Managing Multiple Venues

Last week we talked about selling our products through multiple venues. If you missed the post, you can check it out here.

Last spring I decided to try selling my hand bound books through both Artfire and Etsy. Today, we’re going to talk about that experience. Please note, this is my own personal experience. If you have had a different experience feel free to share in the comments below.

Last spring I decided to expand my shop and try out Artfire. I’d just heard about it through a craft forum and other sellers were managing two shops – Etsy and Artfire. I thought, hey, maybe this would be cool. I was drawn in by the differences between the two venues.

Artfire offers a one  month fee for listing unlimited and they listing is live until you delete it or sell out of that item. It also gave me more sections in the shop.

Etsy, is a pay per listing venue and the listings are for three months.

So for about a year I listed my books in both shops. And here are the results:

1. With in that year, I had less than 20 transactions on Artfire. I have sold close to 200 books on Etsy.

2. Those who found me on Artfire, still came over to my Etsy shop to make their purchase.

3. Artfire accepts Amazon Payments, credit cards, and paypal.  Just recently, Etsy added on the credit card option for customers.

4. Etsy now has a feature for sellers to print shipping labels where as when I was on Artfire, they did not have that feature (not sure if they have it now).

5. Etsy draws more traffic and is more spoke of by word of mouth.

Of course the biggest draw back about selling between two venues is one of a kind products. Obviously, there are times when we make a painting, sculpture, or even a book that can’t be duplicated. NEVER SAY NEVER. When you list that one item on both shops thinking it will give you better exposure, you think, “what are the chances it will sell at the same time on both shops.” Never, right?

NEVER SAY NEVER. It has been known to happen. That one sell you make after months on one shop can be the same thing ordered on your other shop. That’s why I recommend that you keep your one of  a kind pieces in one shop. If you have books, artwork, or other items that you can remake duplicates of them by all means sell them in multiple venues.

The last thing you want is an unhappy customers, especially if it took them a while to finally decide on your piece of craftmanship and then become disappointed if you can’t deliver.

The best policy for managing multiple venues is this:

One of a Kind = one shop

multiple prints = multiple shops

I now keep everything over in my etsy shop, it’s easy to manage and helps me to focus on both my love for book binding and my love for writing. That is when I’m not balancing someone’s checkbook by day. LOL…

What works me, may not work for you, and vise versa. Are you managing one shop or two shops?

I’d love to hear from you!

For the month of September, anyone who leaves a comment will get their name put in a bowl. If you comment and link back to my blog on your blog, you get your name in the bowl twice. If you leave a comment, and link back to my blog, and mention me (in good way of course) on Face book or Twitter…you get your name in the bowl THREE times.

And what do you win?

I will pick a winner once a month and it will be a critique of your etsy or artfire shop (one – not both) or blog, which ever you choose.

If you are selected as winner, you have one week to contact me with your shop or blog address for critique. Your critique will then be posted here as blog post on the last Tuesday of the month. (ex. you’re chosen in Sept, your critique is posted the end of October)

At the end of September I will pick a winner for the monthly prize. Good luck!


Daughter of a dairy farmer, this crafty mom has a heart for all things handmade. When she's not writing or crafting, you can find her creating memories with her family.

Posted in Talk Tuesday

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