Products and Design, Shapeways

Shop Owner Holiday Tips Series: #7 Fan Engagement

We’re back with the seventh in our series of Shop Owner tips to help you get your shop ready for the holiday season.

Once your shop is set up for holiday sales, you’re well on your way to being optimized for selling into the new year. These last few tips are going to help you set up a longer term strategy for maintaining a good shop.
One of the great things about 3D printing is the ability to quickly iterate a design.  You make a product, say a pair of earrings, and after wearing them for a few days, you realize they are actually a bit long, and catch in your hair. It’s easy to go back to the computer and modify the design. Similarly, if your customers give you feedback, you can incorporate it into the design, like adding popular colors or different sizes.

While advertising and promotion is important to get your products known out there, having a conversation with your customers is often more powerful than just broadcasting a message. Customers feel like they get input into a product they are buying, just the same way you feel when you design something for 3D printing! Best of all, they get to tell a cool story, like this one from Pete, our CEO:

“I saw this cup on Shapeways so I bought it to use in the office…
I like to have a little milk and one sugar cube in my espresso. I found that once I added the sugar cube, my coffee would overflow, so I emailed the designer Kostika Spaho, to make the cup just 10% bigger. He modified the design, I ordered it and now I have a perfect cup for the way I like my coffee.”
Something we introduced at Shapeways that should make conversations easier is @mentions!  When your username is @mentioned in a model comment, you will receive a notification. If you @mention someone’s username they will also receive a notification. It’s the best way to have a conversation with a designer or to recommend a product to someone else in the Shapeways community. (You can view your most recent mentions by clicking on the @ notifications icon next to your profile image in the top navigation bar.) So if a customer is shopping on the site and sees a product they wish could be customized, they can @mention you and start a conversation. You can also see who has favorited your products, and @mention them in the comments.
Here’s a great example of a conversation about this Peep Pendant by RustyLab

So what are you waiting for! Get chatting to your customers, and see how much customer engagement drives sales. 

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