Yes, you read that right! After 11 years on Etsy, I am making the tough decision to step back from it. Don't worry, this doesn't mean Dorky Dino is gone! Instead, all of my products will be moved to my own personal website dorkydino.com. Read on to learn why I'm leaving and why Etsy is not a good fit for my business.
I won't make you wait for it. The bottom line is:
Etsy isn't making me money
Want to know why? Let's talk about the costs of selling on Etsy. I did some of that tough business math and realized that after all of Etsy's fees and shipping costs, I was essentially losing money.
Etsy tries to make it sound like you're getting a great deal. You're only paying 20 cents per item? That's nothing! You would have to pay the processing fees from any platform you used, right? No problem! Plus you only have to pay the advertising fee if the ad works! It sounds like a nice deal.
Let's break it down. I'll even do that thing most businesses don't dare to, and talk about the numbers behind-the-scenes.
I was charging $7 for a keychain. I had to pay $0.20 every 4 months to keep that listing there (as well as a $0.20 renewal fee if the item sold). So that's $6.80 I'm making per keychain sold.
Etsy's transaction fee is 5%, so for a $7 item that's 35 cents. So we're down to $6.45.
The payment processing fee is 3% + $0.25 per order. That puts what I'm making down to $5.99.
That doesn't sound too bad, right? But wait, don't forget about the other costs! Etsy recommends offering free shipping, so you have to either eat that cost or work it into your pricing. When you're selling small items like keychains, adding the cost to your price gets a little out of hand. On average, shipping a keychain costs roughly $3.50, so I can either charge $10.50 for a single keychain, or eat that cost to try to get more sales. So far I had been eating the cost, meaning I was left with $2.49 per keychain sale.
Oh, and if that sale happened to come from an ad, don't forget to take another $1.05 out, to bring us down to $1.44.
You might think that still sounds ok, because I'm still making money, but then from that $1.44-$2.49 you have to take out cost of the physical materials, packing materials, and time spent making and packing each order. This isn't even including time spent photographing and writing descriptions and tags for the item.
Have you ever wondered why small businesses charge so much? Now you know!
What can you do to help?
Support small businesses! Shop directly from them when possible. Tell your friends about our products and what we're doing. Like, comment on, and share our social media posts when you see them. Get excited with us and for us! It makes everything worth it.
With over 150 products, it may take some time for me to move all of my products to my website. In the mean time, if there's anything you wanted but seems to be missing, just let me know and I'll make that item a priority to list on my website!