest? Help organize shows or events? Let us know!

By Natalie from fragmentalist with additional information from Ele from minouette

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