Etsy.com: Online Community Revenue

How to craft a billion dollar business. Etsy is a funky boutique of an online community, an independent online marketplace for handmade products and vintage goods where hand made jewellry, with tailor made skirts and vintage jackets live side by side with chocolates and photography. Etsy themselves don’t sell anything, they offer to match dressmakers and vintage resellers with fashionistas looking for a bargain with a story and style.

Given that I am still asked if there is money in online communities, I thought it would be interesting to look at how much revenue Etsy.com makes since they started in 2005.

2005 – $166,000 in sales.

For 2007: Etsy’s 2007 gross merchandise sales reached $26 million in 2007

For 2008: Etsy’s 2008 gross merchandise sales reached $88 million in 2008. Jan 2008 – 50 employees, 650,000 members, 120,000 sellers. 127 countries. (Etsy blogOpens in a new tab.)

Feb 1 2009: $100 million worth of goods were sold on Etsy in 2008. The company is generating over $1 million/month in revenue, Kalin told me. (Michael Arrington, TechCrunchOpens in a new tab.) about 1.7 million visitors a month.

August 2009: $15 million turnover of product in August 2009

November 2009: 3.4 million views a month & Kalin reports that gross merchandise sales on Etsy is “approaching 200 million in goods sold this year,” which is double last year’s amount. from TechCrunch againOpens in a new tab.. SFGate: Etsy’s 2009 gross merchandise sales reached $130 million at the end of October. Etsy keeps 3.5% of those sales for its revenues.  Other revenue streams include listing fees ($0.20/item), and fees for listings that appear on category searches and on a link from the homepage. Note: craft industry is a 27.4 billion industry in US in 2009. (MaineOpens in a new tab.)

2009: 35% of sales come in holiday season. 180 million sales for 2009. Maine.

28 October 2010: 150 staff. Revenue was 15-20million in 2009, 5 million members. “It’s $300 million — with A, B, C, D, and E funding — as valued by our latest investment from Index Ventures. But that doesn’t really interest me. The value that Etsy provides to its shareholders and community is much, much longer-term. [People involved with] Etsy are on board for the long haul. It will outlive me and everyone working there.” (Rob Kalin, CEO Etsy on BloombergOpens in a new tab.) The New York company tallied $273.2 million in sales through November (maineOpens in a new tab.)

December 2010: Etsy, the eBay for arts and crafts, is set to see $400 million worth of business on its site this year, the New York Times reports. Of that $400 million, Etsy’s slice of revenue will be in the range of $30-$50 million. It generates revenue from listing fees, processing fees, and other fees like prominent display for what people are selling (SFGate San Fran ChronicleOpens in a new tab.)

January 2011: Etsy’s 6.9 million vendors live in more than 150 countries. Planning to do 1 billion dollars of sales in 2011 and between 30-50 million in revenue.

What’s your favourite peer to peer economy commuity?

Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

21 thoughts on “Etsy.com: Online Community Revenue

  1. I think Etsy is another great example of making a huge turnover from a concept already implemented (EBay), and applying it to a niche market (Arts & Crafts)…


  2. Except that Etsy is wrecking its brand by not curating it well. Between the non-vintage resellers posing as crafters and resellers, and the heavy-handed moderation of its community members in forums, it will go the way of eBay (which used to be cool, and then turned into junk central).

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