Every day, creative entrepreneurs continue to join the already existing 7.5 million sellers on Etsy, as of 2021 statistics. However, the trend is not the business, you have to have a sellable business idea before joining Etsy online shops. What are Etsy business ideas then?
If you want to start a new business, you must first ask what you can do. What are your creative skills? What skills are you willing to learn with limited resources? Answering these questions is what has got many people selling on Etsy, especially if the answer aligns with creativity and handcrafting. Etsy shop ideas are creative and handcrafted businesses that sell vintage and handmade goods and supplies on Etsy at affordable prices for customers around the globe.
There are numerous Etsy business ideas that any supplier or producer can venture into to generate income and profit seamlessly, ranging from basic materials to handcrafted and vintage materials. The Etsy shop ideas any seller comes up with must have a Unique Selling Point that creates a niche for that market. Consistency and creativity are also important, as resilience to the competition already exists on the platform. Some of these ideas will be discussed in this article.
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This is a very popular item to sell on the Etsy platform with a high number of searches. Examples include lingerie, T-shirts, wedding dresses, and other types of clothing. Etsy fabrics have about 5000 searches per month. The search rate is about 3,200 times per month.
- The sellers will have a wide variety of innovative ideas
- There is a wide niche for clothing items
- The flexibility of price, and niche
- High frequency of returns compared to other products
- Need for a wider range of innovative clothing ideas
This includes homemade jewelry and vintage jewelry. They include pieces of jewelry made by hand and different from the usual pieces of jewelry found in stores. These handmade jewelries attract customers more. Vintage jewelry is old jewelry offered at great prices to the thrill of customers. They include rings, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, engagement rings, and other types of jewelry that are in high demand. Brand jewelry also sells on Etsy and is available to the general public. Jewelry is an excellent and profitable business on the platform. Etsy jewelry has an average of 19,000 monthly searches with more than 16 million results.
- The jewelry items are small and easy to ship and sell
- They are very popular items to locate and sell on the Etsy shop
- It has a wide and crowded niche; with lots of competition
- It requires investment in jewelry materials
These are varieties of fashion items that people want readily without having to pay large sums of money. The fashion accessories include sunglasses, hats, belts, and other fashion items. This remains one of the profitable Etsy business ideas that yield profits.
- They are easily available and easy to ship
- They are always in popular demand
- They are easy to locate on the Etsy shop
- It requires investment in materials
- It has a lot of competition
These are items used for arts and crafts and are one of the profitable shops to buy and sell various items for artists, students, and other customers. Some of the items include glue, scissors, paint, rulers, cutout shapes, and other crafting kits.
- The buyer will use already acquired skills
- It allows for creativity
- No consistency of quality can be guaranteed.
- This is a fairly competitive niche.
This is a fairly competitive business but still has opportunities. Creating sticker designs requires innovative ideas.. There are no skills required for this versatile market as the seller can either make new innovative designs or hire designers to do this job. The number of searches is about an average of 4000 per month with more than two million results.
- They are simple and easy to ship and sell
- Unlimited sticker options
- The constant need for innovative sticker design
- Competitive niche
Etsy shop is an ideal place to sell art as the online shop encourages innovation and creativity. It connects creators to lovers of art. Arts can be sold as physical items to be delivered to the buyers or as digital items to be bought and downloaded or as items that cannot be reprinted. The physical art items can be sold as feature art or as a print-on-demand art item by printing the art on items like T-shirts, phone cases, or mugs as their product.
They can be sold as a one-of-a-kind art item that cannot be reprinted or replicated. They can also be offered as digital downloads by the end consumers as background images, wallpaper, and other images. The digital downloads do not require any shipping fee or logistics or fulfillment. The number of searches is more than 4000 monthly, and the term Etsy wall art is searched about 7,400 times per month.
- Super flexible with lots of product options
- Allows you to use your creativity
- There is no logistics or shipping fee for digital downloads.
- Lots of competition
- Can be challenging to mix passion with business
- Consistency of creativity and creation cannot be guaranteed.
Candles can be very classic products to produce, market and ship, as they are delicate products aimed at a specific target audience. They can be used at spas, homes, restaurants, and businesses of specific ambiance. They include scented candles, beeswax candles, soy-based candles, and carved candles. During the period of the COVID-19 pandemic, the candle business reeled in a lot of profits as more people were at home. The number of searches per month is more than 4,000 on average.
- Versatile in fragrance and use cases
- The sellers can produce themselves or outsource from a supplier
- They meet a specific target audience
- They can be heavy to ship
- They are delicate and must be handled with care
These are creative and beautiful potteries and clay products molded with the hands, with the aid of some specialized equipment and a certain level of know-how. Ceramic, clays, potteries, and other handmade products can be molded and properly stored, and organized for sales. The handling however has to be delicate to prevent damage to them.
- It allows for innovation and creativity
- It allows for the creation of unique items
- Raw materials are easy to obtain.
- They need to be handled delicately
- They are prone to easily spoil if mishandled
- A certain level of skills is required before undertaking it
- It requires some equipment to mold
Curated boxes are themed boxes used to ship items and products from vendors to the buyers of a particular product. They emerged on Etsy shops after the Covid-19 pandemic and brands like Birchbox have remained popular since that time. The boxes serve as a convenient means of transporting or shipping items. They also serve as an opportunity for the maker of the boxes to know more about brands, and what they stand for. It gives a chance for innovative ideas but can be monotonous if the same methods are applied repeatedly. New or recycled materials can be used and there is no need for special skills to make them.
- Flexible for packaging any material
- Recycled materials can be used
- Material for its creation is readily available and cheap
- Need to constantly source products to package
- The type of product to be packaged can sometimes be a hindrance
- Might be difficult to package according to the products
Pet accessory is another business idea on Etsy shop for people who own pets. According to APPA (American Pet Products Association), US-based pet owners spent about $123.6 billion on their pets alone in 2021. There is a variety of accessories including collars, beds, feeders, toys, clothing, and some other treats for pets. These items require creativity and there must be varieties for marketing purposes. The number of searches monthly is more than 4,000.
- A growing industry with a gradually increasing customer base
- It grooms creativity
- Niche competition
House plants are in demand by many people. This demand increased during the pandemic because many people were at home during the Covid-19 pandemic. The demand is still high as there are more remote jobs, and people are more enlightened toward sustainability concepts and green environments. These plants are indoor and succulent plants that are easy to grow indoors without huge specifications and people buy them for themselves or as a gift for people. The green plants can be explored or faux plants to meet the needs of the customers. The number of searches is about 3,400 in a month.
- They are beautiful to display.
- There is increased demand
- They are delicate and difficult to transport.
- Plants shipping regulation differs in different countries
- Only specific target customers.
Furniture and household items serve as a great business idea on Etsy. The sizes and heaviness of these items can restrict them to a specific location. Furniture might be heavy, and difficult to produce and ship and that makes other household items and upholsteries a safer option to produce, market, and ship to customers. These household items are a form of decoration in homes and they complement the furniture present there too. The items could be made from scratch with raw materials, second-hand products, recycled materials, or from an outsourced supplier. The number of searches per month is around 4,400.
- Multiple sources of raw material
- There is flexibility in ideas
- Home goods are competitive
- Large items can be expensive to ship
- They can be bulky to ship
Beauty and skincare is a booming and thriving business to get into as statistics show that most business owners in this space report satisfactory business performance. Most people are becoming more aware of their skin, taking care of their skin, and wearing more makeup than usual. This is a good business idea, especially for people who make the products themselves and also for retailers who sell them on the Etsy shop. However, there might be a need for health and legal registrations as it has a direct impact on the customers.
- Easy to ship
- Wide customer base
- Great demand by customers
- A competitive niche
- Products have an expiry date and might expire faster than other business ideas
- Might require extra steps and regulations in registering. Other legal and health regulations can factor in too.
This is a very popular and common business idea, especially during and after the Covid-19 pandemic. A lot of people are becoming more aware and are trying out items by themselves with tutorials online. This business idea can be very appealing, especially for people who share DIY videos as well as sell the materials online for kids and adults. Though a very competitive business, it is sure to yield profits and the materials are quite easy to ship.
- The materials are easy to ship
- A steadily increasing customer base
- It allows for creativity
- A competitive niche
Bridesmaid accessory business is a very delicate and interesting business idea for ladies, especially organizing showers for ladies getting married and needing the use of accessories. These materials are easy to make, market and ship to customers. The bridesmaid accessory shop is easier to operate if the seller has a Cricut machine to aid in the designs and they include items like personalized hip flasks, hangars, and other items for bridesmaids.
- It allows for creativity
- A competitive niche
- There is a need to constantly come up with innovative ideas
This business requires a very low startup cost, and anyone can do well with this business. The only requirement is to have a ready supplier of quality gift items for packaging and sale according to the customer’s choice of gift items.
- There are no problems with getting raw materials
- Reliability of a consistent supplier
- Gift items may be delicate to transport and ship
- It might include food items that have expiry dates.
This is a very popular and common business now, particularly for startups and entrepreneurs who want to save cost, and for people who have celebrations or as gift items. It is a great way of owning an online store without having to spend a lot of money on printing. They have a large customer base, of customers and entrepreneurs alike, who would like to print photos and words on any item. Printing on items ranges from gift items to clothes, bags, pillows, pet accessories, and other materials as long as the print quality is high. It however requires that there must be a ready and quality supplier of these items for print.
- They are in high demand.
- It displays the creativity and expertise of the business owner
- Quality and ready supplier of items
- Transporting of items might be delicate
These are in high demand on Etsy shops as it demands creativity and a display of crafts. They include wooden toys, which are safe for babies, silicon teeters, headbands, and other personalized items like keepsake boxes for babies. Other personalized baby items include boards, puzzles, and busy boards that keep children occupied. Some of these items can be crafted and others are bought and sold on Etsy shops to customers.
- Items are easy to make and ship
- It develops creativity
- Delicate items that need instructions
- Sanitation of the items is important for children.
The sewing supplies shop is one of the most popular shops on Etsy as it involves the sale of fabrics, embroidery patches, laces, buttons, zippers, and other sewing items. It does not require any specific craft or skill as the fabric items are resold online or vintage items. One of the most demanded items is vintage items like buttons and embroidery patches and this only demands scouting for the items in flea markets.
- Items are easy to sell
- Vintage items bring more sale
- Specific customer target
Planners and journals business is a specific customer-based business as it involves creating a specific niche amongst the shops on Etsy. The planners and journals could be hard copies or digital downloads that can be sold directly to the customer or shipped to them. They include spreadsheets, budget diaries, habit trackers, checklists, and other types of journals. These journals must however be lucrative enough and also serve their purpose to the customers.
- Specific niche and not overcrowded
- Demands creativity
- Hard copies of journals might be delicate to transport and ship
Print games are great offers for parents and serve as a form of learning and entertainment for kids. This makes it a great business idea on the Etsy shop. It helps the kids to learn counting, numbers, the alphabet, and logic. The games could be crossword puzzles, board games, card games, and others as it keeps kids and adults alike engaged.
- They are easy and simple to ship
- It is in high and close competition with phones and digital games.
This is a great business for sellers that love parties, simple, themed, and other forms of parties, especially those that have a supply of party materials. Etsy is a great place to sell party goods and the supplies available based on the demand of the customers.
- It displays the craftsmanship of the seller
- Materials might be heavy to transport
- Choosy and themed materials might be unavailable
Decoration materials are great items that reel in profit as a business. These materials serve as a means to bring families together during the holiday seasons as they decorate their homes for that season; Easter, Christmas, Halloween, and custom holidays. The online business owner can go as far as listing and creating vintage decoration materials, handmade or custom materials as people love unique decoration materials during the holidays.
- It is cheaper than physical stores
- It allows for the creativity of the craftsman
- The materials are heavy to ship
For people who love and enjoy cooking or baking, this is a superb business idea to sell unique and hard-to-find ingredients as well as the materials for cooking and baking. Customers who love to make desserts and their favorite meals are always on the lookout for unique ingredients, unique pots, and fun ingredients to make their food tastier and look pleasant. Some of these materials include special knives and cooking spoons, unique pots and pans, fun gadgets like apple cutters, and even gift baskets filled with a variety of cooking tools.
- This is a unique niche on the Etsy business site
- Vintage and unique materials sell faster
- They might be heavy to move around or delicate enough to require shipping specifications
This is another popular Etsy business as different kinds of cards and invitations can be printed for customers physically or digitally. It is a quick and easy method of making money as cards and invitations are always printed for birthdays, weddings, showers, and other forms of invitations. This greatly involves the skills of a graphics designer combined with creativity at its best to easily win over customers.
- This is a creative business
- It sells easily
- No damage can be incurred for digital cards
- Physical cards must be handled properly
- Creativity must match the needs of customers
Etsy shop is a great place to start a business for any smart and crafty entrepreneur, craftsman, and building of brands. The list above only highlights some of the numerous Etsy shop ideas that can reel in money as there is an opportunity to sell various items ranging from handmade items to vintage items, craft supplies, arts, prints, DIY projects, and materials, and many more. Well-planned Etsy business ideas help to promote businesses online and improve sales for entrepreneurs.
It can also supplement an existing business as the Etsy business account can be linked with the Shopify store to allow for synchronization.
Handmade and personalized jewelry are the easiest to sell on Etsy. However, Jewelry and craft supplies, printable, digital artworks, and stickers are also quite easy to sell.
Most common and with the most sales, Craft and Supplies is the top-selling category on Etsy and includes craft essentials, miniatures, jewelry tools, beads, and more. Stickers, antique charms, hooks, claws, and beads are also common items.
Etsy shops are affordable opportunities to earn a comfortable income with your skills. It is absolutely possible to make a living off Etsy. According to Glassdoor, the most senior sellers on Etsy can earn up to $74, 460 a year.
For anyone starting out on Etsy, there is no limit for how many products to list. However, Etsy recommends listing at least 10 products. The number of products listed increases the likelihood of customers finding your business.
Some of the best ideas that kids have made an impact with on Etsy are hand-painted items, dog treats, hand-carved items, candles, dog collars, slime, friendship bracelets, and soaps. However, kids under the age of 18 are considered minors on Etsy and must have parents or legal guardians to manage Etsy accounts.
- List new products often to gain numbers
- Use cross-sell and upsell to boost customers’ lifetimes
- Run offers and promotions
- Attend visibility-building events
- Ask for help when necessary
- Use social media to drive traffic to your store
- Optimize your store for SEO
- Engage brand ambassadors to popularize your shop
- Operate a subscriber list without being intrusive
- Human remains and animal products
- Dangerous and Hazardous Materials e.g., Weapons and Chemicals
- Items that promote, glorify, or support hate
- Items that promote, glorify, or support violence
- Illegal and regulated items
- Pornography and other adult content
Three main documents are often required for selling on Etsy. They are;
- Business Operation License: This varies by state and city, and sellers might have to contact their local business administrator for advice on securing this.
- Employer Identification Number: This is not required for a sole proprietor, which is the most common on Etsy. However, it is required for partnerships and LLCs.
- Home Occupation Permit: This is for sellers working from their homes and details regarding this can be gotten from the local small business administrator.