How 2 Broke Students Went From An Idea To $30K/Month In The Jewelry Industry

Published: September 28th, 2023
Joosep Seitam
from Tallinn, Estonia
started January 2023
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Hello! Who are you and what business did you start?

Hey fellow entrepreneurs, my name is Joosep Seitam and I will share a story with you on how I went from having a crazy idea to making $30,000 per month in just 8 months in the jewelry industry. Me and Martin Kardi started a business that sells gold-plated moissanite hip hop jewelry.

The products that we are selling are directed to afro american people living in the USA. The jewelry that we sell is very specific. It's called hip-hop jewelry.

Within just 8 months we scaled this business up to making $30,000 in revenue solely from doing SEO. Within these 8 months, our organic monthly traffic is surpassing 10,000 visitors per month.

Here’s me & Martin 2 years ago, broke and not knowing what the future holds…


What's your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?

As of September 2023, I'm a 22-year-old university dropout from Tallinn, Estonia. I started my first business when I was just 16 years old. I used to run a gardening business in the richest neighborhood of Estonia. I started it in 2016 and within 3 years we scaled the business up to become the biggest name in the gardening business. But at the back of my head, I always wanted to do something in the e-commerce space.

So in 2019, I got into dropshipping and I had success with the first-ever store that I launched. I sold Halloween masks that you probably have seen in the horror movie “The Purge”. I made $37,000 in just 16 days by running Facebook AD-s (It was the time when Facebook could track every movement of their users and it was very easy to make money off of Facebook AD-s).

However as it was a seasonal business, I quickly had to build up new online stores selling more evergreen products. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any luck with the following stores so I started to lose belief in dropshipping.

Fortunately, there was one business that I had success with and it was selling designer clothes on platforms like and I ran that business until I got banned from the platform because I was dropshipping -_-

In 2021 I went to the military and all my business ventures stopped for 8 months. In the military, I met someone who changed my life forever and with whom we had multiple successful business ventures to come.

Together we started 2 businesses: and We are still running them today and these businesses in combination are making around $50-$70k revenue every month.

During our ventures, I learned one very specific skill - SEO. I had a very big learning curve, spending over $100,000 per year on doing SEO the wrong way until I learned from my mistakes and this is what helped me to understand what a magic SEO is and how you could turn a business into a long term business by just ranking relevant keywords on Google.

How I came up with the idea behind Icecartel?

This business idea came to me simply because my partner Martin was already running a jewelry business on a small scale and it was working, but he didn’t have enough funds to grow his business on a scale.

From that point, I knew that if he made money with so little effort, we could partner up and build up a brand Icecartel where we could invest around $60,000. And so we did…

I didn’t have any knowledge about the jewelry business myself when I started, but I quickly started learning about the jewelry industry on the Internet. There are videos on YouTube about how to create a moissanite jewelry business.

Sourcing products was easy, my partner had connections with the suppliers. We simply used the same supplier who had done quality work for Martin’s jewelry business in the past.

You can start a jewelry business with much less starting funds. We were just outsourcing almost everything. That’s why our costs were so high.

Take us through the process of building the first version of your product.

The process was simple. We ordered velvet sheets to the factory with the Icecartel logo and paid the manufacturer to take pictures and videos of the jewelry that they had in stock. Here’s a reference image of how the product pictures turned out:


What we had a challenge with was custom packaging. We tried to find something extra premium and so we ordered handmade leather cases that gave the products an extra luxury feel. However, these boxes came at a very high cost. We ended up paying around $100 for a jewelry box so we had to find a new supplier and we had to buy boxes in larger quantities.

We ended up paying $50 per leather jewelry box for the next batch. Here’s an image of our jewelry box:


We got the leather jewelry box idea from a very high-end jewelry company and we were very specific about how the jewelry box should look like.

The only way to get started is to trade your time against money. Try to develop a skill and offer a service on platforms like Fiverr or Upwork.

Here’s how we built up a jewelry stand in our small office and how we turned this business into making $30,000 per month.


Describe the process of launching the business.

The first 2 months:

With my prior SEO knowledge, I knew that the specific industry that we were targeting was relatively new and the competitors hadn’t done any SEO or had done it very poorly.

The first huge investment we made was to buy an expired domain which cost us $6,500 and an Instagram name which cost us around $3,000.

Then I created a website that I optimized for the first 2 months to be as SEO-friendly as possible.

We didn’t have any money to buy ourselves samples for product images, fortunately, our supplier did the pictures for us for free.

We also connected a payment gateway Stripe but didn’t have any luck with it because they said that we are a high-risk business because we are selling products that can go up to $10,000 per item.

So we couldn’t accept payments and I had to start digging out all payment gateways there were.

The next 2-6 Months:

During these months I wrote around 100 blog posts gathered over 160 backlinks and grew the organic traffic from 100 visitors per month to 8,000 organic visitors per month.

We also found a payment gateway in the 6th month. It took me 4 months to find a payment gateway.

At the end of the sixth month, we had spent around $40,000 to start this business.

If you need help with payment gateways or SEO, feel free to contact me on LinkedIn.

7-8th Month

In the 7th month, we got our payment gateway integrated and within the first 15 days, our business generated over $20,000 in revenue with around 50% profit margin.

On the 8th. month our organic traffic has grown to almost 10,000 visitors per month.

Currently, we are generating $30,000 per month and we are working with Youtube influencers who are making review videos for us.

In the jewelry business, the hardest thing is to build trust. As there are other established jewelry businesses with thousands of reviews, it takes a lot of time, money, and effort to build up social proof.

We are sending our influencers jewelry that costs us thousands per piece but that’s how we will take our business to earn hundreds of thousands of dollars per month.

Probably the biggest lesson I learned from this business is that in a big ocean, even small fish get’s his part. The fact that there are competitors in the jewelry industry who are making everything better than you are, you can still get customers if you target them from a point where others aren’t.

Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?

You should always offer the clients what other companies are not. In our case, we offer our customers a custom leather jewelry box where they can store their jewelry and take them on trips.

Also, you should try to be where your customers are hanging around. Again in our case, we saw people searching for very niche-specific keywords on Google and we started doing SEO to rank with these keywords. Just solely on the SEO, we are at the stage where we are today.

Here’s how our website traffic has grown from 0 organic visitors per month to almost 10,000 visitors per month (screenshot from


Do you want to know how I’m doing it? Here’s how:

The first thing I always do is topical / keyword research. With every business I’m starting, I will always find all relevant keywords to the business and manually list them in a Google Sheets file.

Here’s an example of the Google Sheets file (keyword research):


To get help with finding relevant keywords, I’m using

If you don't know how to find relevant keywords, It’s always best to look at what keywords your competitors are ranking with.

Once you have all the keywords, you should start with the on-page SEO. You simply have to have all the relevant keywords on the page that you want to rank with.

In our case, I wanted to rank collection page keywords so I categorized all the keywords I found into collections and then I started writing copy for them.

While writing copy you have to bear in mind how much content you should write to rank. You can determine this by looking at the competitor sites.

Once you have done the copy and once It’s implemented on the website, It’s time to start doing internal linking.

Internal linking is a very important part of on-page SEO because it allows your site to get an extra SEO boost.

The home page should always have most, if not all links visible to other collection or product pages.

Once the internal linking was done for all the pages, I started building links.

Link building can be seen as a hard thing to do at first, but it's very easy when you get on doing it.

I started the link-building process by going over all competitors' backlinks one by one and made a list of 1000+ links to outreach to.

Before I started the link outreach, I bought a new domain and made a Google Workspace Account. Then I used to warm up the new email I had just made.

I warmed up the email for 14 days and then I started the outreach. Thanks to and their email warmup, the email open rate was around 50%. It’s a great hack to use warmup service for anyone who’s into email marketing.

Then out of hundreds of replies I got back, I started to research whether the site was worth getting a link from. You can do it by looking at where the majority of their traffic is coming from and whether they haven’t had any huge traffic fluctuations. Traffic fluctuations indicate that these might be PBN (private blog network) websites that are selling backlinks to their websites. You should always avoid PBNs and go for sites that have healthy growth in terms of traffic and sites that don’t publish restricted content like casino or adult content.

The next thing is to write guest posts for their sites. The guest post should always be relevant to the site’s content and I don’t recommend using AI for writing the content as you might get penalized by Google’s new AI updates.

Inside the guest posts your goal is to link some anchor text to your site. You should have a proper anchor text strategy in place where you are mostly focused on the home page at first and then on collection, product, or blog pages.

Be careful with the anchor texts because they should look natural and you shouldn’t get links from all the sites with the same anchor text. It just looks very unnatural and it might get you penalized.

I’m able to guide anyone through the process who's interested.

Building Topical Authority:

No doubt that today the most important ranking factor is Topical Authority. To put it simply, topical authority means that you have covered every topic within your niche that people are searching for on Google. In Google’s eyes, if you have covered every topic there is within your niche, they have nothing else to do but to award your site with higher rankings on Google.

Within 8 months I wrote around 100 blogs and covered all topics there are about moissanite diamonds and currently I’m covering all topics there are about chains & necklaces.

Doing topical authority is a great way to start doing SEO without spending any money on it. Without link building on blogs and solely on writing around 100 blogs, my website traffic doubled.

I didn’t see any money for the first 8 months. But it was the work ethic and belief that if someone made it then I can do it too, and I will give my best to make it better than others.

How are you doing today and what does the future look like?

Today we are still not in profit but our estimates are saying that we will start to be in profit in 2.5 months.

There’s a Christmas eve approaching and we are estimating that we will turn over over $100,000 this Christmas.

Our profit margins are around 50% and as of now, we don’t have any customer acquisition costs or any ad costs to run this business. It has just been hard work.

Our returning customer rate is around 11% and the average customer value is around $1000.

The visitors spend an average of 2 minutes on our site, although our conversion rate is below 1% because around 50% of our traffic goes to blogs and our intention in the blogs is to help people find answers to their questions.

Currently, we have around 50,000+ followers on Instagram around 1,000 likes on the Facebook page, and around 10,000 monthly views on Pinterest.

99% of our sales today are coming from the website and around 1% is coming from the Etsy marketplace.

The next 12 months:

Within the next 12 months, we are planning to reinvest every earned penny on sending new jewelry out to influencers and brand ambassadors on YouTube and Instagram

We will hire a marketer for Instagram who’s going to shoot us high-quality videos and who’s going to post around 2-5 posts per day.

I will continue doing SEO and my goal is to reach 50,000 organic visitors by the end of 2024.

Again, I can help and show every detail of how I’m doing SEO for anyone interested.

We will also continue to scale our Facebook ads campaigns and explore some marketing tactics on other social media platforms like TikTok and Snapchat.

Our revenue goal within the next 12 months with all the marketing channels is to reach $250,000 per month by the end of 2024.

Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?

Probably the biggest stepping stone was finding the payment gateway. Now I know how to approach payment processors and how to fall into the low-risk category. Until now all my businesses have fallen into the category of high risk.

The fact why my company fell into high risk is that it was a new business and I didn’t have any processing history. I was dropshipping and payment processors don’t like that because my business depends on the success of the supplier. If anything happens to them, I’m out of business.

The business fell into the high-risk category also because the products that I’m selling are selling at thousands of dollars. In case of any chargebacks, it will be risky for the banks.

I also learned that the timing of starting this business was right. People are starting to know about what moissanite jewelry is and how much cheaper they are from real diamond jewelry. This can also be seen from the increase in search volume for the relevant keywords:


What's your best piece of advice?

Honestly, to make something like this work you should train a habit of hard work and belief in yourself. Everything is possible if you keep grinding. That’s where 99% of the people fail. I didn’t see any money for the first 8 months. But it was the work ethic and belief that if someone made it then I can do it too, and I will give my best to make it better than others.

What platform/tools do you use for your business?

There are several tools that I’m using, these are: for SEO
Chat GPT for content creation
Figma for designing
Photoshop for more complex designing
Premiere Pro for video editing
Discord for communication

Shopify for the store’s CMS

Alibaba for communication with suppliers for order management

Zapier for automated workflows
Whatsapp for communicating with Suppliers
Skype for communicating with partners
Spotify for listening to Notorious B.I.G (Sky’s the Limit)

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

“The 4-Hour Workweek” by Tim Ferriss - I learned the power of outsourcing from that book.

“Rich Dad Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki - This is the book series from which I got an interest in the world of business.

“The Prince” by Niccolo Machiavelli - This book is all about leadership over the ages and it helped me structure how we are treating our business partners.

Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?

The only way to get started is to trade your time for money. Try to develop a skill and offer a service on platforms like Fiverr or Upwork.

The main mistake that I’m seeing is why people don’t start anything because they want someone to teach them. But the reality is that no one can teach you how to make money. You have to go through the process yourself. I know It’s hard and It’s hard for a reason. Nothing comes to you on a silver platter.

Where can we go to learn more?

If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!