Etsy is relatively inexpensive as compared to other online stores. It is absolutely free to open a storefront, provided you link a valid credit card to your Etsy account for any billing fees incurred which are due monthly. Unlike other sites, which charge you a flat per month rate just to have a store, Etsy does not.
They do charge a small “per item” listing fee (at the time of this article, only twenty cents per item), which allows you to list an item for sale which stays on Etsy for four months. Included are five photos of your item. If you list multiple quantities of one item, you will pay per item twenty cents each. Therefore, in your item listing if you have five quantity multi-colored crocheted blankets for sale, will cost you $1.00 to list. Many sellers try listing one item at a time, and re listing the item later if it sells.
In addition to listing fees, there are selling fees. Currently these are only 3.5% when your wares sell. (at the time of this article.)
Overall, if you do your homework, the pros are these fees are some of the lowest in the industry and the site is very easy to use. The cons however, is understanding how many sellers are on Etsy, and how to make your item stand out. Being a successful seller will require work and knowledge of how the site works. Using the online Etsy “How Selling Works” guidebook and learning from their blog “The Storque” will give you plenty of tips and tricks to make sure you know the ins and outs of selling. The “Quit Your Day Job” articles found in their blog will explain tips and tricks from top sellers to increase sales.
The only other fees you would incur are those from PayPal, if you choose to use them as a viable payment option. If so, for any monies received from buyers, PayPal would take fees out, directly in your PayPal console.
There are optional services for promoting your wares on Etsy. These would include specialty showcase slots which normally start at $7 per item, per slot. For instance, if you purchase a Thursday night jewelry showcase, you will pay $7. Other showcases range slightly higher and are often referred to as “Main Showcases”. In the past Etsy has also been known to offer print ad discounts to sellers, but these are few and far between. Any options that are being offered can be found in the “Promote” section of your shop.
If your item doesn’t sell in the first four months, there’s an optional re listing option, which will again, cost twenty cents per item, and last you another four months. Your description and item info including photos will all be saved and re listing is as easy as a touch of a button.
Currently, Etsy allows you to sell handmade products, supplies for crafting, or vintage items (their definition is any item over twenty years old.)