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I have found a new craft site for buying and selling crafts. The administrators are a lovely couple, Andrew and Kimberley. There is a warm, cozy community feeling there, like here at ThriftyFun. There is almost immediate help with technical issues. I have had to ask for help several times, being a not too savvy old person. You'll find a forum board for discussions.
I'd love for all of you to have a look since there are many talented crafters here. In this day of internet, sharing this would be a fine addition to your "favorites" list.
To start up selling online, an easy option is to chose a site to post on that already sells. Google the craft your planning to sell and see what sites sell things similar to them. This means people already see and visit these sites for that area of interest. Why reinvent the wheel?
If you hope to go big, you may also want your own site that distinguishes you as a separate business and to post your associated name. This can then be linked to the posts on the aforementioned crafting sites to advertise and sell from.
By lavtoad from OH
Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.
I know nothing about online webpages, etc. How can I set up my own business to sell my handmade recycled crocheted rag rugs. I know what I want to name it. I have 20 made already. Please tell me where to begin and the cheapest route.
This is wonderful and I'll try to help you out. I'll list some sites that you can check out. Some are free and others charge a fee. I wish you all the luck in your adventure.
Aftcra - this site encourages crafters to sell their crafts online.
Articents - here you can sell handmade and vintage items online.
BigCommerce - if you have your own name and want to set up your own online store this is one site you can check out. They have options to help you out and teach you how to make your store and how to sell your work.
eBay - you can always go there and put your work on eBay to sell. You'll need to set up your online store through the platform.
Bonanza - this is yet another great platform that is similar to eBay where you can sell your crafts there.
Cratejoy - I like this platform it helps you to sell your crafts worldwide.
Etsy - many people find this site a good way to sell their crafts. It is like eBay and you can creae your store and sell here.
This is only a few of the ones that I like and they are a good start for you to check out.
Does anyone want to sell their craft items? Please let me know of other craft related places where you can sell or buy craft items.
By Gina Rahman from Manchester, UK
Etsy.com is the only one I can think of.
Does anyone sell homemade items online? If so, I need some advice from you. I need to supplement my low income and want to sell online, but don't know how to go about it. Is there a book for beginners or just some advice you can give me as to the cheapest way to get started? I don't have any money to invest in the business. Do I have to sign up for a domain name, or website creation? Does that come free with sites like Etsy? I am in the dark here. Any help would be appreciated.
By Connie J.
There is a website called etsy.com that people use to sell their craft items. Go there and see what you can find out. You can also advertise your items locally. Just be sure that what you make is something that others want and that it is priced right. Also when I see a homemade item that I like I figure out how I can make it for my own use, for about half the price that it is marked.
I have sold on ebay for over 10 years (though not regularly) and etsy (although I have bought more on etsy than I have sold). Etsy and eBay provide you the "website". (You can of course, go pay for and make your own website, but my advice is to start on some of these pre-made websites initially to learn the ropes and see if your items will sell.) Etsy: You pay them to list items (it is cheap, last I knew it was 20 cents an item), and when it sells they take a small percentage (a very fair percentage) of the sale.
It is easy to list things, the pictures are a bit trickier, but they make that fairly easy also. The items also are searchable on the web, which can draw outside traffic. To join etsy, you sign up and provide credit card and then list your items. Joining is free (eBay also). If you don't know much about making your own page on Etsy, you can buy "banners" from other sellers fairly inexpensively. (eBay also) Etsy is easy, pleasant and a wonderful site, both in terms of selling and buying.
On Etsy pictures are very important, so aim to have the best pictures possible. Go on there and study it a few days before you start, is my advice (and what I did years ago)...(study the rules, see what people are selling, etc). Likewise on Ebay. Crafts on Ebay do sell, but in my opinion, it's not the best forum for crafts since ebay specializes more in "new items" (originally it was a site to sell collectables and you still can, but they have gotten radically away from their original format).
Ebay's listing fees are much more expensive (50 cents per item, last I knew) and their end of sale cut is hovering around ten percent and you pay fees to PayPal (which they own) when people pay with credit / debit cards and last I knew that is the only way you can pay on eBay now, whereas on Etsy other methods of payment are accepted. The costs really add up, when you have several items that don't sell.
Also, the great advantage of Etsy over eBay (besides the fact that Etsy's forum is crafts) is the items stay on Etsy 2 or 3 months, and you have about a week on eBay. Study other people's rules before you start and develop some of your own (your refund policy, policy on mailing times, etc.) Rules might seem "funny" but there are reasons for them.
A fair amount of buyers (about 1 in 10 try this) are dishonest and will say they didn't "get something" (or it's broken)...in the mail, when in fact, they did and want you to refund their money and they get something free (Lost in the mail is fairly rare).
Either do confirmation tracking on your items or have a policy regarding this (Ebay has a "not allowed" policy on this. eBay also favors the buyer, no longer allowing for negative feedback by the seller, which is very unfair.)
Answer all emails, be nice to everyone, follow up on everything and be on the ball @ all times. Pack your items well if they are breakable. Insure very expensive / breakable items. Have an attitude of fairness and treat this like a job. Hope this helps.
Anybody can tell you a lot about this, but honestly, just get out there and do it and you will get the hang of it quickly. Both ebay and etsy make listing items very simple. Also, there are tons of other websites for selling. I haven't tried many of them, so don't consider myself too knowledgeable on them, but if you really want to be successful, spread your work out among several sites and get your own website eventually.
People do make and sell "how to do" books on ebay and etsy, just to let you know, I don't know how useful they are. I think some people just make up these booklets without necessarily having sold anything much other than the booklets :).
A couple of more things. Don't hold me to the fees, etc. for eBay, etsy. I basically sell mostly at Christmas and things change in the meantime :). Also, get to know your automated mailing machine @ the post office. This is a wonderful way to mail things, since you can go there at odd times of day or night and mail things. Much better than standing in lines! Study the postal stuff also as you get started (usps.com).
I am interested in selling my craft items. May I know on which sites I can sell them? Also, I am interested to take class for doll making and craft class for children and ladies (i.e) who want some knowledge of arts items and tanjore paintings and all type of paintings. Can you please give me an idea?
By kavi from Chennai
I would like to sell my windows online. Should I create a store or website? Please let me know how to go about it.
Do you need a business license to sell items on sites like ECrater.com, ArtFire.com, etc?
By AliM from Dallas, TX
Never heard of those sites. I would think in their info pages they would mention if a license is necessary. If they are like eBay then I would say no. But their website should have an area listing all requirements you have to meet as a seller.
I don't know about the sites you mentioned, but for Etsy, Made It Myself or eBay, you will not need a license at this time. That could change anytime though.
Good Luck with your crafting business.
A business license? Or a resale tax #? If a resale tax #, then check with your state. My state is Texas and require such to report taxes.
Online would be the best place for your state to find you doing business without one if they require it.
How about eBay or Craigslist?
Etsy.com would be good bet - it's supported by and for crafters and artisans.
What is a best name for my vase decorating web page?
I decorated about 20 wine bottles and have given them to people as gifts. I enjoy doing it so much that I have more decorated bottles than people to give them to. I thought of flea markets, or eBay? Is there any advice on where to sell it?
What is the best way to sell on-line? How do I make pictures look good on line? I make silk arrangements, but have no luck in selling them.
By Cindy from Middletown, DE
Hi Cindy. I don't have the technical expertise to answer your first question (how to sell online) but I do suggest that you use several "Could be used for . . . " references in your description of each item. This helps the consumer imagine how he/she could use the product.
I can, however, offer a few suggestions for your second question (how to make the pictures look good).
1. Make sure to use a solid color (no prints or patterns), neutral back drop, as busy or loud backgrounds might detract from the arrangement.
2. Make sure the background color contrasts with the particular arrangement, as a low contrast background will wash out the object. (For example, if there are a lot of white flowers, you don't want a white background, maybe a dark taupe or sky blue.)
3. Don't clutter up the picture with unnecessary objects, but do use a reference item if the product is an unusual size. (For example, if the item is a large table top centerpiece, use a single wine glass or water pitcher in the shot but avoid showing an entire dinner setting. Again, this will keep the focus on the product.)
4. Practice good lighting techniques when you photograph the products for posting. (Google or Bing searches on "photography lighting" or "lighting for photography" if you need help brushing up on these skills.)
5. Use a good camera. You don't need a high quality photographer's camera for "internet only postings" but you do need one with an adequate pixel count for high quality web images. Generally speaking the higher the pixel count, the better the image quality of the photo: However, the internet is not designed to use the full pixel capacity of high quality photography so you just need a good "internet posting" camera.
I wish I could explain this camera pixel thing better but the only reason I know this much is because I know someone in the industry. If you are in doubt of your camera quality, and don't know someone in the industry, I'd start by visiting camera shops (without your wallet) and ask a lot of questions.
Best of luck in your venture!
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What is the best way to sell silk flora arrangements on-line? I've tried eBay, artfire, and esty with no luck.
By Cindy from Middletown, DE
Where can I sell my crafts online besides Etsy, and eBay?
By Monique Rowe from Creighton, SK
blujay.com (reminds me of ebay - all sorts of stuff)
artfire.com (more like etsy)
I feel like I know about a couple other places, but can't think of them right now.
Best of luck. I've kept my etsy shop empty for the past year or so, just too busy with my daughter and life. I found out one of my good friends officially closed her etsy shop over the summer. She said sales were down dramatically in the last year. I think about re-photographing and starting to list items again, but I'm just so busy volunteering at school and I'm not comfortable with our new camera. Sometime I'll get around to it! Hope you find the right venue(s) and you have lots of sales. (10/09/2009)
Google etsy, ebay, and when it pulls up a list look for the word similar towards the bottom and hit that. Ruby Lane might be a possibility. (10/09/2009)
By PENNY K
I remembered another! lov.li. I haven't visited their site in ages, but it was okay a while back.
Why not take a look at Craigslist also. They might have a section for hand/homemade items. The only thing is that people would have to come to you (I think) so that might limit you. (10/15/2009)