One of the most common questions that we’ve heard from potential Etsy sellers is: “Is selling on Etsy still worth it in 2024?” If you’re swayed by the chatter on social media platforms, you might be tempted to answer in the negative. But is this the whole truth?
In this blog post, we will tackle this question head-on. By dissecting the facts, analyzing the data, and stepping beyond the noise, we aim to shed light on the real state of the Etsy marketplace. Spoiler alert: it’s as robust as ever. While challenges exist, as with any business endeavor, new Etsy sellers can thrive with the right approach, preparation, tools and expectations.
Join us as we delve into a detailed exploration of Etsy in 2024, its growth, costs, pros, cons, and tips for success. Our mission is to dispel doubts and convince you of the thriving potential that Etsy offers to those willing to navigate its waters strategically and persistently.
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Etsy’s growth over the past four years has been nothing short of astonishing. The COVID-19 pandemic marked a pivotal moment for e-commerce, leading to a dramatic increase in online shopping, with sales on major marketplaces doubling or even tripling. Etsy was no exception to this trend, experiencing a significant surge in its sales during this period.
What truly sets Etsy apart is its ability to transform this temporary increase in buyer interest into a permanent, loyal customer base. Despite the pandemic’s conclusion, Etsy successfully maintained its sales volumes, or Gross Merchandise Volume. In a world accustomed to relentless growth, this may not seem extraordinary at first glance. However, when considering the recent global crises and comparing Etsy’s performance to other online marketplaces, the platform’s ability to sustain its success is a clear indicator of its resilience and strategic effectiveness.
Cost of selling on Etsy
Every business involves costs and risks, and selling on Etsy is no exception. The expenses associated with running an Etsy shop can be categorized into two groups: Etsy-specific expenses and general business expenses.
The general expenses relate to running your business – creating your products, taking good photos, stocking supplies, accounting, etc. These expenses are inherent to e-commerce and would be present regardless of the platform you choose. Therefore, they should not influence your choice of platform.
As for Etsy-specific expenses, these include various fees associated with listing and selling items, categorized as follows:
- Listing fee: $0.20 for every published listing
- Transaction fee: 6.5% on the total sale price
- Payment processing fee: between 3% and 4% on the total sale price
Additionally, Etsy offers advertising options:
- Etsy ads: pay-per-click ads within the Etsy platform which aim to show your listings with priority over your competitors. A single click costs about $0.30 – $0.45 on average.
- Offsite ads: Etsy may advertise your items on other sites, and if these ads result in a sale, you will be charged a fee. The fee is between 12% and 15% on the total sale price.
While these expenses might seem substantial, they are relatively modest compared to platforms like eBay and Amazon. For instance, selling on eBay can be much more expensive than Etsy, as eBay’s transaction fee can reach as high as 15%. Amazon’s fees can be even steeper. Additionally, the cost per click for a Google ad promoting your product can easily amount to $2.00 – $3.00 or more. It’s also worth noting that while Etsy’s offsite ads are costly, they are optional and only charged when a sale is actually made.
Pros of Selling on Etsy in 2024
Selling on Etsy continues to offer several attractive advantages for entrepreneurs and crafters. Let’s explore the key benefits that make Etsy an appealing platform for sellers.
Etsy offers relatively low fees for listing and selling products, making it a financially accessible platform for small business owners and individual sellers. This cost-effective structure is ideal for those starting out or operating on a tight budget.
Simple setup process
Setting up a shop on Etsy is straightforward and user-friendly. With easy-to-follow steps, sellers can quickly establish their online presence without needing extensive technical knowledge.
Etsy’s platform is designed for easy maintenance of online shops. This means sellers can focus more on creating and less on technicalities, ensuring a smooth operational experience.
Etsy provides access to an international customer base, allowing sellers to expand their market beyond local boundaries. This is a significant advantage for those looking to reach a wider audience.
The platform offers simple and effective advertising tools that make it easy for sellers to promote their products. This helps in increasing visibility and driving sales with minimal effort.
Comprehensive support and training
Etsy is known for its robust support system, offering training and assistance to sellers. This includes seller protection policies, ensuring a safe and supportive environment for conducting business.
The Etsy community is a welcoming and supportive network of creative individuals. Sellers can engage, share experiences, and learn from each other, fostering a collaborative and inspiring atmosphere.
Access to valuable data and tools
Etsy sellers benefit from a wealth of existing data and tools available on the platform. These resources aid in market research, trend analysis, and strategic planning, helping sellers make informed business decisions.
Cons of Selling on Etsy in 2024
It’s important to acknowledge the challenges and limitations that come with Etsy. This section delves into the potential drawbacks that sellers may encounter on the platform.
Oversaturation in Certain Niches
Some product categories on Etsy are highly saturated, making it challenging for new sellers to stand out. This oversaturation can lead to intense competition, potentially impacting visibility and sales for newcomers.
Limited Control Over Advertising
Etsy’s advertising system, while user-friendly, offers limited control to sellers. This can be a drawback for those who wish to have more hands-on involvement or advanced customization in their advertising strategies.
Limited Marketing Tools
While Etsy provides basic marketing tools, the platform’s capabilities in this area can be limiting for sellers seeking more sophisticated or diverse marketing strategies. This may necessitate additional efforts outside the platform to effectively promote products.
How to be successful on Etsy in 2024
Selling on Etsy can be quite complex, but also rewarding. To succeed on this platform, you need a mix of creativity, a strong business plan, intuitive understanding, and a bit of luck. Although there’s no certain path to success, taking specific steps and adopting effective strategies can greatly improve your chances of doing well on Etsy.
Offer the right products
Establishing a successful Etsy shop fundamentally starts with selecting the right products. While search engine optimization (SEO) is often highlighted in many guides, it’s the well-thought-out product strategy that truly determines success. Effective SEO will only go so far if the products don’t align with what buyers are actively looking for. The key is to offer products that meet buyer demands and interests.
To aid in this crucial process, Koalanda’s Etsy Product Research tool is an invaluable resource. It simplifies the task of identifying popular products and uncovering potential niches. With its daily updates, the tool keeps you informed about the latest market trends, enabling you to make informed choices about products that have a higher likelihood of success on Etsy.
Use professional looking photos
Gone are the days when independent artists could snap a few amateur photos, create an Etsy listing, and expect sales to roll in within a week. Today’s Etsy marketplace is far more competitive, dominated by sellers who operate with professional business acumen. High-quality, professional photographs are no longer optional but essential. They are crucial in capturing customer attention in a crowded market. Without them, potential buyers are likely to bypass your listings in favor of more visually appealing ones.
SEO optimize your listings with long-tail keywords
With your market research complete and product photos ready, the next crucial step is ensuring your products are discoverable on Etsy. The most efficient and cost-effective way to increase visibility is by optimizing your Etsy SEO. This involves incorporating a variety of keywords that have high demand but low competition into your listing titles, tags, and descriptions.
However, identifying such keywords can be challenging. A specialized tool that provides insights on search volumes, conversion rates, and competition levels for each keyword is invaluable. Koalanda’s Etsy keyword tool is an excellent choice for this purpose, offering speed, ease of use, and accuracy.
Turn your customers into repeat customers
Turning your customers into repeat buyers is a key strategy for long-term success on Etsy. Repeat customers not only boost your sales but also help in building a loyal customer base, essential for sustained growth. To encourage customers to return, consider implementing an efficient email marketing strategy, which allows you to stay in touch with buyers through newsletters and exclusive offers. Additionally, leveraging social media marketing can keep your brand and products in the forefront of customers’ minds. Engaging with customers on platforms like Instagram and Facebook helps create a community around your brand, fostering a sense of connection that encourages repeat purchases.
Motivate your customers to buy more
To motivate customers to buy more from your Etsy shop, consider offering enticing promotions such as free shipping, discounts, flash sales, or deals like ‘buy two, get one free’. These incentives can encourage larger purchases and attract buyers looking for value deals. Implementing these strategies can effectively increase your average order size and boost overall sales.
For an in-depth look at this topic read our dedicated article on how to increase your Etsy sales.
Here are three inspiring Etsy shops that opened at the beginning of 2023 and had a fantastic first year. We hope that they will serve as an inspiration to all artisans and crafters that wonder if selling on Etsy is still worth it in 2024.
Little Coco is a charming family-run business specializing in high-quality, safe, and adorable pacifier clips. Crafted with non-toxic materials like food-grade silicone and natural wood, Little Coco is dedicated to enriching your gifting experience, embodying a family’s big dream in every product.
- Opened: Jan 2023
- Total sales so far: 2,548
- Total listings: 11
AuroraCustomizeUS excels in crafting men’s wallets that are not only a symbol of elegance but also a commitment to eco-friendliness. They use premium full grain cowhide leather, ensuring both quality and sustainability. Each wallet offers personalization through unique handwriting customization and enhanced with essential RFID protection. Their vegetable tanning process guarantees that each wallet is free from harmful chemicals.
- Opened: Jan 2023
- Total sales so far: 1,763
- Total listings: 13
At HMGiftCollection you can discover a world of refined whiskey accessories, where premium quality meets personalization. Specializing in laser-engraved glasses and decanters, they offer an elegant touch to your whiskey experience.
- Opened: Jan 2023
- Total sales so far: 23,053
- Total listings: 10
It is clear that in 2024 Etsy continues to offer a robust and viable opportunity for sellers. Despite challenges and evolving market dynamics, Etsy remains a fertile ground for those equipped with the right strategies, tools, and mindset. The key to success lies in understanding the platform’s nuances, adapting to its changes, and leveraging its strengths. For those willing to invest the effort and navigate its complexities, Etsy in 2024 can indeed be a rewarding and prosperous venture.