Etsy is a globally recognised eCommerce platform that draws millions of customers searching for unique, handmade, and vintage products. It’s a goldmine for savvy online sellers who know how to leverage dropshipping.
Now mix the concept of dropshipping with Etsy, and you’ve got yourself a winning combo. Etsy dropshipping has emerged as a lucrative and sustainable business model, capturing the attention of sellers worldwide, including India.
So, if you’ve been toying with the idea of starting your Etsy dropshipping business from India, this guide is tailor-made for you. Here you’ll learn what Etsy Dropshipping is, certain rules for dropshipping, and how to sell on Etsy India.
What is Etsy Dropshipping?
At its core, dropshipping is a retail fulfilment method where you sell products in your online store but don’t keep a stockpile of inventory. Instead, when a customer purchases from your store, you forward the order details to a third-party supplier, who then ships the product directly to your customer.
Take this concept and apply it to Etsy, and we have Etsy Dropshipping. It’s not just a simple cut-and-paste job. As a platform, Etsy has unique characteristics and rules that set it apart from other eCommerce platforms.
This means you’re not selling generic products from a random supplier. Instead, you’re collaborating with craftsmen, artisans, or suppliers of unique, vintage, or craft supplies, who’ll ship their creations directly to your customers. In short, you’re providing a platform for these unique products to reach a global audience while building a sustainable business with low startup costs.
Remember, Etsy values transparency and customer satisfaction. As a dropshipper, you’ll need to disclose your production partners (the third-party suppliers) on your listings, ensuring that the buyers are aware of your business model.
Rules of Dropshipping on Etsy
- Etsy is not your average marketplace. Here, you should be dealing in vintage, handmade, or craft supplies. Remember, for a product to qualify as vintage, it must be at least 20 years old.
- On Etsy, you are expected to be the designer and/or maker of the items you sell. Simply put, reselling sourced handmade items from other Etsy sellers in your shop is a no-go.
- In the case you work with production partners, you must disclose this relationship on your product listings. But note your production partners can’t be other Etsy members or suppliers from whom you’re sourcing ready-made products for resale.
- When it comes to craft supplies, you’re allowed to source commercial, vintage, or handmade goods from a third-party seller.
- Each of your Etsy listings should directly sell a physical or digital item. Activities like creating referral codes for Etsy listings, posting want ads, or similar is strictly prohibited.
- You should refrain from selling products sourced from merchants unaffiliated with your business, selling trade fair items you didn’t design or make, and repackaging/rebranding commercial items.
- This one’s a bit more specific but essential to know – you’re not permitted to use AliExpress for dropshipping on Etsy.
How to Sell on Etsy India?
Choose a Product Niche to Sell on Etsy
Before diving into Etsy’s marketplace, you must first identify your niche. Then, conduct market research to identify the most profitable niches on Etsy, especially those that align with your interests and skills. Finally, pay attention to the demand for specific products on Etsy to ensure you’re entering a viable market.
Create an Etsy Seller Account
Starting your journey on Etsy begins with creating a seller account. So, navigate to Etsy.com and register using your business email address. Verification is a vital step in this process; complete it as per the instructions to maintain your account’s integrity.
Create an Etsy Storefront
Your storefront is the face of your business on Etsy. Begin by setting up your shop with your newly created account. Next, choose your shop preferences, such as the language for your product descriptions, your selling country, and the currency for your transactions.
Adding products to your shop is the next critical step. High-quality photographs and compelling product descriptions are vital for each listing – remember, the internet is a visual platform, and your customers will decide based on what they see. Optimise your listings with the best SEO practices to ensure they appear when potential buyers search for relevant keywords.
Determine How You Will Be Paid
Now, it’s time to decide how you’d like to be paid. You have various options, ranging from bank transfers to digital wallets. Provide the necessary bank or wallet details accurately, and double-check them to prevent future payment mishaps.
Selling on Etsy isn’t entirely free; listing fees and other costs are involved. Understand these charges and set up a payment method to handle these expenses. A clear understanding of your costs will help you price your products effectively.
Make Your Etsy Storefront Unique
Customise your shop with eye-catching banners and profile images. Create a compelling seller profile and narrate your shop story – let customers know who you are, why you’re selling these items, and what makes you unique. Establish clear business policies to ensure buyers have a smooth experience when purchasing from your shop.
Promote Your Products
Visibility is key to your success on Etsy. Utilize various promotional strategies to increase your shop’s reach. These could include running sales, sharing shop updates on social media, or optimising your product descriptions with SEO-friendly keywords. The goal is to make your products easily discoverable by potential buyers.
Pick A Shipping Service
The last but not least step is to choose a reliable shipping service. Accurate shipping details and processing time are essential to meet customer expectations and ensure a smooth delivery experience. You could opt for a logistics aggregator platform like NimbusPost for seamless logistics support. Remember, a happy customer is more likely to return and refer others to your shop.
In the grand tapestry of eCommerce, Etsy forms a vibrant thread connecting India’s unique craftspeople with a worldwide audience. It’s not just a marketplace but a community that thrives on originality, creativity, and human touch. The ease of integrating Etsy with your existing eCommerce platforms is like setting up your retail chain on the digital landscape. So, start selling, and start exploring Etsy today!
Can you sell on Etsy from India?
Yes, if you’re an Indian seller with a knack for crafting beautiful items, Etsy provides you with a fantastic opportunity to showcase your creations and connect with a global audience. From intricately designed jewellery and vibrant textiles to handmade decor and personalised gifts, the possibilities are endless.
Do you need a business license to sell on Etsy in India?
While Etsy, the popular online marketplace, does not explicitly require sellers to have a business license, there are certain legal requirements you need to consider when selling on the platform in India. You’ll need an IEC (Import Export Code), which is necessary for exporting goods from India.
To obtain an IEC Code, you’ll need to register a firm in India. This process involves setting up a legal entity for your business, which could be a proprietorship, partnership, or private limited company, depending on your preference and requirements. Once you have registered your firm, you can apply for an IEC Code.
Is GST required to sell on Etsy?
Yes, Goods and Services Tax (GST) is generally required to sell on Etsy, especially for business sellers mandated to provide their GST Identification Number (GSTIN). As per local tax regulations, Etsy collects an 18% GST on all seller fees. However, it’s noteworthy to mention that for individual sellers and sole proprietors, providing GSTIN is currently optional.
Nevertheless, understanding and abiding by your local tax obligations is an essential part of running a successful Etsy shop.
Is Etsy dropshipping free?
No, it is not free to do dropshipping on Etsy. There is a listing fee of 20¢ charged by Etsy for each item. If you sell multiple quantities of the same item, the listing fee will be charged for each item sold. Therefore, if you sell two of the same items, you will be charged the listing fee twice.
Who cannot sell on Etsy?
Etsy has certain restrictions on who can sell on its platform. Here’s a breakdown of who cannot sell on Etsy:
- Individuals under 18: To open a seller account on Etsy, you need to be at least 18 years old.
- Individuals without a valid email address: A valid one is essential for communication and account verification purposes.
- Individuals residing in unsupported countries: While Etsy is a global marketplace, it supports specific countries for sellers using Etsy Payments.
- Individuals selling prohibited items: Etsy has a list of prohibited items that cannot be sold on the platform. This includes items like alcohol, tobacco, drugs, weapons, hazardous materials, and human remains.