If you want to start a dropshipping business today, you have a lot of choices.

Etsy is one of the new eCommerce sites that have come out over the years.

It’s a place where you can sell handcrafted, unique, and custom items.

You might think that Etsy isn’t a good place for dropshippers because of how strict the product requirements are.

We agree that dropshipping on Etsy is harder than on other platforms, but it’s not impossible.

This guide will explain how to start dropshipping on Etsy, what its pros and cons are, and a lot more.

So let’s start right away!

What Is Etsy

Etsy is an online shop that has been around since 2005. Since then, it has grown to become a strong eCommerce platform that can compete with others.

The main idea behind Etsy is to give people a place online to sell handmade, custom, vintage, and one-of-a-kind goods.

Dropshipping on Etsy
Remember that things that are called “vintage” should be at least 20 years old. Etsy isn’t the best place for large businesses to sell their products because of the restrictions on what can be sold there.

But it works great for small business owners who want to make money from their hobbies.

But don’t be fooled: Etsy is still a great way to make a lot of money because it has more than 80 million buyers.

Etsy has a lot of potential, but entrepreneurs are hesitant to use it because starting a business on the site requires creativity.

Etsy Dropshipping Rules: Can You Dropship on Etsy

Dropshipping is not mentioned anywhere on Etsy’s Seller Policy page. This means that you can dropship on the platform as long as you follow their rules for products.

Also, it’s important to note that their seller policy says you can sell things that “you, the seller, made and/or designed.”

Also, they say that you can work with a production partner as long as you let people know about it in your listings.

But can the traditional dropshipping method work on Etsy, in which the supplier gets the product and sends it to the buyer?

Well, it can if the products you’ve listed are unique and hand-made and you’re involved in the design process.

If you break any of the rules above, your store could be removed from the platform.

So, if you do start dropshipping on Etsy, make sure you and your supplier are on the same page.

How Does Etsy Dropshipping Work?

Dropshipping on Etsy works pretty much the same way as it does on any other platform.

The only exception is that the products should be unique and you should have some part in making them.

But you might be wondering, what if you leave everything on the supplier and just sell the product labeled as your own?

Well, this might work, but it’s a little risky, especially if another seller copies the listing.

So, at least make sure that the pictures you add to your Etsy listings are unique.

You never know if your supplier is also dropshipping the same item to other Etsy sellers.

This is also one reason why we suggest that you work with the supplier and give the product your own unique twist.

It could be a different style, color, or way to use the thing. Just try to be a part of the design process in some way.

Advantages of Dropshipping on Etsy

Can’t decide whether or not dropshipping on Etsy is worth it? Well, here are some of the good things about it that might help you decide:

Huge Customer Base

Marketing is the hardest part of running an online store. You need an online presence to get the attention of people who might buy from you.

But if you dropship on Etsy, things get a little bit simpler. This is because, even though Etsy is aimed at a small market, it has more than 80 million buyers.

You only need to worry about how to get higher on Etsy’s listings. This can be done by uploading professional product pictures, writing product descriptions that are good for search engines, and getting good reviews from the start.

Lesser Competition

Entrepreneurs are often hesitant to start a business on Etsy because of the rules about what can be sold there. This means that dropshippers have less competition on the platform.

Also, it’s very easy to sign up for the marketplace. Your account can be checked out in 5 days.

The only hard part is finding a supplier, but once you do, you’ll be able to make a lot of money.

Room for Creativity 

If you’ve always thought you were creative, Etsy dropshipping would be a great way to make money.

The platform thrives on creativity, and even as a dropshipper, you can’t just do nothing. You should use your creativity by taking part in the design process.

This can inspire you to make your own unique brand and help you get into the right mindset to be an entrepreneur.

High-Profit Margin

The people who run dropshipping businesses make money by keeping a certain amount of profit from each sale. This margin can change depending on what you’re selling and how long you’ve been in business.

Most new dropshippers keep a profit margin of 10–15%, but businesses that have been around for a while can aim for 20% and, in rare cases, even 30%.

Customers on Etsy understand how hard it is to make something by hand, which is great. So, as long as they are getting good quality, they don’t mind paying a high price for it.

This means that you can make a profit margin of 40% or more if your customers get what they pay for.

Niche Market 

As you already know, Etsy caters to a small group of people.

So it shouldn’t be a surprise that it’s usually the first place people look when they want to find something special or out of the ordinary.

There are many stores on the site that sell clothes, home decor, craft supplies, and other things. Etsy is a great place to sell niche products, so you can’t go wrong if you want to do the same.

Patient Customers

Customers who are patient are the best thing about selling on Etsy. They know that making things by hand can take longer, especially if you aren’t working with a lot of people.

This gives sellers a little bit of wiggle room, even if the shipment is sometimes late.

Even though we are in no way suggesting that you don’t finish your orders on time. We’re just bringing this up because, unless you hire a professional dropshipping agent, it can be hard for a dropshipper to keep track of the package.

If the shipping takes a long time, your customers might not complain as much.

Disadvantages of Dropshipping on Etsy

Before you start dropshipping on Etsy, you should know about these problems:

High Transaction Costs

The biggest problem with Etsy is that it costs money to make a purchase. The vendors have to pay 6.5% of the price shown for each sale.

A listing fee of $0.20 is also charged for each item. This might not seem like much, but as your business grows, it can definitely cut into your profits.

This is one of the main reasons why we don’t recommend Etsy for bigger businesses.

If you want to sell a lot of products, dropshipping through Shopify would be a better option.

Uncertain Future for Dropshippers

Etsy’s rules don’t say anything about dropshipping, so it’s hard to tell what will happen to dropshippers on the site.

You never know when Etsy might make a rule that makes dropshipping illegal and closes all the loopholes they can use.

Because of this, we suggest that you build a brand instead of just making an Etsy storefront.

Even if you can’t keep working on Etsy, it would be easier for you to switch to other platforms and start your own eCommerce site.

Expiration of Listings

Etsy’s biggest downside is that your listings will disappear after 4 months. If you want to renew them, you have to pay an extra $0.20.

One way to get around this is to only list a small number of products and only add more when the ones you already have are sold out.

But overall, we think the date should be pushed back at least a year, if not more.

Lack of Scalability 

You probably know by now that Etsy isn’t the best place to sell if you get dozens or even hundreds of orders every day.

It doesn’t sound like a good deal to pay $0.20 for each listing and then 6.5% of each sale.

So, if you’re getting this many orders, it’s probably best to switch to a different platform.

Design Involvement 

Dropshipping on Etsy is a little different from how dropshipping is usually done. It needs you to be involved in some way in the design process.

Etsy wouldn’t be the right place for you if you don’t have the time or creativity to do that.

There are ways to get around it, but we wouldn’t suggest it because it could put your account at risk.

Strict Rules and Guidelines

Choosing what to sell is the hardest part of starting a dropshipping business. It’s not as easy as just looking at the highest-rated product on AliExpress and buying that one.

The most important thing for Etsy dropshipping is that the product should involve your thought, creativity, or input. This means that you have to do a lot of thinking about what to sell.

It’s also hard to get around this rule because when you sign up for Etsy, you have to tell them where your products are made.

How to Dropship on Etsy?

If you want to start dropshipping on Etsy, the first thing you need to do is decide what you’re going to sell. Then, you need to find a production partner.

The next step is to make a storefront, which is a pretty easy thing to do.

On the registration form, you will be asked for some basic information, like your preferred shop language, country, and currency. Go to the next page to add your listing and then choose how you want to be billed.

To get your account verified, you’ll also have to give other personal information and a business address. Remember that it usually takes Etsy 5 business days to look over the onboarding process.

Once your account has been verified, you can start dropshipping on the marketplace.

The Best Guide to Dropshipping on Etsy 4

How to Find a Maker or Manufacturer for Etsy Dropshipping

Getting an Etsy store up and running is not the hard part. The problem is finding a maker or manufacturer who can help you make unique items that you can sell on the platform.

In the past, Etsy helped designers find manufacturers, but they’ve stopped doing that now.

You have to find an Etsy manufacturer on your own now. One way to do this is to look online for companies that make custom products in the niche you want.

Here are a few things to think about when you’re looking for an Etsy manufacturer:

Do your research and find a manufacturer whose main skills match those of the product you want to sell.
Talk to the sellers about the terms and conditions and tell them they can’t sell your product design to anyone else.
Check to see if the seller is willing to deliver the product.
Set up a good way to talk to each other and agree on how many days it will take to make the product.
Before you decide to work together, you should place a test order to see if the manufacturer is trustworthy.

What is Etsy Print on Demand? 

Print on demand is a way to run a business in which you work with the supplier to sell items that are made just for you. You can have designs printed on a huge range of things, like t-shirts, mugs, and notebooks.

Etsy does allow print-on-demand, and it’s also one of the easiest ways to start dropshipping on the site. The only thing you have to do to use Etsy POD is make the designs yourself and put them on your site.

When a buyer chooses a design and pays for it, the details of the order will be sent to your POD providers. The design will be printed and sent to the customer.

Tips for Starting a Print on Demand Business on Etsy 

On paper, starting a POD business on Etsy might seem easy, but there is already a lot of competition. So, here are three things you can do to help your business do well:

Don’t Just Sell T-Shirts

We know that T-shirts are a popular choice for a POD business, but they’re not your only option.

Over the years, styles have come and gone, and many other things have become more popular.

People also like to order unique designs on hats, mugs, notebooks, and even pillow covers these days.

So, don’t limit your Etsy POD business to just one product when the sky’s the limit.

Add a Variety of Designs

People often search for the word “anime” on Etsy, even though “band tee” designs always sell well for POD businesses.

Even if you don’t know much about anime, adding some popular anime designs to your Etsy store can be very helpful.

Prioritize Print Quality 

In a POD business, you should already know how important it is to put print quality first. Still, a lot of sellers don’t get this.

Always keep in mind that buyers would rather pay a little more for a good print than for one that fades after a few washes.

Even if a POD company charges a bit more, it’s worth it if they offer high-quality work in exchange.

Best Print on Demand Companies for Etsy Dropshipping

Here are some options if you’re looking for a POD company for Etsy dropshipping:

The Best Guide to Dropshipping on Etsy 3


CJDropshipping is a company in China that can help you print high-quality photos, logos, and other designs for your Etsy dropshipping business.

With warehouses in the U.S., Thailand, and China, they can make sure the quality is high and ship quickly, no matter how many orders they get.


Etsy sellers use Printify a lot as a print-on-demand site. It not only has high-quality prints, but also cheaper prices than services like Printful.

The site is easy to connect to Etsy, and the fact that it has more than two million active sellers shows that you can trust it with your business.


Printful is a well-known service for printing on demand that also works well with Etsy. They’ve been in business for years, and they rarely have problems with quality or fulfillment.

Even though they are a bit more expensive than Printify, they have better quality. Printful also has a huge selection of products, such as mugs, clothing, and stationery.

Best Items to Dropship on Etsy

On Etsy, choosing items to dropship is the same as it is on any other platform. And one of the most important is to avoid things that are easy to break.

So, what kinds of things can you really dropship? So, here are some things you can do:

The Best Guide to Dropshipping on Etsy 2

Men’s Wallets 

Wallets are a gift that never goes out of style and are a sign of wealth and success. They are also easy to change, which makes it easy for them to meet Etsy’s requirements. Also, there is literally no chance that it will get broken while being shipped.

Home Décor

A lot of people who buy things on Etsy are looking for things to put in their homes. It’s not surprising, really, because Etsy is full of creative people who can make unique things for your home that will make it stand out.


Did you know that stickers are one of Etsy’s most popular items? They are great for a variety of events and occasions, and the best part is that most people buy them in large quantities. All you need is a print-on-demand service and you’re good to go.


Who doesn’t like a cool T-shirt with a cool print? If you like making digital art, you could have it printed on a t-shirt. It’s also one of the best ways to get people to know about your skills.

Printable Notebooks

People who like to write and go on trips buy printable notebooks like they’re going out of style. So, if you have good-looking prints and high-quality pages, you’ll start making a lot of sales every day.

Is Etsy Dropshipping Worth It?

Dropshipping on Etsy is a good idea if you are creative and want to get into a market where there is less competition.

It’s great for small dropshipping businesses, but don’t expect to become a millionaire through Etsy dropshipping.

Because there is a fee for each transaction, the platform isn’t good for medium- to large-sized businesses.

So, if your store starts making a lot of money quickly, you might have to move.

The Best Guide to Dropshipping on Etsy

FAQs about Etsy Dropshipping

Can I Dropship From AliExpress to Etsy?

You can’t sell things on Etsy that you didn’t make or that aren’t vintage. This means that you can’t dropship from AliExpress, 1688, or any other marketplace to Etsy.

If you do, you will be breaking the platform’s rules, which could lead to your store being shut down and you being banned from the site.

Can I Dropship with Etsy Suppliers on Shopify?

There are many apps that can connect Etsy products to your Shopify store, so yes, you can dropship with Etsy suppliers on Shopify.

But remember that Etsy sellers sell handcrafted items that take time to make and can only be sold in small amounts.

It’s also hard to find a replacement for the product because it was made by hand and is one of a kind. So if the seller backs out on you, it will be hard to deal with your customers.

Which Is Better, Etsy Dropshipping or Shopify Dropshipping?

Comparing Etsy dropshipping to Shopify dropshipping is like comparing apples to oranges, since Etsy is an online marketplace and Shopify is a website builder.

Still, Etsy has a lot of benefits, such as giving you access to a customer base that is already well-known. Also, it is much easier to set up a storefront on Etsy than on Shopify.

It’s safe to say that Etsy is a great choice if you want to start a small business and aim for a niche market.

But Shopify is better if you want to build a business that can grow and don’t like being limited in what you can sell.

So, in the end, it all comes down to your business goals and your personal tastes.

Final Thoughts

When you dropship on Etsy, you have to be a bit more creative than when you dropship on other platforms. But because signing up is free, you can start your business with little to no money.

But it’s not the best choice for everyone, of course. You can start your dropshipping business on many other eCommerce platforms these days, which is good news.

Most of them aren’t as strict as Etsy about what you can sell, so you can pretty much sell anything.