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What is Etsy: Buy and sell internationally on Etsy

As Etsy is becoming more and more famous in the Netherlands, you may find it helpful to know exactly what Etsy is and how to use it.

What is Etsy

Etsy is an American online platform and community for buying & selling handmade items. That's how it all started in 2005, with the focus on “handmade”But nowadays you can also find the categories“ vintage ”and“ parts ”. On this platform for creatives, more than 4 million people have one own shop. When you buy an item on Etsy, you buy it directly from the maker. So you don't buy it from Etsy.Below you can see the opening page of Etsy. This front page is constantly changing according to the season and current trends.

What is Etsy?


Because Etsy now has millions of buyers and sellers, it can be quite difficult to see the forest for the trees. To a handmade felt bag from the Netherlands To find, you must first work your way between all the jeans and hobby projects bags. Still, Etsy is a great place to get one online unique object or gift. Because Etsy is focused on handmade items and worldwide available, you can also buy a woolen cap from that small studio in South America or a woolen blanket from that maker on a mountain in Austria. That is a completely different shopping experience than at Amazon or Bol. 

Since you were on Etsy with iDeal can pay, the popularity of Etsy in the Netherlands has risen sharply. There are always new ones Dutch shops at, so it pays to turn on the NL filter every now and then and scroll through the Dutch Etsy products. At the bottom of the page / website you can set the language to Dutch or English. 

You do need to invest some time to find out how Etsy works - it's not difficult, but before you get through those trees & see the forest you'll need the handy filters on the Etsy website. You can filter your searches and search more and more specifically. The filters I often use are

  • Shop Location: Here you indicate where the shop is located where you would like to buy something. I often search in the Netherlands, because so many beautiful things are made in our little country. Below you can see the location filter for Dutch Etsy stores in red.
Find Etsy stores in the Netherlands with the shop location feature


If you have ended up in a super cool shop by clicking through Etsy, you can see in that Etsy shop where it is located. The great thing about local Etsy searches is that you can discover beautiful items ... made just around the corner! Like the beautiful linocut print “The Hug” by Gabriela Aguirrezabal - van Printtherapy from Utrecht


Dutch Etsy seller Printtherapy with linocut print The Hug


  • Special offers: I would like to check the “Personalizable” option, so that you can find all items that you can personalize, for example a bracelet with a name engraved on it or a leather wallet in your favorite color. Below you see the personalized mugs of which you can have the text adjusted - from Pinkq from The Hague
Dutch Etsy seller PinQ with personalized mugs


-> Have you made an awesome purchase on Etsy? Share your experience in the comments!

If we look at Etsy's Trustpilot reviews, the figure is pretty low. The reviews show that many people in the Netherlands do not know how Etsy works and therefore have different expectations. Because if you buy a product directly from a maker from the other side of the world, then it may just be that your order is weeks and weeks away. Sometimes your product even has to be made when you place your order. Because we are used to deliveries within 24 hours and sometimes even on Sundays, this is also a very different shopping experience than the big online retailers.

Selling on Etsy is very easy; the dashboard is also available in Dutch. If you have all your details ready to fill in your shop, you can get started in no time. You don't have to have a VAT number for it. The parts you will fill in include:

  • Story of your store
  • Terms and conditions of your store
  • Shipping
  • Product Photos
  • Product descriptions

Sell on Etsy

On Etsy you can sell both digital products (downloads) and physical, tangible products that are shipped. The layout of your Etsy store is an easy and clear set of settings, products and communication with your customers and visitors. Etsy (can) advertise for you within Etsy and on the internet, which is very convenient.  Sales on Etsy do come at a cost: In total, you have to count on about 15% commission & transaction fees that Etsy content sells on you. In order to start selling, you do NOT need an investment; Via this link you can start with 40 free listings. These are the product ads for which Etsy charges 20 cents per shrewd fee. 

Do you need help setting up your Etsy store?

Then join my private Facebook page or give yourself a great start on Etsy with my Strippenkaart for online support and coaching.  


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