I’ve been using Etsy as a selling platform for my Mama Bleu Designs business for almost 13 years now. Although there are handmade artists who may tell you all the reasons why you shouldn’t use Etsy to sell your items, I’m here to tell you why I believe it is a perfect place to start and a great place to stay.
My history with Etsy started in 2010 when I was searching for a place to sell the mixed media art I was creating as I grieved the loss of my grandma. The Etsy platform was only 5 years old at the time and there was very little training available to help me understand how to get my shop up and running.
I learned as I went. Some things worked and others didn’t but in the end my business grew and I became a better business owner through my successes and failures. Today I’m sharing with you five reasons I believe Etsy is a great starting place.
LARGE CUSTOMER MARKET
Some may say that Etsy is over-saturated with handmade artists, but don’t let that deter you from using their platform to set up your shop. The customer reach that Etsy has is far larger than you may ever possibly reach on your own.
In 2014 Etsy made some huge changes to their platform. Just about everything I had become accustomed to was rearranged, transformed or removed. We were confused and frustrated. There was an uprising and many sellers chose to leave the platform.
I chose to create a website here on Shopify but I never abandoned Etsy. I just created another income platform for myself. That transition time took a couple of years. It was hard, frustrating and the learning curve was huge but it was all worth it.
I learned that the ground is always shifting and it’s not exclusively on Etsy. I learned how to pivot over and over again. Most of all, I learned that Etsy reaches far more customers than I could ever reach on my own. The sales I make through my website don’t even compare to what I sell on Etsy.
LOW LISTING FEES
Etsy’s item listing fee is only 20 cents each, making it a very low cost option for getting started. Better yet, if you want to open a shop and get your first 40 listings for FREE you can use this link.
Yes there are other fees that Etsy charges when a sale is made but for a handmade artist who is just getting started this is a very small out-of-pocket investment.
Etsy does not charge a shop setup or subscription fee like Shopify or other website platforms. It is a great low-risk place to start!
Although customizing your shop isn’t necessary, it is a wise choice to add visual elements that reflect your brand and style. Everything about your shop should draw your potential customers into a great shopping experience and Etsy makes it easy to put those elements in place.
Etsy takes care of all the payment options for your customers. You don’t have to set up anything except for telling Etsy where to deposit your weekly paycheck. Easy peasy!
Another bonus is that Etsy collects the sales tax from your customer at checkout and takes care of sending it to the appropriate government entities for your business. This is by far a feature I much appreciate!! One less bookkeeping thing to take care of!
SIMPLE SET UP
As far as setting up a selling platform, Etsy is pretty simple. As long as you have all the required components such as payment preferences, shop name, listing photos, etc, you will be able to set up your shop in a weekend.
Even though it is an easy process, just the thought of it may be making you feel a bit unsure of yourself. If that is the case for you I have put together a short online course to help walk you through the process. The course guides you through the preparation steps, your shop set up and a couple of the “now what” questions you may have once your shop is open. You can find the course here.
I remember feeling very overwhelmed with all the things that I might not know how to do once I opened my Etsy shop and it just about stopped me from following through. It’s true, you probably don’t know it all and that is OKAY!
It doesn’t matter how long we have been in business. It doesn’t matter how much we already know. There will ALWAYS be more to learn!
The most important thing to do is to take the first step.
Do one thing a day!
If you don’t try you will never know if it will work for you.
So, is there something that is keeping you from taking the first step? Is there something you just aren’t sure of or have questions about? Drop your question in the comment box below and I’ll do my best to address it in a future blog post.