Is Etsy oversaturated with sellers?
We have all heard it over and over again.
“Etsy is too oversaturated with sellers.”
“There is no way my Etsy shop is going to make it with so many people selling the same thing I am.”
Let’s look at Etsy with a different set of eyes
Etsy is a marketplace, so let’s imagine it as a mall. This mall has 13 stores. All of stores sell jewelry. Now this mall has many visitors. People love going to this mall because they have a variety of jewelry stores to choose from and they are known for having a safe and secure environment.
The mall does it’s job by providing the stores with everything it needs to run a business. A safe environment for both buyers and sellers, traffic to the mall, tools to promote each store, + easy store set up.
That leaves the store owner with a list of responsibilities. These responsibilities include running their business, promoting their store, handling their finances, attracting their customers, making the sale and providing exceptional customer service to keep the customers coming back to their store and choosing them over the other stores.
Now as I said, the mall is full of jewelry stores who sell the same thing. So why does only 3 of the 13 stores make really good sales, while the others hardly sell any items at all?
Is it because it’s oversaturated?
Survival of the Fittest
It’s survival of the fittest. These 3 stores do much more than just have pretty displays. They do anything and everything to be better than the other 10.
They make flyers, they promote online, they run contests, promotions, giveaways. They pass out promotional materials. They tell their business back story, why they started, what makes them special. They wrap their items so they will make it home without being damaged. They use pretty paper to make the buyer see the quality and pride they take in each item. They price their items competitively but not at discounted prices to seem cheap. They go above and beyond the norm.
It’s not luck folks. It’s hard work, and hard work pays off.
Now let’s take a look at your Etsy shop.
You sell X handmade item. You take pride in what you do, but your items are not selling.
You think you are doing what you should be. You create a listing, you try to take pretty pictures, you post them on social media. Still, you have very few sales. What gives?
Well. That is the norm. That is what most Etsy shop owners do. If you are just selling on Etsy as a hobby, you’re done. For those of us that want more, we need to do more. A lot more.
A personal story for all of those who continue to think that Etsy is over populated.
My husband and I started a plumbing business in San Diego a few years ago. Plumbing is one of the most saturated businesses in the market. There is a record number of plumbing businesses in San Diego. There is also a ton of cheap labor and unlicensed people doing work. Did my husband ever doubt that he can make it, nope. Does it suck that there is so many businesses that do the same thing, yes, but we focused on what was going to make ours different. We started handing out flyers door to door. My husband took pride in the work he completed. He was always clean and presentable. He always arrived on time. He priced himself competitively, never cheap. He knows how much he is worth. A lot more went into it, (including hand written holiday cards) but did we find success? Yes. It can be done. Many other plumbing businesses have started up and failed but we pulled through.
Same as with my Etsy shop. Is there a ton of shops that sell very similar things I do? Yes, but I still make a killing and you can too.
Persistence is key. Treat your Etsy shop as a business. Don’t give up. Pull through.
Before you go into a rampage in the comment section about how you do everything and still Etsy is not cutting it, remember that relying on Etsy for traffic and sales is one of the biggest mistakes a shop owner can make!
Now tell me, do you treat your Etsy Shop as a business or a hobby?