Advertising your business on social media

Those of you who run online shops I’m curious to know how (or if) you advertise them on social media. Do you run your ads consecutively or do you stagger them out? I’m currently running a small Facebook ad, and when that’s completed I’m going to run an ad on Pinterest, and then on Instagram. I’m getting my feet wet, so to speak, testing out how much engagement each one gets, but I’m not sure if this is the right way to go about it. And I’m 100% terrified of Google Ads.

This is stemming from a bit of desperation - a really large craft fair I was to participate in in November just got canceled, and I’m really worried about the other three that I’ve signed up for.


I’d imagine this is exactly the sort of thing that google is good at answering…?

Surely there are plenty of sites out there where people have talked about this.

1 Like

“getting started with online advertising” yielded this:

among many others.


I started a shop on etsy and then had to shut it down to an international move. I started an Insta account for it and got a bit of traction with followers but nothing that led to sales. I only was doing this for about a month before I moved, and I did not pay for any adverts - I just posted to my account and stories and used hashtags. I’ve seen quite a few accounts on there that Glowforge and (seem) to be doing well. It takes a lot of time and energy, but I suppose if your product is solid and you have an eye for nice visual self-promo’s, it can be done. Good luck!

I really want to start with the opinions of this community. I don’t think that’s too much to ask.


I never said it was. I took some of my time to offer you answers and you get defensive? Next time I’ll just let you figure it out for yourself.

I just moved over to Shopify last week, and my remaining Etsy products are set to expire in August and September. I may just put that store in permanent vacation mode instead of shutting it down completely.


I’m not being defensive. I would just rather hear the opinions of those here who have done this before to see how they managed it, that’s all.

1 Like

I have an Etsy shop that I’ve had for 9 years, I’m partners with my daughter at our local farmers market, and I’m part owner of a boutique that we just opened in March with a website. We use ads in FB and Instagram. The key to social media is posting daily. It’s time consuming, but it has to be done and I don’t do Google ads in any of my businesses. Maybe we will try it in the future, but for right now we’re happy using FB and IG. I’m not sure if this helps you or not.


This is very helpful, thank you! :blush: I will check out the ads on Instagram and see what that yields.

I’ve been pretty bad about posting on social media lately- this pandemic really hit me hard and it really dropped my engagement with practically everything. In hindsight I should’ve been ramping up instead of coming to a full stop. Now I’m having to play catch up.


Mine is still on vacation mode too :slight_smile: If you don’t mind, let me know how shopify goes. I’ve been thinking about starting up my shop again.


Great question. I worked for two years in the Google Ads team, and you’re right to be careful - their goal is to help, but to charge as much as possible while they do it! It’s easy for ads to get away from you and to have a huge spend with no return.

Your approach sounds wise. You might consider signing up for every ads program - Bing, Google Ads, etc - and then just waiting. They often send you a free trial credit after a few weeks to try and entice you to continue!

I also saw that TikTok is offering $300 in free ad credits - I haven’t tried it, but it sounds like a great opportunity to experiment on their dime.

Here’s the link to the TikTok ad credits.

Many credit cards let you create virtual cards that only have a certain amount of money on them. If you have one, that’s a good way to make sure that you don’t get billed for more ads than you meant to. I’ve seen people accidentally get enormous ad bills when they set things up wrong.

This is a really tough time. I’m so sorry to hear about the craft fair, and I hope you’re able to make things work.

Good luck!


I work in the marketing department of a medical research company and we have a healthy budget for Google Ads, and it amazes me how much marketing dollars they spend for it. It’s very scary for me to look at those numbers as a sole proprietor.

I did end up running small ad campaigns on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram and I saw a lot of positive reactions to them (I more than doubled my Facebook likes, and engagement went way up on both Pinterest and Instagram). I’m going to do it again this month to keep the interest up and hopefully start getting that investment to turn into sales.

Thanks so much for the suggestions, Dan. I will definitely take a look into TikTok (my daughter’s on it all the time) and Bing. The last incentive I received from Google Ads was “Spend $150 and we’ll give you $150” - still too rich for my blood!

I just had another one cancel today for September (sigh). It’s frustrating but understandable given the circumstances we’re in right now. I’ve still got two more on my docket for October and December, and I’m hoping those don’t get canceled. On the positive I can take those dollars that would have been spent on hotel stays and meals and put them towards another ad campaign. :slight_smile:

1 Like

If you create an account on Adwords, enter some ads, and then leave it alone, they will email you a better offer to get you to finish.


This topic was automatically closed 32 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.