You’ve sold your creative items and crafts on Etsy for years. But now, it’s no longer viable. After all, sellers on Etsy doubled from 2.7 million in 2019 to nearly 4.4 million in 2020. With too many sellers, the competition levels are unsustainable for your business.
More often than not, such situations call for a fresh start. And in this scenario, the best course of action is to pivot away from Etsy and create your own store.
Read on to discover the benefits of running your own store and the best Etsy alternatives in the market.
- 6 Reasons Why Sellers Should Have Their Own Ecommerce Website
- What To Look For in a Good Etsy Alternative
- Best Etsy Alternatives
- Wrapping Up — Etsy Alternatives: 6 Reasons To Launch Your Own Online Store
Reasons Why Sellers Should Have Their Own Ecommerce Website
Running your own ecommerce store has its benefits. Let’s explore them.
1. Brand Ownership
Building your own website can give your brand a significant boost. With a website builder, you have the freedom to shape your business the way you see fit without the restrictions of Etsy, Artfire, Amazon Handmade, or any other third-party platforms. You get to own your identity and also have a custom domain name.
Unique branding helps you stand out from competitors on and off your website, which is more difficult if you only have an Etsy shop.
2. You Own the Customer
Unlike Etsy and Big Cartel, which control your customer accounts, payment, and contact information, having your own online store empowers you to capture them yourself.
As customers sign up to purchase handmade items from your website, you can request their phone numbers, email addresses, and credit card information. You can upsell, retarget, and remarket to them with that information. You can also charge membership fees for subscriptions and custom downloads.
Your ecommerce website doesn’t have to replace your Etsy store. Instead, it can become your primary store as you use Etsy, Google Shopping, Bonanza, and eBay as alternative online marketplaces to make sales and scale your business.
Omni-market strategies and tools like Zibbet also help spread your risk and protect your business from unexpected shutdowns, especially from account suspensions.
4. Increased Marketing Opportunities
Unlike the limits of using paid ads on Etsy, you can market your handmade product listings to customers across social media and other platforms in different ways.
You simply get to open your business to new markets and sell unlimited products to a more diverse audience.
5. Reduced Cost Per Sale and Repeated Sales
Currently, Etsy charges a $0.20 listing fee for all products uploaded to its website. You also incur a 6.5% transaction fee, amongst other fees. That often makes your items more expensive and sometimes inaccessible to customers.
Related reading: Bypass “Selling on Etsy Fees” with StoreBuilder >>
In contrast, if you own an ecommerce website, you reduce the costs you pay per sale, which leads to more sales and repeat customers. You can recover abandoned shopping carts too.
6. No Price Wars
Are you selling the same product as another crafter on Etsy? Two words: Price wars. And who’s to stop others from joining the fray?
Having your own online business website takes away the risk of price wars. You only need to focus on marketing your products to potential customers at an ideal price.
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What To Look For in a Good Etsy Alternative
Are you looking for an alternative to your current Etsy store? Here are some key features to look out for.
Lower Ownership Cost
Consider the cost of ownership as you choose a new ecommerce platform. As a small business that deals with handmade goods, you want an economical option that beats the option of owning an Etsy storefront.
Most platforms charge a monthly fee and payment processing fees. Find out if these are feasible for your ecommerce store.
Integrations improve the performance and functionality of your online store, giving you a one-stop solution. Would you like to plug your Etsy account into your online store? With integrations, you can do that.
Other essential integrations to look out for include payment providers like Stripe and PayPal. The more a platform can integrate with other tools, the better.
Does your online store have an appealing and user-friendly interface? Can your customer navigate pages on your ecommerce site easily? 73.1% of web designers believe non-responsive design increases your website bounce rate, and with good reason.
Related reading: 16 Best Ecommerce Website Examples & Tips for 2022 >>
The best Etsy alternatives offer excellent ecommerce UX that appeals to buyers and brings them back for more. Excellent SEO functionality is also something to look out for.
Choose a solution that allows you to grow beyond your current capacity. Can your chosen sales channel handle a spike in visitors? Can it perform consistently without experiencing any crippling downtime?
Where possible, opt for high-quality cloud-based solutions with features that let you meet the demands of your growing business.
Does your platform offer cutting-edge security? If you’re handling payments through your website, ensure the platform guarantees your customer base's privacy and security.
Your ecommerce website should also be PCI compliant, use HTTPS, and have robust firewalls and multilayer security.
Best Etsy Alternatives
Here are three great Etsy alternatives:
WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that scales your WP website into a fully functional ecommerce store.
All you need is web hosting for your WordPress site to get started. Although WooCommerce is technically free of charge, you can enhance its functionality with other plugins which aren’t free.
WooCommerce stores are often user-friendly to the customer, but they need some technical knowledge to build. Beginners can always opt for managed WooCommerce hosting and let an expert handle the nitty-gritty for you.
You can always opt for managed Magento hosting if you need to get to market fast. But unlike WooCommerce and Shopify, you’ll need some technical know-how to get the best out of Magento.
Magento is a dynamic, scalable, and customizable online shop platform capable of using multiple integrations, languages, and currencies.
Shopify is another alternative to Etsy. It’s already a popular option among Etsy sellers, especially entrepreneurs and crafters looking to build large-scale solutions for their businesses.
However, for its dynamic functionality and easy-to-use interface, Shopify is expensive. Shopify also subtly penalizes you for not using Shopify Payments or Stripe by charging higher fees for other payment processors.
Related reading: WooCommerce vs Shopify: Key Differences and How to Choose >>
Wrapping Up — Etsy Alternatives: 6 Reasons To Launch Your Own Online Store
WooCommerce and Magento are two excellent alternatives for your next chapter as an Etsy seller. They offer excellent scalability at manageable costs, and you have complete control of your store all the time.
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