Making Money

Etsy Vs. eBay – Pros, Cons, and Full Comparison

Etsy and eBay are eCommerce websites that each have a large, loyal customer base. Both eBay and Etsy allow individual sellers to promote their items and sell to buyers on the platform. However, you may be wondering which one of these marketplaces is the best one to use. If you’re still deciding whether to sell on Etsy or eBay, you’ve come to the right place.

Although Etsy and eBay have many similarities, these platforms differ regarding their payment processing fee, listing fees, and product listing process. They also offer different seller tools and processing fees that are individual to each platform and store type. Let’s dive deeper into Etsy vs. eBay, so you can find out which is the right eCommerce website for your needs.


Etsy vs. eBay: Customer base 

As a prospective seller on eBay or Etsy, you may be wondering what the customer base is like on each marketplace. After all, interacting with your buyers is one of the best ways to make a sale. Although both sites have large customer bases, eBay’s is much larger. eBay has 183 million customers worldwide, while Etsy has just over 45 million.

Although eBay has a more extensive customer base, the demographic of each audience is similar. The customer bases on each website are primarily American. However, many other countries participate as well!


Etsy vs. eBay: Shipping processes 

Although selling on eBay is similar to selling on Etsy, their shipping processes and shipping costs differ. Free shipping is the standard on eBay. If you want to sell on eBay, you may feel obligated to offer free shipping as a business. In fact, 71% of purchases made on eBay were of items that had free shipping.

That being said, both eBay and Etsy offer great shipping tools that make shipping for sellers easy. They also each let buyers track their products through the website. While selling on eBay, you’ll get free shipping labels and a free shipping calculator that allows sellers to calculate the final value fee and cost of shipping.

However, shipping on Etsy is often cheaper than shipping on eBay. Etsy offers discounted postage labels to sellers and provides a free shipping calculator on the website as well. This makes Etsy payments easy and affordable. However, the overall value fee, insertion fee, and transaction fees are similar on both platforms.


Etsy vs. eBay: Selling fees

You may be wondering: does Etsy or eBay have lower selling fees? The difference between the selling fees on Etsy and eBay differ depending on the type of store you have, how many products you sell, and how many sales you’ve already made.

eBay offers up to 50 free listings each month for new sellers, making it an excellent platform for those who don’t want high seller fees. On the other hand, as an Etsy seller, you’ll be required listing fees 100% of the time for all sellers on the eCommerce platform. Across all categories, Etsy’s insertion fees and payment processing fees are more frequent than those on eBay. However, they’re often more affordable.


As a seller on eBay, you’ll have the option to pay a monthly or annual fee. These value fees will vary depending on the type of business you have, how many products you sell, and how many listings you’ve posted on the marketplace. eBay’s monthly plans range from $19.99 to $300. If you have an account on Etsy, you’ll typically pay just $0.20 per item on the platform.


If you want to become a popular business on Etsy, Etsy Plus maybe something to consider. On Etsy Plus, successful sellers can pay just $10 per month for advice about selling on Etsy. This premium subscription is just half the price of the cheapest plan on eBay.

Etsy vs. eBay: Advertising fees 

Advertising on various platforms is a great way to promote your online store. Most of the time, you’ll only need to provide an email address and credit card to start advertising online. However, the advertising fees vary greatly when it comes to Etsy vs. eBay.

As a seller on eBay, you’ll know how much you’ll pay upfront before advertising your items. This makes the advertising fees lower risk and more predictable on the site. Running ads on eBay is a great way to grab buyers’ attention and show them the differences between your store and other stores in your niche. This is important to an eBay buyer, since the platform has so many different stores that are all making sales.

On Etsy, however, you’ll be charged per click instead of depending on how many sales you make. Whether you make a sale or not, you’ll have to pay for advertising on the site. This makes Etsy way higher risk and more unpredictable. If you want to cut costs, you can also set a daily budget on Etsy while running eCommerce ads. One of the most notable eBay cons is that it doesn’t give you this option.


Etsy vs. eBay: Products

Similar to Amazon, the most popular items on eBay include electronics and accessories. Most of the items on eBay are mass-produced. Etsy, on the other hand, has a more specific target audience. If you’re a small business, Etsy is the better platform for you. Etsy has a boutique feel where many sellers sell craft supplies, antiques, and handmade items.


While it’s great to sell on Etsy as a small business, eBay is a better place to make an account if you want to scale quickly. It’s also important to keep in mind that eBay is a better place to make sales if you sell used items. Across all categories on eBay, used items sell more often than new ones! Etsy, on the other hand, is the opposite.


Etsy vs. eBay: Overall experience

Although the marketplaces differ greatly from one another, each platform offers great experiences for new sellers. If you want to build a loyal audience as a seller, Etsy and eBay are both great options. However, the process of becoming a popular seller differs between each marketplace.

The more you sell on eBay, the more likely you’ll be to gain a loyal following. This is a great platform for those who want to build an email list or show up high on the search results for a curious buyer. On eBay, you can become a Top-Rated or Above Standard seller on the site. Once you gain this title, you’ll have access to more seller tools and a larger audience.

On Etsy, the reviews of your store matter more than the amount of items you’ve sold to customers. The reviews from your audience also matter more than the type of item you sell or the amount of money you’ve made. Unlike eBay, Etsy doesn’t rate their sellers. Instead, they focus on the reviews from customers and customers only.


Another main difference between Etsy vs. eBay is that eBay is great for selling mass-produced products while Etsy is ideal for exclusive items and smaller businesses that promote a unique product. If you’re an artist or creative entrepreneur, Etsy is the better marketplace for you.

Etsy also gives sellers more advice on how to sell products and has a community forum so that each store can interact with each other. eBay, on the other hand, has less of a community feel. In fact, throughout all categories, sellers on eBay may feel pressure to scale up or make more sales within a short amount of time since the marketplace tends to be competitive.

Ultimately, no matter what type of item you’re trying to sell, Etsy and eBay are great sites to consider. Although each platform has its pros and cons, these popular marketplaces are designed to help you make sales and have a successful online store.

Whether you want to sell antiques or articles of clothing, it’s important to learn the differences between these marketplaces. Keep in mind that their overall terms, accepted credit cards, and value fees may differ significantly from one another.

If you want to cut costs on advertising, Etsy’s terms will likely be most compatible with your budget and type of store. However, if you’re someone that runs a larger business and makes many sales each week, eBay may be the better marketplace for you to sell and promote your items.

Kevin Martin

Kevin is an ambitious entrepreneur that is obsessed with all things related to finance. From a young age, Kevin has always been involved with side hustles ranging from online selling to freelance work. Over the years, Kevin graduated from side hustles and started launching multiple online and offline businesses. Kevin is a serial entrepreneur who loves starting new businesses and exploring all things related to business and finance. He is constantly looking for new ways to save money, invest money, and create income streams.

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