Etsy Weekly Tip #11 When Should You Start a Website

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When is the correct time to start your own website?

Is it going to replace your Etsy shop or compliment it?

Do I buy self-hosting or start a Shopify store?

These are all excellent questions, and luckily for you, we have the answers you are looking for.

To answer these questions correctly, I'll have to assume a few things.

I'm assuming you are a dead set on being successful and committed to the long haul. 

If that is you, start your own website as soon as possible.

Once You are Committed

There really isn't much of an argument against starting your own website. Maybe the time commitment? Perhaps the fear of failure or the fear of the unknown.

These fears are valid, but if you found your way to this article, you're obviously fighting through these fears and looking for some positive reassurance.

Start Your Own Website Today!

Let me tell you all the incredible reasons why.

Ownership of a Digital Asset

You don't own your Etsy shop. It can be shut down without notice and without much recourse to get it back. Now obviously, this is not an event we want to happen, or an event that is super common, but it does happen.

We've had our shop shut down twice. The first time was the scariest and took an incredible amount of energy and stress to get it re-opened.

The genuine possibility of losing your income overnight without much recourse was enough for us to start our own eCommerce website.

We own Nobody can ever take it away from us.


The term branding can be a little strange and confusing when you first start out unless you have a marketing background. But all of us have been inundated with branding our whole lives.

We buy Nike shoes because we believe Nike shoes are something we need, trust and recognize. I guess the thousands of adverts you've seen have worked and solidified Nike's brand into our very culture.

You need to start your brand too, and a website is a precious tool for this. It's also good for Google. Google likes brands as they help Google figure out which sites are legit and which are spammy. 


With your own website, you get the opportunity to receive organic traffic to your shop. You have no control over this with your Etsy shop. With your own website, you can integrate a blog to go alongside your product listings.

Start a Blog

Writing articles, allows you to attract possible customers to your website. If you are an expert on a subject, let the world know.

Paid Traffic

Etsy does have the option for paid traffic. We 100% recommend all Etsy shop owners use promoted listings. More recently, Etsy has also added Google shopping and Facebook ads.

Our Etsy Google Shopping Ads perform slightly 'profitable.'

The problem with running Etsy Google Shopping ads? You can't really control them, there is no way to optimize, a/b split test. You set it and forget it. This strategy doesn't really work with paid traffic.

Our private Google Shopping Ads that we control have produced much better results. Same items, same time period. 

For the Etsy Google shopping, for every $1 spent, we made $1.43.

For our Google shopping campaign, for every $1 spent, we made $2.58.

And this is just for Google Shopping. There are thousands of other paid traffic opportunities on the internet, but they all require you to have your own website.

Affiliate Marketing

Last but not least, affiliate marketing. 

Affiliate marketing is what made Amazon the biggest retailer in the world.

Affiliate marketing is a potent tool. Its world of mouth advertising, sharing part of the profit with the partners who send you customers.


There are lots and lots of reasons to start your own eCommerce website. For us, just the fact that we owned it was all it took to convince us it was necessary.

In future articles, we will be teaching you exactly how to set up your very own WooCommerce shop on your own domain.

Etsy Tips of the Week

Each Monday, we release our Etsy tip of the week. This series aims to teach Etsy sellers on how to improve their shops and sell more items.

When is the correct time to start your own website? Is it going to replace your #Etsy shop or compliment it? Do I buy self-hosting or start a #Shopify store? These are all excellent questions, and luckily for you, we have the answers you are looking for. #buildWebsite #etsySuccess #etsyTips #ecommerce
Kelly Fitzsimmons

In 2010, Kelly left the corporate world behind, sold all his stuff and hit the road. He settled in Chiang Mai, met his super-intelligent wife, Bibi and together, they created their thriving Etsy business. To keep the creative juices following, Bibi and Kelly have started side blogging projects aimed at helping others mimic their Etsy and blogging success.