So I'm sure many of you who follow this sporadic blog have seen that ArtFire is shutting down their basic accounts. I'm one of them. I'm not pleased with their reasoning, and since I was on their basic account to see if sales might be better there, and to see if I wanted to sign up with a Premium account for $10+ a month, this offers me no incentive whatsoever to get one. While I understand that they want to make money, they need to understand that in order to ask for money, their service needs to be worth it.
It's one of the same reasons my Etsy shop has dwindled. They are not about letting the sellers sell (at least not their few prized features, who we see on the front page day after day, week after week, month after month - 90% of us NEVER see the front page, no matter how many sales we've made, how professional our photographs are, or how awesome our work is), they have turned into a social network which is more focused on networking friends than they are about bringing "strangers" in to buy the lovely things in our shops.
So I have moved... My ArtFire studio will disappear when the basic account shutdown occurs. My Etsy shop will empty eventually, since I no longer have the online-fee budget to keep renewing items. (However, there are notices everywhere that if someone wants me to list an item there, I will list it for them so they can purchase it - even a small purchase will replenish my Etsy fee budget at this time.)
I am trying out Zibbet, which made a very prominent and bold announcement through email to all of their members (including me, who had been a member for perhaps a few hours when I got the email) about how they felt about what ArtFire was doing, and invited in all of the sellers being thrown out of ArtFire to join them, as they would NOT be removing their basic accounts, with the understanding that someone's not going to pay for something they do not feel is working for them. I just made my shop there public - check it out! Not all of my things are there yet, but more will come as more time goes by.
I also looked into Silkfair - which I DO NOT recommend, as they require a credit card to sign up at all (not a debit card or gift card, a CREDIT card such as Discover, AmEx, cards that are not linked to bank accounts), and they do not accept PayPal - meaning purchasers would have to put in their credit card information directly to the site - which I am not a fan of. Simply put, I told them I would absolutely NOT recommend them to anyone for this policy.
I am also setting up a shop at MadeItMyself - I am still in the process of doing this, so there is nothing up there yet. Though please keep checking my shop - now that I have Zibbet set up, I can work a bit more on this one. This place seems to focus more on the PERSON behind the work - which I like a lot. Their bio is the first thing you see, followed by their items at the bottom. You get to know the person who created the lovely works of art they sell, instead of just seeing an item, buying it, and only possibly clicking to find out more about them.
I do have one more site I am looking into, which will be in my next post; I have not done enough research on it to give it a thumbs up or a thumbs down.
In the meantime, I'm continuing to work, to design, and trying to get over an ear infection I've had for more than a month... It was well over a month before I finally saw a doctor for achey ears, and found out that I've had an infection long enough that I got The Glare. I'm taking my medicines as I'm supposed to, don't worry; at this point I'm well on the mend. In the meantime, I've gotten some interesting ideas for new works. (NyQuil/Antibiotic/fever haze; you know the one - "the pretty colors say you're my friend, and the little blue men say that I should wander outside naked!")