Why a whopping 86% of sellers on Etsy are women

Supplies for the hit Etsy store Three Bird Nest, owned by Alicia Shaffer. (Matt Edge/The New York Times)

According to the second annual seller report, 86 percent of sellers on Etsy are women. This is a huge increase from the general trend, which shows that only 29 percent of small business owners are women, according to a study from the Institute of Women’s Policy Research. While not all sellers count an Etsy shop as a business, it is the sole source of income for about a third of the users of the website. However, the report also showed that less than one percent of the women took out a loan to start their online shops, a trend that translates into the real world where the U.S. Department of Commerce found that women are less likely to source outside financing when starting a business. And this is one of the primary reasons women turn to Etsy, Fortune discovered in a new report. Several other factors came to light to explain the gender disparity as well. Women who did not work before using the website and who were stay-at-home mothers claimed that it is an excellent way to pursue a passion and have a business while staying home and maintaining the same duties. Another big reason the site appeals to women is that it provides an easy way to make happiness a priority. Many female sellers claimed that doing something they enjoy is more important than making money.

Read the full story at Fortune.

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