There are many different ways to sell your creative passion online these days. It doesn’t matter what your selling, there’s a platform perfect for it. You could be selling general services, digital downloads, eCourses, handmade goods, antiques, etc. Each selling platform has it’s own unique pros and cons. The platform I’ve chosen to take on? Etsy.
I want to learn exactly what it takes to build a successful online shop with a pre-existing service like Etsy AND I want to share with you exactly what I’m learning along the way. That’s why I’m taking you on My Etsy Business Adventure.
What is Etsy?
For those of you who aren’t familiar, Etsy is this wonderful online community of makers and artists, sellers and buyers.
In their own words: “Etsy is a marketplace where people around the world connect, both online and offline, to make, sell and buy unique goods. The heart and soul of Etsy is our global community: the creative entrepreneurs who use Etsy to sell what they make or curate, the shoppers looking for things they can’t find anywhere else, the manufacturers who partner with Etsy sellers to help them grow, and the Etsy employees who maintain and nurture our marketplace.”
Pros of an Etsy Business
There are 26.1 million active buyers. That is a lot of folks looking to buy.
Etsy is a service. That means no coding, web design, payment processing and general back-end logistical maintenance for you.
Shipping labels can be purchased at a discounted rate directly from Etsy. No trips to the post office to buy postage, woo! ✨
Etsy handles all payment processing and customer payment protection.
No monthly fees to set up shop.
Customer reviews and related products on each listing.
You can use the Etsy app on the go to manage your business.
Comprehensive shop stats. Things like conversion rates, page visits, likes, etc.
Etsy offers a ton of resources once you have a shop set up for how to grow your business!
Etsy can help you get into the wholesale sector of business.
There are a lot of other people out there, just like me, blogging about Etsy – helping you learn.
Cons of an Etsy Business
There are 1.7 million active sellers. That is a lot of competition.
Etsy is a service. You can’t customize exactly the way your shop looks and feels right down to the color of fonts used – which is a little bit of a downfall for a web designer.
Listing Fees. It’s $0.20 to list a product for 4 months. That’s every single product. So if you have one product listing with a quantity of 20, you will be paying $4.00 to list those – even if they don’t sell.
Commission + Processing Fees. 3.5% transaction fee and 3% + $0.25 processing fee when your item sells.
Your shop URL isn’t your domain name. Set up as etsy.com/shopname.
Large community of makers who may try to take and make your product their own.
You are your HR. If a customer complains you need to know how to address it properly.
There is a lot of information out there that may or may not be misleading.
My Experience with Etsy as a Buyer
I haven’t done a lot of ordering on Etsy because I get overwhelmed after searching for a few minutes. There is A LOT of (not very good) stuff on there.
However, when you do find a great shop – it’s really great. I have a handful of favorite shops that I enjoy oogle-ing over. Plus, you can totally tell why they are successful. They are passionately making products, they take great photography, the care enough to write detailed descriptions and their customer reviews are off the charts.
As far as receiving purchased orders go, I haven’t been incredibly impressed. Albeit, I haven’t ordered much from those shops I oogle over. But I will. Someday. Soon.
Anyway, maybe because I’m a designer, I care too much about the little details. When I receive an order from a one-person business and the item is just thrown into a mailer with no order receipt, no business card, no… nothing – I get a little upset.
The little details – things that show you actually care about people – are what makes them come back for more.
Customer service is key and I want to feel valued. I opted to help your small business – the least I should get is a thank you (and maybe a pretty business card to add to my collection). Who’s with me? 🙋
Why am I doing this?
I want to see if Etsy will be a sustainable, easy-to-use platform that I can rock one of my side businesses on. Setting up an eCommerce site on your own website, without the help of a pre-existing service is a bit difficult, headache inducing and time consuming. I want a simpler way to sell products, and I want to sell them on a platform that’s trusted by millions.
Etsy has streamlined the system and they are a community of over 25 million people. That excites me. I think with the right branding, product line and commitment – this would be a great source of supplemental income AND I would be getting to share things I love creating with others.
Oh! And hopefully I can help one of you start the business of your dreams? ✨
What will I be sharing with you?
Seriously. Every couple of weeks, I’m going to be sharing with you the progress I’ve made, starting at the very beginning. I’ll be letting you in on stats so together we can monitor my Etsy business growth. I’ll be sharing with you strategies I’m implementing to make that growth happen. And I’ll be sharing with you helpful resources I’ve found on my way.
I’m super excited to get started on this. I’ve had my eye on Etsy for a while now, it’s just never been the right time and I was generally hesitant about having one more thing to manage. But I’m totally ready now and you are all going to help keep me accountable!
Next Time on My Etsy Business Adventure
- What is my Etsy Business / brand?
- My initial product game plan.
- Setting up Etsy – Steps for how to, what you need, etc.
Happy Monday friends, let’s make this week awesome!