6 Reasons Small Business Owners Love Etsy
There are many things to love about running a small business!
Some entrepreneurs dive in full time. Others start around their work commitments so they can pursue a beloved hobby and share their talents with the world.
Artisans who create and sell handmade wares or curate vintage collections are found in both of these groups.
And, you’ll find many of these business owners on Etsy, a popular e-commerce marketplace that allows sellers of handmade and vintage goods to connect with buyers around the globe.
- Etsy is a great way to start a business.
“It’s quite easy to get online and start selling,” says Willoughby. “The infrastructure is all there instantly. You just sign up, upload your goods and you can start selling to the rest of the world.”
- There is no large upfront investment in technology.
“One of the great advantages of Etsy is that it’s very easy – you don’t have to spend a whole lot of money to get the technical infrastructure working and [ensure it is] safe and secure,” explains Willoughby.
- Etsy drives a lot of traffic to your business.
When you host your own e-commerce website, you have to drive all the traffic yourself. Etsy has a huge audience of consumers that might not otherwise find your shop. Willoughby says some merchants sell from their own websites and use Etsy too, but “they will stay on Etsy because it is very affordable for the service that it provides.”
- There is a built-in community of sellers and buyers.
Small businesses are often run by one person, especially in the beginning. With Etsy, business owners have access to an established community of their peers. “Having a network of colleagues doing something similar is very useful,” explains Willoughby. “There is also a network of buyers who love the idea of buying handmade and vintage goods locally and internationally.”
- You can participate in events organized by Etsy vendor communities.
Sellers can join an Etsy Team to meet other business owners with common interests. Teams work together to learn from each other, collaborate, network, socialize and plan events. These events include Made in Canada, which is co-hosted by the Toronto Etsy Street Team and 416Hustler, plus other markets and shows throughout the year.
“Selling art or handmade goods online can be very solitary because you work in your studio on your own, says Willoughby. “Get together for these big events is a great way to meet your colleagues and peers. It is also a really wonderful opportunity for the public to get to know the actual people who are behind these Etsy shops.”
- There are opportunities that help further grow your business.
Etsy Teams work to add value for their merchants. Here’s a great example: the Toronto Etsy Street Team and 416Hustler have partnered with Dream Payments so sellers can easily accept debit and credit cards to process in-person sales at Made in Canada and future events.
“Often at a big show, you’ll get someone who will fall in love with what you [are selling]. If the vendor doesn’t have the ability to accept [debit or credit card] payment, often they will lose the sale. The potential buyer may say they’ll go get the money, but they might spend it elsewhere or never have the opportunity to come back. I don’t think I can overstate the importance of being able to [process debit and credit card sales].”
Ready to start selling online? The Toronto Etsy Street Team offers online classes to get newbies online with Etsy – from opening your shop to shipping your sold items.