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Setting up a Webstore

edited June 2013 in The Toolbox
I'd like to set up a webstore to sell Amala's Blade issues and prints directly to the public. What's the most hassle-free way to do that with the lowest (or no) fees? Thanks.
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Comments

  • I use BigCartel. Their free option gives you five products to use at a time. For $10/month, you can upgrade to 25 products. For $20/month, 100 products. They don't take a percentage of sales (although I think that's an option instead of a monthly fee), and sales go through Paypal. Been using it all year; no complaints yet!

    If there's a better option out there, I'd love to know.
  • Yeah, @BrandonSeifert has mentioned it before and I planned to look into it.
  • I use storenvy, which is also used by Tom Brazelton for his Theater Hopper webcomic series. It was very hassle free, and it's easy to set up sales and promotions.

    Here's the link to my storenvy page: http://trevoramueller.storenvy.com/

    You can do more customization to it than I have, but I was more interested in getting the content updated.
  • edited June 2013
    I use Storenvy.com, which is free and fantastic. When I say free, you still have to pay Paypal, but Storenvy doesn't take a cut on top of that. They've partnered with a digital company (http://app.boxtruck.co/) that I'm just starting to look into. 


  • Nice seeing all these options.
  • All good options! I tried BigCartel first but the 5-item limit is annoying. I might switch.
  • @SteveHorton - Hmmm... that is an interesting point.  I clearly have more than 5 items to offer.  But I also don't mind paying the monthly fee.  I'll check them all out.
  • edited June 2013
    I've been using Gumroad for digital products and like it a lot. It's a tad more expensive than Paypal, but it takes care of digital hosting and delivery for free. It's really simple to set up, and you can imbed its buttons almost anywhere on the web - your web page, emails, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Responsive customer service too.   

    I especially like that it doesn't rely on Paypal. 

  • @Jay_Latimer - I admit, I'm not a friend of Paypal, either.
  • My collaborator Dale Lazarov was happy using Gumroad for digital sales ... until they suddenly decided that they didn't like smut and summarily dropped his books (and others, including Smut Peddler).  He switched to Ribbon.co (note the lack of "m" on the end of that), in the process negotiating a promise from them that they're OK with "adult" material.  He's been happy with it so far.
  • I just went with Gumroad.  Thanks @Jay_Latimer.  I like it.  I created an account and set it up in minutes.  I'm not using it right now, I have to set up a few things first.  But I'm glad to have it ready to go.
  • Just occurred to me that I can sell my books on Amazon, just like anybody else can. I'm giving it a shot with the new "Witch Doctor" Vol. 2 TP. Amazon takes a cut and I don't have as much control over the shipping options, but the increased visibility may make it worth it.
  • Got an email from Square today about an online store option.
  • @RussellLissau - Oh?  I shall check that out.
  • Thanks.  Looks neat.  I'll check the FAQs on it later.
  • The Square thing is appealing, because that lets you manage both your con inventory and your online store from the same place. And at a flat 2.75% fee, you're only paying $2.75 in fees for every $100 you sell — way lower than my monthly fee on BigCartel. No App to integrate into a Facebook Page thought — yet.

    I also like that they have "cover photos" — you could stick a photo of yourself behind your convention table, and brand it as an online artist alley booth.

    I just turned my Square account into a Market store. Might as well!
  • @BrandonSeifert - perhaps it's beneficial to have multiple storefronts.  
  • It might be — but it's also more work to maintain several than just one.
  • I'm seeing a lot of storefronts for physical stores... where they want you to go there, as opposed to buying it from the online store.  I'm still searching around, but the majority are promoting brick & mortar.
  • Try searching for "comics" Jimmie, and it should show comics-related storefronts in your physical area. In mine, they're mostly people who exhibit at cons.
  • Yeah, I searched "comics" and "comic books".  I was looking for individuals... I mostly got stores.  I went to Tr!ckster's storefront and they only show the books and prices, but not the ability to buy them -- unless I'm missing something.
  • Brandon, I'm looking at yours now.
  • There's two options for displaying products online in your store — you can just display them, or you can have them available for purchase now. The only one I've had time to set to purchasable is the Vol. 1 collection.
  • I think getting my Square Market up and running is going to be imperative for me, because I'll be using that system to control inventory at cons as well. So whether or not I keep my BigCartel store (or keep selling stuff on Amazon Marketplace), I think the Square Market's going to be imperative.
  • I'm getting an iPad next week... I will be doing this, too.

    So, has selling online been good for you?  Or is it a lot of bother (shipping, packaging, running to the post office, etc.)
  • It's not been super difficult. I live walking distance from a post office (and, if I'm lazy, a postal annex — which is more expensive) and I bought 100 rigid photo mailers from Amazon, so packaging and shipping is pretty easy for me. I get a sale every week or two. I could see it becoming a pain in the ass if I started getting too many sales — but that's a nice problem to have.

    I'm glad to see that Square now lists products in the iPhone app. Used to be just in the iPad app, which limited the product list's use at cons.
  • Thanks for the Square info!
    I've sold more comics through Storenvy this year than I have at cons the last 2.5 years combined.
    At the rate I sell the fulfillment isn't much of a problem either. Would love to have that problem though. :)
    Still need to set up something digital. Does Square handle that? I didn't see anything, but I haven't had much time digging into it yet.
  • So far I'm having the same problem with Square that I have when trying to add products in the past — their website is buggy, or doesn't play nicely with my browser (Safari). Lots of me making changes to a product... and Square not saving them.
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