Should I get an Etsy shop account?

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Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by Artistwolf on Sun Apr 17, 2016 6:25 pm

Hah, first post in the off-topic section! Yay.
Anyway. So I've been debating whether or not to get an Etsy account. There's someone on Deviantart who I kind of know would be happy to be my first buyer for a custom dragon plushie. But is that worth opening an account? They only charge a $0.20 listing fee and like 3.5% from your sales. So it's not bad by any means. Certainly more than I'm getting now (otherwise known as nothing XD). I read through the custom information and it all sounds pretty good and easy to use. I wonder if I could sell paintings from there? I don't see why not.
Hm, I wonder if the buyer pays shipping. That would make sense.
And then how much would I charge for my stuff? And what could I sell, anyway? I couldn't really use any online patterns to make stuff, I suppose. So I would have to work out my own patterns for stuff. So currently I could do dragons and knitted dogs. Although the dragon pattern is extremely painful to make... Too many little details in the wings and feet! But I guess I'd probably feel better doing that if I was getting paid for it, though XD
Maybe I should make up a few more knitting and/or sewing patterns before I start? I'm not really sure.
So has anyone ever successfully used Etsy before, and if so, how did you like it? Do you think I should try selling some of my stuff there?

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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by Peachy on Sun Apr 17, 2016 10:44 pm

I have no idea about Etsy, but why wouldn't be able to use others' patterns? I thought people usually just said that if you sell your work you have to use your own pictures... That can be tricky when you don't have a model. Maybe it's different for not-hats, but so many patterns seem to be nearly identical anyway. Razz
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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by stephlisa on Mon Apr 18, 2016 3:12 am

I've used Etsy before to sell a few handmade clothes. Its easy enough to use and the fees are reasonable but I found it hard to get buyers - you may have better luck! I mostly stopped because of health issues but haven't found a reason to start again. You can sell anything you like that is handmade/vintage although there are a few restrictions ( mostly food I think, but don't count don't that!) You could definitely try and sell paintings!

Yes, the buyer pays shipping. You work out in advance how much you'd like to charge and you can specify options (e.g. first class/second class - I'm from the UK so I presume those made sense!).

For charging items, I'd look around for similar-ish things and also take material cost and time cost into account as well - that's what I did and it worked out OK Smile

Patterns: check the small print and copyright info on the pattern, not sure of the rules where you are, but some specifically say don't sell items made from this pattern, others don't say anything. I guess if in doubt ask the designer if possible. (As a knitting pattern designer I tend to just ask for credit for the pattern (but then so far they are free and simple patterns that most people could work out with a little basic knowledge!)

That's my opinion and experiences, hope its a little bit helpful Smile

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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by Artistwolf on Mon Apr 18, 2016 6:53 am

Thank you so much, guys! Hm, that's true, I need to actually go through all my patterns and see what they say. That's super helpful! Thank you so much, guys Smile

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Anna: How was dinner?
Mary: Uphill. I'm so bored with Mr. Blake's cold shoulder.
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Mary: According to Mr. Napier, he finds me aloof. I'm not aloof, am I?
Anna: (chuckles) Do you want me to answer truthfully, or like a lady's maid?
Mary: Let's move on.
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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by CinnamonPearl on Mon Apr 18, 2016 2:02 pm

I don't see why not! If it makes you a few bucks, it's all for the better. I took up crochet recently, so I'm thinking about opening a shop myself when I get a better handle on amigurumi.

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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by Brynne on Mon Apr 18, 2016 3:20 pm

I don't see any risk in trying. Take a look at what similar items are available for sale. How often do they actually sell? What prices do they get? What would you do better or differently than your competitors?
You will need a PayPal account, which requires linking a bank account.

Find the etsy member discussion board and read up on the mistakes new people make, how to avoid them, etc. The board on eBay has been invaluable for me. It taught me good things I never would have known and warned me about bad things to prevent learning them the hard way.

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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by Artistwolf on Mon Apr 18, 2016 5:13 pm

Thanks October! I'll definetely take a look at that.
You're probs not right, CinnamonPearl Smile

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Mary: Uphill. I'm so bored with Mr. Blake's cold shoulder.
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Mary: According to Mr. Napier, he finds me aloof. I'm not aloof, am I?
Anna: (chuckles) Do you want me to answer truthfully, or like a lady's maid?
Mary: Let's move on.
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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by MouseLover on Mon Apr 18, 2016 5:20 pm

Go for it Artistwolf Smile It doesn't cost a lot to list items, so what have you really got to lose?
I guess it can be hard to find customers, but if you're on DeviantArt or social media, share your work in groups and such so that more people see it, you might be able to advertise your shop that way perhaps? Maybe make a facebook page for your shop and get friends/family to like and share it?

I think in terms of pricing, you'll have to think about how much time it takes to make the item (i.e. what you want your hourly wage to be). Then add up how much your materials cost you, and at least double that so that you can make a decent profit? I guess you'll have to use your own judgement to decide how much your work is worth, and maybe compare prices to similar items on Etsy to make sure you're on the right track. Don't under-price your work though, or it won't be worth your while.

You should give it a go! Good luck Very Happy

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Re: Should I get an Etsy shop account?

Post by Artistwolf on Mon Apr 18, 2016 5:59 pm

Well it does cost 20 cents. But I shouldn't be that stingy Laughing. You're totally right, those are some great suggestions! Great idea with the pricing, too. Thank you so so much, that was super useful!

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Anna: How was dinner?
Mary: Uphill. I'm so bored with Mr. Blake's cold shoulder.
Anna: He hasn't warmed up, then?
Mary: According to Mr. Napier, he finds me aloof. I'm not aloof, am I?
Anna: (chuckles) Do you want me to answer truthfully, or like a lady's maid?
Mary: Let's move on.
~Downton Abbey, season 4
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