I use the Dawanda website (www.dawanda.com) to sell to Europeans.
Dawanda is basically a european equivalent of Etsy.
They have 3 ‘sub-sites’… an english site, a german site, and a
french site. You can choose to list on only one site, or you can
list on all 3… trick is you need to be able to communicate in
german to list on the german site, and french to list on the french
I list on all 3 dawanda sites… most of my sales come from the
german dawanda site, maybe 25 come from the french dawanda site, and
almost none come from the english dawanda site. The english dawanda
site is unfortunately VERY VERY SLOW.
Most of my sales are earrings (wire-wrapped gemstone) in the 50 USD
range. My average sale there is about 35 - 40 USD. I had about 70
sales over the last 12 months… that’s with zero promotion,
marketing, etc for that shop… not a lot, but hey it’s a start!
With tons of luck, a venue site like that can also get you wholesale
accounts… but I think that would be a very difficult in this
case… the wholesale buyers would probably prefer to keep their
life simple and order from EU artisans.
There’s a quite a range of jewelry makers that sell there…
everything from 5 plastic doo-dads to very lovely metal-worked
I offer paypal and bank-transfer via a swiss euro account. Few
germans use credit cards… I find about 50 of my sales are paid via
bank-transfer. Bank-transfer to a US account is prohibitively
expensive… to make bank-transfer work for your shop, you need a
european euro account… which is practically impossible to get if
you don’t live there!
I think “putting your eggs in more than one basket” is a great idea
… the EU is a HUGE market! But if you’re selling retail online,
you really need to be able to communicate in your buyer’s language,
cause most buyers will mainly go to sites that cater to their
Eventually I plan on creating my own english/french/german shop on
my own website. But Dawanda’s been an excellent “learning
Another site I know about is “www.alittlemarket.com”… it’s
actually a french site. Much smaller than Dawanda, and has a lot
less traffic. I’ll eventually try it out… even if it’s just to
practice my french, in the hope that one day I’ll need it for all
those zillions of french buyers.)
… just to elaborate a bit on my experience with foreign payments
I do offer both paypal and bank transfer to a swiss euro account. My
experience is about 60% of germans pay with bank-transfer and the
rest pay with paypal. I’ve had about 3-4 Austrian customers as
well… about half paid with bank transfer and half with paypal.
About 20% of my customers were french, and they all paid with bank
That’s with a dataset of 70 (ie 70 customers), and an average item
price of $35-40 USD. (Though I actually list on Dawanda in EUROS!)
If you’re really serious about selling to Germans, then it’s handy
to get a German euro account. Germans are used to doing bank
transfers to german accounts… the bank transfer to my swiss euro
account regularly causes difficulty. Which is painful… I can
communicate in German, but I’m not fluent in
"business/banking-speak"! I’ve ameliorated this problem a bit by
sending each bank-transfer customer a little ‘blurb’ with the info
they need about my bank account, and some tips on doing an
international bank transfer.