top of page

10 reasons I moved from selling art on Etsy to my own website.

So, recently the biggest update I’ve made to my art business in 2024 is moving my art store from Etsy to my own website. And since the time I announced this on social media, many artist friends have asked me why and how I decided to do this. So I thought I’d make this post answering those questions. I’ve sold my paintings on Etsy for the past 5 years, but I finally thought it was time to move away from the platform for many reasons.

An image showing my paintings packaged to be sent off to their buyers.

But first, let me tell you all the good that is Etsy,

and why it makes sense to begin your art selling journey on Etsy.

  1. Etsy is VERY easy to set up. You don’t need to be a registered business, you don’t need any coding skills, and you don’t need to pay a fixed upfront price to become an Etsy seller. Basically, your shop can go live the day you decide you want one, and for the whole world to buy from.

  2. You don’t need to bother about how you would get paid. Etsy takes care of that for you. You don’t need to set up a payment gateway (which if you haven’t tried doing, is not the most straightforward thing to do).

  3. Etsy does sometimes brings organic traffic if you have good photos and descriptions, and a good track record as a seller. So, there are benefits to being on a marketplace. Buyers are already on it. (But it’s better not to rely too much on this)

  4. This is kind of shallow, but your number of sales is displayed at the top of your shop, and kind of works as a vanity metric that you always want to go up. You don’t know why or what it’ll do for your business. But it’s fun to see that number go up as you get orders, and feels like a “braggable” metric, can’t lie. (Yes, I know how stupid that sounds)

  5. That Cha-Ching sound! (IYKYK ;))

A box full of artsy goodies.
Holiday Gift Box that I sell on Etsy

Now, let’s come to why I decided to move away from Etsy:

  1. Selling on Etsy has gotten expensive over the years. When I started, Etsy’s cut was somewhere around 3%, and shipping charges were exempt from this. Now they charge 6.5% of price + shipping, which may sometimes be difficult to build into the price of the product. Add PayPal fees to this, and you’re almost down by 10% of the selling price, which is quite a lot.

  2. You’d say the easy combat to #1 above would be to increase your prices, right? But on a platform like Etsy, you have to play the price war to win. You can’t just increase your prices if you want to depend on organic discovery on the platform. Even for something like art, you’ll find tens of similar pieces priced at a tenth of your price. Again, far from ideal.

  3. Even though I have used Etsy, I would say it’s not the right place to sell art unless you’re bringing your own audience. People don’t buy art like they buy a commodity like post-its or phone chargers. They buy when they feel a connection with the artist. Or that’s at least how it is for art that doesn’t costs more than say $30. What I’m trying to say is you wouldn’t want to appeal to the average bargain seeking Etsy customer.

  4. Etsy has strange mandates for Indian sellers to compulsorily buy shipping labels from Etsy for domestic orders. This is annoying, as I have my own logistics partner that I prefer. Moreover, I get orders from the city I live in, and prefer to drop off the orders myself.

  5. You have to bring in your own audience. Those are the people that know, like and trust you. Ya, you might get the one-off organic sale, but it’ll mostly be people who know you from your social media or newsletter. So you’re basically doing the work of marketing yourself. Why let Etsy take a cut then?

  6. The people you sell to are Etsy’s customers, not yours. Etsy doesn’t share their email or any other contact information with you. You are not even officially allowed to contact them in any way except for Etsy messages. I know that for artists, building an audience is key, and for me at least, repeat buyers have been a great source of income. On your own website, you can capture key details such as email addresses, and provide an option to your customers to subscribe to your newsletter, which is SO precious to build this.

  7. Let’s face it, Etsy’s goal is to keep people shopping on their platform. And I don’t blame them. That’s their business! But in doing that, under each of your listings, they will promote other similar looking pieces, most probably ones available at a lower price, and it is so easy for customers to click away from your shop and never find their way back. They’re shopping on “Etsy”. Not your shop. Personal branding goes for a toss when that happens.

  8. All website/shop aggregators now provide the same logistic convenience as Etsy anyway. I host my website on Wix, which comes with a beautiful storefront, automated payments and order management. There is nothing I need to do manually. And, there is no listing fee, it keeps 0% of my order transaction. All the reasons Etsy seemed like a good deal a few years ago don’t make sense anymore, as I’m getting everything from Wix anyway. I hear Squarespace, Wordpress and Shopify are the same too. So it’s not difficult to set up shop anywhere if you control the top of the funnel, i.e. bringing in your own audience.

  9. I like consolidating all of my stuff in one place, my website. My website has my shop, my blog, the freebies that I offer, my newsletter signup form, and important links, which makes it easy for my audience to find what they want. From my perspective, I have all the information about my orders, earnings, inventory, subscribers, blog readers in one dashboard, which saves time and energy, and makes it hard to miss anything.

  10. There just is more control. I can customise the look and feel of my website as I want. It’s MY page. There is no algorithm. There is no dependency on someone else bringing you on to the front page. You are in the driver’s seat, and I’ve always kind of been a control freak all my life, so it works for me 🙂

I have still kept my Etsy shop live, in the off-chance that I get that sporadic organic order, but I'm not focussing on promoting it anywhere.

Instead, you can find my shop on my website now! And also enjoy a very special 20% discount if you're one of the people who read till the end haha!

(Use the code NEWYEAR at checkout to avail the discount)

A screen grab of my store on my website.

Let me know about your experience selling art on Etsy, if you have any in the comments below.

182 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page