Selling on Etsy vs Your Own Websiteon May 16, 2022
Etsy is a powerful marketplace for new sellers, but as your store grows you may be looking to take control over your shop. By building your own website, you can take control of the growth and design of your store.
Both strategies have something to offer, depending on your needs. In this article, we’ll be going into detail on what each platform has to offer, and which is right for you!
Why Sell on Etsy?
Etsy has become one of the largest and most popular marketplaces for new and experienced sellers alike. With well over 80 million users, it’s become an incredible way to get your products recognized without building your own store.
Etsy provides a number of tools and other benefits, which make it one of the largest and most active marketplaces available. However, it has limitations that are important to consider when scaling your business. Below, we go into detail on Etsy’s most significant pros and cons.
Ease of Use
One of the most notable pros of selling on Etsy is the ease of setting up and maintaining your store. If selling is primarily a side gig, and you’d like to keep it that way, then Etsy’s platform may suit your needs!
Large Built-In Audience
Another huge benefit to selling on Etsy is the existing audience. By joining their platform, you have access to millions of active users. While this means more competition, it also gives you a huge pool of users to help get your products out there!
Listing & Transaction Fees
While most e-commerce tools charge transaction fees, Etsy is quite expensive, with a 6.5% fee on each listing. By gaining ownership over your website, you can reduce or even eliminate these fees.
Another disadvantage faced by Etsy sellers is the high competition. Thousands of users are selling very similar products, all within the same marketplace, so it can be difficult to get recognized among the sea of listings.
Why Sell on Your Own Website?
While Etsy provides incredible tools for getting started, building your own website opens the door to many new opportunities. Owning your shop gives you full control over the growth and design of your website, which allows you to develop your brand and retain more customers!
While selling on your own website provides freedom, it also typically requires more commitment than an Etsy shop. So before you take the leap of faith, it’s important to consider the pros and cons of owning your own website.
The most notable benefit of owning your own website is creative freedom. This means you can select the font, colors, images, and designs featured on your website. By doing this, you can provide your audience with a more personalized and branded store.
Creating your own website typically means lower transaction fees. While maintaining your store yields its own investments, you’re typically subject to significantly fewer transaction fees than on Etsy.
Marketing and Growth
Owning your own website also gives you a unique platform to build your brand and retain your audience. By creating a website, you open the door to a number of new strategies, which allow you to accelerate your growth and traffic!
Maintenance and Management
With creative freedom, also comes responsibility. Owning your own website also means maintaining it. This could range from adjusting the aesthetic to user flow, which can be difficult for new sellers. However, the maintenance can be reduced by selecting a web builder, like Wix or Squarespace, which automatically updates your site.
While websites save you money on each transaction, they require a fixed monthly investment of anywhere from $14 to $299 to access their tools and templates. However, as your traffic increases, the reduction in transaction fees essentially pays for your hosting!
Integrating your Etsy Shop with Your Website
Previously, you had to decide whether Etsy or a personal website is best for you. Fortunately, with Etsy360, you can leverage the benefits of both by integrating your Etsy shop with your own website! This allows you to leverage Etsy’s transaction and processing tools while providing you with the website’s tools for branding and growth.
To get started, all you have to do is select which web builder you’ll be using and start your free trial! In the next section, we’ll go into detail on a few of the best platforms and what they have to offer.
Once you’ve selected your web builder, you can then start editing and designing your website to fit your brand. After you’ve built and customized your site, you can head over to your host’s plugin directory, where you’ll find the Etsy360 plugin!
Then, you’ll be able to integrate your Etsy shop into your website. This allows you to take advantage of the growth and design aspects of owning your own website, without giving up Etsy’s product and transaction tools. This is also a great way to transition into fully owning your website if that’s the route you decide to take.
Best Websites for Hosting Your Shop
While Etsy offers a number of tools for scaling your business, building your own website grants you full creative freedom. And as you just learned, now you can pair the best of both worlds! Now, it’s time to consider which platform is best for your business! While there are countless powerful web builders available, this list compiles the four most notable:
Wix is a super powerful web builder that simplifies the web design process. Well known for its drag-and-drop web page designer and an incredible selection of built-in tools, Wix also comes in extremely affordable packages!
- Combo: $14 per month
- Unlimited: $18 per month
- Pro: $23 per month
- VIP: $39 per month
If you’re looking for the most bang for your buck, head over to Wix to explore their tools and over 800 templates! They also provide a free trial, so you can design your website before investing in a paid plan.
Shopify is one of the most well-known e-commerce solutions, powering over 20% of all stores on the internet! Many successful companies like Nestle, BeardBrand, and GymShark, trust Shopify to provide a responsive and reliable experience, which is one reason it’s a go-to for many entrepreneurs.
With loads of analytic, marketing, and design tools, Shopify is a powerful tool for small and large businesses alike. They offer four plans, as well as a free trial to get started!
- Basic: $29
- Shopify: $79 per month
- Advanced: $299 per month
WordPress powers nearly 40% of the internet, and is established as one of the most powerful web development tools. With WordPress, you own your site and must select the plugins necessary for your business.
While this takes longer than using Shopify or Squarespace’s built-in e-commerce solutions, you can tailor plugins for your business, speeding up your website and removing unnecessary factors!
WordPress is completely free to use, however you must purchase hosting. Hosting prices can go for as little as $4 a month, which is significantly cheaper than the alternatives.
The remainder of the cost goes into plugins. Many of these are free, but some can cost between $2 and $200 per month. With a little bit of research, you can build a website with similar tools as Shopify for much cheaper.
While it’s not as well-known as some of its competitors, Squarespace has been recognized as the greatest platform for professional-looking sites, all without the hassle of learning how to code.
With numerous beautiful and responsive websites, this is a great place to start if branding and design are your priority. Squarespace also offers cost-efficient prices, tailored to your level of need:
- Personal: $14 per month
- Business: $23 per month
- Basic Commerce: $27 per month
- Advanced Commerce: $49 per month
These are just four of many incredible web builders, which allow you to grow your traffic and personalize your branding! Each web builder provides unique tools, so to find which is best for you, create a list of features you’re looking for. Then, compare the list with each platform and analyze which is most closely aligned with your priorities!
Selling on Etsy vs Personal Websites
As you’ve seen, both Etsy and personal websites offer a number of pros and cons. So, there isn’t always one choice that’s best for everyone. The most important factor to consider is which platform benefits your business’s goals the most.
If you prioritize ease of use, Etsy is an incredible place to start. If you prioritize growth and branding, building your own website is likely the best route. And if you’re stuck in-between, don’t worry. You can install the Etsy360 plugin into your website, and experience the best of both worlds!