Etsy



  • So, I guess Etsy did a dumb a couple weeks ago.

    I know there's a handful of people here that sell or craft show and the like. What's the next best place to be for selling online? I have done Shopify, but it's a much harder 'self-push' forum than Etsy was. I know Square has a similar set up to Etsy, but after Etsy did the dumb, I'm leery of just jumping onto any old bandwagon and hoping they don't do something similar :(

    Anyone have any info about these things or recommendations?


  • Pitcrew

    I used Square for years for my biz, it was super easy, and while the skim off the top was pretty stiff, it wasn't the worst of the services.


  • Pitcrew

    I had to go check out the article as I've been ignoring my Etsy shop for the last little while, outside of checking for orders. I didn't have that happen to me, but that doesn't invalidate what happened to others, and that sucks.

    Quite a few people I know are having success with Amazon Handmade. Their seller fees / commissions are a bit higher than Etsy, but right now they are not charging anyone who sells in the Handmade only category for their professional seller fees (usually $39.99/month) so long as you are selling in the Handmade category. It seems they keep pushing that deadline back each year when they open new categories. They've waived the professional fees since the program started. I think they've come to understand that selling Handmade is not entirely the same as selling retail.

    You can find out more about Amazon Handmade here: https://services.amazon.com/handmade/



  • @Raemira I was looking at that! It might be the way I go. They have a whopping 145 handmade chain bracelet listings and I have about 120 finished bracelets. Only about 20 of the postings were chainmaille, so I'd almost double their overall postings and be way ahead on the chainmaille crowd.

    When I had Shopify, I was paying $30/month, so $40/month for a lot more visibility and 'brand trust' built into Amazon is definitely worth another ten bucks, in my mind.


  • Pitcrew

    @Taika You won't have to pay that $39.99/month unless you decide to do something outside of the 'Handmade' category - like sell used books or wholesale retail goods or the like. You'll just have to pay the commissions, credit card processing feels, and shipping. And yeah, having Amazon drive customers is definitely good - plus you can filter things to the Amazon warehouses for FBA orders (aka, Prime Customers). I know someone selling keychains and another selling lockets this way.



  • Knowing that the three of you lovely ladies are on Etsy makes me so very happy.



  • The etsy news is now making me grumpy because I had been hoping to set up there this year.

    We have both old vintage junk I wanted to be rid of for at least a pittance and newly made things I was hoping to shill. Grar.


  • Pitcrew

    @surreality I'm not intending to take my stuff off of Etsy, just because of that one article. The main complaint has some truth to it, but there's also some misinformation being spread in the author's articles. I'd join a group like Artisan Indie - https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheJoyfulEntrepreneur/ - which focuses on business development and management for Makers. The owner of the group sometimes does Facebook Live videos that teach people the best business practices, and talks about the changes and happenings going on within Etsy, Amazon Handmade, Shopify and other eCommerce locations (https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheJoyfulEntrepreneur/videos/). The peers there also help each other out and give recommendations.



  • @Raemira It isn't so much a startup business; we've been doing this for ages. The online presence angle just went poof ages ago when ebay became useless for it and finding our site was a thing that simply didn't happen, and there was a definite level of 'cannot be bothered' when we were doing OK with a pile of shows.

    Before handing things off to me, my mother managed to screw some things up for us (and my husband is helpful, but... sometimes lacking in clue in ways he needs education about re: 'how art shows are different from convention dealer's rooms') and we lost a few shows due to her insistence that our crap displays looked professional. (Just... no, Mom, no.)

    Then she retired, and, welp. Now it's my problem to find new venues. Online should be easier than it actually is.

    I may send the folks to that link, though. They think it's as easy as television commercials tell them on the news: 'two hours and like magic, you have a website, and then the money rolls right in!'

    Meanwhile our digital camera is ancient (2004 called... ), our lighting rig needs either replacement or new bulbs (replacement = cheaper with some LEDs that won't roast me in under 5 minutes) and they don't quite understand that it can indeed take up a whole dining room table to photograph that wee dinky pair of earrings properly, or that 'photograph the earrings, put them in a listing online' often takes as long as making the damned things does.

    Oh, you sweet summer children... (Not a phrase that one normally applies to one's septuagenarian parents, but there you have it, really.)



  • In my case, I was just starting to get things back up on Etsy, and decided to back out of it again. There's a lot of speculation in the article, but the money DID get shipped around and pulled out, and even just stripping it down to:

    They took the money.
    They knew the same day.
    It's taken a while and not everyone has been fixed yet.
    They tried to sleaze around and give store credit versus giving the cash back.

    Nevermind not refunding the overdraft and bounce fees they're not reimbursing and the like.

    It's just really soured me on it. They had a chance to fix a spectacular fuck up and make themselves shine with amazing customer service... and they really pooched the screw instead.



  • @Taika Plus, who is going to rack up $140k in etsy fees. Seriously. Who do they think they're foolin'.



  • @surreality Right?!

    Seriously about the pictures. I swapped to a google pixel 2 xl specifically because it can tell my blue from purple. On an average post (cause I hangups) it takes me... probably an hour of fiddling to get a couple of not-claw-your-eyes-out boring af pics. Then you upload and fill in all those blanks - which isn't too bad. It's the 'write 300 words, minimum, of nice things about the product and get people invested in some bs story'. When all I wanna do is be like: It's shiny, this long, these materials, and this one jingles a bit when you shake it. Buy my stuff.'



  • @Taika Writing product copy is so miserable a nightmare it seriously makes a joy out of writing policy files for obscure corner case MU bullshi--fuuuuuuuck me, now I see how I've been procrastinating all these years...

    But I'm totally not kidding, and I so feel you, oh, gods, do I ever. :|

    We have a Canon 20D. It's great, it is. For... not this any more, really. I know of someone who did amazing print work with one, even, but, y'know, that guy was a photographer for National Geographic for years, and I'm prettttttty sure he knows his stuff better than me in every possible way and he has a full time studio room set up for photography. We don't... have any of any of that. (The years of accumulated clue or the room.) At least when it comes to that, I still have good lenses and can just replace the body with something that works with what I've got.



  • @Taika said in Etsy:

    @surreality Right?!

    Seriously about the pictures. I swapped to a google pixel 2 xl specifically because it can tell my blue from purple. On an average post (cause I hangups) it takes me... probably an hour of fiddling to get a couple of not-claw-your-eyes-out boring af pics. Then you upload and fill in all those blanks - which isn't too bad. It's the 'write 300 words, minimum, of nice things about the product and get people invested in some bs story'. When all I wanna do is be like: It's shiny, this long, these materials, and this one jingles a bit when you shake it. Buy my stuff.'

    If you make a fair amount of those things and they sell for a reasonable price. It might be worthwhile to find someone on Fiverr who'll write your blurbs for you. Someone like this although 300 words seems a lot longer then the Fiverr standard.



  • @Taika @Groth ...I hope they can deal with people numbering things and not naming them. Because I am not coming up with names for that many things.

    If I have to do that, I'm going to jury rig one of those random name generators to spit out things like 'Crashing Rainbow Sunset Flame Earrings', and where is your God(s) then, I ask you.

    Don't you test me, internet. I'm onto your shenanigans.



  • Writing descriptions for my jewellery is the worst. I mean it's there and it's pretty, buy it if you like it why do I gotta write a story for it too???



  • @Groth This is amazing. $5 each @ 120 items is rough, but batching them 3-4 at a time would be sweet and afforadable, for certain!

    Looking at Amazon Handmade, there's a lot less blood and sweat involved. You don't have to have those /ten/ frikking pictures - you can have 1-3 or so and be alright. People don't go to amazon to invest in a story, they go for products and concise descriptions - which is where I might excel. The amount of work is surprisingly diminished for the much larger company, and it's really a surprise.

    It almost feels like the expectations are totally different. With Etsy it's 'stay at home crafty moms have ALL the time ALL the creativity, let's make them do the heavy lifting' and Amazon is more... 'We understand a business has X resources to put into these things in a day, let's give them what they need and keep it on point.'



  • @surreality Hah! I call them things like 'Rainbow and Black Byzantine Bracelet 8"' Fuck those fancy names XD



  • @Taika My dye mentor's husband was great with bullshitting up names in a pinch, so he got that job in her business the second he demonstrated this talent. He did not understand that he was doing magic in front of brain-fried muggles with this rare and precious gift.

    Ever since, he regrets uttering the words 'Sahara Sunset' out loud, he really does.


  • Pitcrew

    @surreality A friend of mine turned me onto this all in one Light Box: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01GIL6EU4/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I purchased it and it's made a whole world of difference in creating photographs for jewelry products, and all I have to do now is play with settings and there's not much editing that needs to be done anymore. Maybe just a few tweaks editing it in raw. I've been playing with it since I got it it in December, and now I just need to sit down with a tripod and get serious about creating photos.


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