Why it makes sense to expand your Etsy shop to your own website

Hey Etsy Seller, tell me if this sounds like you.

You started your Etsy shop with a goal for it to supplement your regular income or entirely replace it.

You’ve now grown your Etsy shop into a profitable business and you’re ready for more.

You’re tired of how oversaturated Etsy has become and the high percentage of every sale that Etsy takes.

Maybe you’re just starting to wonder if having your own website is worth it or have you had “Should I Stay or Should I Go” by The Clash on repeat for a while now?

There are several reasons why it makes sense to expand your Etsy shop to your own website: 

Cost

Etsy charges fees that you won’t have on your eCommerce site. 

  • Listing Fee – Etsy charges a $.20 listing fee per item. Listings expire after 4 months and the listing fee is paid again to renew. 
  • Transaction Fee – Etsy charges a transaction fee of 5% of the displayed price + shipping cost + gift wrap cost + personalization cost.
  • Payment Processing Fee – Etsy charges a 3% + $.25 payment processing fee for each item sold. (This fee is USA only, other countries have different fees. See them here.) *This is a fee you will have to pay on your site, but it may be lower.

This means that you lose a minimum of 8% + $.45 per item sold. Etsy banks $1.25 of your $10 candle with $7 shipping (and that’s only if your candle sells in the first 4 months). This may not seem like much, but what if you sell 100 candles? The fees begin to add up.

Oversaturation

It’s true that Etsy has a dedicated buyer base, 39.4 million buyers were reported for 2018.

That number is pretty exciting, right?

How many of those buyers made their way to your shop? When a potential buyer searches for an item on Etsy they’re shown many options from many different sellers. It’s easy for a buyer to get distracted by another seller’s product even if yours might be better quality.

When someone searches Google for an item and lands on your site they’re only shown items from your shop. 

Marketing

When you make a sale on Etsy you don’t collect your customers’ email address. Email marketing is a proven sales tactic that you’re missing out on.

It’s much easier to sell to a return customer than it is to a new customer.

By using an email client such as ConvertKit, MailChimp, or MailerLite on your website you will be growing your email list and converting visitors to customers. You’ll also be reminding past customers of your great products every time you pop up in their inbox.

Branding

Think about going to the mall.

Part of what makes malls so appealing (besides decadent cinnamon rolls) is the variety of shops. Indulging in a little retail therapy can make a bad day a little better.

Each store displaying all the pretty items in their windows, the holiday decorations, the funky item you always find hidden in the back of your favorite shop.

Now imagine that all the shops had the same layout, the same wall color, and the same window display. They would all blend together, right?

I already can’t remember what side of the mall Sears is on. Forget it if it looked the same as Nordstroms. 

The same idea goes for Etsy.

The Etsy platform has a very specific layout that all the shops must fit in to. Yes, your images, banners, and profile picture help distinguish you from all the rest.

But what if you could change the background color or the image size of your listings? What if you could add animation or a cool infographic about how you use sustainable products? You’d stand out and be remembered.

The Good

Etsy is a very successful platform that has helped many sellers launch their business. They empower their sellers by making it easy to set up shop and get their product in front of the dedicated buyers that frequent the site.

Etsy is a great place to start your business, but it shouldn’t be where your business ends.

Having your own eCommerce site means:

  • You can make it look however you want
  • Sell anything you want
  • List products without paying a listing fee
  • Sell products without paying Etsy a transaction fee
  • Use email marketing

You started your Etsy shop as an answer to a desire. Whether it was to have some extra income, an outlet for your creativity, or as your full-time business, you began this journey with the hope of being successful.

To seriously grow your business and make your desire a reality you need a website.

You don’t have to abandon Etsy entirely, you can have both your own website and an Etsy shop that are linked together. The key to your success will be to use all the available resources you can to attract buyers. This is why it makes sense to expand your Etsy shop to your own website.

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