Why it is critical to have your own website in 2021? Do not put all your eggs in one basket is advice we have heard our whole life. If you sell t-shirt quilts on Etsy, Facebook, Instagram or Amazon you could be out of business through no fault of your own.
Search the internet and you find many articles from people who were selling on Etsy, Facebook or Amazon and overnight their shop was shut down. How can this happen? Easy. You are building your business on borrowed land. The customers who buy YOUR t-shirt quilts are really Etsy, Facebook, Instagram and Amazon’s customers NOT yours. Why put all the work into your business and then customers tell their friends ” I bought it from an Etsy shop”,or “A lady on Facebook made my quilt”.
I am in several quilting groups on facebook. This week the admin put out to PLEASE do not refer to a 1/4 yard of fabric as a fat quarter. Several members were in “facebook jail” and they were afraid the group would be shut down. Using the word fat (according to facebook) was bullying. We all know fabric does not have feelings but the algorithms do not.
The point is you can be shut down for anything. And it is not just facebook. There are also many stories of Etsy sellers who have lost their shop. Some may have done something against Etsy rules but some made honest mistakes. Amazon handmade also has a reputation of shutting down shops.
What can you do to protect your business?
A website that you own is the solution. Use social media to your advantage. Send customers who visit your facebook page, instagram ,Pinterest and Etsy shop to your website. Eventually your website will get found organically. Keep the other platforms as a backup.
Protect your business in these crazy times!
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update: In a t-shirt quilt group I am in a lady posted to the group and asked who did she pay to do her quilt. She cannot remember who she sent payment to. Whoever received her money will make the quilt but it will not do her business any good. She will just be “a lady on facebook”.