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Topic: pros and cons of starting an etsy  (Read 1309 times)
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« on: May 14, 2009 01:20:01 AM »

what are the pros and cons and how does it work? how do i sell stuff? just looking for all the info i can get!



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« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2009 09:06:42 AM »

Pros - relatively cheap, no need to set up your own e-commerce. Listing stuff is relatively easy, but tedious. There are some outside people who make programs to ease a lot of Etsy's technical shortcomings. Etsyhacks.com or something. I haven't tried any of their programs, but hear they actually work.

Etsy takes 20 cents per listing, PayPal takes 2.9% of the sale, and Etsy another 3% off the sale. Sounds like a lot until you compare the cost of your own site, hosting, and an e-commerce setup, particularly if you're not technologically inclined.

The con for me is that Etsy doesn't really have a culture of success going about. Basically you can't mention your other ventures there or link to your own website or even portfolio, yet Etsy also wants you to invest in their setup, get you to build your reputation there, only to reject you when you become successful and have to hire out some of your work because you're busy selling too much. Because if you don't make it yourself, Etsy don't want it. Or so they say.

Does it stop me from listing there? No. I hate having sales on my own website, it makes it all too busy and takes a lot of hosting space which I don't want to pay for.

« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2009 07:08:59 PM »

Pros: Etsy is fairly entertaining. This is, I know, a weird thing to write, but there are a lot of fun ways to kill time on Etsy. Uploading your stuff is cheap and easy, and not a lot of committment is required. You can spend two dollars, dump ten things on there, and see how they fare. Meanwhile, they have a lot of active community forums, treasuries, and an area where people put up the things they'd like custom-made and you can place bids. It really does have a sense of community, albeit a community that feels a little desperate, as people vie for attention in an attempt to "make it."

Cons: As mentioned above, the mods are fairly strict about anti-Etsy promotion, and some things sell very well and other things are left to wither. Also, people tend to "renew" their items a lot, which is pretty much paying to have your items shifted up in the queue. It'd be great, if only everyone didn't do it, so if you don't renew frequently, your stuff can get caught up in the shuffle. It's kind of like the phenomenon of one person standing up in a stadium, and everyone following suit. As you spend more time on Etsy, you will find that the same types of things are constantly making it onto the front page, and some sellers have thousands upon thousands of sales, whereas others aren't doing so well. I'm not quite sure what makes some people get ahead, but it seems to take a lot of work. I think it helps to promote your Etsy elsewhere, like on your blog or twitter or another site, in order to get off the ground, which is a lot of work.

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