Etsy, the site that brought craft shows online, had a banner year in 2012, with sales from its community of handmade and vintage goods sellers up more than 70 percent, the company said Monday. Though CEO Chad Dickerson has said he’s not gunning for an Etsy IPO in 2013, the New York-based company’s recent CFO hiring of Fidelity’s Kristina Salen, plus a huge jump in sales, puts Etsy in an ideal place to go public whenever it desires.
Sales on the handmade marketplace climbed from $525.6 million in 2011 to $895.1 million in 2012. Jewelry continued to hold the top spot for the most sales in 2012, while wedding goods, clothing, and home decor sales were also on the rise. For a place where you’d normally search for needlepoint crafts, handmade jewelry, and oil paintings, it’s surprising that furniture (mostly vintage and repurposed) was the fastest growing category, up 134 percent from 2011.
Image by Etsy
While Etsy sellers in U.S. and Canada fetched the highest earnings, shop owners in China, the UK, Australia, and India followed closely behind, though Etsy wouldn’t divulge exact numbers. Shoppers in the U.S., Canada, the UK, Australia and most of Europe made the most purchases on the site. Those shoppers and shop owners have been helped by the fact that Etsy added five new versions of its site translated into French, Dutch, British English, Italian and Spanish last year.
Look closer at just the U.S. and you’ll see that people in Alaska and Massachusetts are making more purchases per capita on Etsy than any other state. And most of those goods are hailing from sellers in Oregon and Utah, the two states with the top earnings for 2012.
The marketplace is up to 22 million members (up 10 million from 2011), and the number of new people who signed up and purchased something in 2012 grew by 83 percent. In the seven years that Etsy has been around, 14 million people have made 100 million purchases from the site. Etsy earns between three and three and half percent per transaction, plus 20 cents per listing.