Etsy ecommerce Platform Review

Image representing a review of the Etsy eCommerce platform

In this review, we will take a closer look at Etsy, one of the leading eCommerce platforms for handmade, vintage, and craft supplies. Etsy has carved a niche for itself by providing a platform where creative entrepreneurs can showcase their unique products and connect with a community of like-minded individuals. We will explore its features, user experience, seller benefits, buyer experience, and overall performance. Whether you’re a seller looking to expand your reach or a buyer seeking one-of-a-kind products, this review aims to provide you with an in-depth understanding of Etsy and its offerings.

What is Etsy?

What is Etsy? Etsy, Inc. is an American e-commerce company focused on handmade or vintage items and craft supplies. These items fall under a wide range of categories, including jewelry, bags, clothing, home décor and furniture, toys, art, as well as craft supplies and tools. Items described as vintage must be at least 20 years old. The site follows in the tradition of open craft fairs, giving sellers personal storefronts where they list their goods for a fee of US$0.20 per item. Beginning in 2013, Etsy allowed sellers to sell mass-manufactured items.

Now, let’s delve into the details of Etsy’s e-commerce platform and review its key features, benefits, and potential drawbacks.


On Etsy, pricing and payments are simple and secure. Everything happens without additional monthly fees, and you can be confident in the security of your transactions. There are 3 basic payment methods in this platform, namely: Product Placement Fee, Transaction and Payment Processing Fee, and Offsite Ads Fee.

More details about these fees:

Product Placement Fee – USD 0.20

Ads remain on the platform for four months or until the items are sold out.

Transaction Fee – 6.5 % , Payment Processing Fee – 4% + EUR 0.30

When you sell an item, there is a small commission and a standard payment processing fee.

Offsite Ads Fee – 15% 

Etsy pays to advertise your products online through Offsite Ads. You only pay for the actual sales of these ads. More information on advertising fees.

Etsy customers insights

Etsy is an e-commerce platform that primarily focuses on handmade, vintage, and unique items. It attracts a diverse range of sellers, each with their own characteristics and offerings:

  • Independent Artisans and Crafters: Many Etsy sellers are independent artists, artisans, and crafters who create unique handmade products. They often specialize in various crafts such as jewelry making, pottery, woodworking, painting, and sewing.
  • Small Business Owners: Etsy also attracts small business owners who offer niche or specialty products. These sellers may operate small shops or boutiques, selling items like clothing, accessories, home decor, and personalized gifts.
  • Vintage Collectors and Resellers: Etsy allows sellers to offer vintage items, which attracts collectors and resellers. These sellers curate and offer a wide range of vintage products such as clothing, accessories, furniture, and home goods.
  • Creative Entrepreneurs: Many Etsy sellers are creative entrepreneurs who turn their passion for arts and crafts into a business. They often use Etsy as a platform to showcase and sell their unique creations.
  • Hobbyists and DIY Enthusiasts: Some Etsy sellers are hobbyists and DIY enthusiasts who enjoy creating and selling their crafts as a side business. They may not rely on their Etsy income as their primary source of livelihood.

Ease of use for customers

Based on user feedback and reviews from platforms like Trustpilot and other references, here are some common points about the ease of use for customers on Etsy:

  1. User-friendly interface: Customers find Etsy’s website and mobile app interface intuitive and easy to navigate, allowing them to browse and search for products effortlessly.
  2. Seamless product discovery: The platform offers various search filters, categories, and personalized recommendations, enabling customers to discover unique and niche products that align with their interests.
  3. Clear product information: Sellers on Etsy provide detailed product descriptions, high-quality images, and often showcase customer reviews, ensuring that customers have the necessary information to make informed purchasing decisions.
  4. Secure and convenient transactions: Etsy offers secure payment options, including credit/debit cards and PayPal, and ensures the protection of customer data. Additionally, the platform provides a streamlined checkout process, making it easy for customers to complete their purchases.

Search and discoverability challenges: Customers have reported difficulties in finding specific items or narrowing down search results on Etsy. The platform’s search functionality, while improving, can still be challenging for some users. Navigating through the vast array of products and refining search parameters to find desired items can be time-consuming and frustrating.

Etsy Themes

Etsy allows sellers to customize the appearance of their online shops through the use of themes. While the exact theme possibilities may vary over time, Etsy typically offers a range of design options for sellers to choose from. Some common features and possibilities include:

  • Customizable layouts: Sellers can select from various pre-designed templates and layouts that suit their branding and product display preferences.
  • Branding and color schemes: Sellers can customize their shop’s color schemes, fonts, and logo placement to align with their brand identity.
  • Banner and header images: Sellers have the ability to upload banner images and header graphics to showcase their products or create a visually appealing storefront.
  • Product display options: Etsy themes allow sellers to present their products in a visually appealing manner, with options for grid or list views, featured products, and image galleries.
  • Mobile responsiveness: Etsy themes are designed to be mobile-friendly, ensuring that the shops are accessible and optimized for customers browsing on smartphones and tablets.

Etsy’s killer features

Etsy, an online marketplace specializing in handmade and vintage products, offers several killer features that set it apart from other eCommerce platforms.

  1. Offsite Ads: Etsy’s Offsite Ads feature is designed to help sellers increase their visibility and reach potential buyers outside of the Etsy website. Etsy runs advertisements on external platforms such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, driving traffic back to sellers’ Etsy shops. This feature saves sellers the time and effort required to advertise their products on multiple platforms, expanding their customer base and boosting sales.
  1. Etsy Plus: Etsy Plus is a subscription plan offered by Etsy that provides additional benefits and tools to sellers. By subscribing to Etsy Plus, sellers gain access to features such as advanced shop customization options, promotional listing credits, access to exclusive discounts, and enhanced shop analytics. Etsy Plus offers sellers valuable resources to improve their shop’s performance and grow their businesses.

Localization with Etsy

Etsy understands the importance of catering to a global customer base and offers localization features to enhance the buying and selling experience across multiple languages and locations.

  • Multi-Lingual Support: Etsy supports multiple languages, allowing sellers to create shop listings, product descriptions, and communication with customers in their preferred language. This feature enables sellers to reach international buyers effectively and removes language barriers, facilitating smoother transactions.
  • Multi-Location Settings: Etsy allows sellers to set their shops to specific locations, providing localized experiences for buyers. Sellers can specify shipping destinations, currencies, and even shop policies tailored to different regions. This localization feature helps sellers offer relevant information to buyers based on their location and creates a more personalized shopping experience.

A little bit about shipping and what customers don’t like about it:

Shipping and delivery issues: Customers have reported instances of delayed shipping or prolonged delivery times for their Etsy orders. This can be particularly frustrating when purchasing items for special occasions or time-sensitive events. Shipping and delivery are ultimately the responsibility of individual sellers, and variations in their processes can lead to inconsistent experiences.

Payment gateways and processing

Etsy offers various payment options for buyers and sellers, making it convenient to complete transactions securely and efficiently.

  1. Etsy Payments: Etsy provides its own integrated payment system called Etsy Payments (formerly known as Direct Checkout). It allows sellers to accept payments from buyers using credit cards, debit cards, Etsy gift cards, and other regional payment methods. Etsy Payments simplifies the checkout process, ensuring a seamless experience for customers.
  1. Third-Party Payment Gateways: In addition to Etsy Payments, Etsy also supports third-party payment gateways in certain countries. Sellers can integrate their preferred payment providers, such as PayPal or Stripe, to process transactions on their Etsy shops. This flexibility enables sellers to offer payment options that cater to the preferences of their target customers.

SEO and Marketing tools 

Etsy, as an eCommerce platform, offers several SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and marketing tools to help sellers increase their visibility and reach a wider audience. Here are some notable features:

  1. Shop Optimization: Etsy provides various tools and guidelines to optimize individual shops for search engines. Sellers can add relevant keywords to their shop title, product titles, descriptions, and tags to improve search rankings and discoverability.
  1. Promoted Listings: Sellers can promote their products through Etsy’s Promoted Listings feature. It allows them to create ad campaigns by selecting specific keywords and setting a budget. These ads appear in search results and on relevant product pages, increasing exposure to potential buyers.
  1. Etsy Ads: Etsy also offers an advertising platform called Etsy Ads (previously known as Etsy Promoted Listings and Google Shopping). It allows sellers to create campaigns that promote their products across multiple channels, including Etsy search, Google, and social media platforms.
  1. Social Media Integration: Etsy makes it easy for sellers to connect their shops to social media accounts, such as Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. This integration allows sellers to showcase their products on these platforms, expanding their reach and driving traffic back to their Etsy shop.

Etsy Security and Support

Etsy prioritizes security to ensure a safe and trustworthy environment for buyers and sellers. Here are some key security features and support options offered by Etsy:

  • Secure Transactions: Etsy utilizes industry-standard encryption and secure payment gateways to protect sensitive information during transactions. Buyers can make purchases with confidence, knowing their financial details are safeguarded.
  • Support Channels: Etsy provides various support channels for sellers and buyers to seek assistance. These include an extensive Help Center with articles and guides, community forums where users can interact and get advice, and direct support through email or Etsy’s messaging system.
  • Customer support and dispute resolution: Some customers have expressed dissatisfaction with Etsy’s customer support and dispute resolution processes. Concerns have been raised regarding response times, effectiveness in resolving issues, and the overall level of support provided. While Etsy has systems in place to address disputes and protect buyer interests, the experience can vary depending on individual cases and the responsiveness of sellers.

TOP 5 Etsy Alternatives:

  1. Wix: Wix is a website builder platform that also offers eCommerce functionality. It provides a user-friendly interface and customizable templates, making it suitable for small businesses looking to create an online store.
  1. eBay: eBay is a popular online marketplace where individuals and businesses can sell new or used products. It has a wide reach and diverse product categories, making it a competitive alternative to Etsy.
  1. Shopify: Shopify is a comprehensive eCommerce platform that enables businesses to create and manage their online stores. It offers a range of features and integrations, making it a popular choice for businesses of all sizes.
  1. SquareUp: SquareUp, also known as Square, is primarily known for its payment processing services but also offers an online store feature. It is suitable for businesses that require seamless integration between their payment processing and eCommerce operations.
  1. WooCommerce: WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that allows users to turn their WordPress websites into fully functional online stores. It offers flexibility, customization options, and a large user community, making it a viable alternative to Etsy for WordPress users.


Etsy’s key unique selling points are its focus on handmade, vintage, and craft supplies, which attracts a niche market of buyers and sellers. It provides a platform for creative entrepreneurs to showcase their unique products and connect with a community of like-minded individuals. Etsy’s emphasis on personalization, artisanal products, and supporting small businesses sets it apart from its competitors and contributes to its strong brand identity.