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Pricing on ETSY, Unreasonable? Specifically Bandsaw Boxes.

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Forum topic by Blackie_ posted 581 days ago 3293 views 2 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Blackie_

3292 posts in 1114 days


581 days ago

I don’t know but I seriously believe some shop owners are delusional with pricing on their products, specifically bandsaw boxes on ETSY, all box makers take much pride in their work be it traditional box makers to bandsaw box makers and I’ve seen some really…. nice stuff among builders here on LJ and online in general that warrant what ever pricing the builder is asking, I’ve come along ways in my bandsaw box building and I have to mostly thank folks here on LJ leading me in the right direction and from what I’ve seen my products are among the best out there but I price mine accordingly, After doing a search on ETSY for bandsaw boxes, I’ve seen several that I think are way over priced, I saw a simple, small, average two drawer box that didn’t even have the skids under the drawers to center the drawer in the cavity made of Mahogany on ETSY going for $195.00 way…. over priced in my opinion, any one of my two drawer boxes are priced well below $100.00 more like around 50 – 60 dollar range, every seller goes through that ordeal of trying to find that fine line where they are trying to get out what they have involved but also not wanting to have them sit on the shelf either certainly not to gouge someone of their earnings, it’s ridiculous.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs


22 replies so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13308 posts in 939 days


#1 posted 581 days ago

More power to them. Many people are willing to sit on their products in hopes the one gullible fool on the internet. I prefer to move lots of products. I agree, I’ve seen a lot of over priced stuff on etsy.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View Tedster's profile

Tedster

2269 posts in 812 days


#2 posted 581 days ago

They might have the overpriced items listed, but are they making any sales? :)

I think a lot of ETSY shoppers, or maybe most, don’t have a clue about quality. They only see the picture of what the item looks like, the overall dimensions, possible what sort of finish is applied… and if they like it and can afford it, then sales are made.

-- I support the 28th Amendment. http://www.wolf-pac.com/28th

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11072 posts in 1707 days


#3 posted 581 days ago

Just because they price them that high does not mean they will get it. Yours are beautiful. price them fairly and I’ll be you out sell those high priced ones!!

I got an order for an urn from a lady that looked on ETSY and guy had a small one and would not make her bigger one so I go the job and priced it fair and we were both happy!. I don’t sell on there. She say my work here on Lumberjocks and lived close by…..............Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

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Blackie_

3292 posts in 1114 days


#4 posted 581 days ago

I had one of my large necklace jewelry boxes priced at $300.00 which I felt was fair on that item due to the complexity of the build and rarity of the wood, most of the wood I use can not or is not sold commercially, An ETSY customer sent me a message asking if I’d take $250 for it as it was way out of the limb for him, a gift for his wife, I responded thanking him for his interest and that I normally have that item priced at $310.00 due to the reason above rarity of the wood but I was willing to come down and asked if he could do better then $250 maybe split the difference? he was in agreement on that.

So yea I have no problems with working with someone on the price.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

View Roger's profile

Roger

14146 posts in 1405 days


#5 posted 581 days ago

I hear ya, Randy. Some folks are nutz

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View rum's profile

rum

148 posts in 1187 days


#6 posted 581 days ago

Its only overpriced if no one is willing to pay it :D

Pricing isn’t rational on either side. I’ve found that if things are priced to cheaply it also hurts your sales because folks figure it must be worth what you’re asking (not much) and aren’t interested in it because ..well .. if its that cheap it must be cheap. I know more than one person who doubled their sales by doubling their prices.

OTOH if what you are selling is a commodity its easy to get priced out of the market. The key, I believe, for a small producer is to make whatever you’re selling NOT a commodity and then its art/craft/(whatever you want to call it) and the market is as high as you can charge and have people still buy it.

View Greg's profile

Greg

281 posts in 1475 days


#7 posted 581 days ago

Man, I have to agree with Rum. I think he’s spot on with the pricing deal. That is my strategy and work simply because you cannot find what I sell anywhere else! I try to be fair(for both of us) on the pricing as I give them my heart and soul in each piece.

Reputation also adds to the value. An unknown woodworker will almost have to sell for less. Price, in that case, is a moving target. You raise prices as the demand, and your good reputation, grows. This tempers sales, and provides you with an actual living (maybe).

-- You don't have a custom made heirloom fly fishing Net? http://www.Sierra-Nets.com

View Tedster's profile

Tedster

2269 posts in 812 days


#8 posted 581 days ago

Offering free shipping is one way to get peoples attention. Of course, the shipping is built into the price, and any reasonable person knows that. But I think people like to know exactly what something is going to cost before they inquire about it. On the listings, if the title starts like “Free Shipping Jewelry Box Hand Carved…” then buyers browsing the Woodworking category will tend to click on that item to find out more.

-- I support the 28th Amendment. http://www.wolf-pac.com/28th

View Blackie_'s profile

Blackie_

3292 posts in 1114 days


#9 posted 581 days ago

I’ve seen the video on does and don’ts when it comes to vendors and pricing, pricing to low and or pricing to high, both can hurt you, that’s what I meant about finding that fine line you can easily price yourself out of a sale by under pricing as you can over pricing as the seller in question is doing once again in my opinion but yea I do see the points made, the shop in question, if he gets the sale then more power to him, his shop has 24 sales in a 2 1/2 year period nor is he offered free shipping, Ted good point about the free shipping. I’ve been on ETSY right at three weeks now, new kid on the block no reputation nor feedback built as of yet and have already made 5 sales but that could just be Christmas shoppers. I think it’s all about what people want and what appeals to them.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

View jerrells's profile

jerrells

843 posts in 1486 days


#10 posted 581 days ago

I agree with Monte. I have now started pricing items to move. Also, as I look at ETSY for pricing I look at shop statistics. It will tell you how many items sold. Now I do have a few questions about that. Does a shop owner have a friend that wants to purchase something and he tells the to get it off ETSY and he will cut a back end deal. Do not know.

-- Just learning the craft my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ practiced.

View tyskkvinna's profile

tyskkvinna

1308 posts in 1587 days


#11 posted 581 days ago

Yeah.. next time you see something like that, go look at their shop profile and it will tell you how many sales. You can’t find out how much anybody paid for a sale, but you can at least tell if they are selling. I have encountered a few shops that wildly overprice their stuff and then I see they have very few, if any sales… and generally the sales have nothing to do with those overpriced items.

I think the buyers of Etsy are pretty good at being discerning about what is worth the price and what is not.

-- Lis - Michigan - http://www.missmooseart.com - https://www.etsy.com/people/lisbokt

View rum's profile

rum

148 posts in 1187 days


#12 posted 579 days ago

Heh, so maybe it is overpriced since as you noted no one seems willing to pay it :D At least based on how they are presented and marketed there.

As long as you’re being fairly compensated for your work there is obviously a pretty wide range of “acceptable” for pricing. If you don’t need the money it makes more sense to price it high because you get a better return/hour. OTOH if you’re trying to scrape together a few bucks so the kids can have christmas, maybe some bargains are in order. I know a good handful of professional woodworkers and they are largely envious of me being able to do “fun” things as a hobbiest.. Unfortunate but its not what puts food on my table so I have some leeway, they otoh have to pay the bills with it so whatever the customer needs is what it is.

Blackie_ makes a really good point about appealing to the customer to (“I think it’s all about what people want and what appeals to them.”). If you can get your customer engaged with the item (make it have a story somehow) you can raise the price commensurately. The best prices are always for something people want, not something people “need”, need items are generally pushed into commodity prices and then you’re out of luck (a good ?bad? example of this in another field is a hand knitted sweater. They take 3-7 days for a good knitter to make at $10 per hour that’s $250 to $600 in labor.. you can’t reasonably compete with that against the $10 sweater at the mall no matter how nice yours is). I’ve done a few small but complicated pieces that I’ve given away to friends and other people asked if they could buy one.. I told them that I had ~100+ hours into it.. even at local minimum wage that would be $880, ain’t no way that’s happening (I did it for fun so its cool, but I couldn’t possibly sell them for what they would be “worth”).

I would add that pricing to low ends up hurting the craft industry as a whole in the long run as it devalues the effort required. Don’t work for (less than) minimum wage, if you are you need to re-evaluate how you can either increase the value per item or simplify and produce more items. Doing the latter is certainly possible but you risk ending up fighting the pricing of imported commodity items and that’s a hard one to win.

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tyskkvinna

1308 posts in 1587 days


#13 posted 579 days ago

@Rum

Something I have started doing since selling my woodworking regularly is really learn and push working for production.. which is far different than truly “honing my craft”. A great example is that I rarely make one of something – I won’t square one piece of wood through the jointer and planer, I’ll take an hour and do a stack of them so it is efficient in the long run. I was able to reduce my prices on some standard items about 15% because I noticed that from when I set the price (a year ago) to now I have refined the process quite a bit and am just hammering them out now.

-- Lis - Michigan - http://www.missmooseart.com - https://www.etsy.com/people/lisbokt

View rum's profile

rum

148 posts in 1187 days


#14 posted 578 days ago

Lis,

What you say is very very true, in the specific example above I actually made four copies of the piece or it would have been worse. Part way though I also upgraded some tools, a drum sander saved me about 10 hours of cleaning up little flat fiddly bits by hand. Knowing what I know now about the design and use I’m pretty sure I could make a similar product in ~20 hours per after having simplified the slowest parts to do (as one example: the original design had a lot of stopped slot cuts on a round piece that had to be laid out carefully and done by hand; resizing the backing piece to be a smidge more robust allows them to be through slots which are about 10x faster to make).

Most of what I make today is done to push my skill set. Often about half way through I find that the time required is dictated not the tools or the workpiece but by bad design choices. The next version, if I make one, is inevitably somewhat better.

View Drunken Woodworker's profile

Drunken Woodworker

62 posts in 853 days


#15 posted 523 days ago

I sell most of my bandsaw boxes on Etsy for around $125 + $14.80 for shipping. I don’t overcharge on shipping as that is exactly how much it cost me to ship. I do under charge on my boxes. I would like to get $200 each for them. I take great care and time to make sure my boxes are flawless. No saw marks and each one I sell is an original design.

Here’s what I currently have for sale on Etsy:
https://www.etsy.com/listing/123594947/stylish-wooden-keepsake-jewelry-bandsaw

You can see more of my bandsaw boxes on my project page or my website here:
http://drunkenwoodworker.com/my-projects

-- Visit my blog at http://drunkenwoodworker.com

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