How to Sell on Etsy: 5+ Steps to Open an Etsy Shop in 2021

How-to-Sell-on-Etsy
BY: M. Sebastian | Updated on October 30, 2021

Learning how to sell on Etsy is a great business idea. If you want to open an Etsy shop and to start selling products to this spacious collection of potential buyers, please read on.

Since Etsy launch in 2005, Etsy has amplified into one of the world’s most popular online marketplaces. There are 54 million members on Etsy, with over 35.8 million buyers and up to 1.98 million Etsy sellers. Furthermore, there are over 50 million unique products listed for sale on Etsy.com.

Contents for: How to Sell on Etsy

#What is Etsy?

Etsy is the eCommerce platform that specializes in the selling and buying of craft supplies, artistic products, and vintage items hard to find in a regular online store. Buyers on Etsy browse their marketplace to find handcrafted goods rather than mass-produced products.

Etsy It is an outlet for small business owners such as people with artistic skills and art shops to showcase their products and sell to a generous audience without needing their own ecommerce website like with Shopify.

Etsy It is a company that combines the enthusiasm of an art fair with a popular marketplace like eBay. Users who look for goods on Etsy marketplace will find handmade and vintage goods, hand-printed clothing, customized works of art, custom-made children’s toys, and many more.

There is a large variety of collector goods that you can get for a fair price. The Etsy platform uses a specific storefront where sellers list their goods for a fee. There is a considerable category of vintage products for sale on Etsy. For products to qualify as vintage, they must be a minimum of 20 years old.

It is essential to specify that Etsy does not make the items. Instead, it acting like an decent intermediary connecting together both the buyer and seller, bringing them to Etsy marketplace.

Etsy has the headquarter in Brooklyn, and this is where it carries through daily operations. The niche that Etsy occupies makes it the number one marketplace platform for art products and collectibles in the world.

Etsy also has an particular crafting class known as Etsy Labs: a class where people improve and learn their unique artistic skills.

If Etsy doesn’t look like the solution for you, check out my reviews of the best ecommerce platforms and see if there’s a better fit for you.

#How to Sell on Etsy Successfully.

Are you really ready to open an Etsy shop and start making money online? Even though there are some steps, Etsy makes it easy. Find here how you can start now selling on Etsy and build your own online shop.

Open an Etsy Shop

1. Go to Etsy.com to Get Started.

You can start now by visiting the Etsy homepage, click the Sell on Etsy link, then click Open your Etsy Shop.

2. Select a Etsy Shop Name.

This is that part where your particular and unique creativity can come into play. You should think up with a name that reflects your personal brand. Your name should be identified with your item offerings and easy for customers to remember. The name needs to be between 4-20 characters with no spaces or special characters.

3. Customize Your Etsy Shop Settings.

Set up your individual preferences for how you want to sell your items on Etsy. Select the language for describing your goods, and the currency for trade, include your location, etc.

4. Select Your Payment Method.

There are many types of online payments available on Etsy. You could offer Etsy Payments or PayPal which is what most sellers use. Etsy Payments allow sellers to get their money through different options like debit and credit cards: as well as store credit and Etsy gift cards.

5. Include Billing Information.

This will depend on your own country of origin. Etsy may want a debit or credit card for identification and authorization. You will also need to provide a card where Etsy can charge you for commissions and fees.

Perfect, that’s it. You’re all set up and now it’s time to start promoting and optimizing your own products.

6. Start Listing Your Products on Etsy.

Follow these steps to set up your product listings on Etsy:

  • Add Photos: Etsy advice sellers to have a minimum of 5 photos for each product, to be taken from different angles so buyers can have a proper idea of what your item looks like. The photos should be of high quality and shot with a nice background.
  • Complete your listing information: Your item description should have a title and description that describes what it in detail. Make use of the 13 ‘tags’ available for each Item. Buyers look for items based on keywords, so make sure these keywords match what is in your tags.
  • Adjust thumbnails: Thumbnails are the first photos a buyer comes across when they search or stumble upon your item. These dictate the feel and look of your Etsy shop, so make sure they are consistent and match your own brand.
  • Set the shipping fee: This is where you include country of origin, shipping fees, processing time, weight and size. You can always update this information later on if needed.
  • Enter inventory price and quantity: Add the price for each product and make sure you factor all the costs into the sale price. Include the quantity in stock, and if there are product variants such as color, size and material.
  • Preview your Etsy listings: Look at your Etsy shop to see if there are any changes to make. It’s very important to feel good about your Etsy shop’s look from a customer’s perspective before publishing for the first time. Now just click finish and you’re all done adding your first product.

7. Optimize Your Etsy Shop.

Find here few ways how to optimize your Etsy shop and attract more sales.

  • Add Your Etsy Shop Policies: This section includes FAQs that customers may ask about the item. You can add shipping and processing timelines so customers can have a proper idea of how long it will take to get their item. Return policies (if any) also fall into this section too.
  • Add Your Etsy Profile: This will include a short bio about you with a picture. This will let users know who you are and increase your credibility as a seller. You can use this opportunity to create a personal connection with your customers and give more insight into your item.
  • Add an Etsy Store Bio: This is the section that allows you to talk more about your Etsy store and who you are. Etsy gives sellers 5,000 characters to write your own biography. Remember to write with passion and create a connection with your customers.

The user value transparency, so try to be open about your values. You can show them how you create your items by inserting pictures or videos of your workspace. You can share your Etsy shop’s social media links here too.

  • Use Marketing Tools: This allows you to connect with an wider audience through social media. They has made this easy to do with a new marketing tool to allow them sellers the opportunity to share their own products on social platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook.

#How Much Does it Cost to Sell on Etsy?

Many users pack up them Etsy shop after no more than one month because of little or no sales. And the worst part is that you still running expenses based on your Etsy listings. Therefore, it is important to consider the long-term revenue to cost ratio.

It costs $0.20 to set up an account and list a product to the Etsy marketplace. According to the seller handbook, a listing will remain active for 4 months or until the product is sold. Once an product sells, a 5% transaction fee occurs on the sale price.

This is specifically true when you have many items to sell. So how much does it cost to sell your items on Etsy?

Let's go find out.

1. Etsy Shop Cost.

An great advantage is that it cost a seller nothing to set up an Etsy shop. Yes it is true, opening your own shop on Etsy is free. However, that is where the free things ends: at least for now. This is because They has a standard listing fee of $0.20 per product. This listing fee is for 4 months. But let us talk about the product listing.

Etsy has a listing different from other online marketplaces giants. For Etsy online marketplace, a listing and a product are not the same things. This is because a listing on Etsy can contain multiple items.

As an example, if a seller is selling a t-shirt, and the t-shirt has different sizes and color schemes, the seller is only obliged to create “just one listing” to cover the various sizes and color diversity while giving buyers the choice of selecting a t-shirt with any of the sizes and colors.

So if the seller has 100 products of that t-shirt, and they come in different sizes and colors, the seller creates just one listing to cover them all, updating the quantity as the sales come in.

Every each 4 months, the validity of a Etsy listing runs out. It is up to the seller to either renew the listing manually or automatically at the same $0.20 per Etsy listing.

Even though allowing the Etsy store to renew itself automatically can make great sense for a first-time seller who has not yet grasped the financial basics of running an Etsy online store, it makes more sense and at least from a financial angle to renew the Etsy store manually.

This way, you can analyze the data to find out which items are making sales and turning out a profit, and which items are taking a loss before you renew your Etsy listing for another 4 months. Just remember that the cost of each listing remains $0.20 per list.

This means if there are 100 Etsy listings in your Etsy store, you are liable to pay $20 every 4 months. This can become a problem if you are not making any sales because the $20 keeps adding up in your expenses which could also include the cost of crafting your item in the first place.

2. What is the Etsy Transaction Fee?

Just like Amazon and eBay, there are other types of Etsy fees that a seller has to pay to keep doing business on Etsy marketplace. First, a seller will pay a 5% transaction fee of the sale price whenever an product is sold.

3. Is The $0.20 Cost All There Is?

Many Etsy sellers confuse themselves on how to remit the $0.20 fee when the sales come in. They forget a listing differs from a item and that the charge for Etsy listing and the renewal fee for them Etsy store depends on the number of products on sale.

Find here these examples for clarity:

  • Example 1:

An Etsy seller creates handmade sweaters available in 5 different colors. When the Etsy seller creates a listing, there are 6 pairs of the sweater in stock. So for the following 4 months, the Etsy seller will pay $0.20 for a listing of those 6 pairs of sweaters.

If there are any sales coming up within that period, the Etsy seller gets another charge of $0.20 for renewing the listing.

But if the Etsy seller sells one of the sweaters, everything reverts to “0” and the listing will auto-renew for another four months for the remaining 5 sweaters. If the Etsy seller adds more sweaters to the quantity available, or the seller has new colors of the sweater and would like to display new images of those colors, the Etsy seller can edit the listing at no extra cost.

Every each time the Etsy seller makes a sale, the stock renews again and again until they sell all available sweaters or the four-month period ends with no sales. If a Etsy buyer purchases 3 pairs of sweaters from the seller in just one order, the Etsy seller will get an extra charge of $0.40 alongside the earlier $0.20 for 3 listing fees.

The Etsy listing auto-renews itself again even though 3 sweaters got paid for in one transaction.

  • Example 2:

An Etsy seller has an handcrafted table store. In that Etsy store, there is just only a single handcrafted table for sale. The table sells, and the Etsy seller opts not to renew the listing or craft another table again.

The Etsy seller pays is $0.20 to list the table. Because the table has sold, the Etsy seller is no longer charged a listing fee (although there are other Etsy fees which we shall explain later).

4. What Are the Etsy Payment Processing Fees?

When an Etsy buyer checks out directly on Etsy and uses them payment system, Etsy charges a payment processing fee of 3% + $0.25 per each transaction.

Also, depending on the Etsy seller’s location, there could be extra expenses in the form of taxes, including the cost of converting the currency where the products listed are not in US dollars.

5. What Does it Cost to Promote on Etsy?

The users on Etsy can also choose to create Etsy promoted listings and advertise their items. The minimum to get started promoting on Etsy is $1 per day and it is based on a cost per click model.

When an Etsy user conducts an search, there are both  non-paid and paid listings. The only difference that the Etsy buyers can see in promoted listings is the small, white “Ad” in the top left corner of the image:

Etsy-Paid-and-Nonpaid-Listings

It’s commonly challenging for a new Etsy seller to make waves on Etsy, particularly when launching a new item. Investing in ads to gather more Etsy visibility may not be a bad idea to test out your product’s market viability on Etsy. Once you start promoting on Etsy, you’ll get access to an individual dashboard where you can view your stats.

I recommend you set a maximum cost per click (CPC) between $0.10 or $0.50 per click to start testing results.

6. What About Etsy Shipping Costs?

Commonly, the Etsy buyer pays for shipping. The shipping cost will depend on the location of the buyer. Generally, problems arise in situations where the shipping cost is not correctly calculated, and the Etsy seller realizes they have to pay more for shipping than initially intended.

If this happens frequently, it could notably increase the total cost of doing business on Etsy marketplace, particularly when the cost of insurance is included in the shipping fee, which drives the cost further.

A quick fix is to do the research and find out precisely how much shipping products to different locations will cost. Shipping on Etsy is never free or on any other online marketplace. Etsy sellers who offer free shipping should be prepared to include the cost of shipping into the product sale price.

7. Final Thoughts on Etsy Pricing.

It is tempting for you to think it’s just $0,20 to start selling and rush to open an Etsy store. Before selling your items on Etsy, it’s smart to have a very clear understanding of the total charges required to both list and sell your products on Etsy.

The total cost of setting up your on store on Etsy includes the transaction fee, listing fee, shipping fee, payment processing fee, and any Etsy promotions you take part in.

Also, take note that none of this includes the cost of goods sold (COGS). So if you price your products too low to attract more customers, you may eat into your profit margin and sell items at a loss.

There are always external fees to consider if you want to manage your online business properly. When started get a spreadsheet ready to track your outflow and inflow to be sufficiently informed on what is going on in your online business.

Try not to get carried away until you see a proper return on investment (ROI). It’s significant to gradually scale up your online business rather than get too aggressive with pricing right away. As you keep selling on Etsy marketplace, you’ll get the hold of the charges and adapt your online business accordingly.

#More Tips for Selling on Etsy.

Now that you have your Etsy store optimized and set up to start yout online business, how do you drive sales over time? What are few ways to boost your “Etsy SEO” and gain more visibility as a new Etsy shop owner?

Find here 6 final tips for selling on Etsy successfully.

1. Organize Your Etsy Store.

You should put each product on your list in an order that you specify. Having items everywhere in random order doesn’t inspire any confidence in the quality of your items. You gonna need to create a great first impression so buyers who come into your Etsy shop see a proper professional layout.

2. Hire a Professional Photographer.

Today's people are visual: we want to see, feel  and touch items before we buy them. And there’s a psychology behind great item photography. The main kind of item photography shots include lifestyle shots and hero shots.

  • 1.) Hero shots are close-ups of your items with a simple white background. These are good for your main pictures and should be in high resolution so buyers can zoom in and see the item by itself.
  • 2.) Lifestyle shots show the item being used by a person or with more background context. Example: a picture of a women’s sweater may be worn by a smiling woman outside in a park.
  • 3.) Start by using a combination of both of these methods, as well as shots in between. Example, a picture of an crafts and arts set could be disassembled to show all of the parts and laid out in a particular beautiful pattern. Etsy allows a maximum of 10 pictures, so uses them all. High-quality pictures will help drive sales for your products on Etsy.

3. Optimize Your Pricing.

Pricing has a direct impact on how much you sell on Etsy. It’s frequently difficult to get the right price for your items because undercutting the competition can lead to a price war, while selling too high on Etsy can lead to “0” sales.

Find decent ways to cut production costs so that your profit margin is much higher. Test, test and again test. You can update your pricing on Etsy regularly to reflect economic factors such as the cost of raw materials as well as your competition.

4. Learn Etsy SEO.

Search engine optimization or SEO, enables you to increase visibility online on platforms like Google. However, Etsy SEO is one key to driving great sales too. SEO techniques depend on the platform.

Amazon, eBay, and Google all have individual and different SEO methods and so does Etsy. But the basics are the same and it all comes down to the well-known keywords.

What are users searching for on Etsy? Try to understand the main product categories you’re in and use keywords to stand out. Use as many valuable keywords as you can so Etsy users search can match with your items and bring out your Etsy shop in the search results.

5. Analyze and Study the Data.

Use analytical tools to help you keep track of your online business. Some items may sell more than others and you may need to drop non-performing products and increase the quantities of performing ones.

6. Keep Good Financial Records.

Decent bookkeeping can help you understand the direction your Etsy online business is heading. It can help you set proper targets and know whether you are turning a decent profit or running at a loss. The better you master the exact numbers, the more informed your decisions are.

#How to Sell on Etsy: Conclusion

Remember, most outstanding sellers on Etsy started small and grew with time. The massive obstacle to Etsy sales is mostly the hesitation to start. You don’t need a big team – 79% of businesses on Etsy are mainly run by single individuals, with 97% run from home.

With millions of Etsy potential buyers, and the ability to share your own unique items with the all world, why not take this tips on how to sell on Etsy and get started now to have your own online business?

Recommended Articles on on StartUpAm.com: check out my reviews of the best ecommerce platforms and my how to start an ecommerce business to see if there’s a better fit for you.

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