Shopify Vs Etsy: Which Platform Is Best For Your Business?
By Storeplum Editorial
Posted | 12 min read
Shopify and Etsy are both popular e-commerce platforms, but they serve different purposes and have different features and target audiences. It is a constant debacle among the ecommerce business community to choose one of them over the other.
So to save you a lot of headaches and give you a brief idea of how both are different from each other, we are here with a comprehensive comparison of Shopify vs Etsy to make you able to make a wise and informed decision and achieve your business goals.
Comparison of Shopify vs Etsy
Etsy and Shopify serve different purposes in the world of e-commerce. Shopify is a standalone e-commerce platform that provides businesses with everything they need to sell their products online, from website design and hosting to payment processing and shipping solutions.
With Shopify, businesses have complete control over the look, feel, and functionality of their online store, and can sell any type of product they choose.
The platform provides a wide range of features, including robust marketing tools and integrations, as well as 24/7 customer support and a wealth of knowledge resources. Users of Shopify ranges from retailers who wish to start online store to successful brands such as Allbirds, Kkw beauty, Kylie Cosmetics etc.
Suitable for large retailers
Whereas Etsy is a marketplace that specializes in handmade, vintage, and unique goods. It provides individual sellers with an opportunity to showcase their creative products and reach a global audience of buyers.
Etsy's focus on unique, one-of-a-kind items sets it apart from other e-commerce platforms and makes it an appealing option for those looking to buy or sell handmade goods.
The platform provides limited marketing tools and relies on individual sellers to manage shipping and fulfillment. Etsy is an extremely popular platform for individual sellers and small businesses, offering a more personal and unique shopping experience for consumers.
Suitable for individual sellers
Comparing Shopify vs Etsy serve different purposes in the e-commerce world, with Shopify being a comprehensive e-commerce platform for businesses and Etsy listings being an online marketplace for handmade, vintage, and unique goods. Both platforms have their own strengths and weaknesses, and the choice between them depends on the specific needs of the business or seller.
Shopify provides a wide range of customization options for its users, giving them the ability to create a truly unique and personalized online store. Shopify's themes allow users to customize their storefront with their own branding, colors, fonts, and images.
In addition, the platform provides advanced customization options through its theme editor, which allows users to make changes to the HTML and CSS code. Shopify also offers a range of third-party apps and plugins that can be integrated into the platform to add additional functionality and customization options.
Etsy, on the other hand, has limited customization options for its users. The platform provides a few basic customization options for storefront design, such as choosing a color scheme and adding a header image.
However, these options are limited compared to those provided by Shopify. Etsy's focus is on promoting the individual products offered by its sellers, rather than the storefronts themselves. As a result, the platform places less emphasis on storefront customization and instead focuses on the overall look and feel of the Etsy marketplace.
Ease of Use of Etsy vs Shopify
When it comes to ease of use, both Shopify and Etsy have their strengths and weaknesses. Let's examine the key factors that contribute to the overall user experience on each platform.
Like Etsy, Shopify is known for its user-friendly interface and wide range of features. The platform provides a simple drag-and-drop interface for creating and customizing store designs, and offers a wide variety of themes to choose from.
Shopify also provides robust inventory management features, allowing merchants to easily track their stock levels and fulfill orders. With this, the platform integrates with a variety of payment gateways, making it easy for merchants to accept payments from customers.
For sellers, customization options on Etsy can include creating listings with detailed descriptions and multiple photos to showcase the unique features of their items, setting up custom orders and commissions, and offering personalized customer service to build relationships with their buyers.
Etsy sellers can also use tools like Shop Policies and Shop Updates to communicate with their customers and provide them with a more personalized experience.
Etsy offers various tools and features to help buyers and sellers with customization, such as the ability to save favorite items and shops, search for specific types of items or shops, and communicate with sellers directly through the platform.
Shipping integrations are an essential feature for any online marketplace, as they allow sellers to efficiently and effectively manage their shipping process. Both Shopify and Etsy offer various shipping integrations that enable sellers to streamline their shipping operations and provide a better experience for their customers.
Shopify provides a wide range of shipping integrations, including major carriers such as FedEx, UPS, and Canada Post, as well as carriers such as PD, USPS, DHL Express, Canada Post, Evri,Sendle, Chonopost, Colissimo,Correos, Mondial Relay, Poste Italiane and many others based on the seller country.
Shopify also integrates with shipping label printing services and shipping rate calculators, making it easy for merchants to accurately calculate shipping costs and print shipping labels from their Shopify dashboard.
The platform's app store offers fulfillment solutions such as fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) and Shopify Fulfillment Network (SFN) for businesses looking for more streamlined and efficient fulfillment processes. This comes in handy when a seller is selling on multiple channels like Amazon and their own website.
On the other hand, Etsy provides limited shipping options compared to Shopify.
Etsy allows sellers to set shipping rates for each item and calculate shipping costs based on the item’s weight and destination. However, Etsy does not offer shipping label printing services or integrations with major carriers, so sellers must arrange shipping on their own.
Etsy also does not offer fulfillment solutions like FBA or SFN.
While Etsy, like Shopify provides basic shipping options for its sellers, Shopify offers a more comprehensive shipping solution with a wide range of integrations and fulfillment options.
This makes Shopify a better option for businesses looking for a more streamlined and efficient shipping process, while Etsy may be a better option for small businesses or individuals who are just starting out and want a more basic shipping solution.
Third party integrations
Shopify offers a wide range of third-party integrations through its app store.
Shopify's app store has over 4,000 apps that offer various functionalities, such as marketing, payment, shipping, and fulfillment solutions.
This allows Shopify merchants to extend their store's functionality, automate their workflows, and access a large number of services to help grow their business like-
Integrating social media platforms to create and manage business pages on social media platforms.
Using email marketing integrations like Godaddy and Mailchimp to directly compose and send marketing and transactional emails
Generate more leads using integrations like Privy, and make sense out of data using advanced analytics like GA
Etsy, on the other hand, has limited third-party integrations compared to Shopify.
While Etsy has a small selection of integrations available through its app marketplace, these integrations are focused on enhancing the functionality of the platform and improving the selling experience for individual sellers. Some popular integrations include shipping carriers, such as USPS and FedEx, and payment gateways, such as PayPal.
Shopify provides a more extensive range of integrations, while Etsy's integrations are focused on enhancing the platform's functionality and improving the selling experience for individual sellers. For businesses looking to integrate a wide range of services and automate workflows, Shopify might be the better choice.
Shopify and Etsy offer different levels of customer support, depending on the needs of their respective users.
Shopify gives 24/7 customer support through multiple channels, including phone, email, live chat, and a comprehensive knowledge base. This makes it easier for merchants to get answers to their questions and resolve any issues they may have with their stores. Shopify also has a large and active community of users who can provide support and advice to each other on various topics like from setting up store to how to get the first customer.
On the other hand, Etsy's customer support is more limited, relying primarily on its online community and limited email support. While this may be sufficient for some Etsy sellers, it can be a disadvantage for those who need more immediate and comprehensive support. Additionally, Etsy's customer support may not be as knowledgeable about the technical aspects of e-commerce, as it is focused more on the handmade and vintage products sold on its platform.
That being said, Etsy's online community is an active and supportive one, where sellers can connect with each other and share advice and experiences. Additionally, Etsy provides educational resources and guides to help its sellers grow their businesses.
From several customer feedback of both platforms, we conclude that Shopify provides more comprehensive and accessible customer support, making it a better choice for businesses that need more assistance with their e-commerce operations.
However, for individual sellers and small businesses focused on handmade, vintage, and unique products, Etsy's community-based support may be sufficient.
Pricing difference between Shopify and Etsy store
Shopify offers several pricing plans, including Basic Shopify ($29 monthly fee), Shopify ($79 monthly fee), Advanced Shopify ($299 monthly fee), and Shopify Plus (custom pricing).
In addition to monthly fee, Shopify also charges transaction fees, which range from 2.0% to 0.5% depending on the pricing plan selected. It doesn't have a listing fee.
Etsy charges a listing fee of $0.20 per item and a transaction fee of 5% of the item's price. This fee structure allows Etsy to make money from the sale of each item, rather than relying solely on monthly subscription fees.
In terms of value for money, Shopify allows a wider range of features and customization options, which may justify its higher monthly subscription fees . For example, the Basic Shopify plan includes features such as unlimited products, a website and blog, and 24/7 customer support.
Etsy's fees , unlike Shopify, are more focused on the sale of items and may be a better value for sellers who are primarily focused on selling a smaller number of handmade items and justifies its high transaction fee. Another important revenue stream for the platform is Etsy ads. As a seller, you can run these ads to reach maximum audience.
It's important to consider the type of business and the size of the product line when evaluating the pricing of Shopify and Etsy. Although Shopify has higher upfront costs, it may be a better fit for businesses with a large product line and complex e-commerce operations, while Etsy payments may be a better fit for individual sellers and small businesses focused on selling handmade items with limited SKU.
Ultimately, the choice between Shopify and Etsy will depend on the specific needs of the business and the types of products being sold. Both platforms offer advantages and disadvantages, and it's important to carefully consider the fees, features, and target audience of each platform before making a decision.
Below is the quick pricing overview for Shopify and Etsy-
|Starts from $29 per month||No monthly subscription fees|
|Transaction fees vary between 0.5% to 2% based on plan||Etsy payments is the default payment option with a flat 5% transaction fee|
|No listing fees.||Additional listing fees|
|Additional fees with apps/ integrations||Additional but limited fees with third party integrations|
Payment Gateway support
Shopify and Etsy both offer various payment gateway options to their customers. A payment gateway is a service that authorizes credit card or electronic payments for e-commerce transactions. The choice of payment gateway can impact the customer checkout experience and affect the cost and security of transactions.
Shopify provides a variety of payment gateways, including popular options like PayPal, Stripe, and Authorize.net. With this, Shopify also supports over 100 payment gateways through their app store, which allows merchants to choose the payment options that best suit their needs.
Shopify offers its own payment gateway, Shopify Payments, which is integrated into the platform. Shopify Payments supports multiple currencies, making it easy for merchants to sell to customers around the world.
Etsy, on the other hand, has limited payment options if we compare Shopify. Etsy only supports a few payment gateways, including PayPal and direct checkout, which is a secure payment option provided by Etsy.
Direct checkout allows buyers to pay directly from the Etsy website without leaving the site, making the checkout process faster and easier.
PayPal is a popular payment gateway that is widely accepted, making it a convenient option for Etsy customers.
Shopify and Etsy platform offer secure payment options, but Shopify has more options for customizing the checkout process, including custom SSL certificates, two-step authentication, and fraud analysis tools.
In addition, Shopify provides a secure checkout experience with automatic fraud analysis and the ability to process refunds and void transactions.
Both Shopify and Etsy offer payment gateway options to their customers, but Shopify has a wider range of payment gateways and a more secure checkout process.
Shopify is a better option for businesses that need more payment options, while Etsy is a good choice for smaller businesses or individual sellers who only need a few payment options. Ultimately, the choice of payment gateway will depend on the needs and what is best for your business.
Which one to choose- Shopify or Etsy?
In conclusion, both Shopify and Etsy are popular e-commerce platforms that offer different features and benefits for businesses and individuals looking to sell their products online.
Shopify is a standalone e-commerce platform that provides businesses with more customization options for store design and functionality. Shopify POS is another offering by the company intended for merchants who are selling online as well as offline, providing a seamless experience for merchants to manage their orders.
Shopify also offers a wide range of marketing tools, shipping and fulfillment solutions, and payment options, making it a suitable choice for businesses of all sizes. On the other hand, Etsy is an online marketplace focused on unique goods. It has a simpler interface and is best suited for individual sellers and small businesses.
When it comes to fees, Shopify charges monthly subscription fees and transaction fees, while Etsy charges listing and transaction fees. In terms of customer support, Shopify provides 24/7 customer support and a wide knowledge base, while Etsy relies on its online community and limited email support.
In terms of product offerings, if we sell on shopify , it allows us to sell any type of product, while Etsy is focused on handmade, vintage, and unique items. This means that Shopify is the better choice for businesses that sell a wide range of products, while Etsy may be a better option for businesses specializing in unique or handmade goods.
When it comes to payment options, if we use Shopify payments, it gives a wide range of payment options and integrations, while Etsy has limited payment options. This means that Shopify may be a better choice for businesses looking to offer multiple payment options to their customers, while Etsy is a great option for businesses that only need a limited number of payment options.
Ultimately, the choice between to use Shopify or to use Etsy will depend on a number of factors, including the type of products being sold, the size of the business, and the level of customization and control required.
One should carefully consider his needs and requirements before choosing between these two popular e-commerce platforms to set up your store and grow your business.
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Suitable for small businesses
Frequently asked questions
It depends on where you start. If you're new to selling online, use Etsy if you sell handmade goods or artisan services. Shopify is great for retail sellers with an established customer base.
Recently, Etsy has increased on its transaction fees and in some countries, Etsy payments is the only option available for sellers which makes it restrictive to sell on the platform.
On an average, Etsy takes $0.20 per item as a listing fee along with a flat 5% transaction fee per sale.
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