Etsy vs eBay: Which Online Selling Platform is Better?

Before you can sell anything online, you first need to decide where you want to sell it. That is, what online selling platform do you want to use?

And there’s no shortage of options on the table! 

On one hand, this is awesome. The variety of ecommerce platforms available gives sellers plenty of opportunities to connect with customers, showcase their products, and generate sales. 

But on the other hand, there are so many online marketplaces that it’s just not practical to create listings on all of them. Instead, you need to carefully weigh your options and select the best platform for you.

In this article, we’ll compare two popular online marketplaces: Etsy vs. eBay. We’ll look at the pros and cons of each, including audiences, merchant plans, and seller fees, to help you decide which platform is right for you.

Let’s start with a quick background on both Etsy and eBay.

What is Etsy?

Founded in 2006, Etsy is an online marketplace where independent sellers, artists, and artisans can list handmade goods, vintage items, and craft supplies. 

What You Might Not Know About Etsy

Etsy is known for handmade items—but it’s not a marketplace for reselling handmade goods.

If whatever you want to sell doesn’t fit into one of Etsy’s three categories (handmade, vintage, or craft supplies), then this is not the right place to list your items.


What Sets Etsy Apart from Other Online Marketplaces?

Shopping on Etsy feels like the modern-day version of browsing an antique market or farmer’s market, but with a much larger audience. Not only can you get way more eyes on your products than you could from local foot traffic, but it’s also possible to sell items to customers almost anywhere in the world.

To list handmade items on Etsy, you must be directly involved in the creation process—either as the designer or maker of the item. Everyone involved in the creation must be listed in the shop description and any production partners must be credited in the listings. 

For example, an artist could sell original works or downloadable prints on their Etsy store; but a collector wouldn’t be allowed to sell artwork they had no part in creating (that is, unless it meets Etsy’s requirements for vintage items).

If you want to sell vintage items on Etsy, you must be prepared to prove that the item is at least 20 years old.

As for craft supplies? This is the only category on Etsy that can include “commercial” items (alongside handmade and vintage craft supplies, of course). Etsy allows the selling of “tools, ingredients, or materials” to be used “in the creation of an item” or for special occasions. Examples include party decorations, DIY kits, patterns, canvas, and paints.

What is eBay?

Created in 1995, eBay is one of the oldest shopping websites in existence. Millions of people around the world use eBay to buy and sell everything from clothing and furniture to electronics and collectibles.

What You Might Not Know About eBay

It’s not just for resellers anymore. Although eBay originally launched as an online auction site (named “AuctionWeb” at the time), over 80% of today’s listings feature brand new items. 

What Sets eBay Apart from Other Online Marketplaces?

Perhaps eBay’s biggest advantage is its sheer size and popularity. As the second most popular ecommerce and shopping website in the world, eBay sees over 600 million visitors every month.

Originally eBay was an online auction site that involved bidding on each item. These days, the eBay marketplace has expanded to include a wider range of selling options—including auctions, store pages, individual listings, and more.


What Online Sellers Need to Know About Etsy vs. eBay in 2022

If you’re choosing between Etsy and eBay for online selling, there are a ton of factors to consider. Not sure what you should base your decision on? We recommend comparing eBay vs. Etsy by these five criteria: 

  • Audience: How many shoppers can you potentially reach on each platform?
  • Merchant plans: What plans are available for sellers?
  • Platform fees: How are sellers charged for listings, sales, and transactions?
  • Payment processing: How do sellers get paid by their customers?
  • Shipping and fulfillment: How does shipping and fulfillment work?
Etsy vs. eBay

Audience: Etsy vs. eBay Customers

How many shoppers use Etsy vs. eBay?

Both Etsy and eBay are wildly popular. At the end of 2021, Etsy had 90.1 million active buyers and 5.3 million active sellers.

As for eBay, the ecommerce giant boasts 142 million active buyers worldwide and has approximately 1.6 active listings.

What are Etsy and eBay customers shopping for?

Etsy shoppers are looking for unique handmade items, vintage goods, and craft supplies. Some of the top categories on Etsy are Clothing, Jewelry, Home & Living. In 2021, 23% of Etsy’s global market share came from custom and made-to-order products.

eBay shoppers could be looking for virtually anything, in either new or second-hand condition. The top-selling category on eBay is “Electronics & Accessories” (16.4%), followed by “Clothing & Accessories” (13.8%) and “Automotive” (11%).

How do shoppers access the platforms?

Ecommerce shoppers love to browse listings on their phones. Both Etsy and eBay have dedicated mobile apps that receive more traffic than their website counterparts.

On Etsy, 67% of traffic comes from mobile devices; on eBay, about 60% comes from mobile shoppers.

Merchant Plans on Etsy vs. eBay

There are several different merchant plans offered by each platform. Depending on your preferences, sales volume, and budget, you can choose between three plans on Etsy and six plans on eBay.

Merchant Plans on Etsy

Here’s an overview of Etsy’s merchant plans:

  • Etsy Standard: This is the default version of Etsy that’s free to use.
  • Etsy Plus: For $10/month, Etsy Plus subscribers get access to tools to help “take their shop to the next level.” This includes advanced shop customization, monthly credits for listings and Etsy Ads, as well as a discount on a custom web address, packaging, and promotional materials.
  • Etsy Pattern: For $15/month, sellers can subscribe to Etsy Pattern and customize their store even further. This is geared towards merchants who want a professional web presence that fully encapsulates their brand, while still using the Etsy ecommerce platform. Etsy Pattern can be trialed for 30 days for free.

Merchant Plans on eBay

When it comes to merchant plans, eBay offers even more choices for sellers. Here’s a look at the six types of eBay merchant plans:

  • No Store Package: If you’re not ready to open your own eBay store, you can still list items for sale on eBay. Anyone can create up to 250 fixed-price listings per month (with some exclusions) at no charge. Listings are free to create but do involve fees once an item is sold. This is ideal for low-volume sellers who want to sell a few items but aren’t looking to grow their ecommerce business.
  • Starter Store Package: For $7.95/month ($4.95/month with annual subscription), a Starter Store subscription includes:
  • 250 free listings per month (fixed price listings or auctions)
  • Reduced insertion fees ($0.30) for additional listings
  • Basic Store Package: For $27.95/month ($21.95/month annually), this plan includes:
  • 1000 fixed-price listings per month
  • 250 auction listings in select categories (including antiques, art, clothing, collectibles, and jewelry)
  • 10,000 fixed-price listings within a smaller pool of categories
  • Reduced insertion fees ($0.25) for additional listings
  • Premium Store Package: For $74.95/month ($59.95/month annually), eBay’s Premium Store plan includes:
  • 10,000 fixed-price listings per month
  • 500 auction listings in select categories
  • 50,000 fixed-price listings in select categories
  • Reduced insertion fees ($0.10) for additional listings and auctions
  • Anchor Store Package: For $349.95/month ($299.95/month annually), this plan includes:
  • 25,000 fixed-price listings per month
  • 1000 auction listings in select categories
  • 75,000 fixed-price listings in select categories
  • Insertion fees ($0.10) for additional auction listings
  • Reduced insertion fees ($0.05) for additional listings 
  • Enterprise Store Package: For $2999.95/year, large scale sellers get:
  • 100,000 fixed-price listings per month 
  • 2500 auction-style listings in select categories 
  • 100,000 fixed-price listings in select categories
  • The lowest insertion fees ($0.05) for any additional listings 

Etsy Fees vs. eBay Fees

How much does it cost to sell items online? The answer varies widely depending on your platform of choice, merchant plan, and other factors.

In addition to the subscription fees based on your merchant plan (listed above), selling on Etsy and eBay also involves seller fees for listings, transactions, and more. Let’s take a look at some of the fees you should know about when you list and sell items on Etsy or eBay.

What Type of Fees Do Etsy Sellers Pay?

Here’s a breakdown of the fees you might have to pay when you sell merchandise on Etsy:

Listing Fee

  • When it applies: Charged per item listed on Etsy.
  • Amount: $0.20 flat fee per item.

Transaction Fee

  • When it applies: Charged when you make a sale through Etsy.
  • Amount: 6.5% of the total price (including any charges for delivery + gift wrapping).

Advertising and Promotional Fee

When it applies:

  • Etsy Ads: Optional for sellers who want to promote items on Etsy.
  • Offsite Ads: Optional for sellers who want to promote items through Etsy’s partner network (including social media + search engines).


  • Etsy Ads: You set a daily maximum budget (at or above Etsy’s required minimum).
  • Etsy Ads: 12% or 15% of “attributed orders” (purchases by shoppers who click on the ads). 

(Want to learn more about advertising on Etsy? Check out our guide to promoting your Etsy store!)

Subscription Fee

  • When it applies: Charged monthly for paying subscribers.


  • Etsy Plus: $10/month
  • Etsy Pattern: $15/month

In-Person Selling Fee

When it applies: Applicable to sellers who choose to sync in-person sales with their online Etsy shop.

  • Amount: A percentage of total sale price + flat fee per sale.
  • 2.6% + $0.10 or 3.5% + $0.15 or 2.9% + $0.30 

Payment Processing Fee

When it applies: Charged when you make a sale through Etsy.

  • Amount: A percentage of total sale price + flat fee per order.
  • In the US, it’s 3% + $0.20.

Shipping Fee

  • When it applies: Charged when you purchase shipping labels on Etsy.
  • Amount: Varies based on shipping distance, weight, and other factors.

Regulatory Operating Fee

  • When it applies: Charged per sale to sellers in certain countries, due to increased costs caused by new regulations (such as Digital Services Tax).
  • Amount: A percentage of the item price + shipping costs. Varies by country. Applies to sellers in the UK (0.25%), France (0.40%), Italy (0.25%), Spain (0.40%) and Turkey (1.1%).

Currency Conversion

  • When it applies: Charged when Etsy accepts a foreign currency (anything other than the currency where your store is located) for a purchase.
  • Amount: 2.5% of the total sale price.

Visit Etsy for more details on their fees structure.

What Type of Fees Do eBay Sellers Pay?

These are the main fees you might have to pay when you sell merchandise on eBay:

Subscription Fee

  • When it applies: Charged monthly or annually for sellers on an eBay store plan.
  • Amount: Ranges from $4.95/month (Starter Store Plan) to $2999.95/month (Enterprise Store Plan). 

Insertion Fee

  • When it applies: Charged when you publish a listing on eBay.
  • Amount: Your first 250 listings each month are free. Beyond that allocation, insertion fees vary by item category and your merchant plan.

Final Value Fees

  • When it applies: Charged when you make a sale through eBay.
  • Amount: Final value fee % + $0.30 per order. The percentage varies based on the item category, sale value, and merchant plan.

Fees for Real Estate

  • When it applies: Real estate listings incur listing fees, notice fees, and optional upgrade fees. 
  • Amount: Ranges from $70 to $300.

Fees for Classified Ads

  • When it applies: Applies to listings in certain categories, like Business & Industry, and Travel.
  • Amount: $9.95 per listing (valid for 30 days).

Dispute Fee

  • When it applies: Charged if a customer files a dispute claim and the seller is found at fault.
  • Amount: $20 flat fee.

International Fee

  • When it applies: Charged when a customer outside of your country buys an item.
  • Amount: 1.65% of your total sale value.

Currency Conversion Charge

  • When it applies: Charged when a customer uses a foreign currency on an international eBay site.
  • Amount: 3% of the total sale value.

Shipping Fee

  • When it applies: Charged for shipping labels purchased from eBay.
  • Amount: Varies based on shipping distance, weight, and other factors.

Promoted Listings

  • When it applies: Optional for sellers who want to advertise on eBay. Charged when a buyer clicks an ad and makes a purchase within 30 days.
  • Amount: You set your own rate based on a percentage of the item’s total sale price.

Visit eBay for more information on their fees for sellers.

Payment Processing 

Both eBay and Etsy have their own payment gateways built into their platform. 

Etsy Payments

Etsy Payments is Etsy’s payment gateway, which enables shoppers to choose from a range of payment options. Shoppers make purchases by credit or debit card, Etsy Gift Card, Etsy Credits, Etsy Coupons, certain bank transfer services, PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Klarna.

Merchants can set up direct deposits to their bank accounts and select how frequently they’d like to receive payments from sales (monthly, weekly, or daily).

Learn more about Etsy Payments here.

eBay Managed Payments

Like Etsy, eBay has its own built-in payment gateway for processing sales. Customers can purchase items through eBay using credit and debit cards, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and PayPal, as well as some additional locally accepted payment methods.

Sellers can connect their bank accounts and choose to receive payouts daily, weekly, biweekly, or monthly depending on their preference. 

Learn more about eBay payments here.

Shipping and Fulfilment

Whether you’re selling on eBay or Etsy, you need to consider how your items will be shipped to a potential buyer. Sellers on both eBay and Etsy may purchase labels from third-party shipping services (like USPS) through their respective platforms to simplify the shipping process.

Shipping Labels on Etsy

Etsy sellers are responsible for shipping items within 30 days of purchase. Sellers have the option to buy shipping labels on Etsy for up to 30% less than standard rates.

In order to purchase shipping labels on Etsy, sellers must be located in the United States, Canada, UK, Australia, or India and accept Etsy Payments or PayPal as payment options for their store.

Etsy sells labels from USPS, FedEx, Canada Post, Royal Mail, Australia Post, Global Postal Shipping, and Yakit Shipping Partners.

shipping labels on etsy

Buying Shipping Labels on eBay

Sellers on eBay are also responsible for shipping their own items. Like Etsy, eBay offers shipping labels that sellers can buy and print instantly for maximum convenience. eBay’s shipping partners—USPS, UPS, and FedEx for domestic shipping–offer discounted labels and automatic tracking.

ebay shipping levels

Etsy vs. eBay: Which Marketplace Will You Choose?

Ultimately, choosing the best ecommerce marketplace for you depends on what type of products you’re selling, who your target customers are, your inventory volume, and what type of store you’d like to create.

What are you selling?

Do your items fit into one of Etsy’s niche categories or would it be a better fit for eBay? While Etsy only allows listings for handmade or vintage items and craft supplies, eBay allows you to sell almost anything.

Who are you selling to?

Do your shoppers love the artisan vibe of an Etsy store or do they prefer auction-style eBay listings? More importantly, which platform is more popular among your core demographic of shoppers?

Both platforms have an audience for new and used items—with the caveat that new items on Etsy must be handmade or craft supplies, while used items must meet Etsy’s vintage criteria. If your potential customers are searching for unique items, they’re likely searching on Etsy.

What type of volume do you hope to sell?

Whether you’re a new seller, small business, or established brand, consider your growth goals when choosing which platform to use. If you’re mass-producing anything, eBay is the way to go; but if you’re creating small-batch items by hand, Etsy is likely the better match. Compare plans to see which can support your potential sales volume best.

What’s your vision for your store?

You should also compare the merchant plans more closely to see which platform best aligns with your vision for your store. Think about how much flexibility or control you want over the look and feel of your online store. Are you developing your own line of products or curating items from other sources? How much effort do you want to put into promoting your store and how much do you want to spend on ads?

On Either Platform, Online Sales Require Top-Notch Product Photos

Whether Etsy or eBay is the right platform for you, one thing is certain: you need high-quality product photos to succeed in the world of ecommerce.

Your product photos can make or break your store. Beautiful visuals can help you stand out from other ecommerce sellers on Etsy, eBay, Amazon, or any other online marketplace.

Not only are visuals responsible for catching shoppers’ attention, but they play a role in drawing them deeper into your store to view more listings and influence their impression of your brand as a seller. Shoppers notice your visuals before they read a product listing description, click to learn more, or decide to buy.

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Unfortunately, creating high-quality product photos can be tricky and time-consuming for the average online seller. 

The good news? The right photo-editing app can help!

Beautiful Product Photos Are Just a Few Taps Away

Regardless of where you sell your items online, Pixelcut is a must-have app for creating product photos. It makes editing photos simple for sellers who want professional results, fast.

Whether you’re posting a single item or creating a range of listings for your online store, Pixelcut allows you to showcase your items in the best possible light. 

You can easily add or remove a background, add filters, and play around with visual effects. Choose from our huge selection of backdrops, photo templates, and more to achieve the precise look you want. 

With Pixelcut Unlimited, you also get access to batch editing, which pro users love for creating a suite of similar edits. It’s a fast, simple, and effective tool that can help take your online store to the next level.

So, what are you waiting for? Beautiful product photos are only a few clicks away! Get started with Pixelcut and see how easy it can be to create eye-catching product photos for your ecommerce business.

Ready to start creating with Pixelcut?

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