Are you starting out in selling your crafts online? Or perhaps you’re looking to progress from the usual online marketplaces (Etsy, eBay, Amazon Marketplace, and more) to create a truly memorable experience for your customers. It could be time for a website. But where do you even begin? And is it even worth it?
Fear not. We’re here to help answer these questions. In Part 1, we’ll cover some frequently asked questions about setting up a website for your business. In Part 2, we’ll share exactly how you can get started, with an easy-to-follow guide. Rest assured, no technical knowledge is required.
So, with that in mind, let’s dive into some frequently asked questions about starting a website.
Is having a website worth it?
Having your own website is like having an extension of your craft. You can tailor the look and feel to match that of your design and handy work. Online marketplaces give you space for a logo, some words, and perhaps a banner if you’re lucky. But that’s where the experience ends.
What are the benefits of online marketplaces over a website?
There are a couple of key benefits when you sell via an online marketplace. Firstly, you’ll have an instant audience, thanks to your chosen marketplace’s membership. It does sound attractive to have a (potentially) ready-made customer base, but unless you have a truly unique craft, you’ll have to jostle for position with thousands of other sellers. Take Macrame art for example. On Etsy alone there are over 560,000 listings!
Also, chances are you’re working on a small scale, or perhaps in your spare time. You probably just need a handful of people to get you started, right?
What are the benefits of having my own website?
There are some huge benefits to running your own website to sell your craft online. Let’s take a closer look:
Unlike online marketplaces, which offer very little in the way of visual customisation, having your own website means you can brand pages as you wish. You get to choose the colours, the font, and the layout. Want bigger photos? You’ve got it. Want to collect customer email addresses for a newsletter? You can do that too.
This goes hand-in-hand with branding. Having your own website means you can have more control over the customer experience. From the moment visitors turn up to your website, to when their order arrives in the post, it’s all about your brand and craft – no third parties.
Less associated fees
One big downside of selling on online marketplaces is the fees, as you’re charged a percentage of everything you sell. Having a website does come with some costs, such as web hosting fees, but it’s a monthly fixed cost. And with that cost, your web hosting provider will offer a whole range of services to help your business grow online.
Creating and running your own website, selling your craft, and building a loyal customer base really is rewarding! And, as a bonus, you’ll pick up digital skills and know-how as you go. It could even help your day job or other side-hustles.
Online marketplaces aren’t a bad thing. You can still set up shop on your favourite store AND run a website. Including a link to your website on your profile not only looks professional, but it will help build trust with your customers. You never know, visitors might like your website so much they decide to buy directly from you.
Do I need technical knowledge to set up and maintain a website?
Any undertaking on the internet will need a little research and learning, but it’s probably easier than you think to get started with your own website. You don’t have to do it alone though. That’s what web hosting companies are for – to get you up and running and help maintain your website.
Hopefully, that’s helped answer some questions you might have about starting a website. Got more questions? Our team is here to help. We’ll be back soon with part 2, where we’ll walk you through exactly how to set up your own website for selling crafts!