Last week we provided a basic comparison of ecommerce giants Amazon and eBay, and how they differ from each other. We also included some details you might be interested in about selling on your own website too. We compared three areas: 1) what they can offer sellers in terms of marketing, 2) how easy or difficult items are to list for sale, and 3) specifications for uploading product images. We’ve done the same analysis for Etsy, Shopify and Bigcommerce today, and intend to continue bringing you further details of how the myriad of ecommerce sites and marketplaces compare to each other. Have you considered selling on Etsy or either of these shopping carts below? Find out now which one is right for your business.
Though Etsy falls below heavy-hitters Amazon and eBay in terms of sales volume, it is still a valuable place to list your products for sale.
- In 2013, Etsy sellers sold $1.35 billion dollars of merchandise.
- As of June 2014, Etsy had 40 million members.
- It is the 9th most popular retail website in the US, coming in third behind similar marketplaces Amazon and eBay.
- There are over 23 million visitors to Etsy each month.
- 2.04% of all Pinterest pins come directly from Etsy.
What’s unique about Etsy is that, due to the fact that it’s catered to artisans, only about 80% of its sellers are full-time ecommerce business managers, whereas the other 20% sell only part-time. Moreover, 26% of Etsy sellers have other full-time jobs, but 94% of all sellers want to increase their sales in the future. Etsy sellers may first join the creative marketplace to pursue their passion, but eventually aim to turn their craft into a full-time business.
On Etsy, you can sell handmade goods, vintage items and craft supplies. It costs $0.20 to list an item for 4 months, or until it sells. Once you sell your item, Etsy collects a 3.5% fee on the sale price. There are no membership fees. Here is a complete guide to adding physical products to your Etsy store. Within your listing, add attributes, tags, descriptions, and a descriptive title.
According to Etsy, your images
- Should be between 800-1000 pixels wide, but the height can vary. If they are more than 1000 pixels wide or tall, they may not upload correctly.
- Should use your most compelling photo of the item for the first photo, which will be the main thumbnail that shoppers will see in searches.
Shopify has proven to be a very popular cart option. In 2013, Shopify
- Sold $1.7 billion dollars worth of products worldwide.
- Had 81,939 Shopify merchant stores.
- Sold to 121 countries worldwide.
- 22.7 million orders were placed, from 14.9 million customer accounts.
- It’s estimated that 1 in 9 people in the US bought something from a website built on Shopify over the past year.
To list your products on Shopify, you must
- Export/Import products using a CSV.
- Have products listed with SKUs.
- Sign up for our own Innovation Bulletin to be notified once ecomlister is ready to make listing on Shopify easy (coming soon).
Shopify offers guided tutorials for listing products on your web store. To read their listing handbook, please click here. In addition, ecomdash integrates with Shopify POS – so if you have a brick and mortar location, your inventory, sales orders and product information will be synced with your online sales channels.
Images on Shopify must all be the same size, with identical aspect ratios. For a video on how to accomplish this, please watch this. Shopify offers extensive guides and helpful videos to assist Seller’s with their store. The complete Shopify Manual is free to use.
Bigcommerce’s over 55,000 stores have sold more than $4 billion in goods. This hosted shopping cart and ecommerce website platform has well-designed templates best suited for fashion, electronics, health, gifts, jewelry, sports, and home ware industries. To help shop owners drive traffic to their site, Bigcommerce offers marketing and basic on-the-website SEO (search engine optimization) features that include
- Auto-generated sitemaps and customizable product descriptions.
- Metadata and URL customization options to help rank highly on Google, Yahoo and Bing.
- Discount and coupon codes.
- Social media integrations.
- Newsletters and automatically generated customer lists.
Before you add your products, you’ll want to set up your product categories. To list a product on Bigcommerce, you’ll need to
- Assign a name, price, category, weight and SKU to a product.
- Create a description for each product.
- Adjust basic product settings.
Additionally, Bigcommerce recommends creating a unique description for each product that you add to help your site be found in search engine results. Full instructions and a video tutorial can be found here.
Adding images to your Bigcommerce listings is easy.
- Simply click the “Select images from your computer” link.
- Or, drag a file from your desktop right to a big white box.
- You may add several images of each product.
It is suggested that you add a description to each image (also referred to as ‘alt text’). This is also helpful for search engines to more easily “read” the images. It’s best to make this description unique for each image. Video tutorials for adding images can be found here.
Stay tuned for more in-depth comparisons of the most popular marketplaces and shopping carts. Just a reminder, ecomdash is a marketplace and shopping cart integration software for multi-channel ecommerce sellers. Are there any you’d like to see next week? Let us know in the comments. If you have any questions about whom we’re integrating with next, please feel free to contact us.