There’s just something about a paper greeting card that never loses its charm for some of us. We like to hold the greeting in our hands, feel the crisp paper, run our fingers over the words and pictures as if we were trying to absorb the essence of the message. Most of all we like to see the handwritten notes and the signatures of our loved ones. While ecards may be viewed instantly and forgotten over time, printed cards can be saved, cherished and shared for years. Although ecards have replaced printed cards in many instances as the more convenient, inexpensive and quick mode of wishing one another, printed cards still retain that special quality that electronic messages cannot convey effectively.
There is an increasing number of online craft marketplaces, such as Etsy, Amazon's Handmade, Artfire, and many other specialist sites. Selling online is a viable proposition for anyone with access to the internet. No technical skills are required to set up an online store within these online handmade marketplaces. Starting a store on Etsy is relatively quick and easy to do. But, you will need to work hard at taking top-notch photos of your cards, crafting superb product descriptions, and learning about search engine optimization and keywords to really get your online business off the ground. Don't worry if this sounds daunting, the Etsy seller's handbook is a fabulous source of information and will help you get started.
As of December 31, 2014, Etsy had 54 million users registered as members, and the online marketplace for handmade and vintage goods connected 1.4 million sellers with 19.8 million buyers. At the end of 2014, Etsy had 685 employees, and had 29 million items listed. In 2014, Etsy had total sales, or Gross Merchandise Sales (GMS), of US$1.93 billion on the platform. Of this, 36.1% came from purchases made on mobile devices and 30.9% was generated outside the US.
In Etsy's first year, it attracted attention for frequently adding new tools and functionality to the site to help sellers gain exposure and traffic, including Adobe Flash-based visualizations and a taxonomy of categories with tags. Etsy passed $1.7 million in sales in May 2007. On July 29, Etsy had its one-millionth sale and anticipated its two-millionth sale would occur mid-December 2007. In November 2007, buyers spent $4.3 million purchasing 300,000 items for sale on Etsy, an increase of 43 percent from October 2007. In June 2007, it expected to be profitable by the fall, but in December 2007 it was not a profitable company. In January 2008, Etsy received an additional $27 million in funding from Union Square Ventures, Hubert Burda Media, and Jim Breyer.
Cover Verse: To my Wife my Best Friend You've been there to laugh with me, to cry with me, to be proud of me, and to be happy for all the good things in my life... Inside Verse: You've also shared my disappointments and listened as I worked out my thoughts and feelings about so many things that troubled me... You're the most important part of my world, and you always will be. I love you. Happy Birthday
We downloaded the available Mac greeting card programs – there are only six we could find that keep their software up to date and seemed safe to download – and tested them over the course of several weeks. In total, we spent about 40 hours designing cards and playing with the programs’ features so we could make well-informed comparisons between them. We created some event and holiday cards from scratch and with the provided templates. In each program, we also made invitations to a summer ice cream party to see if the software could help us make the designs we had in our heads a reality.
As we tested each program, we evaluated the quantity and quality of the graphics and templates it includes. To check clip art quality, we flipped, rotated, resized and recolored images. Both during the design process and after we printed our final designs, we made sure the graphics retained their shape and that they didn’t pixelate or have jagged edges. We also uploaded our own pictures to create personalized designs and to make sure the programs didn’t distort or corrupt our files.
If you are starting a business for the first time there's a wealth of support and information available including online groups. If you plan to sell on Etsy, you will find many tutorials available to get you started. You'll also find a wide selection of books published on the subject of running a successful handmade business. When looking at books, make sure you find books that are up to date. The market for selling handmade cards and other products is constantly changing. Another great option is online training and workshops.
However, it’s hard to ignore that some of the graphic design tools Hallmark includes give you more control over your creations than even Canva, our best pick, which only has basic drag-n-drop tools. Also, it has more filters, fonts and effects than Canva, though neither program has photo editing tools such as those for cropping images and removing red-eye. Hallmark Card Studio comes with significantly fewer clip art choices than Canva, as well as some of the other greeting card design programs we tested. However, its graphics are high quality, so they are easy to resize and alter for your design. Though not quite trendy, there are a lot of cute and attractive graphics and templates that cover major and minor holidays and events as well as a host of other types of projects you can make, including ornaments, certificates and business cards. Unlike Canva, Hallmark includes templates for traditional single- and multi-fold cards. Hallmark Card Studio also offers a lot of support to help first-time users, including a searchable index, video tutorials and an in-software link to its website. In addition, it is one of the few services we reviewed that offers technical support over the phone.
Anymore, the price of a card can nearly equal a premium coffee, so “free” is a breath of fresh air, and you won’t encounter fine print exceptions or surprise fees. Complete your Printable Card project using your home printer or send your creation as an eCard from our site via email or Facebook from your computer, phone, or tablet. You can even download the image or PDF file and save it to portable storage media, if you’d like to take your design to a local shop for printing. As always, there’s no charge from us.