I only just found out about Storenvy and the more and more I read about it, the more it looks appealing as a platform for selling my knitted goodies. Like, seriously. I feel like I’ve put so much effort into trying to gain more views and likes for my items in my Etsy store and nothing seems to lead to sales. On top of that, I’m losing money and something I do for fun, is becoming less fun because I can’t be spending money on yarn and listing fees when I have books and tuition to pay for. So I’m going to list pros and cons and by the end of my writing this, maybe I’ll come to a conclusion.
Fees: The #1 appealing quality of Storenvy is that there are zero fees. Yep, no listing fees and no transaction fees. At Etsy I’m popping out $.20 a listing plus a 3.5% transaction fee once I sell an item. And at Storenvy you don’t have to renew your listings, although it won’t help if you want to get more exposure on their new items list.
Promotion: At Etsy, it’s really difficult to get exposure unless you make Treasury on the front page. Even if a lot of people like your item, only the people in their Circle will see that they liked your item (and I am really annoyed by the Circle and Notification system at Etsy.) When you search, the most relevant items appear first and if you just go browsing in the categories, I think it’s the most recently listed items first. They actually changed this recently and it’s too complicated for me to bother looking into. And you can also buy ad space, but that’s not something I ever even considered with my shop. Something I thought Etsy was lacking was a sort of best sellers list or most popular shops directory. Well, Storenvy has that. Storenvy has Marketplaces where you can categorize the type of shop you run (vintage, handmade, indie, music, etc.) When you browse under a Market, they have a list of best sellers, a list of most liked items, and a top selling stores list. That way, what’s most popular ends up at top, rather than the prettiest pictures that fit into some narrow theme. Then you can browse all items and see newest items as well. Storenvy also has a smaller market so it’s much more tight-knit and you don’t have to fight for attention. There’s less competition. But Etsy is more well known outside of the handcraft sellin community. I hadn’t even heard of Storenvy. I also like Etsy’s Treasury feature. But more for the eye candy I think…
So far, it looks like Storenvy is winning.
Community: Something I like about Etsy is the community. I like the idea of Teams and I especially find their Etsy Success series really helpful. I feel like at Etsy, they help you run/start a business. However, I read a few things on the Storenvy forums about Etsy being snobby? I don’t really get that vibe when I interact with people in the Etsy forums but I could see what they might be getting at, especially if you are an Etsy seller who doesn’t get that many sales while some sellers have too much to handle. Oh, and pricing. Sometimes I see thing on Etsy that I wonder, who would pay xxx amount of dollars for that? It’s hard to put yourself in that picture as a new seller. So I guess, yeah, I can see Etsy being a little snobbish now, too.
Shop Front/ User Friendliness: Etsy is easy enough to use. The only bad thing is that they keep changing their policies as of late and I don’t have time/don’t feel like reading about all their changes. Oh and they’ve been having server issues recently so their site’s been down a few times in the past few weeks. Doesn’t seem too good to me… But with an Etsy shop you can’t change your shop layout or customize it other than a banner and the recently added About page (which I believe no one actually looks at.) Storenvy shops are fully customizable with HTML/CSS (or so I’ve read about since I haven’t opened a shop yet.) While this may be a little more troublesome if you’re not a techie, I’ve dabbled in some website design in my Neopet days and I play around with my Tumblr theme often enough that I think I can handle it. AND you can fully integrate a Storenvy shop onto Facebook so people can buy directly from Facebook. How neat is that? Although I don’t use my Facebook much, I can see myself using it for my shop. I also like how you can list one product, then put in options for different sizes and colors, rather than doing one listing for each option. It’s much more like a real online store (like when you buy something from an online retailer.)
Ok, so wow, this has gotten really slanted isn’t it? I think all in all, Storenvy looks like a better option for someone who isn’t making money on Etsy due to its over-saturation. There is no way I’m gonna get exposure and sales there AND be a full time college student. With one week of summer left, I might begin to integrate to Storenvy and use both at the same time for a while. It’s a pity since I worked so hard on my Etsy this summer but I need to step back and realize I’m not getting anywhere there. And I think as long as I promote via social media and word of mouth, I can maintain the same exposure.
Near-midnight thoughts… yeah, this post was impulsive but I needed to think this through. Time for bed. I’m waking up early for Zumba tomorrow morning, getting a hair cut, and buying things for school. But if any of you have had experience with Etsy or Storenvy or both leave me your thoughts below. Which do you think is better?
I didn’t feel like making a whole new post but I just made a Storenvy to try it out. I’m still working on listing everything but please check it out here or in the link on my main menu.