Wednesday, September 9

Calling all Etsians :)

Picking up where I left off in my last post... Judging by what I have read in the Dawanda forums, I don't think I'll be relieved of my problem anytime soon :( Time to consider other venues, i.e. Etsy. The fees on Etsy seem reasonable enough, and the selling process is pretty straighforward as far as I can tell. I'm just a little daunted at the overwhelming number of handmade bag shops, plus I'll be catering to an entirely different market with different demands, expectations etc. On the plus side, Etsy definitely gets more business overall than Dawanda. Then there's the matter of shipping. My shop may be on a US-based selling site, however I'm still here in little old Germany. I've reduced the cost by shipping the make-up bags flatpacked in padded envelopes, but it's probably still high from the customers' point of view. Here's where I need your help and honest opinion. Do I have a snowball's chance selling my products on Etsy? I appreciate any advice you might have for me! Thank you.

15 comments:

  1. Sorry that you are having problems on dwanda.

    (I have been wondering why you have not sold on etsy!) Your bags are lovely. But you are correct in the fact that the competition in bags is fierce. But there are sellers that have been successful on etsy in that category. One great thing you have going for you is that you are very true to your style. And even when I convert the dwanda prices to US currency you still have great prices.

    I say try it. Give yourself a timeline and then evaluate if it is working for you.

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  2. I'm with NICO....does Dawanda allow notes in your shop letting your customers know where else to find you? That could help.
    There is always ArtFire too & you can start off small with a free shop (just with a limited number of listings)
    And pricing, don't worry. Etsy customers are used to international shipping charge.

    If you do go to Etsy - join up with a team...a local and maybe the Carried Away Bags team.

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  3. Like Tilt, I was thinking about ArtFire and their free account to begin with. I have one and although I haven't sold anything there yet I also haven't promoted it as much. They do have a great widget called "Rapid Cart" you can stick on your blog and people don't need to sign up to purchase. Also, once you get the ball rolling there you can upgrade and no matter what there are never any fees. Personally, I'm getting very frustrated with Etsy as a selling venue.

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  4. Both NicoDesigns and TiLT sell bags on Etsy so they know more about what you'd be facing but I think you could give it a try! I agree with TiLT that you should join teams such as the Carried Away Bags or even our EtsyBloggers team (that I'm on with those two!) as it gets you more exposure and the members are extremely helpful. Artfire does have that Rapid Cart feature like Theresa pointed out which is another good option as you can sell right from your blog. Anyway, can't wait to see what you come up with!

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  5. Good luck figuring things out. I really like Etsy but I often feel like my items are buried within minutes because there are so many people on there.

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  6. I've seen at etsy products that people write down the shipping costs below the item. So you can do that too.

    You also need to leave an instruction to mail you.

    I tried to buy something the other day and got stuck in the orderingsystem because it didn't accept The Netherlands as shipping adress.
    The deal was closed anyway because the seller gave me her paypal.

    There are lots of bags at etsy, but also lots of other things.

    Yours are so very beautiful, they fit there.

    Good luck!!

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  7. I've never heard of either of these sites but I'm a guy too and that might explain that comment. I think you should go with your gut feeling. If your product is quality, which I assume it is, then you should have no problems selling on either site. Best of luck my friend!

    Friends 4 Life!

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  8. I can't help you Duni :(
    Sorry !!!

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  9. I've been selling in the US on Etsy for about 1.5 years. And there are more jewelers than bag makers - I'm sure of it. Only thing, right now, things are slow, but they will pick up for Christmas.

    If you get on Etsy, be prepared to join at least one team (I love the Etsybloggers) and get personal with other sellers. The other thing about Etsy is, since there is so much to see, you need to relist your pieces (I mean one to five, about) every week, since your work will get lost in the shuffle of thousands.

    Don't worry about being overseas. Most people don't mind. There's no fee to join Etsy, so try a few items, and if it works for you, add on. At least, that's my suggestion. Good luck, and visit the Etsybloggers if you come by. {:-Deb

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  10. I would agree with others (like storybeader, NICO, etc.) that customers don't mind overseas shipping, and you should definitely consider joining a team or two. I'm on Etsybloggers, and it increased my exposure. Things get veeeery slow in the summer, but they pick up for holidays.

    Good luck, whatever you decide. I'd love to see you at Etsy! :)

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  11. You should try it first. You never know if you don't try, since you crafts are just beautiful & very lovely too. All of my customers are oversea buyers Duni.

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  12. Duni,
    I don't know anything about Etsy except that I do know many artisans do use them.

    Amy at Amy Lilly Designs seems to do quite well with them. She is a very lovely person and I know would answer all of your questions for you.

    As for your bags, yes definitely! You have a wonderful unique style!

    I do think the economy over here right now is hurting everyone. But, yes....you could sale your bags anywhere.

    I hope you get all the information you need and have great success!!

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  13. I would suggest trying the free shops on Artfire and on iCraft. They have different audiences.

    I have handmade jewelry on icraft and am doing well (for the amount of time I put into it since I work full time) and have vintage jewelry on the Artfire free shop. Artfire has a TON of great seller features.

    I am reloading my Etsy shop with handmade jewelry right now so we will see what the holidays bring.

    Your bags are lovely and very market-friendly!

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  14. First of all, you commented on my sketchbook photo, and I just wanted to say, no it wasn't an unpleasant convo with the window sealers, thanks for asking! And congrats on the 1 year coming up too, can't wait to see your contest:)

    In terms of etsy...if you are coming to etsy thinking the technical stuff will be cured...so not true. They have their share of problems too. Spend some time on the etsy forums before you sign up. I think that will help you decide.

    In terms of shipping- you can always up your product prices and charge a flat shipping rate or something like that so it doesn't seem so bad to the customer.

    Etsy does have a lot more traffic than most online venues, but you're right, there is so much more competition. I think what matters most is how are you making sales on Dawanda? If you know it's traffic from your promotions, I think selling on etsy wouldn't be so bad. If you rely heavily on the site's promotion though, it's gonna be a lot more work.

    Now that I've written you a novel, I'm done! Haha...good luck choosing!

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  15. Best wishes to you Duni! Please tell us what your store name will be so we can look for you :)

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