I’ve been selling online since the 1990s as soon as I coded my first website. It took me zero seconds to grasp the concept and potential of the internet. Since that time, I have had a website selling my art and designs, which means this was before eBay, Amazon, Google and definitely before Etsy.
Since there were no payment processors online, I used a little known site called Kagi to process payments and mail them to me, or people wrote me checks and mailed them.
Anyway, I’ve been selling online for all these years, and I’ve always had my own website that I designed or coded until 2016 when I moved Blue Morning Expressions (2004) to the Shopify platform.
In all fairness, I have/had three or four Etsy stores since 2006 and have done a decent amount of business there over the years. That changed dramatically when Etsy decided to let people outsource in 2015. I changed directions and never looked back.
Today, I still throw things up on Etsy on occasion, but here are the Etsy things that I don’t have to deal with by having my own site:
- Ads on my listings directing people elsewhere
- Twitchy SEO that seems more like keyword stuffing than true SEO
- Ending up on page 15 in a search result because they decide to give new shops exposure
- Pretending that there are no shipping costs
- A star seller ranking that comes and goes
- Independence from people who don’t have my best interests at heart
- Some crazy offsite ad program that doesn’t allow you to see the metrics involved
- Limited buyers who are on the Etsy platform
I sell on two platforms: Shopify and Amazon Handmade. Amazon Handmade is the bulk of my handmade sales while my Shopify website comes in second, but both of these are relatively hassle-free, so I am good with that. Amazon Handmade has some hefty fees, but the exposure and sales make up for the difference. Shopify is less expensive than Etsy and have way more bells and whistles than you’ll ever use.
If you sign up for Shopify, I might make a little money, so thanks!