Arts and crafts retailer Michaels has plans to compete directly with marketplaces such as Etsy that host some of its best customers: makers.
The Irving, Texas-based retailer is preparing its digital platforms to begin to sell customers’ creations by mid-2022.
Michaels Cos. CEO Ashley Buchanan mentioned that the plans were in the works Thursday while speaking at the Texas A&M Retailing Summit in Dallas and later confirmed more details in an interview.
“Makers have been giving us feedback. They’re finding friction points and we’re responding,” Buchanan said. Michaels has “hundreds of coders around the world working to completely revamp and recode our website and app.”
The move represents an evolution of Michaels’ efforts to cater more to artists and crafters who make money selling their creations either through hobbies or small businesses.
In its recent annual report, Etsy said that craft supplies are one of the top six categories sold by its sellers and represented sales of just over $1 billion in 2020.
Michaels built up its online business last year and turned its stores into fulfillment centers as households sought out craft activities during the pandemic.