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Cratejoy review

Launching a business isn’t as daunting as it used to be: You don’t need a lot of cash or the skills to build a website even if it includes an online store. But, what can still feel challenging is to build revenue streams – revenue that you know is coming regularly.

That’s why subscription boxes are all the rage these days for businesses as well as consumers. As a consumer, you can get a monthly delivery of coffee, flavoured teas, snacks, beauty and personal care articles, or even socks and daily wear directly to your door.

Arguably, Amazon is the king of subscription boxes, be it laundry powder, food, or whatever product you can think of. But you can start your own successful (home-based) business with the help of Cratejoy. It’s an online marketplace and e-commerce platform rolled into one. It wants to make it easy for entrepreneurs from all walks of life to launch their own subscription box business.

Launched in 2014 by Alex Morse and Amir Elaguizy, Cratejoy, makes it easy both for consumers to find their subscription box service as well as entrepreneurs to market their products.

In other words, Cratejoy is a software as a service and ecommerce platform provider for businesses to build a website as well as to manage an online store including subscription boxes.

The subscription box marketplace is for consumers and is a bit like eBay but for subscription boxes.

Pros and cons of Cratejoy

For this review, I’m only looking at the ecommerce platform side of Cratejoy. Its web-based software allows you to build your website and along with it the subscriptions that you want to offer. You can design your boxes and enter them into its marketplace. For shipping your boxes, Cratejoy offers shipping software integrations.


  • Easy to use
  • No lock in – you can export the source code
  • Built-in marketplace


  • It seems Cratejoy was used in the past by some shady “entrepreneurs” so that customers may not trust your service

Who is Cratejoy for?

If you’re planning to dip your toes into the commerce world, Cratejoy is an interesting place to start. It helps you get your business off the ground. It’s easy to use and Cratejoy holds your hands all the way until you’ve launched your website and listed your products.

How easy is Cratejoy to use?

When you sign up for Cratejoy, you have to answer a catalogue of questions. These are meant to set up service for your needs. This means you first have to know what type of box you’ll want to sell. You’re then taken through a 3 step setup process where you add your products and list them on its marketplace.

To get your store up and running, follow and finish Cratejoy’s checklist

Cratejoy design and theme

All themes provided by Cratejoy are optimised for selling your subscription boxes. The good thing is that it warns you when you want to change the design of your live store and prompts you to make a copy.

Cratejoy themes

Cratejoy’s editor, the so called Designer, lets you change the design of elements globally so that they are consistent throughout your site as well as individually.

Cratejoy Designer

Customising your store is very easy with Designer. It makes it a breeze to get a consistent design throughout your site. The downside is that you don’t have a high degree of freedom. That said, if you know web design and development or have access to skills, you can customise the design to your heart’s delight as you get access to the source code.

All in all, Cratejoy is a well-thought-out service: It wants to make it as easy as possible for you to get your store up and running and sell your subscription boxes. Further, it doesn’t look you in: You can export the source code and also have FTP access.

How to manage your ecommerce store in Cratejoy?

Most tabs on the left side menu are for you to manage your store. You can add your products, list them, manage orders, customers, and shipments. It comes at no cost to you if you only want to make use of Cratejoy’s marketplace.

Cratejoy integrations

Most of Cratejoy’s integrations have to do with ecommerce, be it for shipping, exchange rate conversion, or tracking shipment. You also find apps that help you grow your website’s traffic and email marketing providers.

What marketing and SEO tools does Cratejoy have?

When you’re customising the design of your store, you have the option to add Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel for analytics. You can also add site keywords and a site description.

Payment options

To accept payment for your subscription boxes, you’ll need to connect your Cratejoy account with Stripe.

Cratejoy security

As Cratejoy offers its all-in-one subscription e-commerce platform as a software as a service, it takes care of all maintenance and security tasks.

Cratejoy customer support

Whether you’re logged into Cratejoy’s website or not, you’ll always see the “Need Help?” button in the lower right hand corner. Chat with its support team whenever you’re hitting a wall.

Cratejoy pricing

You can experience how easy it is to set up an online store with Cratejoy with its free trial that lasts 14 days. If you only need to sell on its marketplace it comes at no cost save its transaction fees of 1.25% + $0.10. If you want to connect your online store with your custom domain and have access to advanced shopping cart features, you need to subscribe to its All Access Plan for $39 a month.

If you want to run a full-fledged online store, subscribe to its All Access Plan

Is Cratejoy the right tool for you?

If you like the idea of subscriptions, with Cratejoy, you can sell virtually any kind of subscription box. It can be food, drinks, or birthday presents as long as it’s legal and ethical. You get built-in marketing with Cratejoy’s marketplace. It’s an easy way to start building revenue streams.

If you don’t shy away from doing your own marketing or need more customisability, you may want to look at Woocommerce. If you’re eyeing digital subscriptions, Sellfy is an interesting service.

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