Friday, May 13, 2011

Etsy Vs. Ebay

I think that Etsy and Ebay are the 2 most prominent marketplaces on the internet. However, therein lies the only commonality. Both are distinctly unique and I'd like to point out the similarities and variances. I think Ebay (don't quote me on this) has been around longer and appeals to quite a large demographic. It used to be solely an auction house, but now has "Buy It Now" features that allow buyers quicker attainment. Anything you can think of can most likely be found on Ebay - collectibles, handmade items, vehicles, vintage items as well as your basic pair of jeans. And, most of the time, your basic consumption is cheaper on Ebay. However, you have to be aware of the shipping fees, which tend to be a bit pricey, if you ask me. So unless you're scoping out something very eccentric, it may, in fact, cost the same as if you purchased the items in a store near you, when you factor in shipping fees. I think many sellers make their money by jacking up the shipping costs. You can figure it out if you really want to by estimating the size of the item and then going to to check on the shipping. The S/H is not regulated by Ebay - they're soley providing a forum for you so they can make money. Sometimes you think you're getting a real bargain until you notice that the shipping fees are virtually the same as the item. Maybe if the item is coming from another country I'd understand, but they tend to be unusually high within state to state. Suspicions abound! As for ease of discovering your fancy, you simply search for it as you would in Google. You may contact the seller and ask questions, but I've found that they don't reply immediately. So if it's an auction that you're attracted to, you may not get your answer in time. If you're interested in selling, Ebay makes it fairly simple for you to follow their directions. There are even people and shops that will photograph the item and post it for you - for a fee, of course. When I've sold things on Ebay, the fee usually started at $.50 and rose depending upon the amount of pictures that you'd like to have included. Then Ebay takes out a portion of your final selling price. There is also a monthly charge just to keep your items posted on the site. (These fees are all stated in Ebay's provisions - I don't know them by heart) You can also have your own shop now on Ebay, for an extra fee as well. Now that we're talking about shops, though, Etsy is actually a huge marketplace consisting of individual shops. Although you can find some vintage and eclectic items, I'd have to say that 99% of Etsy items are handmade. Etsy used to be solely viewed as an artisan venue, and still to some extent is (though like I said, some shops sell man-made goods). To me, Etsy used to be synonymous with crafts - unique, handmade, one-of-a-kind finds that tend to satisfy its ever-growing fan-base. Having been a seller and buyer on both Ebay and Etsy, I honestly find Etsy to be a much more nurturing, communal market. The sellers respond to questions with enthusiasm and create their art with such love and care. The shipping costs are considerably lower than Ebay's, and I don't even bother to look at them anymore. As a seller, you have the option to be on various teams with various interests. Artisans are in constant communication via blogs, posts, treasuries (theme-based, curated lists of Etsy items), etc. They provide learning tools and applications as well. To me, the analogy is a simple one -  Etsy is one big family, whereas Ebay is a huge commercial corporation. Even Etsy's fees are much lower than Ebay's. It is only $.20 to post an item and you have the option of using up to 5 photographs. A nominal fee is taken out of the final transaction and there is no monthly charge for sellers. What can I say, I love Etsy! I'd much rather buy items on Etsy than Ebay nowadays. As for variety, though, you can't beat Ebay. Etsy doesn't sell vehicles or locks of hair from dead celebrities. If you're interested in beautifully, lovingly crafted items, though, Etsy wins hands down every time.


  1. I really like the comparison of Ebay vs Etsy. I am somewhat new with Etsy and am happy so far. I have not tried ebay so thanks for the info.

    I am following you via FNF blog hop Please follow me.

  2. Hi Patricia!
    I'm glad this post was helpful to you. I am going to follow you as well.
    Thank you,

  3. Following you from the FNF blog hop.
    Hope you can drop by

    I love, love, love the colors on this blog! And the type is cute and still easy to read.

  4. Hi! Following you from FNF blog hop!
    Hope you visit me and return the follow!:0)

  5. Hi! Following you from the Finding
    New Friends blog hop! Hope you visit
    my Cajun blog and return the follow!
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  6. Will do everyone! Thanks for stopping by. I'll be by soon.

  7. following you from the Finding new friends blog hop.

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  8. Hi, new follower. I agree with all your comparisons, and I greatly prefer Etsy too.

    When I started making jewelry, someone suggested I sell on Ebay - I guess that's where she sold stuff she made. I never tried it and if I had, I don't think it would have been worth it. People on Ebay are looking for a good deal, while Etsy has a reputation for quality so people are willing to pay more. Plus you can't beat the active (and helpful) community.

    - Michelle