Etsy is a very popular platform for hobbyist, creators, and aspiring entrepreneurs to sell their goods online. It gives people that are not familiar with coding, hosting, or even buying a domain an easy way to have a place to sell. There are so many good things that Etsy does, it is easy to see why it has become the giant that it is today.
However, it is important to keep in mind its limitations and see the benefit of not putting all of your professional eggs in one basket… even if that basket is a billion dollar company.
First the benefits of Etsy:
- Etsy is incredibly easy to get started with.
- Reasonable Fees
- Built in Search/ Marketplace
With all of those benefits, why should anyone consider something other than Etsy?
Never put your eggs all your eggs in one basket.
You probably heard this at some point in your life. The idea is to diversify your risk, so that if something happens to one basket, you don’t lose everything. This applies to so many things in life, but is vitally important in your business. HTML Labs recommends never giving full control of your business to someone who doesn’t have your business interests in mind. Year after year, there are changes to Google’s algorithm, updates to how Facebook allows businesses to post and share, and other kinds of disruptions that force business owners to adapt. Just like we wouldn’t recommend you rely only on organic search traffic, we don’t recommend Etsy shop owners to put their whole business in trust of Etsy.
At some point, Etsy may decide to up fees, significantly change how they list shops, or otherwise make changes for which you don’t care. Building up a following that you can sell to direct via social media, email list, through your own website, or in a local setting, are all ways Etsy shop owners can diverisfy their risk. If you haven’t started these, we recommend starting immediately.
Our Recommendation for Etsy Shops
Keep your store on Etsy, but begin pushing users to interact and purchase on your own website. You can be more insulated from risk if you have your own website. Having a second place to sell from will increase your work some, but with proper organization you shouldn’t have any significant trouble.
Etsy entrepreneurs should build a website on Shopify.
Shopify is a very popular ecommerce platform that makes it easy for shop owners to keep track of inventory and sell across multiple sales channels. There is a bit of a learning curve to getting as website setup correctly, but by the end you will have a fully functional website on your own domain. After adding products, you can sell on your website, directly on Facebook, Pinterest, or in person using the point of sale card swipe.
If you need help setting up a Shopify store or have any questions, HTML Labs can help.