International and local artists unite under the umbrella of DaWanda, an online handmade marketplace based in Germany. While we’ll be reviewing DaWanda’s English-based site, there is also a DaWanda France and a DaWanda Germany. DaWanda’s diverse selection is made manifest through talented artists turned sellers from around the globe. The website is easy to use, and both the buying and selling process are straightforward – just be sure to notice that all prices are listed in Euros. With DaWanda’s user-friendly interface and globetrotting selection, it is no surprise that it has earned our TopTenREVIEWS Bronze Award.
DaWanda is very customer-driven. Each and every page has been designed to help the consumer share, save or “heart” products and shops. On the right hand side of each product listing, you'll to see a tally of how many times the product has been viewed as well as how many people have pinned it to their favorites or “hearted” it. You can also email the product to friends. When you pin products to a pinboard or “heart” them, you will be able to pull those handmade items up later through your account. We really like this feature because one hazard of browsing through online shops is never finding your favorite items again.
To search the selection, you can use the website’s general search function or you can click on the advanced link to perform a deeper hunt. Under the advanced search you can filter items by category, price, color, county of origin and even accepted payment methods. You can also search for a specific shop or seller.
Once you’ve found the perfect handmade gift, or handcrafted jewelry, each DaWanda seller has the option to offer customizable items. When an items is customizable, the listing will generally have a tag running along the top left corner that says “customizable.” Most shops also include links to contact the seller personally with questions or concerns. Be sure before you add the item to your cart that the seller will ship items to your country.
DaWanda breaks down the buying process into four distinct steps: shopping cart, shipping information, payment information and confirmation. Because a different seller runs each shop, you will need to complete a separate transaction for each shop. You can still add several items from differing shops into your cart; the checkout process will just require you to complete separate transactions with each shop. The only buying feature we wish DaWanda did have was a personalized selection option that would email updates of the hottest items or send options of handmade items catered to our tastes. Other marketplaces offer this feature, and we found we missed it here.
One of our favorite features of DaWanda is the ability to connect with artists from around the world. However, this could also be one of DaWanda’s weakest points. Anyone can create shops promoting their handmade items, but because this handmade marketplace is based out of Germany, that is where most of their clientele are located. If you speak or write German, you will have a huge advantage over other shops. DaWanda has an option that allows you to translate your pages if you choose to sell in the German market.
While there are currently no listing fees in the English platform, fees are included in the German and French platform. If you plan on selling items across all platforms, you’ll have to pay the accompanied listing fee. DaWanda also states in their seller FAQs that the English platform will soon have listing fees as well. Currently, you simply pay a 5 percent commission on all sales. While the 5 percent seems a bit high, we do like that you don’t have to pay for each list, meaning that the only time you would have to pay DaWanda is if you made a sale.
As a seller, DaWanda has several options up their sleeves to help market your items. You can customize your shop to highlight popular items with a shop banner and personalized site introduction. As a shop owner, you are also able to write your own shop policies where you outline shipping policies and shop terms. To boost sales, DaWanda has an embedded Facebook “like” button on each product’s page, and you can also create coupon codes or subtract a percentage off of items.
One thing the backend of a DaWanda shop is missing is site analytics. They do have a statistics section, but it isn’t nearly as detailed as Google analytics would be. When we contacted DaWanda, they said that they were in the process of implementing Google analytics, but that hasn’t occurred yet. Analytics is so important in understanding how your shop attracts customers, it is a shame DaWanda isn’t already on the Google analytics train.
We were very impressed with the selection available on DaWanda’s homemade marketplace. Because of the diversity of their sellers, DaWanda has handcrafted items from China to Germany to the UK. To narrow down the selection, the site is broken up into categories like fashion, accessories, baby, art, supplies, home + living and more. You can also filter the selection using the navigational tools DaWanda has across the top of their site. The “latest trends” button is an especially helpful area on the website. Trending items, or those that have received several views, are categorized into themes like “Ballet Chic,” “Beautiful Birdies” or “Statement Jewelry.” These categories change on a regular basis.
You will need to create an account regardless of whether you are a buyer or a seller. Once your account has been created, you have access to account information and sale history, and you can begin pinning your favorite items to pinboards. If you run into any problems when buying or selling items, DaWanda’s website has pages of FAQs, a blog and forum to answer common questions. For more specific questions, you can contact customer support via email.
DaWanda was founded in 2006 and has since become one of the biggest handmade marketplaces in the UK. They may not be as popular in the United States, but as the word continues to spread regarding their fabulous selection, worldwide consumer base and user-friendly interface, we think they will flourish. For truly original products that you won’t find anywhere else, check out DaWanda’s online handmade marketplace.