Starting our own business of handmade goods might seem like a gamble – especially when the infant diversity of such products makes it almost impossible to analyze the best productions and marketing practices.
Thankfully, many online marketplaces have established standardized algorithms that make it so much easier for creators to connect with their dream client base.
Further, these platforms attract the right kind of customers who are willing to pay creators for their unique creations.
Lastly, good marketplaces are fulfilling results for creators with minimum effort. They encourage the use of simplistic, efficient dashboards that help small teams manage growing sales in one place.
Let us look at some established and improving marketplaces that are specially dedicated to handicrafts, artwork and designer items.
8 Best Online Marketplace For Selling Handmade Products
All kinds of marketplaces and platforms exist on the internet today. By doing our research, we can carefully select an amazing community where we feel appreciated and understood.
Without a doubt, this is the number one platform for small creators who love to make unique, funky handmade goods and want a community that appreciates that. This is a platform that easily finds buyers for luxury handmade goods that enable users to hike up their profits.
The sales on Etsy are high not just because it’s a household name but also because it has an amazing interface that keeps customers hooked. Additionally, Etsy uses a cutting-edge algorithm and frequent notifications to let customers know when their favorite item is back in stock.
A life-changing set of analytical tools, features, and promotional strategies have made Shopify a revolutionary name among small businesses. Shopify not only provides the platform but also active tutorials and upgrades to help small businesses push their online stores to the forefront.
Shopify has no marketplace fees. At the same time, it gives complete freedom to customize payment systems, product displays, prices, etc. Enhance your brand image by building a stunning website using Shopify.
Weirdly enough, the social media platform Instagram has slowly emerged as one of the best unconventional marketplaces for small creators and businesses selling handmade goods and services. Millions of users on Instagram connect with creators’ pages and buy goods they see and like.
Creators can organically promote their products by creating viral content on Instagram. Since Instagram is a visually oriented social media platform, artistic products receive the highest and most consistent engagement here. You can also connect with influencers and request them to review what you create!
For any business of any kind, Amazon is the ultimate winner. ‘Amazon Handmade’ is a special place within this realm for those creators as well as small communities that create handmade products using traditional methods.
Amazon Handmade is great because the name itself filters buyers in such a way that only those looking for handcrafted work will visit the platform.
The Amazon advertisement and affiliation program is one of, if not, the best among all existing online marketplaces, which means enrolling on Amazon might automatically lead to more favorable creator metrics.
Anything and everything can be sold on the Facebook Marketplace. Even better, Facebook still uses traditional tactics – connecting with people on Facebook groups, posting about new products for friends and family, etc – to promote products. Both manual and automated tools are now available for creators on the Facebook Marketplace.
Being a social media platform, Facebook enhances customer engagement and helps build brand loyalty. The Facebook Marketplace enables highly customized listing, so you can display your product exactly for what it is.
6. Big Cartel
Bridging the gap between Shopify and Etsy, Big Cartel lets creators build their own, unique online store while also protecting them under an umbrella of a well-known platform. Big Cartel provides free and premium tools to manage products, analyze sales, manage marketing programs, and even set discounts and deals on your store!
Further, Big Cartel is specifically dedicated to artists, designers, crafters, makeup brands, traditional medicines, etc. Services like international promotion and print-on-demand not only enhance the quality of production and packaging but also the growth potential of a customer base.
Promote one another and create a positive, sustainable community of handmade creators from across the world at World Wide Arts Resources. The initiative started in 1995 to provide expert digital solutions to artists of all kinds.
If your handmade goods lean more towards the abstract, visually stunning realm of fine arts, this is the platform you should approach.
From sculptures and pottery to traditional and medieval art canvases, World Wide Arts Resources helps creators connect with new buyers as well as distributors and art galleries.
The new and emerging platform Bonanza focuses on customer retention so that businesses can have more and more regulars. Additionally, it promotes higher earnings by letting small businesses retain better commissions even at low sales.
Bonanza encourages creators to connect so that they can set up collaborative projects. Apart from an additional advertising program that Bonanza pushes creators to the forefront, there are several third-party advertisers and affiliates available on this platform that can help boost your brand.
How to Pick the Best Online Marketplace for Your Small Business in 2024?
There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to the best marketplace for handmade goods and services. This is why a careful analysis of available options is a must before you select one or two marketplaces of your choice:
Low Competition, High Demand
The golden option is one where you will easily find a target audience that might be willing to purchase what you sell – but at the same time not enough pre-existing sellers who might outcompete you in your niche!
One way to do this is to select an up-and-coming online marketplace that promises great growth in the future but also doesn’t have a huge community of creators at the moment.
Another way is to pick a related niche – if a marketplace has a big community of young apparel buyers, chances are there will be needing handmade jewelry too!
Keep Up With Changing Algorithms
Every year, leading E-Commerce platforms make changes to their algorithms that determine how quickly a product will reflect on the top search page, how earnings will be calculated, and even how a customer will engage with that particular brand on the particular platform.
One of the biggest challenges of a small creator on a digital platform is how quickly everything can change after a bad algorithm update is released.
You might also want to see how often a platform ranks on top of the Google search page. (For example, in most cases you will see that Amazon always reflects on top, and this means something!)
Comparative Analysis of Earnings, Growth Scope
How likely is a particular platform to grow in the next few decades? More importantly, a comparative analysis of growth scope will help you predict how much you are likely to grow on a platform if you do everything right.
As a creator, you need to make sure that this growth report aligns with your personal long-term goals.
Similarly, you must also make sure that a prediction of your earnings in the next few months, 1 year, 3 years, etc looks positive enough to meet your requirements.
Looking at stock prices, performance reports of competitors, third-party analysis reports, etc can also help.
Know The Main Marketing Needs
If you choose a good marketing platform this means you will get many features that will promote your product – great algorithms, ads, sponsored products, affiliate marketing, and whatnot.
However, to maintain consistent growth you will also be expected to promote your products using unique marketing methods. Which marketing are you most comfortable with?
This question itself can answer a lot. Blogging, social media content creation, WhatsApp groups, etc are some of the many methods that small creators use these days.
Know Your Boundaries
Are you sufficiently educated at the moment to handle large-scale technical concepts that are bound to emerge in said online platform? At the same time, would you be able to keep up with the different production needs that your target audience will expect?
For example, if you are selling on Instagram, you will need to constantly update your product catalog to meet the trends of fast fashion because this is what your clients want!
In the beginning, focus less on pushing yourself and more on finding a platform that makes you comfortable – this is the only way to sustain a business long-term in today’s highly competitive market.
Ultimately, factors like the finishing quality of your products, raw materials you use, trends you follow, etc will affect which platform your business does well in.
Carefully calculating and reporting customer responses is necessary for small creators so that they can create better products and marketing campaigns in the future.
So it is important to choose a platform that provides us with enough time to come up with unique ideas! If possible, independent creators are encouraged to try out at least two or three marketplaces before choosing one to stick to.