Online shop comparison

folksy etsy

So, back in October-ish, I pointed out the effort vs sales ratio difference between selling on Etsy and Folksy. I was getting about equal orders but spending about ten times the effort on Etsy to get those sales. I said then that I would give my Etsy shop til the end of the year before deciding whether to keep it or not. Well, I’ve (finally) been checking my 2009 sales for each of my shops and thought I would share some stats with you.

I hope no-one thinks I am showing off. I mean quite the opposite as many people seem to give the impression they sell a lot more than they actually do. I do like that Etsy and Folksy make this more transparent by showing how many items each shop has sold.

Obviously, everyone is different and your experience may be the complete opposite etc. etc. As I’ve said before, there is no best solution, just what works best for you.

trouble shop

Etsy (March – December 2008)
Items sold:53
Average cost of item: $5.80
Average order total: $10.60
No. of people favouriting me: 325

Folksy (July – December 2008)
Items sold: 49
Average cost of item: £2.90
Average order total: £1.95
No. of people favouriting me: 105 / Shopify (January – December 2008)
Items sold: 154
Average cost of item: £4.30
Average order total: £10

– Folksy totals are not exact as they don’t yet provide a full order download.
– Folksy/Etsy prices are higher than my own shop because of the listing fees.

Interesting, no? Clearly, I am not yet making my millions although this doesn’t include cash sales or retail/gallery sales. My aim was to reach 50 sales in both Etsy and Folksy and I so nearly managed it.

To put this in perspective, I never promote my Etsy/Folksy shops, except alongside my main shop. Thus the majority of sales have come from within those sites.

Etsy really took off for me near the end of the year, once I started adding all my Christmas stock. I used the old ‘list one new thing a day’ trick to keep my shop up the listings and that did seem to help, rather than just relisting old stuff. Since then I’ve tried to list something new or relist something old every week day. I got a lot of Treasury love over the summer which didn’t lead to any sales that I know of. Since then, I’ve updated all my photos to have my scalloped border which has led to zero Treasury spots but lots of sales. Go figure. The one thing I learned about Etsy this year was, there is no secret to success; it’s all totally random.

Folksy surprised me by being so successful for me so quickly. I was one of the first people to sign up so I was probably more visible than some, but I had steady sales right from the beginning. After I was Featured Seller and did a Make, it all went a bit mental on the book heart front which carried through until Christmas. I do virtually nothing to promote myself on Folksy, just add new items and relist sold ones.

Shopify has been very steady all year. First order of the year: 1st January. Last order of the year: 30th December! I get more return customers and bigger orders. I feel my totals should be higher here considering I do promote this shop, it has my full stock and all my business cards etc. use this url. Looks like I have some work to do! However, I also feel like these sales have been off my own back. Despite my best efforts, I’ve had very few mentions in the press or blogland this past year and the majority of my sales come via my blog or Twitter.

In conclusion, I will definitely be keeping all three shops open. All of them have had regular orders so far in 2009 so I’m very pleased.

If you’re thinking of setting up shop yourself then my comparison post on ecommerce services might be of interest.

And, yes, I could probably have done my tax return in the time it took me to do this.

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