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The world of ecommerce is ever-evolving with new platforms and solutions emerging all the time.
You might be reading this post because you're an existing Etsy seller wondering if there's a better option for your business.
Or perhaps you haven't started your handmade business yet and you're still weighing options. Investing in a particular ecommerce store platform is a big deal because switching to another isn't always easy once you're invested.
Either way, in this post, we'll take a look at 15 of the best alternatives to Etsy, as well as some of the specific advantages and disadvantages of each.
By the end of this post, you'll understand which solution is best for your business.
Let's dive in!
Etsy has experienced tremendous growth since it was founded in 2005. Today, it is one of the most popular ecommerce websites for handmade and vintage items – becoming a household name for shoppers and crafters alike.
The success of the Etsy store is a testament to how successful online platforms can be if they focus on providing quality products and services that meet customer needs.
However, this success has also led to a need for Etsy alternatives. While Etsy is an excellent platform for buying and selling handmade items and vintage products, it may not be the best choice for everyone.
And it's not the only game in town if you have handmade goods to sell online.
Many other online marketplaces provide similar services, with some offering more specialized features than Etsy and others being cheaper or more convenient.
There is also some value in selling your products on Etsy and another platform for wider exposure.
One reason merchants move away from Etsy is because of its limiting and sometimes restrictive rules on what users can sell (and how they can sell it). More on that later.
Another reason that merchants look for alternatives is to gain ownership of their ecommerce stores.
Etsy and other third-party marketplaces own all of an online store's data, making it a challenge to run advanced marketing campaigns or access customer insights without the risk of violating a third-party agreement.
In other words, you can’t send retargeting ads or automated emails to customers across your sales channels.
Finally, some users switch away from Etsy after hitting high sales volume numbers. Here's why.
Suppose you've been really cozy on Etsy doing handmade production, but your business is growing to the point that you want to pivot to outside production and feature mass-produced items.
This is a normal business evolution, especially for those that want to scale.
In that case, Etsy will prohibit you from selling your items on their platform.
Why? Etsy won't let merchants resell on their platform. Doing so goes against their house rules. They consider it selling items that you, as the seller, didn't design or make. The only exception to that rule is vintage goods.
Limitations such as these make it a challenge to grow your ecommerce business with an Etsy shop, which is one of the reasons why merchants go looking for a better, more flexible alternative to the Etsy platform.
So, how do you know you've outgrown Etsy? Or that it just isn't a good fit for your online business?
If you're a seller or merchant looking to make the switch or avoid Etsy in the first place, here are some questions to ask yourself:
If you are testing a product listing's traffic on Etsy to see if an audience responds and you’re not getting the traffic or sales you expected, it could be time to explore other platforms.
Etsy is limited in the customer data it gathers, which can be problematic for businesses looking to grow their customer base or get better insight into their target buyers.
As mentioned, Etsy and other third-party marketplaces own all of an online store's data.
If you're looking for more control over customer insights or running advanced marketing campaigns, a switch may be in order.
As mentioned earlier, Etsy prohibits merchants from selling items they didn’t design or make themselves. If you need to offer more options and cannot do so through Etsy, consider an alternative.
Say you've gotten a small business loan and want to start mass-producing your handmade goods immediately. In that case, Etsy won't be your best option - look for an alternative.
By asking yourself these questions and understanding the limitations of Etsy and other third-party marketplaces, you can determine if now is the right time for you to switch and try an alternative ecommerce platform.
Here are 15 of the best Etsy alternatives that handmade craft sellers can try out in 2023. All of these platforms have something unique to offer and can help you expand your business’ reach.
Whether you’re looking for a more specialized service or a cheaper option, there’s sure to be something here for you.
We selected each web-building alternative to Etsy based on:
The Shopify ecommerce platform was founded in 2006 and since then, it's developed into one of the best all-around Etsy alternatives in the market.
It offers everything you need to launch a custom online store and manage sales and payments. Once you get it launched and going, it handles everything from marketing and payments to secure transactions and shipping.
The platform also features customizable templates with free website designs that allow you to quickly and easily launch your store.
Amazon Handmade is Amazon’s version of an Etsy store. From jewelry to stationery to pet supplies, Amazon Handmade is a booming online marketplace for skilled artisans and craftspeople to scale their businesses.
Potential Amazon handmade sellers will also be happy to know that the platform offers buyers access to millions of items from around the world, thereby extending the reach of your brand.
This website has been around since 1995 and let's be honest, who hasn't bid on an eBay item? It’s one of the oldest and most popular marketplace websites to buy, sell and trade items. It offers buyers access to a variety of goods from sellers all over the globe.
Bonanza was founded in 2008 and they offer buyers access to unique, one-of-a-kind items from all over the world.
Unlike Etsy, Bonanza's focus isn't on crafts and handmade items. Instead, it is a more general marketplace and its booths include cosmetics, dishes, furniture, jewelry and more.
Bonanza also lets you list your items on its marketplace or build your own online store. That means you get to keep customers and maintain control over your brand.
Folksy is one of the biggest online marketplaces in the world, counting 10,000 UK artists, designers and artisans as its users.
It's also one of the best Etsy alternatives if you live in the United Kingdom. One of the primary things that set Folksy apart from Etsy and other ecommerce platforms is there are no shipping costs.
Started in 2008, it prides itself on being an ethical platform for independent designers and makers. The marketplace has a focus on handmade items and artwork.
Aftcra is one of the best Etsy alternatives if you are selling handmade products made in America. Additionally, it's a great marketplace to showcase your unique products to buyers who appreciate originality.
Research has shown that Magento is used to design around 20% of ecommerce sites globally. Magento Open Source was first released in 2007 and it is the open-source version of Adobe Commerce.
Those looking to set up a full-fledged online store may find this website builder to be the best Etsy alternative.
WooCommerce is an open-source and flexible ecommerce platform that is built for and powered by WordPress.
The platform allows users to create their own websites without any technical expertise and set up a shop quickly.
It also helps integrate third-party apps easily, making it one of the most popular platforms among beginners. With a WooCommerce account, you can upload unlimited products and have full control of your site.
Launched in 2004, Squarespace is a popular ecommerce site-builder. The company provides SaaS services for building and hosting Websites.
It allows merchants to use pre-built drag-and-drop elements and modern, elegant templates to create and modify pages on websites. You can easily create a beautiful website or blog with it.
Founded in 2005, BigCartel is a great place to set up an independent ecommerce site. Unlike Etsy, it allows you to launch a personal website, giving your business a more standalone brand prominence and presence.
You can list items such as handbags, art, pottery and stickers on their online marketplace.
Each month, over 100 million people tap on Instagram shopping posts, making it one of the most popular platforms for businesses to market their products and services.
In 2019, Instagram launched its new shopping feature, which allows merchants to tag items in photos and promote them directly on their page.
This feature makes it much easier for customers to shop right from the app without having to leave and visit a website.
Bad aesthetics don't show your goods in the best light, which could be a dealbreaker for a shopper looking to buy your wares.
Enter Wix, a website builder which has been around since 2006, which allows users to create a stunning digital store with just a few clicks.
Wix also integrates seamlessly with dozens of third-party apps, making it a great all-in-one solution. Likewise, Wix offers Etsy integration so you can hold onto your existing product listings.
Weebly has been around since 2006 and it's great for those looking to launch a professionally designed store in minutes. It's also one of the more affordable site builders out there, offering premium plans for as little as $26 per month with annual billing.
With Weebly, you can customize your digital store with product images, descriptions, pricing and more and you can also link it to a payment gateway for secure transactions.
Volusion is an excellent Etsy alternative for sellers with more advanced needs. It was founded in 1999 and offers an easy-to-use ecommerce platform that allows merchants to customize their stores and increase sales.
You can use Volusion's resources to build a website with a custom domain. Volusion's website is responsive, so users can view your store on any device.
Storenvy is a great Etsy alternative for those who are looking to launch their own store without spending a lot of money.
They offer low-cost plans that start at only $14 per month and also have an app (iOS and Android) so you can manage your store from anywhere.
Its marketplace combines the best aspects of an ecommerce platform with those of a social network – you can launch a store and also interact with other buyers and sellers to boost your sales.
As you can see, there are a lot of great Etsy alternatives out there that let you set up your own store. But which one is the right fit for your business?
Ultimately, the answer will depend on your individual needs and budget. Here are some tips to help you choose the best marketplace for your store:
By keeping these tips in mind, Etsy sellers and those new to the game should be able to choose the best Etsy alternative for your business.
Having your own digital store gives you a unique platform to showcase and sell your products. It also allows you to build relationships with customers, market your business better, have more control over pricing and offers and establish yourself as a serious brand.
Additionally, an independent digital store will give you more flexibility in terms of design and features compared to some of the larger market marketplaces like Etsy.
The top ecommerce sites that are competitors to Etsy include eBay, Amazon Handmade and Shopify. Each of these marketplaces offers their own unique benefits and features, so it's important to research which one is right for your business.
If you’re selling crafts, then one of the best Etsy alternatives is Amazon Handmade. This marketplace was created specifically for handmade products and offers attractive features like low commission fees and integrated Amazon Prime shipping options. Additionally, it provides promotional tools to help you reach more potential customers.
Yes, various marketplaces allow you to sell handmade crafts for free. However, each of these platforms has different fee structures when it comes to other services like processing online payments or using subscriptions. So before signing up with one of these marketplaces, make sure you understand the fees and what services are included.
Yes, you can design your own ecommerce website. Once you're done, you can sell from your stand alone online store. However, it takes skill and knowledge to develop and maintain it, which many entrepreneurs simply don't have. It takes resources and skill to build your own retail site and publicize it so shoppers can find you. If you've got all that or can hire someone with those skills, then selling from your own site could be a great option — but it generally costs more than many of the options listed above.
Etsy alternatives such as AliExpress, Wish and Etsy International are all popular choices for international sellers. These platforms offer a range of features, including multi-language support, currency conversion tools and secure payment processing.
Etsy is a powerful ecommerce platform with a solid track record and well-earned success. That said, it may not be right for everyone.
Take a closer look at each of these 15 platforms before making a decision. Dive deep into their features and make sure they align well with your goals.
Choosing an ecommerce store platform is a big commitment, so it's worth spending some time weighing all your options before committing to one.
Linnworks is an ecommerce inventory and order management software that helps retailers automate inventory management processes, reduce costs and grow their business.
We also seamlessly integrate with Etsy (and just about every other ecommerce software out there) so you can manage your shipping, quality control and multi-channel inventory processes from one convenient dashboard.
Contact one of our experts or book your free demo today!
Speak to us to find out how Linnworks can connect and automate your commerce operations so you can capture every revenue opportunity.