Etsy has become the eBay for the handicraft and creative small business owner community. When it launched almost five years ago it was a small world and it was easy to shine on the platform. Etsy has changed its stance on the small business owner, now letting more and more wholesale companies use their platforms to sell cheaply made pieces.
They have done great things introducing their wholesale practice so you can become a vendor in big stores, but that has its downside too.
Domain and Hosting
Etsy is a site that you co-brand on, it is not your own and you are sharing everything. First, thing you want to do is purchase your domain and hosting for your business. Your domain will help start the solid foundation you need for your business. People will see you as a professional. Because www.yourcompanyname.bigcartel.com is not what you want when venturing out on your own. You can buy hosting for as little as $10 a month and get your domain for less than $5.
Places to Purchase Hosting or Domain
- Go Daddy – Save 25% off with this link
- Host Gator – Save 20% off order with “imperfectconcepts” at checkout
After purchasing your domain and hosting, picking the platform you will create your own empire with is crucial. I personally suggest in consultations to clients to build on WordPress for the ownership and customization available to them. Before you think, “oh that is going to be super expensive”, you can go the template route and launch on WordPress. Sites such as TemplateMonster and BlueChic have affordable pricing. If you do not want to go that route, launching on Sqaurespace is super easy, when you follow the steps we outlined in our Digital Launch Kit.
One crucial aspect of the transition from Etsy to your own website is letting your existing customers or clientele know what is going on. You don’t want them to one day wake up and go to your site and it’s gone. Alerting them to changes is a great way to connect with your audience on a deeper level. Creating a blog series about it is a great way to start. Make your announcement 3 months out. So they can prepare for the change. Next, create email marketing to make sure they are aware that the change is coming. Over the next 90 days or so push signing up for your newsletter. Telling them they can learn all the details there first.
This might sound strange but celebrate the transition by rewarding your audience, the supporters, of your small business. For the first week of your website launch give your audience 20% off of all orders of merchandise. This is a great time to also introduce new products to them. Honestly, no one wants to shop stale merchandise that has been there forever. Give them something new to buy and reward them for it.
Follow our Launch Week kit and make sure to hit all the points to help ensure that your transition from Etsy to your own website is super easy.
How are you going to take control of your company in this process? Have you thought of when you want to make this transition and the steps you need to take?