How Hard Is It To Sell on Etsy? 5 Things To Know

If you want to turn your artistic passion into a stream of income, chances are Etsy must have crossed your mind.

But despite the numerous success stories, you might be wondering whether you have what it takes to make a kill on the platform.

So just how hard is it to sell on Etsy?  

Here are 5 things to know about selling on Etsy:

  1. Etsy has selling restrictions.
  2. Your shop name matters.
  3. Pictures are everything.
  4. Etsy has seller fees.
  5. You will not get rich quickly.

If you want to be a successful seller on Etsy, you have to understand the ins and outs of the platform. Thankfully, in the rest of this article, I’ll shed more light on the above factors to help you make a solid income. Let’s get started!

1. Etsy Has Selling Restrictions

Etsy is not an open marketplace, meaning you have to abide by the platform’s selling restrictions. Thankfully, Etsy only restricts store owners from selling a handful of items.

Here are the six categories of items Etsy does not let store owners sell:

  • Items made from animals that are threatened or endangered.
  • Weapons, firearms, and explosives.
  • Items that promote or glorify violence and hatred.
  • Copywritten materials.
  • Handmade items that you did not create.
  • Drugs, alcohol, and tobacco products.

The restriction new sellers are most likely to run into on Etsy is copyrighted material. While a crochet Baby Yoda may sell well on Etsy, it is against terms of service, and you could find yourself banned from the platform.

As much fun as it is to make art around media you’re a fan of, it’s not worth the risk of losing your Etsy store.

Therefore, I recommend that you follow the above item restrictions for selling on Etsy.

2. Your Shop Name Matters

The next thing you should know about selling on Etsy is that your store name matters. You need to understand that your store name is a driving factor in how many people will click through to your product listings or storefront page.

I understand coming up with a catchy store name is incredibly difficult, and it’s something I struggled with when I was new to Etsy. 

When choosing a name for your store, try to come up with something unique that resonates with your brand or items. Ideally, the name should also be relatively easy for clients to remember and also refer to friends and family. 

You can find more tips about building your brand here

3. Pictures Are Everything

Low-quality images are the number one sin you can commit as an Etsy seller.

When customers browse through an online shopping platform like Etsy, they scan through the pictures until one catches their eye. If you post low-quality, unattractive images, you can rest assured that no clients will be drawn to your listing.

And if no one is drawn to your listing, you won’t make any sales. 

Read also: Does Selling on Etsy affect unemployment?

Therefore, if you want to sell successfully on Etsy, you need to learn how to take high-quality product photos.

When it comes to product photography for Etsy, you have two options. You can either hire a professional photographer or learn product photography.

If you’re a hands-on person, you may find taking your own photos fun! Learning a new skill that helps your business is a rewarding activity. However, if you want to spend time focusing on what matters most to you, creating your product, you may consider hiring a professional.

Hiring a professional is also a great way to ensure high-quality images. As an amateur product photographer, your images may not be up to par with those of your competitors on Etsy.

If you’ve decided to learn product photography on your own, allow me to give you three tips to get started:

  • Create a compelling background. When taking a photo of a product, your background should be related to the product. If you’re selling a ship in a bottle, maybe you’d take the photo with a sandy background, or if you’re snapping pics of wine glasses, you might consider setting up a charcuterie board.
  • Lighting is key. Bad lighting is a sure way to ensure no one clicks on your Etsy listing. The most important part of learning photography is understanding how light interacts with photos– and product photography for Etsy is no different!
  • Edit your photos. If you want to make your images pop, you need to touch them up afterward. I recommend bringing your best images into Adobe Lightroom and playing with the colors until the product stands out.

I hope those tips help you get started on your Etsy photos! Who knows, if you hone your product photography skills, maybe you can turn it into a reliable side income by offering your skills as a freelance photographer.

4. Etsy Has Seller Fees

That’s right; you have to pay if you want to sell on Etsy. Fortunately, Etsy seller fees are not too expensive. However, you still need to consider seller fees in your analysis of whether or not to sell on Etsy.

Here are Etsy’s most common sellers fees:

Type of Etsy Seller FeesPrice of Fee (USD)
Listing fee$0.20
Transaction fee6.5% of your listing price and shipping cost
Etsy Plus Subscription (optional)$10 per month

As you can see, Etsy charges relatively reasonable fees considering it exposes you to thousands of potential clients. If you aren’t scared off by Etsy seller fees, let’s move on to the last thing you should know about selling on Etsy.

5. You Will Not Get Rich Quickly

Selling on Etsy is not an effective way to get rich quickly. To be successful on Etsy, you need to work hard and produce consistent quality products for a long time.

While it’s true that some Etsy sellers rake in a six-figure salary overnight, the odds of you having the same success is slim. However, it’s not impossible to find some success on Etsy.

You may not end up with a million-dollar business overnight, but if you work hard and produce products people want, you can make a comfortable living from Etsy. Plus, you can pair your Etsy earnings with some passive income streams to feel the comfort of financial independence.

Final Thoughts

If you’re considering giving Etsy a try, it’s best to put your best foot forward by selling top-drawer items. It would also help to upload high-resolution photos as they’re your best shot at attracting potential clients to your profile. 

Finally, it’s crucial to understand that selling on Etsy requires patience and a high level of consistency. 

About Hi' my name is Simon. I am the owner of Top Work Life. Together with a my team, I write content about income generating ideas, entreprenurship and growth as a person Read more about Simon & TopWorklife

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