The demand for purchasing quality artisanal products has significantly grown over the years resulting in the arrival of numerous handmade online marketplaces such as Etsy, us (Crafter’s Market UK), Folksy and Beautifully Handmade, etc… which are all competing for the opportunity to showcase your lovely crafty goods.
These specialist marketplaces are a fantastic way of growing your customer base by reaching more people online who may not have otherwise of found you.
In this guide we’ll give you the quick intro on the top craft marketplaces/websites for UK handmade businesses.
But Crafter’s Market, why are you advertising your competitors?!
Rest assured we haven’t lost the plot, entirely, we just like to think that whilst we’d love everyone to come to Crafter’s Market, sometimes alternatives are better suited. Community over competition 😊
Crafter’s Market UK
Crafter’s Market UK is a new marketplace for buying and selling crafts, artwork and designs in the UK with low selling fees and no up-front costs. It has been designed and developed by crafters (👋) for crafters and aims to create a community of likeminded makers helping each other over discussions with marketing and small business queries, all accompanied by a secure shopping platform for its customers.
You can set up your shop for free and only pay 5% commission fee + 1.4%+20p payment processing fee per order, meaning you can set up shop with absolutely zero risk or commitment. Alternatively you can pay £5.00 per month and only pay 1.4%+20p payment processing fee per order.
Crafter’s Market has also committed to planting a tree for every order made 🌱
Etsy is hands down the ‘go to’ online market place for handmade products, with millions of sellers and buyers worldwide. It’s the most well-known global marketplace for unique and creative goods from unique handmade products to vintage treasures.
Joining and starting a shop is absolutely free, but there are various additional fees to consider, eg. listing fees, transaction fees, payment processing fees… You get the idea. That said, the traffic the Etsy website is far more than any other marketplace online and it’s a well-trusted name.
Not only this but Etsy does provide various handy, highly refined features made to help you get the most out of your online shop. Utilised correctly Etsy can be a powerful asset for any handmade business but it does take time to build up from scratch.
Folksy was launched back in 2008 and now has an impressive 13,000+ independent designers and makers based across the UK. They’re a small team of people dedicated to craft, based on the edge of the beautiful Peak District national park in Sheffield, UK.
You can set up your own Folksy shop for free and list up to 3 items. After 3 items there is small listing fee (15p) per item and their commission is currently 6%+VAT. Alternatively you can pay £5.00 a month for unlimited listings, with 6%+VAT commission on sales. There is also the standard payment processing fee (Stripe: 1.4%+20p or PayPal: 3.4% + 20p).
Fees aside, Folksy also have a handy mobile app to make things a lot easier that works alongside their website. We don’t often see Folksy’s name mentioned in craft groups or advertising lately but despite this they’ve secured themselves as one of the main UK marketplaces to shop around with a host of positive reviews on Trust Pilot.
Not On The Highstreet
Not On The High Street is another popular online marketplace for gifts and in personalised creative products. Founded back in 2006 by Holly Tucker and Sophie Cornish, their marketplace now has an impressive 2.8m+ active customers (2020) purchasing on-trend personalised gifts, prints, art and more.
There is a one-off joining fee of £199 to start selling as well as a pretty high commission rate (25% on each sale). This does however, include an account set up, your online shop window, access to the 24-hour order management system and added-value resources such as SEO, business planning and SPARK, their vendor area featuring how-to guides and trends updates.
They also regularly promote their ‘vendors’ through weekly emails, catalogues, and even various TV appearances. Much of the marketing does still need to be done by sellers themselves but there’s plenty of training and tutorials available though.
Not On The Highstreet seems to suit more commercially-minded/larger set up creatives who can produce quality and quantities at equal pace at good prices.
Made By Mums
Made by Mums is an inclusive UK Etsy alternative set up to help mums and carers sell handmade creations. Created by Joanna and Robert back in 2018, Made By Mums advertises its marketplace as being great value, no risk and with a supportive community.
Sporting over 300 shops and thousands of unique gifts, Signing up is completely free and the only fee you pay is a combined transaction + payment processing fee of 7.5% + 35p. Nice and transparent there with no hidden additions.
What’s more is that their website is rather nice! Attention to detail has made this marketplace with a modern and clean feel that’s a pleasant experience on mobile devices.
Handmade in Britain
Handmade in Britain online ran by Piyush and Saket and with the current version of the marketplace launched in 2018, Handmade in Britain has been developed to support and promote British Designer-makers.
Unlike many other marketplaces, Handmade in Britain requires vendors to submit an application (est. 20 minutes). Whereas this could be seen as quite some effort, it does mean that the quality of products listed has potential to be better on average.
It doesn’t seem possible to retrieve the fees at this time from their FAQ which states “There is no subscription or joining fee to be a part of our online community and to have a presence in our marketplace. We only take commission on sales. Our commission structure is very simple and based on sales. The details of the commission would be included in your welcome pack.”
That said, Handmade in Britain is available worldwide, making potential sales greater than that of UK-only marketplaces.
Beautifully Handmade was started up by Sarah Harvey in December 2020 and is committed to offering affordability, support through education with online selling.
Unlike many other marketplaces, Beautifully Handmade has set a cap to the number of shops they will accept to 20,000, whilst it’s an unknown what the vendor count is currently is, the marketplace has a whopping 25,000 products already listed with more added everyday.
The current sign up fee for this marketplace is £25.00 per year but has no commission fees. Whilst there is an inherit ‘risk’ with paying up-front fees to smaller marketplaces, the zero selling fees are indeed a tempting and valued offer.
A marketplace to keep an eye on certainly!
Bristol Market brings you the best makers and independent creatives in an online marketplace and in and a Instagram market. Don’t let the name fool you – their heart may be in Bristol, but talent has no borders and they accept makers from anywhere in the UK.
Unlike all the other marketplaces listed on this article, Bristol Market isn’t exactly a standard marketplace per se, instead it’s more of a directory which links off directly to your various checkout methods.
Bristol Market boasts over 18,000 followers on Instagram where they actively promote their listings. Each vendor listed can have their own brand page with product shots and links to social channels. Not only this but they also send out press releases to local and national magazines to help promote you.
Their application process is straight forward but does come at a cost of £7.00 per month (but has no minimum term).
A great opportunity for those simply looking to boost exposure!
Support The Maker
Support the Maker is a brand new online venture coming soon from the event organisers Craft in Focus. Support the Maker promises to offers consumers the chance to find and buy work from some of the UK’s finest contemporary designer makers many of whom have taken part in the Craft in Focus shows.
A unique feature from this future marketplace is their ‘Pre–Loved’ feature. If you have handcrafted pieces made in the UK that are no longer required due to a house move, change of décor – this feature is perfect.
Bonus Facebook Groups
Had enough of marketplaces but active on Facebook? There’s various craft groups available to those looking to quickly market their creative goods!
Do you have a marketplace in mind that we’ve missed? We’d love to hear about it! Send over an email to email@example.com 😊