What are the best online selling sites around?
For our work life contest, we asked Ting customers if they sold stuff online and which online selling sites they used to bring their stuff to the world.
It’s hard not to admire an entrepreneurial spirit. Customers shared some innovative, artsy and impressive e-commerce operations, from small family endeavors to decades-old artisan-run businesses. You told us how your online stores help you connect with audiences and customers worldwide and make selling from your home or business a breeze.
Not to mention, your online stores are an important source of side hustle cash, helping you save more and spend on what’s important.
We picked some of our favorite entrepreneurial Ting customers and have shared their shops and stories below. Check them out. You might just find your next great gift, crafting idea, piece of artwork or holiday ornament.
Carmen started selling her patterns online in 2014. “This was the best way to create exposure for my patterns. Many people prefer to purchase individual patterns rather than a book or magazine where they might only want to make one or two designs. Online selling makes it easy for me to release new designs and for others to see what is available.”
If you’re looking for one of a kind stitch holders and fresh patterns to tackle, Carmen’s shop is a great place to start. Or if you’re a pattern designer yourself and want to take your vision to the next level, have a look and see what she’s accomplished. You can find Carmen’s shop on Ravelry and on her website.
Robert and Nancy craft and sell stained glass items on Etsy.
Originally selling work at wholesale at commercial trades shows and craft fair circuits, Robert and Nancy decided they needed a change.
“Craft shows were getting expensive. We were getting older and couldn’t physically keep up the pace of travel and the setup and teardown. We also needed to appear to a broader clientele than we were repeatedly showing to and needed to have a source of sales during the off season and in between shows. ”
Keiber Glass has made its home on Etsy since 2009. As Nancy explains on her profile, customers are welcome to request custom and special orders based off what they see in the shop.
An Australian living in Madison, Wisconsin, Steven started his career as a geologist with a passion for photography. Today his professional photography is available on Amazon Handmade and a variety of other platforms.
Steven’s body of work is made up of photos from all the places he has lived in or traveled to including Maine, Wisconsin, New Mexico, Australia and Canada. He sells his work at local art fairs around the Madison area.
“In general at these art fairs people gravitate more towards buying more local scenes. By selling my photos online, I can reach a much larger, worldwide, audience. Online, I can have a much larger number of photos on display. People can search for and buy photos that have meaning for them – these can then be printed on demand.”
Steven uses online selling sites like Etsy and Handmade Amazon where he prints and ships his photographs himself. He’s also enjoyed the ease of using services like RedBubble, Pixels.com and Fine Art America. These services handle printing and shipping Steve’s photography in a variety of sizes and on different items.
Kelsey started selling video game holiday themed ornaments in 2013 on Etsy. To date, she’s created and sold over 2,000 of her unique pieces.
“It was my first Christmas season in my own place, and I realized there wasn’t a market for gaming-related ornaments, which was what I wanted to decorate my tree with. After creating and sharing them on Reddit, they got a lot of attention and requests, so I started offering them to the world. During my first holiday selling them, I unexpectedly lost my job. Making these ornaments for others helped me stay afloat while I paid rent, student loans and other living expenses. Every year after that, 100 percent of the proceeds have gone straight to my student loan debt.”
Kelsey’s online store is a year-round operation. When the holidays are over she sells custom, illustrated wedding portraits, bridal party hoodies and anything else she feels like creating and sharing with the world.
Do you think one of these online selling sites would work well for the type of merchandise or artwork you sell? Which online services have worked well for you in the past? Let us know by leaving a comment below.