Selling Arts and Crafts Online Beyond Etsy

Selling Arts and Crafts Online Beyond Etsy



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So many people are now fed up of Etsy, if you are selling Art and Crafts online should you quit Etsy? What other options for you are there, mailing lists, websites, YouTube, Etsy, Folksy, Dawanda, Artfire to name a few – but should we? What is the best strategy for 2019, 2020 and beyond

et is making changes again should we consider quitting eat see personally I see this a little bit like cutting off your own nose to spite your face I know and totally understand that when eat see makes changes you feel powerless they have been making changes all the time and these changes this free shipping thing if you don't know what I'm talking about there's a playlist and a card you really want to go and check that out but these changes do feel different they do feel bigger than the normal changes and yes people are getting mad people are saying they're going to leave so should we actually leave eat see our other decent alternatives let's have a think about it as artists and crafters selling online is there another alternative to eat see that can bring us in the same revenue that's got the same number of eyeballs this graph is a few years old it's from statistic and what it is showing us is for creative people making money off the things that they create eat see is dwarfing all other platforms except for one will gets 30-minute but eat see is dwarfing all other platforms in the amount of revenue and the amount of people shopping the amount of people buying the stuff from the creative people the big stunning glaring difference there is YouTube I've been asked a few times to make some videos on YouTube for creative people so let me know in the comments below if it's something you'd be interested in how to start using YouTube to make money as an artistic crafty creative person and I'll get around to making some videos to show you how that can be an alternative to make a good bit of money and as well as these numbers I've seen other figures that I can't share at the minute that show Amazon handmade in Google Shopping absolutely miniscule compared to the number of people searching buying on Etsy at the moment there are just way way way more people coming to eat see and spending money buying things at the mo so does that mean there's a greater chance to make money on Etsy but as we saw in my video a few weeks ago the average seller on Etsy makes a hundred and fifty one dollars per month only three percent of sellers on Etsy are making more than the annual minimum wage but if we actually look at the numbers we have here the amount of people making money selling handmade and the amount of money that's created buying handmade ebay is not faring any better and most of the others are actually making less per person on average so if you were ready averaging over a hundred and fifty one dollars on Etsy or if you're growing and feeling you're about to get there then you're already doing better than average on eat see you have already put a load of work in you already have customers who likely to return to you that have found you on eat see you've put in the SEO you're getting found you're getting discovered so you started that snowball building up so totally ditching eat see when we don't know what the impact of these changes are going to be might be a little bit premature and also if you just starting out if Canaan got nothing to lose anyway so perhaps completely walking away from eat see is not a great idea I'm always gonna say it's not a good idea to quit before the Christmas period and I know it feels like Christmas is ages away but when you're selling online this is the time to start focusing run your shop through the Christmas time and see how that is the Christmas time is the best time to find out if this is a very quiet time for you or not so whatever else you're doing keep your shop running till January what alternatives are there now there's loads of things I'm gonna miss in this so check in the comments to see what other great ideas everyone else has pop down what platforms you use that you're super happy with give us a little review there I'm just gonna cover briefly some of the ideas I'm not gonna go into huge depths about the pros and cons and if there's any of these platforms that you want me to create a shop in you want me to show you how to go about making a shop let me know in the comments below obviously the first one that comes to people's mind is eBay it's been around for ages its massive just about everybody's heard of it it's also least likely to just close down its established and is pretty easy to set up an account you probably already have one and it's easy to take your buying account and turning it into a selling account by putting up a listing but the cons of using eBay that I've found freshly fees are actually pretty high there is a lot of competition and SEO for eBay is a completely different fish that I've never got the hang of and buyer behavior is different as we seen actually people coming to buy handmade is pretty low people go to eBay looking for a bargain that's where I show up for cheap mass-produced things that I want quickly that's not where I shop for wonderful handmade gifts what about other online marketplaces well this handmade on Amazon problem with that is they're wanting you to send your goods so they can ship them from their warehouse and I've heard stories that their warehouse is not particularly the best environment for your handmade goods to be sitting in there's art fire this is something I hear a lot of sellers talk about I've never actually heard of anyone buying from their they big cartel has free four five products a month Bonanza de Wanda folksy which is mainly for the UK or not on the high streets which actually prides itself in not accepting most of the people that apply it only has the very best but it also has 25% fees story on fee is free and zipper allows you to import your eetzi listings so you can sell on several platforms at once I've heard a seam or is about to integrate with Zipit we'll see how that turns out a lot of people are talking about this I'll keep my eye on it a c-more seems to be more American thing I don't know anyone that's heard of it outside America oh I'm sure in the comments below plenty of people tell me I'm wrong all new places will have a learning curve you've got to learn about their SEO you've got to learn how to set up listings and the fees will be very different across different platforms but it doesn't hurt not to have all your eggs in one basket so if there's a platformer you like the look of it doesn't hurt to open up an account it doesn't hurt not to have all your eggs in one basket so if there's a platformer you like the looks of then open up a shop even if you don't have the time to put all the energy into learning everything about it if you get a few listings up then you have a shop open you've got your foot in the door you might be able to come back and work on it later at the moment in time I don't have a shop on any different platforms I've had the folksy account years ago and I occasionally attempt to sell on eBay but basically I can't recommend any platform as any goods and it's gonna vary for the country and for the product and for you it's gonna vary from individual to individual what's the best so it's worth looking into these markets but as I said if there's any of them that you're particularly interested in I will have a go at opening up a shop and trying to grow on a shop on one of these platforms so let me know which one you think is gonna be the best which one you're interested to see often the best bet is to pick one that you like the look of as a buyer which one would you be happier to buy with which one of you heard your friends talk about this is gonna be the best to at least give it a shot or one that's completely free you might not see much in the way of sales but you've not lost much except for a bit of time so the risk is much less another option that all serious sellers should consider is setting up your own website I have several through Wix it's fairly easy but I don't really spend enough time working on it like I should I haven't but my own Dyneema names yet but I find works not sponsored really easy to set up and it has a range of templates and layouts if you don't know anything about building a website which I think most of us don't anymore so it's fairly easy to get started there you're able to have a landing page for your mailing list to collect people's data you're able to direct people to whatever store you want to so just now you could push them to your eetzi store or the new store that you're opening up and you can even set up your own storefront on your website page using some of the built-in apps or something like Shopify the pros are you own it you control the look your branding the traffic how much work you do on it but the cons are you have to drive all your own traffic you have to learn about Google SEO which is the Big Daddy you have to design the look branding is a big deal I mean all my shops on Etsy are fairly generic but that does make it easier setting up all your branding yourself can be tricky and also there's no community you are absolutely on your own but I do recommend setting something up at least to get you started and then you're able to put that onto your business card that you pop into each of your eetzi orders to direct people to this website so you have your name out there so people can find you in case everything else shuts down another option is selling on social media if for example you're very active on Facebook then that's a platform that you're on you're enjoying spending time there it can be a good thing to try either directing traffic to your shop your Etsy shop or whatever other shop you choose or you can try selling directly on Facebook either on a page you've grown or on Facebook marketplace I prove this is it's another place and it's a platform that you're already hanging about on it's somewhere where you can gather followers like a mailing list people are all in one place that you can communicate with but Reach is hard on these platforms it can be hard when you put up a post even with thousands of followers on age not many people get to see it unless you're paying for adverts and unless you're understanding how to run Facebook adverts and there can also be less buyer and seller protection so beware and look into that properly so there are lots of options out there but none of them quite are the size of each see so my recommendations set up your own website it's free in most cases with like Wix the only real expense to start out is to buy your own do name name so people can recognize you and find you set up a mailing list so again you're gathering people so you're able to communicate with them in case the worst happens and set up one social media group somewhere where you hang out on social media if you have Pinterest build something there if you love Instagram build something there if you're on Facebook all day do something there mention these places in your message to buyers your automatic message to buyers on Etsy and or drop in a business card when you're shipping out your orders a place like Vistaprint can be really cheap to get a whole load of business cards so it's a good thing to do that before the Christmas rush work out a strategy for creating regular interesting content across all of these platforms without creating yourself a whole lot of extra work for example each week plan out a piece of content about what you're working on special deals things that are coming up and work out a way to repurpose this across all the different platforms that you have slightly different for each one so followers so followers in each place get something a little bit different so for example tons of detail in your mailing list some fun images with a couple of words in your social media and some new images on your website all from that one single piece of content and if after you've added all this on you have time experiment with one new marketplace but the plan is we're wanting to get ourselves free of all of these companies to have our own name our own brain our own traffic so we're not beholden to any site and their rules and I know you're gonna say you're super busy and you don't have time for this but the trick is to focus your energy to focus your time on the things that are giving you the best return for that it's an old adage that 20% of your time gives 80% of your results 80% of your time is just busy work that's a bit of a waste of time so for example although it's super important to look at your shop statistics on eat see so many people are gazing at these constantly they get up in the morning and they're looking at their daily stats and then freaking out and going on forums commenting about how it's not being updated look in 5 6 7 10 12 times a day at these stats and doing nothing with them other than going their stats much better if you plan into your schedule either weekly or even better a monthly deep dive into your stats for an afternoon and do something constructive with what you see and the rest of the time don't even look at them spend more time taking awesome pictures rather than spending time handwriting cute next to the few customers you have stuff in your boxes full of goodies spend time on the stuff that's important great photographs can be shared across all your social media can advertise your items in your Etsy shop and other things that other people are gonna share as well so prioritize that over all the little cute things you're planning if you're spending a good amount of time queueing in the post office look at alternatives to free up your time can you click and drop can the post office pick up from you is there a better way you can be doing this if you think of streamlining to free up all this extra time it means you can grow and you're aiming to leave eetzi rather than freaking out and thinking Etsy is your most important thing it's what you have to do and if things change that's terrifying think of it as using eat see you're making use of them to grow your brand to get off the platform so I hope that helps a little bit calm down the freakout eat see isn't a bad platform but we don't own it and we can't control the changes but it doesn't mean we have to leave it it's the biggest platform out there it's given us the biggest opportunity but it shouldn't be our only focus let's use it to grow too we don't need it anymore so don't forget click on my we face to subscribe I'm Pam Duffy I'm here to help you craft your career creating and selling art online thank you so much see you next time

25 thoughts on “Selling Arts and Crafts Online Beyond Etsy

  1. I've heard a lot good things about Dawanda. Of course I'm close to Germany so that may be a good option for me. So if you want to try open a shop there, I'm very interested to follow your experience!

  2. A note about Bonanza: I've heard sellers use it to store their inventory online. I imported my ebay inventory to Bonanza before I closed my ebay store. Now I can copy and paste my listings from Bonanza to etsy. I don't have to start from scratch.

  3. I won't quit selling on etsy. But I won't sell anything that's heavy to ship. Ideally, I would like to sell printables and not have to worry about shipping at all. How will etsy's new changes affect sellers of digital products?

  4. Pam, I was thinking about opening an online shop for a while now. Etsy has always been my top choice but now, thanks to you, I want to maybe create my own website. Thanks. Your videos help a lot.

  5. I have looked into the alternatives bit it is as you say, no other website comes close to Etsy for now. So, for now I will stay on Etsy but I will keep my eyes open as the way Etsy is managed seems like a very harmful way to run a business.
    Not just about the "free" shipping. I haven't been on Etsy that long and I have seen so many changes. It seems weird.
    If something doesn't seem to be working? Fine, please do make it better. But most changes on Etsy I've seen so far are mostly lay out or cosmetic where things didn't improve. They just change.
    Like the description of listings. They were under the pictures, now they are on the side. I don't see the improvement?
    The announcement area on your website. If you want to make an announcement it's something you want your shoppers to see when they come in. It's moved to the bottom of the page. That's definitely not an improvement.
    The recent activity column on your dashboard. It used to shows you which items are popular with a picture. Now it shows only text. If I want to know which items are popular, I need to click on every single item on that list. Is there anyone out there who likes this better than the old situation?
    And these changes happen all the time.
    I can't imagine that is good for business. It doesn't make your business look good. on the contrary, as a company it makes you seem rather insecure and unreliable. It doesn't make you a company that has trust in the future and which supports its product.

  6. Awesome advice, Pam! I agree with you about waiting for Christmas before deciding what to do. Regarding eBay, it has a different kind of customer, like you say, they’re looking for a bargain, but I can’t help but feel like Etsy is following eBay’s lead and attracting an eBay type of customer.

  7. Nope not gonna quit! I chickened out 2 years ago. I've invested to much time and effort watching u Tube, trying to understand the who what when where why how. If I quit now, all that time I put in will be for waste. Let the quitters quit!

  8. I'm with notonthehighstreet and although I've done well in the past I'm struggling now. I've noticed loads of UK sites like Ingenious Gifts, numonday, wow thank you, Look Lane and a whole bunch of new ones popping up. Some are subscription based or have fairly low comm. It doesn't hurt to spread yourself around a bit. I do love etsy still though.

  9. Thanks for the chill pill. A lot of us need one right about now! I have a Shopify website which I really don’t put enough into to justify the fees. If I would get my act together, Shopify integrates really well with social media and can be used to link products directly from Instagram posts. It’s on my list! But first I’m working on the Etsy listings I expect to be the bulk of my Holiday sales this year.

    I have my own predictions about how Free Shipping-gate will play out. Mainly I’m glad Etsy is rolling this out early enough that we have time to make popcorn and sit back and watch some actual changes in search results before our final holiday strategies have to be in place.

  10. Another “sane voice in the wilderness” video: thank you, Pam 👏 … and thanks for the prod to focus (ahem) on my product photography 👍

  11. Hey Pam. I am starting to feel like I have a better grip on what I am doing but I really did have to put a lot of work in and that is only the start. Standing back from this I really got a feel of just how much work will have to be put in later. lol I got a bit spinny. But I am getting cool ideas like I just put up a sneak peak of some creepy art I will be showing next weekend. Not many are looking as I dont really know facebook for much more then playing stupid games on but I think Facebook and Youtube might be a good way for me to advertise and market my stuff out a bit……I have a strange question….Are you doing anything special for Halloween this year for your shop?

  12. Excellent post! I am grateful for the time I spent on Etsy learning all about business. But as I grow, I’ve changed my business model a bit through different streams of product lines and services. Etsy is a great place to start for sure. But moving into different sales channel is incredibly beneficial and important if you want to grow. Just as the saying goes, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Are you going to invest all your money in one stock? No you say? Then why invest all your business into Etsy. Great post Pam!

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