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Aftcra Review: A Worthwhile Alternative to Etsy?

Last updated: March 23, 2020
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Aftcra

Final thoughts

If you produce handmade goods and are based in the United States, then aftcra is a viable alternative to sites like Etsy. The low transaction fees and community feel are attractive features offered by aftcra.

Pros

Signing up for aftcra only takes a few minutes, and you won't have to pay a dime until you complete a sale.

  • Easy sign-up process
  • Complete control over your product store
  • Active community and customer support team
  • No listing fees and relatively low transaction fee

Cons

Aftcra is limited to sellers of handmade goods based in the United States and charges a transaction fee for all purchases. 

  • Only handmade goods allowed on the site
  • Restricted to sellers based in the United States
  • Payment currently only through PayPal
  • 7% transaction fee charged to your credit card via PayPal
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If you are a creative entrepreneur specializing in handmade products, you are likely curious about the best online marketplace to sell your goods. You may be familiar with sites like Etsy Shop or Amazon Handmade, but numerous alternatives may work better for your business.

One such option for business owners is aftcra. Aftcra specializes in the online sale of handmade goods made in America. If you are a handmade seller, then Aftrcra could be a useful choice for your small business.

What is Aftcra?

Aftcra is an online marketplace that facilitates the sale and purchase of American handmade products. The company seeks to support local American artisans by expanding their reach, connecting them with people around the world.

Aftcra is a relatively new company. Founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, as a small team of handmade enthusiasts, it formally launched in October 2013. The company name, “aftcra” is an anagram for “a craft.” The company stresses a family-like, humble approach to business while also having fun.

Aftcra says that its goal is to “sustain a marketplace that you can call your own while showcasing items that you’ve created without all of the typical clutter.”

So if you’re looking to earn some extra cash by selling some of the odds and ends you have lying around your home, then aftcra is not for you. You may instead be interested in sites like eBay, which allow you more flexibility in your listings.

How Does Aftcra Work?

There are a couple of worthwhile things to note when it comes to aftcra. First and foremost, the site only allows the sale of goods made in the USA. Although the site connects you with buyers around the globe, the handmade products themselves must be American-made.

Aftcra also seeks to maintain a boutique approach when it comes to selling. It aims to drive traffic to sellers’ pages while cutting down on the clutter typically associated with showcasing items.

The company stresses a community feel. Sellers in the handmade marketplace make up the community. Those who serve their communities receive a badge they can place on their shop page. Aftcra doesn’t provide examples of what it considers to be “serving the community,” but encourages you to email [email protected] to share your story of community involvement.

Aftcra recognizes that “handmade” can be a subjective term. The company says that to sell unique gifts on its site, the products must not be made by a manufacturer. At most, it should be an artist working with a small team to produce the products.

There are no qualification requirements, per se. The company says it prefers to be inclusionary rather than exclusionary. If you’d like clarification about whether you can sell your products, you can contact [email protected] before listing.

If someone in the community calls your products into question, a member of the aftcra team will reach out to you, as the shop owner, for clarification. If you fail to meet the company’s guidelines, your store shop may close.

Lastly, remember that sellers must live in the United States to sell their goods. Aftcra requires you to submit a zip code when registering. The company may have missed some zip codes when creating its database, however, and advises you to contact them if your zip code appears as invalid.

How Much Does it Cost To Sell on Aftcra?

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One of the stand-out features of aftcra is that it doesn’t cost anything to set up an account. You’ll need to put in a credit card, which is used for transaction fees, as we’ll detail below.

But there are no registration fees associated with opening an aftcra shop. It’s completely free. Similarly, there are no listing fees on the site either. You’ll only have to pay when you complete a transaction.

Aftcra uses PayPal as a middleman. The company says that it views PayPal as trusted and easy to use. Although aftcra only works with PayPal right now, it says that it plans to expand to other platforms in the near future.

When you complete a sale, aftcra will automatically charge the credit card that you have on file. The transaction fee is 7% of the sales amount.

So let’s say that you have a piece of artwork that you’d like to sell for $93. You should list the item for $100, knowing that aftcra is automatically going to take a 7% cut. If you list the item at $93, aftcra will charge your credit card $6.51, meaning you’d only earn $86.49 for the sale.

How To Get Started on Aftcra

Getting started on aftcra is fairly straightforward. All you need to do is register your business and create your shop. You can typically do so in a matter of minutes.

When creating your shop, you’ll need to provide a credit card. Aftcra will use this credit card for transaction fees, so make sure you use a card that you’re OK with having a high transaction volume.

Once you create your account, you’ll set the parameters for your aftcra account. You have control over a number of things, including your:

  • Seller policies
  • Name
  • Unique URL, which appears as www.aftcra.com/YOURNAME
  • Profile image
  • Banner image
  • Company description
  • The story behind your products

Once you’ve filled out this information, you can begin uploading your products. Aftcra will display all of your products in its search tool and categories. The company will also promote your products through its various promotional outlets.

You are in complete control of when your store is open and closed. If you’re going on vacation or need to shut down your store temporarily — perhaps you’ve sold so many handmade goods that you need to make more — you can declare your site as inactive. When you’re ready to become active again, you can do so on your store dashboard.

There is no limit to the number of products that you can sell on aftcra. The company recommends that you upload enough products to satisfy your buyers without overwhelming your store.

When you upload a product to the site, you can determine the quantity available. Products are automatically listed for six months, although you can relist them if they expire.

One of the other cool features that you may want to incorporate is Google Analytics. By uploading your Google tracking ID, you can monitor things such as web traffic and how many views your specific products receive.

You can link your social media sites to your seller page as well. Use this as an opportunity to direct interested buyers to your social media pages so they can see more pictures of your business and the products that you’re creating. Because you set the URL for your aftcra page, you can select something that matches the business name currently on your social media pages. This allows business owners to keep a consistent, professional approach when marketing their goods.

Is Aftcra a Worthwhile Option For You?

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If you have a handmade business, you may struggle to find customers. Perhaps you limit yourself to going to local arts and craft shows. If this sounds familiar, you should be looking at ways to expand your business. That’s where aftcra comes in handy.

Aftcra is a worthwhile e-commerce site for those who sell handmade goods as long as you make them in the United States. You’ll gain access to a global buyer base of people specifically interested in the types of goods that you have to sell.

The fact that you can sell your goods at a minimum cost is also attractive. It’s free to set up a profile and list your products. You’ll only pay a 7% fee when you complete a sale. Since it’s affordable, there’s really no downside to listing your products on aftcra.

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