Selling on Etsy is one of the most fun, creative, and rewarding ways to make money. That’s why we are here to help guide you to know how to make money on Etsy and have fun doing it.
Whether you’re looking to make a side income by selling handmade items, printables, great photos you’ve taken, or t-shirts you’ve designed, etsy.com is a fantastic platform for that.
Just like everything else, understanding the platform and how to maximize what it offers can help you turn your passion into a true money-making machine.
Etsy can be a great way to make money online. With close to 2 million active sellers and around 29 million buyers, Etsy is definitely a marketplace to consider if you’re looking to grow your business.
What is Etsy?
Etsy is an online marketplace for handmade goods, vintage items, collector’s items, and other products that can be considered artistic. This means that you cannot sell just about anything on Etsy.
While you can find a lot of different items on the platform – from soaps to handbags and clothing items, everything has a certain uniqueness to it.
What this means is that having the right kind of product is very important. A quick browse through the website can give you a better idea of what might work and should be your first step to selling and making money on Etsy.
How Does Selling on Etsy Work?
Etsy works just like any other marketplace. Sellers looking to tap into the eCommerce sector can set up their shop to sell any items they have. In this regard, Etsy is more specialized.
As a platform, Etsy is known for goods that have an artistic flair, with buyers flocking to Etsy to find handmade products produced by artisans rather than in factories.
Sellers can set up their own personal shops while buyers can browse items from different shops. Buyers looking to buy a specific item, say a wallet, do not have to visit each store individually but instead can see all wallets from all shops at the same time.
This means that as a seller, you need to compete with other businesses selling products like yours, but don’t let this dishearten you.
How To Sell a Product on Etsy
Before you start selling on Etsy, there is a bit of groundwork that you need to cover to increase your chances of success.
By doing this work beforehand, you will ensure that you take the best course of action to ensure your success as an Etsy business owner.
What Are You Passionate About?
For any business to succeed, passion is one of the most important ingredients for success.
Unless you are passionate about what you’re doing, it’s highly unlikely that you will be able to sustain it over a long period of time.
Is There A Market For What You Want To Sell?
Once you know what you’re passionate about, it’s equally important to do your market research to understand if people are looking to buy what you’re hoping to sell.
Find your Unique Selling Point
It is highly likely that you’re not going to be the only person selling what you want to sell. To help you attract customers, it becomes important to find your USP – a Unique Selling Point.
This is what is going to set you apart from the competition and the main reasons customers buy from you and not anyone else.
One way to do this is to try and identify a niche market to cater to, as these tend to be easier than the mass market.
By identifying a niche market, you will also be able to focus on one type of customer and become the best at it.
You can then grow your business to cater to other kinds of customers. From then on, the world is your oyster.
Figure Out Your Costs
The next important step to take is to figure out how much it is going to cost you to make what you want to sell on Etsy.
In a nutshell, you need to cost out the raw materials (what you need to buy them) and the labor (how much it’s going to cost to make them).
Also, remember to put in overheads such as Etsy fees and shipping.
When it comes to looking for suppliers, make sure you try to find a reliable out and always get quotes from different ones to see which one is able to offer you a better price.
Choose a Catchy and Unique Shop Name
Once all of the business side of things have been taken care of, it’s time to get creative. You will need to find a name for your shop and also design an appropriate logo for it.
The design of the logo should match the style of your product, helping you become more recognizable.
When it comes to choosing a name for your shop, make sure that it hasn’t already been taken on Etsy.
It also pays to make sure that the domain has not been registered by someone else and then buy it. Domain names tend to vary a lot in price and typically need to be renewed on a yearly basis. Find one that is within your budget, and you won’t have to break the bank.
It is now time to get to work and do what you do best – create excellent products!
Setting Up Your Etsy Account
Setting up an Etsy account is easy, but you’ll need to have all of the information at hand to ensure as smooth a process as possible.
To help you better prepare yourself, we are listing the entire process from start to finish so that you’ll know what you’ll need to setup up your shop and start selling on Etsy!
Go to the Etsy website and then click on Sign in. This will open a Sign In prompt, and right at the very top, on the right-hand side, you will notice a small Register button. Enter your details and then click on Register.
Once done, provided your details are correct, you will be automatically logged into your profile. From the menu at the top, click You and then click on Sell on Etsy. On the new page that opens, click on Open your Etsy Shop.
This will take new to a new page where you will be able to set up your shop from start to finish. There are 5 main steps that you’ll need to go through before your shop is set up.
These are set as follows:
Step 1: Shop Preferences
In the very first step, you will be able to set up your shop preferences. These include the language of the shop, the country where its located, and the currency you want to sell in.
One of the great things about Etsy is that it will automatically convert the prices to the buyer’s currency so that you don’t have to worry about exchange rates or anything like that.
Step 2: Naming Your Shop
In this second step, you will be (officially) naming your shop. Enter the shop name, and the website will automatically check if it’s available.
There is a 20 character limit here, so if your official name is longer, you might have to settle for an abbreviation.
There are also some rules you need to be aware of when it comes to naming your shop, including special characters and spaces not being allowed.
Fortunately, the website will also give you some suggestions should the name you enter already be taken by someone else.
Step 3: Stocking Your Shop
One of the most (if not the most) important things a shop should have in stock – and this is where you can upload the stock you want to sell.
Each stock item is uploaded as a listing. This includes a description of the product, pricing information, as well as pictures.
Make sure you take clear pictures and make them as artistic as possible. If you have basic photoshop skills, you can edit the lighting of the pictures but don’t edit the product itself.
Step 4: Payments
In the step before last, you will set up how you want to get paid. You start by selecting the location of your bank, as this will determine the currency that you will be paid in.
You will also need to enter your banking detail and some personal information, including your address and the last four digits of your SSN (Social Security Number)
Step 5: Billing
In the last step of setting up your Etsy store process, you can set up how you are going to pay Etsy fees.
Etsy Fees for Sellers
When it comes to fees, Etsy has two types of fees that you need to be primarily aware of:
- Listing fee
- Transaction fee
In comparison to other shops, Etsy fees can be quite complicated and take a bit of getting used to before you’re able to work out all of your costs. To get started, it is important to understand what is a listing.
Each listing costs $0.20.
A listing is not just a product, and there is some flexibility in how they are used. As a seller, you are obliged to create only one listing for an item that comes in different configurations, such as different colors.
Within the listing, you will also need to specify the number of available stock you have.
Each listing is valid for four months. Once these four months expire, you have the option of renewing it manually or automatically.
Every time you sell an item, the listing fee is reset, and this is why it’s important to list the quantity of any given item in a listing.
So if you have a listing with a stock quantity of 1 and that item is sold, the listing expires.
If you have a listing with say 20 items, the listing is renewed every time an item is purchased. This means that if someone were to buy three items from the same listing, the listing would renew twice, so you will pay another $0.40 in listing fees ($0.20 + $0.20)
This transaction fee is set at 5% of the price at the time and is only charged when something is sold.
Understanding these fees is important as you will need to factor them into your costs to make sure they don’t eat away at your profits.
So to recap, the maximum fee you will pay for a sold item is the listing fee, which is set at $0.20, and the transaction fee, which is set at 5% of the sale price.
How To Increase Your Etsy Sales
Etsy shop owners looking to increase their sales have a few options available at their disposal.
Understanding what these options are can help you be more strategic in how you approach and execute your marketing and sales.
Essentially, there are two ways through which you can promote your products – through Etsy and yourself.
1. Promoting Products Through Etsy
As an Etsy user, you can create ads on Etsy itself with the hopes of attracting more users.
These ads appear in category pages so that when a buyer is looking for a specific kind of product, for example – scarves, your scarf will appear at the top of the page.
Do keep in mind that listings appearing as ads will have a small Ad written in the top-left corner of the product image so that the buyer knows that they are seeing an ad.
Etsy uses what is known as the PPC, which is short for Pay Per Click. This means that you will pay Etsy every time a potential buyer clicks on your ad and not every time that is shown.
The minimum amount you can invest in ads is $1.00 per day, but in most cases, it won’t get you very far. Let us see why.
Etsy can only show so many ads, which means that the space to show ads is limited. This means that you will be competing for advertising space with other sellers who are selling items similar to yours.
To try and bring some sense of fairness into it, you need to set a bid price for the ad, that is to say, how much you’re willing to pay to have your advert seen.
This is why when setting up an Etsy ad, you also need to enter your maximum bid – the maximum amount of money you’re willing to pay to have your advert show up.
Anything between $0.10 and $0.50 should be fine as a starting point. The good thing here is that Etsy also provides its sellers with a dashboard so that you can better understand how your ads are performing.
2. Promoting Products on Social Media and SEO
You can also advertise what you’re selling elsewhere, such as through social media and SEO.
To advertise on social media, set up a page or a profile for your shop and upload pictures and updates to drive up engagement.
If you have your own website separate from the Etsy shop, you can also try to up your SEO efforts to drive up visitors, which you can then link to Etsy to close the sale.
SEO efforts can help you appear higher-up result pages on search engines such as Google. The closer you are to the top, the more visitors you’re likely to get.
To get started with SEO, you will need to do keyword research and blogging to help attract visitors to your website.
It might also pay to take advantage of seasonal festivities such as Christmas to make extra money during these high seasons.
Many successful shops take advantage of these times, where users are more likely to spend by customizing their offers to increase sales.
Can I Make Selling on Etsy My Full-Time Job?
Turning a side hustle into a small business is possible in most cases, and it is certainly possible when selling on Etsy.
It does require a bit of forward planning, such as knowing what your expenses are so that you will know how many sales you need to close to be able to sustain yourself and any dependants.
There are a number of perks to making Etsy your full-time job, including the ability to work from home and being able to pursue your dreams. But selling on Etsy doesn’t have to be your entire sales.
Once you have the products, you can also look into Etsy alternatives to increase your revenue streams and sell to an even wider audience.
Alternatives to Etsy
While Etsy is one of the best platforms for artistic goods, it is not the only one. As a seller, you can also try to sell your products on other platforms to help increase your sales figures.
One thing that can become somewhat important here and something that you definitely need to think about is stock control.
By selling on different platforms, it can become harder to keep track of your stock levels, and as such, you need to keep an eye on this to make sure you are able to fulfill all of the orders you receive.
While not having stock is a better problem than not having sales, both are a problem, and taking steps to avoid them is the best thing you can do. Other platforms to consider include:
Each of these platforms has its own strengths and weaknesses. Depending on what you’re selling, not all of them might be the right fit.
It is important that you do your homework so that you can concentrate your time and effort on what can work.
Should You Start Making Money on Etsy?
Yep, Etsy is one of the best selling apps on the market right now – and Etsy sellers can make quite a bit of money.
Keep it as a side hustle for extra money, or grow it into something bigger and turn it into your full-time job.
To improve your chances of becoming a top seller on Etsy, it helps to see it as a business, especially if you’ll be making the products yourself.
Cost and quality control are two of the most important tasks you need to keep your eye on. Marketing your products is also very important. This can help you attract more visitors to your shop and ultimately increase sales.
The important thing is to plan ahead, and in our guide, we tried to be as thorough as possible. While making and selling things is a lot of fun, having a plan remains important. After all, who fails to plan, plans to fail.