Redbubble Vs Etsy: Which Is the Best For Your Shop?

In the world of online marketplaces, Etsy and Redbubble stand out as two major platforms for creative entrepreneurs. Are you leaning towards selling your unique creations on one of these sites but not sure which is the right fit for your business?

This Redbubble vs Etsy comparison will break down the essentials, from getting started to maximizing profits, so you can decide where your designs will thrive.

Choosing between Etsy, a haven for handmade and vintage goods, and Redbubble, a print-on-demand service specializing in artist-designed products, depends on numerous factors, including the nature of your products and your business goals.

Understanding the intricacies of each platform can greatly impact your decision and future success.

Key Takeaways

  • Assess Etsy and Redbubble to understand their different service models.
  • Identify how each platform aligns with your business plan and creative products.
  • Learn operational strategies to enhance your success on the chosen platform.

Interesting Facts About Etsy

Etsy is a fascinating marketplace with a focus on unique and handcrafted goods. Here are some interesting facts about Etsy:

  1. Etsy’s Origins: Etsy was founded in 2005 as a platform for crafters, artists, and makers to sell their handmade and vintage items, as well as craft supplies.
  2. Global Reach: Etsy has expanded to serve millions of buyers and sellers from around the world, providing a global marketplace for unique goods.
  3. Massive Seller Base: As of 2023, Etsy boasts millions of active sellers, offering a diverse range of products from handmade jewelry to vintage furniture.
  4. Economic Impact: Etsy sellers contribute significantly to the economy, with many sellers using the platform as their primary source of income.
  5. Sustainability Focus: Etsy is known for its commitment to sustainability, becoming the first major online shopping destination to offset 100% of carbon emissions from shipping.
  6. Community Engagement: The platform has a strong sense of community, with sellers often collaborating and supporting each other through forums and teams.
  7. Customization and Personalization: Etsy is a go-to place for personalized items that can be customized, which is a significant draw for consumers looking for unique and tailored products.
  8. Digital and Physical Products: While Etsy is renowned for physical goods, it also has a thriving market for digital products like printables, graphics, and patterns.
  9. Etsy’s Economic Model: The company earns revenue through listing fees, transaction fees, and other services like advertising and payment processing.
  10. Mobile Shopping: Etsy has adapted well to the rise of mobile shopping, with a user-friendly app that contributes to a significant portion of its sales.

These facts highlight Etsy’s role as a key player in the e-commerce space, especially for those seeking unique, handmade, and personalized items.

Interesting Facts About Redbubble

Redbubble is a unique global online marketplace that caters to independent artists and designers. Here are some interesting facts about Redbubble:

  1. Foundation and Purpose: Redbubble was founded in 2006 in Melbourne, Australia, with the mission to provide independent artists a new way to sell their creations.
  2. Artist-Centric Model: The platform allows artists to sell their work on a wide range of products, from clothing to home décor, without the need to manage inventory or production.
  3. Print-on-Demand: Redbubble operates on a print-on-demand basis, meaning products are created only after they have been ordered, reducing waste and inventory costs.
  4. Global Reach: The Redbubble Group operates the marketplaces and, serving customers around the world with the help of a strong artist community.
  5. Artist Margins: When a product is sold on Redbubble, the artist earns a margin of the retail price, which they can set themselves, providing them control over their earnings.
  6. Diverse Product Range: Redbubble offers a vast array of products, including apparel, stickers, phone cases, wall art, and much more, all featuring designs from independent artists.
  7. Community and Creativity: The platform is known for its supportive community, promoting art and creativity among its members.
  8. Stock Market Presence: Redbubble is a publicly-traded company on the Australian Stock Exchange, reflecting its growth and presence in the global market.
  9. Customization Options: Customers can often select different sizes, colors, and materials for the artwork they wish to purchase, making each item more personalized.
  10. Commitment to Quality: Each item on Redbubble is printed individually with attention to quality, ensuring that customers receive products that are as close to the artist’s original vision as possible.

Redbubble’s innovative platform bridges the gap between talented artists and a global audience seeking unique and expressive products.

Understanding Etsy and Redbubble

Marketplace Overview

Etsy is a well-established hub for handmade goods, vintage items, and craft supplies. It’s a go-to spot for sellers who create their products by hand or curate unique vintage collections. Since its inception in 2005, Etsy has become a home for crafters, artists, and collectors alike.

In contrast, Redbubble takes a modern twist with print-on-demand services, perfect for artists and designers who want to offer their artwork on a variety of products without the hassle of inventory or shipping.

Launched in 2006, Redbubble serves as a marketplace where once you upload your design, they take care of the rest.

Types of Products Sold

On Etsy:

  • Handmade: Jewelry, clothing, home décor, and more created by talented artisans.
  • Vintage: At least 20 years old, ranging from fashion to furniture.
  • Craft Supplies: Materials for DIY enthusiasts to craft their own creations.

Redbubble excels in:

  • Print-on-Demand: Your artwork on t-shirts, stickers, phone cases, and countless other products.
  • Custom Merchandise: Products featuring bespoke designs tailored to niche interests.

Target Seller and Buyer Demographics

Etsy appeals to sellers who are:

  • Crafters and makers passionate about their handcrafted items.
  • Vintage collectors and enthusiasts with an eye for retro gems.

Etsy’s buyers typically look for:

  • Unique, personal, and bespoke items.
  • Gifts with a personal touch.

Redbubble fits sellers who are:

  • Digital artists and designers looking for a platform to showcase and monetize their creative work.

And Redbubble’s buyers are often:

  • In search of unique artwork and contemporary designs.
  • Fans of artists looking to support them by purchasing their art on various products.

Whether you’re an artist eager to share your designs on apparel and accessories, or a vintage aficionado with treasures to sell, your journey starts with understanding where you’ll find your tribe and how you can meet their needs.

Will it be the artisanal charm of Etsy or the digital ease of Redbubble? The choice is in your hands!

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Getting Started as a Seller

Starting your journey as an online seller is exciting, isn’t it? Whether you lean towards the independence of an Etsy shop or the print-on-demand model of Redbubble, knowing the setup and costs is key to success. Let’s get you set up!

Setting Up a Shop

Fancy starting your own shop? On Etsy, you’ll create a personalized storefront. Think of a catchy shop name, set your shop’s location, currency, and describe what makes your items unique.

On Redbubble, it’s simpler; you just sign up, and you’re good to go. You won’t personalize a storefront, but you can instantly tap into their global audience.

Listing Items and Upload Designs

Got awesome designs? Upload them to Redbubble and choose the products you want them plastered on. No inventory headaches here—they print when orders come in. With Etsy, you’ll create listings one by one.

Whether it’s your own handmade jewelry or vintage goods, list each item with a title, description, and photos that pop.

Understanding Fees and Costs

Etsy has a listing fee for each item you sell — it’s $0.20. When you make a sale, you’ll also part with a 5% transaction fee, and a payment processing fee that varies by country. The costs can add up, but managing them well means you can maintain healthy profit margins.

Redbubble, on the other hand, sets a base price for each item. You decide how much profit you want on top. No listing fees here, just the costs subtracted after sales. Keep an eye on those fees to make sure your art’s making you moolah, not costing you!

Comparing Sales and Profit Potential

Wondering how your wallet might feel after diving into Redbubble or Etsy? Let’s crunch some numbers and talk shop about where your designs could make the biggest splash in terms of profits and sales.

Profit Margins and Pricing

Redbubble operates on a print-on-demand basis; this means no upfront costs for you—pretty sweet, right? You just create the designs, and Redbubble takes care of production and shipping.

You set your own profit margin on top of the base price. Remember, though, Redbubble grabs about 20% commission on each sale.

On the flip side, Etsy charges you to play the game—$0.20 per listing and transaction fees. Although Etsy’s commission sits at 5%, you handle the nitty-gritty of production, shipping, and customer service. More work, but more control over your prices and profits.

Marketing and Reach

Now, how do you get eyeballs on your art? Etsy’s been around the block since 2005, so it’s jam-packed with buyers.

But guess what? It’s also swarming with sellers, which means you gotta be smart and sassy with your SEO and marketing strategies to stand out. And you know what? It definitely pays off if you can hook that loyal Etsy crowd.

Redbubble? It’s a bit like that cool indie shop around the corner—less traffic but also less competition. Your work’s gotta speak for itself because you won’t have as much control over marketing.

But voilà, when you click with that niche audience, Redbubble’s worldwide reach could zoom your designs around the globe with less elbow grease on promotions.

Logistics and Operations

When choosing between Redbubble and Etsy for your online shop, understanding how they handle logistics and operations is key. This includes everything from shipping and packaging to customer support and services.

Shipping and Packaging

Redbubble takes the hassle out of shipping by managing the fulfillment process for you. When your art is purchased, Redbubble prints and ships the products directly to customers. They offer a variety of shipping options to suit different timeframes and budgets.

The packaging, suited to the product type, typically carries Redbubble branding. Thanks to their handling of logistics, you can focus more on your creativity and less on the nitty-gritty of postage and packaging.

Etsy sellers, on the other hand, provide their own shipping and packaging, which means you’ll need to purchase shipping labels and handle the items personally.

However, if you use a third-party service such as Printful with Etsy, you can also enjoy the benefits of print-on-demand and drop shipping, which takes care of shipping and packaging for you.

Customer Support and Services

Etsy is well-regarded for its community-focused approach, offering personalized customer support and services. As a seller on Etsy, you’re responsible for managing customer communications and resolving issues, which allows for a tailor-made customer service approach.

Furthermore, the platform provides tools to help manage your shop, though the direct handling of disputes falls primarily to you.

Redbubble’s model offers a central customer service system, relieving artists from direct conflict resolution.

Potential buyers visit Redbubble’s centralized customer support for inquiries, leaving the troubleshooting to Redbubble’s team. This could provide a more streamlined experience for customers and a more hands-off scenario for you.

Third-Party Integration and Tools

Both platforms offer integration with various third-party tools and services. While Redbubble’s operations are mostly in-house, Etsy allows for more external integrations, giving you greater control over how your shop operates.

You have the option to use external tools for payment processing, shipping label creation, and promoting your shop, thus potentially enhancing your shop’s efficiency.

Etsy’s open system means you can integrate with platforms like Printful to synchronize your inventory and order processing, making it easier for you to sell custom-made items without personally managing the production.

This contrasts with Redbubble’s more closed ecosystem, where such direct third-party integrations are not necessary due to their complete handling of the production process.

Maximizing Success on Each Platform

Whether you’re eyeing Redbubble’s straightforward print-on-demand services or Etsy’s marketplace for unique items, making it big requires strategy. Here’s how you can play to each platform’s strengths and grow your sales.

Leveraging Platform Features


  • Utilize tags effectively to appear in relevant searches.
  • Design for a range of products to maximize your reach across Redbubble’s print-on-demand products.


  • Offer unique, handmade items to stand out in a diverse marketplace.
  • Tap into Etsy’s shipping and sales tools to streamline your process.

Community and Branding

Redbubble: Your Redbubble store thrives on community engagement. Here’s how:

  • Connect with other artists and potential customers via Redbubble groups.
  • Share your story to build a strong personal brand that resonates with shoppers.

Etsy: Etsy’s all about branding your shop to reflect your unique style:

  • Craft a compelling story to create an emotional connection with customers.
  • Engage with your customers through Etsy’s forums and teams to build a loyal fan base.

Analytics, Feedback, and Growth Strategies


  • Use Redbubble’s analytics tools to track your best-selling designs.
  • Gather customer feedback to improve your offerings and meet your goals.


  • Monitor your shop’s performance using Etsy’s analytics features.
  • Utilize customer reviews to fine-tune your products and store strategy.

By understanding and utilizing the specific features and communities of Redbubble and Etsy, you can tailor your approach to each and chart a course for growth and success.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Which platform should I choose if I want to sell handmade or unique items, Redbubble or Etsy?

If your passion is crafting unique, handmade items, Etsy is the better platform for you. Its strong reputation and dedicated customer base for artisan and custom-made products make it the go-to marketplace for independent creators.

Can you give me the scoop on the potential earnings for artists selling on Redbubble?

Artists selling on Redbubble can expect to earn royalties for their designs. Remember, Redbubble sets base prices for items, and you decide the artist margin, which can vary widely, so earnings fluctuate.

I’m curious about the fees. How do Redbubble’s fees compare with those of Etsy?

Redbubble differs in that it does not charge listing fees, instead taking a flat 20% commission. Etsy, meanwhile, charges a $0.20 listing fee plus a 5% commission, which might add up depending on your volume of sales.

Is it possible to operate a shop both on Redbubble and Etsy without violating any policies?

Absolutely! You’re free to sell the same design on both Etsy and Redbubble. There’s no conflict as long as your work is original and you’re not duplicating someone else’s designs.

I’ve heard about Teepublic and Society6. How do they stack up against Etsy for artists?

Teepublic and Society6, like Redbubble, cater to artists looking for a print-on-demand solution. While not directly compared here, artists often weigh Redbubble’s vast product range and TeePublic’s artist-friendly margins.

For a new seller, which platform is considered more user-friendly and supportive, Redbubble or Etsy?

Though both platforms aim to be accessible, Etsy might feel more supportive for new sellers due to its range of resources and community-driven environment that helps guide you through the selling process.

Final Thoughts | Redbubble vs Etsy

Deciding between Redbubble and Etsy hinges on how you prefer to manage your creative business. Redbubble is like your buddy who covers the backend work, leaving you free to design. They take care of manufacturing and shipping, perfect if you crave a more hands-off approach.

Think of it as a set-it-and-forget-it platform where your artistic flair can shine on everything from tees to prints.

Etsy, on the other hand, might be your go-to if you enjoy the nitty-gritty of customizing orders and running the show. It’s a marketplace with more person-to-person vibes, where your unique, handcrafted products or vintage finds can meet their match. More than a platform, it’s a community shopping experience dripping with personal touch.

When to lean towards Redbubble:

  • You want a passive income from your art.
  • Zero time or inclination to fuss over printing and shipping.
  • Yearning to reach visitors too.

Opt for Etsy if:

  • You’re into the whole crafting, shipping, and customer service shebang.
  • You prefer selling bespoke items or vintage goods.

Now, which resonates more with you? Your choice might just be the stepping stone to your dream side hustle coming alive!