This entry was posted in Advice and tagged Sales on July 18, 2013 by The Small Business Heroes Team.
When you start up a small business, making money fast can be the difference between keeping your head above water and folding unceremoniously.
Whether you’re selling products or services, there’s a site for your needs and many ways to make money – even if your product is a little, shall we say, obscure.
It’s a really fun idea, but best for making a little pocket money on the side rather than making a living. Etsy is an online marketplace for handcrafted items, vintage items (at least 20 years old) and craft supplies. A very professional and clear site, with an attractive selection of hand-picked items for sale on the homepage – from the off it seems like a reassuring place to sell. If you’re selling quality products, and you advertise your online business, you can potentially make a lot of money – the same as in any shop, but without the overhead costs of a premises. This is a great site for new business owners or those who run their enterprise on the side.
Originally a site for people looking for accommodation, Gumtree has now expanded to become a classifieds site that sells just about everything.
The website is a bit off-putting, as it doesn’t look overly professional, but there’s no denying its popularity regardless.
Good for advertising your services free, as the site gets heaps of traffic, and also good if you need to get rid of things cheaply and quickly. Freelancers advertise their services on the site – whether copywriting, designing, SEO, or quirkier services such as creating videos and voiceovers.
You can make a fair amount, but it’s competitive, with lots of people offering similar services.


Great for freelancers offering their services, and as you can work remotely it enables you to connect with clients all over the globe. It’s similar to Etsy, but with a different emphasis – everything is required to be handmade, where on Etsy the rules are less strict. You can probably make quite a bit, but as mentioned above the fees are fairly substantial – so that’s something to bear in mind. Less competitive than Etsy, and with a more specialised target audience, it’s a good choice for craftmakers and designers who are starting out, or selling alongside their day job. You’ve learned how to make some money quickly – how about maximising your business profits by taking card? Slideshare uses cookies to improve functionality and performance, and to provide you with relevant advertising.
Here are five of the best sites on the web for selling your freelance services or products. Perhaps you can speak in a great accent, write and sing songs at the drop of a hat, or draw a photograph. You set up your own shop – similar to eBay shops, if you’ve ever used these – and you can sell away!
Perhaps you are just starting up and want to check out the market demand for your product without the commitment of your own website, or you don’t have premises yet. The terms and conditions mysteriously hint that there might be fees in some circumstances, but doesn’t go into this.
The minimum service fee is ?1, and outside of that you are charged 15% (not including VAT) for the first ?175 you earn in a month, and 3.5% (again, excluding VAT) after that. There are also some quirkier services available, similar to Fiverr, but in general it’s more professional.


For example, you cannot sell vintage clothes on Folksy unless they’ve been significantly reupholstered or changed, and just restoring them to their original condition doesn’t count. A glance over the products gives you an idea of what the website’s about, as they’re extremely crafty.
It could also be used as a platform to gain a client base, who might then commission you for larger – and better-paid – projects.
The security of selling through a third party can be reassuring if you’re nervous about starting up or just giving it a go, and the commission fee is a fair trade-off for this.
As far as selling is concerned, rather than your own products the market tends towards the car-boot-sale type – great if you’re having a bit of a clear-out. The Hourlies section in particular is great, with people offering a service for a fixed rate – so you know exactly what you’re getting.
When the item is sold you’re charged a commission of 6% plus VAT; the VAT means it’s a fairly sizeable chunk of your profit. However, a product with low overheads (my favourite is an offer of someone making a video of themselves singing a song while hula-hooping in a bikini) could have more success. Going alone can be a little scary, and marketplaces such as Etsy give you business experience without throwing you in at the deep end.



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