What is Storenvy?
Storenvy is a marketplace for indie retailers, with small boutique-type businesses. It's very similar to Tictail, but has a much "cooler" vibe. 😎 They are definitely catering towards a younger demographic, so if your products are edgy and hipster-like, you'll fit right in.
Here's an example of some of the products you'll find on Storenvy. Clothing and accessories are particularly popular:
Check out Storenvy's Editor's Picks for a better overview of the types of products you'll find there. Trust me, you'll feel cooler just by looking at them! #LOL 🤣
Also worth noting, Storenvy was acquired by OpenSky in April, 2016. There's not a lot written about the acquisition, but it looks like Storenvy will continue to run separately to OpenSky. Acquisitions always make me nervous though, as in the past the acquirer has shut down the acquired company after a period of time. Anyone remember Bonanza acquiring 1000Markets (a creative marketplace that had so much potential 😢)!? Let's hope that doesn't happen to Storenvy.
Storenvy review summary
- If you sell jewelry or kids related products, there's a great opportunity to increase your exposure with Storenvy.
- Storenvy fees are quite expensive (and confusing), especially for the handmade seller.
- The marketplace gets a lot of traffic, but caters to the younger generation and primarily consists of mass produced products.
Storenvy review scores
- Competitiveness: 6/10
- Exposure: 8/10
- Fees: 2/10
- Flexibility: 7/10
- Handmade ethos: 3/10
Total score: 26/50
This review is written for those wanting an alternative to selling on Etsy. So, I'll be reviewing Storenvy based on the top 5 reasons people are looking for an Etsy alternative:
1. Competitiveness – Do your products have a chance of standing out from the crowd?
2. Exposure – Is there a good chance of increasing your traffic and getting more exposure?
3. Fees – How much does it cost? Is the pricing simple and predictable? More than that, are the fees fair for what's on offer?
4. Flexibility – How professional does it look, and how flexible is it to change?
5. Handmade ethos – Are they strictly for handmade, or can you sell anything there? Will you be competing against manufacturers of mass produced goods, that can easily beat you on price?
I'll give each of these elements a score out of 10, to arrive at a total score out of 50. I'll then use this score to arrive at the top 10 Etsy alternatives.
Let's get one thing straight, in case it hasn't come across clear enough already... Storenvy is catering towards a particular market. The first thing you need to do is to make sure your items fit in with their target market.
If they do, then prepare yourself for a lot of competition. It's hard to stand out because there's so many similar products on there. There's 366,000+ products in the Women's category alone.
However, I have some good news. Although Storenvy definitely favors the "cooler" products, there's potential to stand out in 2 categories: Jewelry and Kids. If you check out these two categories, I'm sure you'll agree that there's potential here for the handmade seller. It's less competitive and has a more handmade feel, whereas the other categories feature highly manufactured products.
So, if you sell jewelry or kids products, you have a chance of standing out from the crowd. However, for everyone else, it's highly competitive.
The Storenvy marketplace gets really good traffic to it, so if your products are the right fit, there's some great potential here.
Search results are ordered by "Popularity" by default. There's a social aspect to Storenvy, where shoppers can "Envy" a product, which is equivalent to a "Like" on Facebook. Plus, you can create "Collections" of your favorite products. A popularity score is calculated by how many Envies and inclusions in Collections it has. I love the social aspect of Storenvy, but I wonder if the scoring system makes it hard for new sellers to increase their popularity score fast enough to catch up with their competitors. Therefore their exposure will be less as they'll appear further back in the search results. Of course, with any system like this, there's potential for you to figure out ways to "game" it. What things can you do to boost your popularity score faster? I'm sure there's ways to do it.
As mentioned, with Storenvy you also get your own website. As with any standalone website, the exposure is dependent on you driving your own traffic to it. You shouldn't fear that though, as the reward is great if you can make it work and there's many other benefits to having your own website! That's a discussion for another day and not the purpose of this review. Perhaps some other blog posts to come on this topic in the future. 🤔
The summary for this one is that if you're a good fit for Storenvy, the potential for exposure is high! It loses a couple of points mainly because the percentage of people reading this review that would be a good fit for Storenvy is slim.
Storenvy's fees for a handmade seller are high. The fee structure is multi-faceted, so let me break it down for you.
They charge a 10% commission fee on sales made through the Storenvy marketplace. You don't pay commissions on sales you make through your standalone website.
However, Storenvy have this confusing and convoluted fee called the "Storenvy fee". It's a fee that YOUR buyers have to pay to Storenvy, even on YOUR website. So, while the fee isn't coming out of your pocket, it may turn buyers off from purchasing from you if they have to pay extra unexpected fees. Here's an explanation of the Storenvy fee from Storenvy themselves:
Purchases from custom stores (items that have the store name as part of the link) that are less than or equal to $10.00 will be charged a $0.59 fee. Purchases from custom stores that are over $10.00 will be charged a $0.99 fee. Purchases from the Storenvy marketplace that are less than or equal to $10.00 will be charged a $0.99 fee. Purchases from the Storenvy marketplace that are over $10.00 will be charged a $1.99 fee.
Similar to most website builders, Storenvy also charges extra monthly fees for their website if you want to add things on like having a custom domain instead of a Storenvy one ($5/mo), create discount codes ($5-$20/mo) and cart abandonment emails ($15/mo).
I really hate the Storenvy fee for obvious reasons, the 10% commission on marketplace sales is simply too high for handmade sellers, and although it's standard practice for website builders to charge for extra "apps", the cost for these relatively simple apps feels too high to me.
Storenvy's marketplace storefront is beautiful and well designed. There's lots of flexibility to make your brand shine through, with nice big photos and a chance to tell your story.
Storenvy's standalone website has just one theme to choose from. You can add a banner and change colors/font, which is nice. You can even dive into the code to make more advanced changes, including the ability to add more pages to your site. The design of the standard theme, without editing the code, is quite outdated though. If you can't code, I think you'll likely be disappointed with having a Storenvy website as your main website. Check out Knee Deep Denim's website and decide for yourself.
One last thought for this section is that I think having the "Storenvy fee" on your website's checkout process is extremely unprofessional too. Can you tell I hate the Storenvy fee?! I've never seen this on any e-commerce site, ever. It's confusing and I think they should remove it.
Products sold on Storenvy don't have to be handmade. That means if you sell handmade products, it's going to be hard for you to compete on price as your competitors are likely using manufacturers. Storenvy is creative focused and caters towards independent brands, so I've given them a few points for this reason.
In conclusion, Storenvy is definitely worth trying if you are selling jewelry or kids related products. Chances are you'll boost your exposure and make sales. You'll want to leverage the social aspect of Storenvy, so that your items rank higher in their search results, since it's ordered by popularity. The store looks great, with lots of opportunity to showcase your brand. The fees are not so great however, especially for the handmade seller.
Storenvy has finished up with a score of 26/50, which ranks them 7th in the top 10 Etsy alternatives list.