ETSY VS. YOUR OWN SHOP + BUY YOUR CUSTOM URL!

PARCEL_TWINE_BACK_BBI have discussed this subject in detail before and gave my pro’s & con’s on both.  Today, I am going to discuss why I am completely migrating to Etsy versus my own shop (for now). These last 2 months for Besotted Brand have been painfully slow, not working as much as I used to for the last six months because of my condition and  having two dead months doesn’t work for me.  I had to evaluate money going out versus money coming in and carrying two shops–an Etsy shop and a stand alone needed to be addressed.  My stand alone shop had no fees associated with it when a client purchased a product but I did pay a $30 fee each month to run it on the platform that I was using. I also had to pay an outside postage company for all my international shipping which ran $16/month to use their system.  Why would I need an outside postage company?  As of this writing, the U.S. Postal service does not have an option to send international first class mail from home you have to buy Priority mail to send even a single stamp and international priority mail is very expensive! Cutting both the platform and the postage company out I have started saving immediately almost $50/mo. it may seem small but it all adds up and over a year I will have saved $552. I don’t know about you but I could use an extra $500!  I absolutely 100% would not have done the move if I couldn’t have used my own dedicated url.  I did a very easy re-direct, it’s free and I can use my own custom website name on all my packaging and branding.  As much as I adore Etsy I would never put “my shop.etsy” on anything that I used to promote my brand, I think it confuses the potential client, (contrary to popular belief not everyone is familiar with Etsy). This is my word of unsolicited advice, if you have an Etsy shop, run don’t walk to secure your custom URL, what does that even mean?  It means your shop name.com ie. www.besottedbrand.com.  It looks so much more pro and keeps continuity with your brand, especially if you are say selling products that have labels that you want your site name, versus your name + etsy.  You should be securing you URL’s any way you slice it, whether you have an Etsy shop or just a company idea.  This may seem obvious but you should also try to secure your own personal name as a URL, you may want to use it one day and it would be a shame if you couldn’t because someone other than you bought it already.  I am going to segue here for two seconds and tell you to buy your custom URL if you have a blog as well.  Even when I was on the Blogger platform my blog had my custom url www.besottedblog.com versus besottedblog.blogspot,com again for the same reasons, it looks a lot more professional like you are taking this seriously, which are right?

INK_CLASSIC_BBSpeaking of familiar, my Etsy shop was out selling my stand alone shop 3:1, it was no contest, I was getting more exposure on Etsy. The thing I love about the Etsy shop is that I could print shipping labels directly from Etsy and my clients would get automatic shipping notifications upon shipment. I felt that for my International clients especially it is nice for them to have a larger entity (Etsy) to go to if there was a problem, I think it gives clients a sense of security that a stand alone shop would not. The biggest con is not being able to customize my shop as much as I like, but by migrating I can give the Etsy shop extra attention and hopefully generate more steady sales and eventually build a new custom shop!

I get asked about opening a shop every.single.day and I am happy to try to be of assistance via these little posts!  I also get asked where I source my packaging + products, do not email a store/business about this, it’s akin to asking a woman her age or weight, it’s not appropriate and can be construed as offensive.

P.S. I have had a 50% coupon ( 5050sale) on all custom stamps for a bit now, it’s only valid until August 30th so take advantage of it and stock up!

P.P.S. The images are some items that have been out of stock forever that are finally back in!!!!

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and the writer of this delightful blog. She recently re-located to sunny Seattle with her handsome husband and two pups, they are expecting a baby girl in December. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.

Comments

  1. Hi, Tristan,

    Very well written! The importance of a dedicated URL cannot be overstated when it comes to business, on the other hand, I would like to make a small comment on the USPS first class international service. It is still available, and the paperwork can be printed via their website, actually. The only problem is that one can’t pay for it immediately on their website and the packages would have to be taken into a USPS location to be scanned and paid for… but yes, the service still does exist! (in fact, if it didn’t, it would not be available through Etsy either).

    • Tristan B. says:

      Hi Jay- Yes, I was only talking about printing postage at home for the USPS.com, I try to avoid going into the Post office at all cost and hopefully help others avoid that as well, it does not give you an option to print First class for international only to print Priority,with the outside service Stamps.com you can print first class and through the Etsy system and buy Upic insurance which has a semi-tracking ability which of course First class mail doesn’t. The US Post is missing out on a major money op by not allowing this service via their site and having people have to go to outside sources to do this.

  2. I have really been enjoying your posts on advice and recommendations for those of us starting our own blog and shop. Of course with my luck the domain I was trying for is already taken. It is not an actual website- someone simply owns the domain. (and has since 2005 – just doesn’t have a site – I found out this info from namecheap.com a site similar to godaddy) I know you have run into this issue for besotted. Would you recommend shortening or editing the web address name to get a .com or keep everything consistent and use an available .net? Often times you can get a domain name that is similar simply with hyphens in it to differentiate as well. Thanks for all your advice! And congrats on the little one on the way!!!

    • Tristan B. says:

      Hi Jenn-
      That will definitely happen, people hoard URL’s, I do! I am going to say something VERY controversial and will probably be stoned, but I think ‘.net’ looks cheap. That’s me and it means nothing, but it’s perception. I would opt for a ‘.co’ as a back up, it is used a lot in Europe so it’s not so unfamiliar that people will be confused, I own besotted.co. and bbrand.co (which used to re-direct to my shop) Besotted as mentioned is clever for the literary minded and the Jane Austen crowd but since it’s not in everyday vernacular it was a dumb name choice for a nascent business, nobody can spell it or say it, so try to be clever on the easy side! If you make your URL easy enough then people will remember it ie. decor8 is pretty easy to remember, versus besottedblog.com! Even Design Sponge which is not a beautiful name but a name you won’t forget! Learn from my mistakes and btw, I do this for a living so shame on me for being so flippant with the name choice!

      I use Godaddy because they are a very good company, they are accessible 24/7 and are very good at answering questions, AND their prices are great. I have tried other companies and one I ran into the problem a few months ago where my blog was down for hours because I couldn’t get them paid?! You can not have that if you are trying to be a professional + legit business! I would rather pay a little more to have a company that would never let that happen. NO hyphens, it’s too difficult for people. If the company owns the .URL you want see if that name is available for use for business or how many businesses have a similar name or choose another name (if this is possible). You don’t want to run into legal problems off the start, you should do some research and treat your burgeoning business as it WILL be a grand success so put a little more time into it to make sure you don’t regret it later:)

  3. I totally agree about getting your own name. I just bought mine and was so shocked I could get it as my last name is Smith! I added my middle name to get the .com and have already used it for a portfolio for a job I went for – very handy. I just changed my business name too as I had the same issues with it not being memorable. We put in weeks of brainstorming and came up with a name people seemed to love but we had so many ideas but urls are hard to get for easy and clever names. Definitely wise to grab yours now everyone. Great post Tristan.

    • Tristan B. says:

      Rach, that is very smart of you! I think securing one’s name is not even considered but it should be! I love that you were able to show off your portfolio with your custom URl, it’s very pro;)

  4. You can send first class mail from home with Endicia.

    • Tristan B. says:

      Hello My! But that again is another fee, my goal is to try to avoid outside fee’s until the shop warrants it. With Etsy I can send everything through their shipping system without incurring the fee:)

  5. Hello. I have a question for you. So I have been toying around quite a bit with an idea for my own brand. I came up with a name, and I was really against etsy and wanted to build my own domain. So I went for the domain first. I bought it, and I am a little confused by what you mean by url. Sorry, I am a complete newbie!! By url, do you mean the http://www.yournamehere.com? If it is, I have that with my desired name. I ran into an issue when I went to open an etsy shop, that name is taken. I was so upset! But I have the domain. My question is, can I “run with it” since I have the domain? Let me know what you think.

    • Tristan B. says:

      Yes, your own url would be your website name. I think it depends on how popular the Etsy shop is and how active. If the shop doesn’t seem active (say it’s a hobby type shop for that person and they sell something once a year) then I think it would be fine if you were intending to make this a business and you had the foresight to get the URL, if it’s a super popular name you may want to check with the trademark office on-line and see if it has been trademarked, no use putting a ton of money into a business only to find out later you can’t use the name!

  6. Tristan B. says:

    Also, when you choose the Etsy name see if you can get something close to your business name because you will still show up in the Google search engines under the Etsy name!

    • then what would I do if it has not been trademarked? It really does not seem to be a fitting name for what they are selling, but for my things it does. I already have a slogan, design in mind and everything! I figured if they were going to go elsewhere with it, they would have purchased the domain in January when they opened the etsy shop.

      • Tristan B. says:

        I agree if they were thinking ahead like you seem to be they would have purchased the URL and it may be something they highly regret later on. I had my brand trademarked via Legal Zoom it was less expensive than an attorney, but if you have access to an attorney (or budget) it would be great to speak to an authority about this. I believe you can also do the paperwork through the trademark office but I have heard it’s a little confusing for the lay person.

  7. I just checked and it is not trademarked. I checked on the US trademark website. It looks like it would cost me 159 dollars to trademark. I just don’t know if I need to go that far. It does not even come up on the first page of a google search. I am still researching SEO! I have read mixed reviews, some say don’t let the fact that another exists bother you, lots of businesses have similar names.

  8. I was just thinking that I would call my etsy shop by my own name, and that I would link my shop to my domain. What are your thoughts on that?

    • Tristan B. says:

      Try to get as close to the name of your company as possible if you can ie. yourcompanynameco or something, since if someone tries to look you up on Etsy your alternate name won’t come up. That is how I would deal with it and at some point you will want to trademark if it’s a good name that you plan to use for a long time, just my thoughts on that matter:)

Leave a reply

*

Blog by Hello Monday Creative