Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Etsy or Artfire?

I have read alot of articles by Etsy artisans, complaining about how things are run. I started to get nervous about some of their concerns and decided it was time to open an Artfire shop. I really thought the new shop would work out so much better. One of the big advantages was that listings are free where Etsy charges 20 cents per listing.
After several months, with no sales at all, I posted a comment in the Artfire forums. I got lots of replies on all the mistakes I made in my shop. I even got my first sale from another artisan. There was a surge in visitors, a total of 47 that day to be exact. But despite my chit chat at the forums, I still get only one visitor a day if I am lucky (I get about 20 visitors a day at Etsy). I asked again why don't I get any visitors and why is my stuff at the bottom of the search list, and the reply is that I should be a Pro member, which is $14.95 per month. Ooooohh, I knew there had to be a catch.
I have had 126 sales at Etsy in a year and only one at Artfire in 5 months. I am trying to weigh the differences between the two and I think I should stick with Etsy. Am I missing something? Do you have a shop? Have your visited these sites? Do you have any opinion on them? Inquiring minds want to know.

5 comments:

Lisa - Alterity Button Jewelry said...

In my opinion, I think Artfire doesnt get half the traffic that Etsy does. I have had a shop in Artfire for over a year and still only one sale. I'm not too thrilled with the way things go at Etsy sometimes, but Etsy is the best venue for online sales at this time. If you were to have your own website, Etsy brings in much more traffic that your own site would bring. I just suck it up and stay with Etsy.

sophie said...

I know little about the internals of how things work on either site, but, like Lisa, I suspect that Etsy has far more web site visitors and so your chances of being discovered there are greater.

It would be interesting to see numbers for the number of sellers and the number of sales for a one month window on both sites. Maybe your experience on Artfire isn't typical and you really just need to tweak your stuff ... but I doubt it.

Sharkbytes said...

Don't know much about either. I listed some stuff on Etsy for a while, but it didn't go anywhere. I didn't do enough other marketing I think

Ann said...

I can't offer a thing here since I don't know anything about either one. Other than you can find some very cool things to buy there :)

Kevin Ian said...

Have you checked out the 45 day guide? Some of the info is for PRO members, but most of it is applicable to any seller (or venue for that manner).

I would specifically check out our SEO guides. The marketing on Etsy and ArtFire is a little bit different and it can take some getting used to.

Etsy does have a larger internal traffic base that seller have to market towards in ways that work on their site.

ArtFire is smaller than Etsy. We are currently number two venue in the handmade space. We focus on external traffic from google and other shopping engines. For that reason, many of the marketing tactics that work on Etsy don't give results on ArtFire.

I would give any of the SEO guides a read and see what you might be able to work on or try out.