Can You Earn a Living off Etsy? The Full Breakdown
It’s crazy how quickly the online marketplace is booming, and Etsy is excellent for selling or buying unique things. However, most people are drawn to Etsy because they believe they can make money. So, can you earn a living off Etsy?
You can earn a living off Etsy while doing other things you love, such as your day-to-day work or studying, by following simple tips on making money on Etsy. It’s also a good idea to consider several Etsy fees to ensure that you’re making profits and not losses.
Sounds lucrative? In the rest of the article, I’ll walk you through the entire financial breakdown of making money on Etsy, how to become an Etsy seller, and various money-making tips. I’ll also list the best-selling items. Keep reading to find out more.
Earning on Etsy: The Full Financial Breakdown
You may be thinking about how easy it is to get started on Etsy and make a living from it as a side hustle. However, before choosing this passive income option, you need to grasp the whole financial breakdown of making money on Etsy.
So, I’ll try to cover everything it entails when selling products on Etsy.
How Much Does the Average Etsy Seller Earn?
Running an internet store like Etsy can bring in a lot of money. While you may find many success stories on the internet, obtaining actual data is more difficult than you might expect.
Fortunately, I’ve discovered the average amount a beginner or veteran seller may earn on Etsy after conducting multiple online searches.
A beginner Etsy seller can earn between $50 and $100 each month, which translates to $600 to $1200 per year on average. On the other hand, a successful and experienced Etsy seller might earn between $40,000 and $50,000 per year.
However, the amount you can make on Etsy is determined by various factors.
- The products you’re selling
- Time and effort you dedicate to your store
- The demand for your products
- Your ability to market yourself
Therefore, working full-time on Etsy and managing the above factors can generate enough money to support yourself. So, if you’re serious about Etsy, make it one of your personal goals, and you’ll make enough money to quit your 9-to-5 job.
Although you won’t become a millionaire overnight, selling on Etsy is one of the best methods to experience work flexibility because you can work from anywhere.
If you’re still unsure whether selling on Etsy can help you make a lot of money, let’s start with the average earnings of top Etsy sellers.
How Much Money Do the Top Etsy Sellers Make?
Top Etsy sellers usually make between $45,000 and $65,000 per year. However, Etsy sellers with a solid foundation can earn anywhere from $65,000 to $85,000 per month or $780,000 to $1 million per year.
I know the figures look outright crazy, and your next thought is to quit your daily job. But what you don’t realize is how much time and effort it takes to make a million or even thousands of dollars on Etsy.
Here is a table showing the top 10 Etsy sellers in 2022:
Note: The total sales since the shop was opened. The figures can change by the hour or day.
Let’s take the 1.8 million sales of the PlannerKate1 store, and assume an average item sale of $5. The shop’s total revenue is approximately $9 million.
So, it’s possible to make six figures on Etsy if the success of generating enough sales drives you. To achieve such sales, you’ll need to make your listings look professional by considering SEO, using high-quality images, including keywords, and more.
How Much Does Selling on Etsy Cost?
Even though Etsy is an excellent way to make some extra money, it can’t all be a smooth roller-coaster from start to finish.
Since its inception in 2005, Etsy has had about 7.7 million active sellers and attracted over 95.1 million active buyers with over 120 million items on sale. As a result, the platform is likely to charge a fee to cover the cost of maintaining the e-commerce site to accommodate such enormous blog traffic.
Selling on Etsy costs $10 a month and is offered in two pricing plans, including Free Standard and Etsy Plus. However, several fees, including listing fees, transaction fees, payment processing fees, and offsite ads fees, also apply to both plans.
The good news is that Etsy doesn’t require any additional monthly fees like Amazon and Shopify.
The 3 Types of Etsy Fees
Although Etsy does not charge monthly fees, it’s more confusing than other online selling stores due to the various expenses.
Let’s take a look at different types of Etsy Fees:
- Listing Fee: The charge for using the platform is set at $0.20 per listing. It lasts for about four months until the item is sold. It’s split into two more categories with the same $0.20 per listing. Auto-renew Fee: Applies if your listing goes beyond four months before being sold and you want to re-add it back on your listing. Multi-Quantity Fee: When you include an additional item on the same listing.
- Transaction Fee: This applies once your item is purchased. Etsy’s cut is 6.5% of each sale. It also includes the PayPal fee.
- Offsite Ads Fee: It’s optional, but Etsy will earn 15% of each sale you make when your item is purchased through their offsite ads.
Here is a table showing the summary of the different types of Etsy fees.
|Listing fee||$0.20 per listing|
|Auto-renew fee||$0.20 per listing|
|Multi-quantity fee||$0.20 per listing|
|Transaction fee||6.5% per sale|
|Offsite ads fee||15% per sale|
Note: There is a $10 monthly subscription fee if you opt to purchase the Etsy Plus Plan. The above fees also apply to the monthly subscription.
Therefore, if you wish to sell on Etsy, you should first budget and save money to ensure that you can cover the above expenses. Fortunately, most fees will begin to recur if the item is not sold after four months or when you make your first sale.
So, selling on Etsy is relatively cheaper, and your next step is to become an Etsy seller.
How To Become an Etsy Seller
Now that we’ve covered the financial aspects of selling on Etsy, it’s time to get down to business- setting up an Etsy seller account.
Read Through Seller Policy
Start by reading the seller policy to grasp the basics of selling, such as what you can and can’t sell on the site. You’ll also get acquainted with the conditions of running an Etsy business, depending on which country you’re selling from.
You can now open an account once you’ve read and understood the seller policy.
Sign Up and Create an Account
Most people rarely go through reading the seller’s policy. If you don’t already have an Etsy account, this is usually the first step. After all, they want a quick onboarding process.
You’ll need a primary email address to sign up, or you can use your Google, Apple, or Facebook account instead. When creating your account, you’ll be prompted to choose the following:
- Your shop name
Set Up Payments and Billing Method
During account setup, you must enter payment and billing information.
The payment method is usually the platform you want to be paid through when your listed item is purchased. The most common one is PayPal in eligible countries. However, you can also add bank transfer services and debit or credit card details.
The billing method determines how you’ll pay your Etsy expenses or other subscription fees. They usually send a reversible amount a few days after enrollment to ensure the billing method works.
The three steps above should only take a few minutes, and you’ll be ready to sell on Etsy. However, that isn’t enough; you must also:
- List your items and customize your store
- Consider your business structure and tax obligations to protect your store.
- Once everything is up and running, it’s time to start selling your products on Etsy.
How Long Does It Take To Get Noticed on Etsy?
You’ve already set up an Etsy seller account, so what’s next? One common question most sellers want to know is how long it will take for their products to get noticed on Etsy?
You can get noticed quickly on Etsy and make your first sale from one week to several months. However, it depends on several factors, such as listing items with appropriate keywords and adding professional and clear images.
Let’s start with several tips to get noticed and make money on Etsy.
Tips for Making Money on Etsy
Here are five tips on making money on Etsy.
Pick a Product and Brand Your Store
The very first step is deciding which products to sell. It’s the most challenging stage because you won’t get noticed or make any sales for several months if you make a mistake.
Start by checking what other successful Etsy vendors are selling and do your research well. You can also build or order a prototype to see how your products appear to your customers and ensure that you offer them the best build quality.
Additionally, personalize your store by choosing a unique shop name and designing a personalized logo to match.
Use Clear and Attractive Photos
Your product’s image makes that first impression, so take high-quality, clear photos. You would want the image on your ad to be as appealing as possible to potential customers so that you can stand out and convert sales.
You can improve your photos through the following measures:
- Select a background for your images that will help highlight the details of your products.
- Take multiple shots from every angle.
- Place a familiar object like a pen or a quarter next to your item for accurate sizing.
- Make sure the images are well-lit and edited so that they are appealing.
- Stick to a single theme for your Etsy shop.
Apply SEO to Your Title and Description
If you want to increase your chances of being noticed on Etsy, ensure your title and product descriptions have the correct SEO. Etsy algorithms can pick your product when a buyer searches for that category.
It’s also preferable to include specific keywords in your item and vary them to increase the likelihood of Etsy’s algorithms picking one to display on every search.
Make Your Pricing and Shipping Fees Competitive
You can avoid overpricing and losing potential buyers or underpricing and losing money by pricing your goods correctly. To price your goods correctly, conduct extensive research on the platform or search online.
You can also provide incentives to your customers by lowering shipping charges, as low shipping costs may encourage customers to buy from your store. You can compensate for shipping costs by slightly adjusting the prices of your products.
Market and Promote Yourself
Create a sales strategy if you want your Etsy business to succeed and make more money. You can get your products noticed rapidly and convert sales in the shortest amount of time by marketing yourself.
You can market yourself through the following.
- Share your product listing on social media platforms.
- Buy ads such as the 15% per sale OffSite Ads provided by Etsy.
- Build customer loyalty through reviews and follow-ups.
- Include a coupon code as a bonus with the first listing purchase.
- Use Etsy statistics and Google Analytics to make informed decisions.
- Learn from the community to develop the best ideas for attracting more buyers.
Best Items To Sell on Etsy
From our full financial breakdown to becoming an Etsy seller to tips for making money on Etsy, it’s evident that working and selling on the platform is worth it.
So, let’s get started with the best items you can sell on Etsy.
- Art and collectibles (paintings and figurines)
- Jewelry (rings, anklets, and necklaces)
- Vintage items (fossils and cutlery)
- Paper and party supplies (custom cards and elegant posters)
- Wedding accessories (bouquets and corsages)
- Craft and supplies (crochet and knitting patterns)
- Handmade items (hand-carved invitations)
- Home and living goods (wall decor and candles)
- Clothing (T-shirts and Swimwear)
- Other accessories (hair, scarves, and hats)
Making money on Etsy is no different than starting a small business. Therefore, it requires a proper business strategy, hard work, and diligence. I’ve provided you with everything you might need when starting on Etsy, from setting up an account to the best items you can sell on the platform.
Use our above tips to earn more money and live off Etsy because a newbie seller makes between $600 to $1200 for the first few months. However, you can make between $40,000 and $50,000 per year if you’ve established a solid foundation.