There are many options out there for selling your handmade items. It can be very overwhelming in the beginning. Starting out you should narrow your choices down to one or two different places to sell. The main place that will be discussed on this blog is Etsy, but we'll try to touch base on others as well.
So today lets take a brief look at Etsy. What is Etsy? Etsy is sometimes compared to Ebay. You have listing fees, commission fees, and you also have the option of using Paypal. I highly recommend using Paypal for your transactions. It is the safest way to send and receive money on the Internet. Etsy houses a large volume of handmade items as well as vintage items. For an item to be considered vintage it must be at least 20 years old. Etsy is also well known for the seller community that it offers. There are so many resources to be found and most of them are all user friendly. You have numerous help guides, success guides, chat rooms, forums, and much more! Etsy even holds "classes" in the form of a virtual lab. This is a very good feature, especially for newbees, to learn the ins and outs of selling and to get direct information for administrators. The videos and classes in the virtual labs are all free and done live in real time.
The main downfall that many people complain about on Etsy is the fact that your items can easily get "lost" among all the other items being sold. There are several things that you can do to help combat this problem. The first most important thing for you do in any business is advertise. I highly suggest that you find resources and ways to advertise your business from day one. (We'll get more into advertising on another post.) This way you are bringing in traffic from many areas at the same time and gain yourself much needed exposure. Another thing that you can do, and not very liked among many Etsy sellers, is to renew at least one item per day. Items on Etsy are listed in their categories in the order that sellers list them, so renewing your item will bump it up to the top of the category for all to see. This is okay to do, but realize that there is a .20 fee associated with renewing items. If your not careful you can really run your bill up hitting that renew button! So do at least one, then whatever your budget allows thereafter. You may also choose to do run a showcase for a specific category of your store. These will usually run you about $7 a day. Running a showcase will allow one of your items to be shown at the top of the on of the main subcategory pages. This is great advertisement and a good way to get your shop noticed. Again be careful when choosing to do showcases and be sure that you stay within your budget.