I have a Glowforge. Purchased it last fall after using one of the mini lasers for a year.
The Gowforge is a major investment, so working with something less expensive for a while before making the investment as a "proof of concept" for what you are doing is a good idea. I purchased mine for engraving on leather, I do a lot of personalized items using the laser - I can tool some things but not with the clarity of the laser, and not without spending many more hours than the laser. I also, wanted to be able to use it for creating durable patterns for my work. Lastly, I was interested in being able to create embossing plates, for embossing highly detailed images into the leather - again without the time involved with tooling it by hand.
The Glowforge has done a wonderful job with all I wanted from it. Additionally, I have used it to make various one-off plaques and other pieces I would never have thought of before starting to work with it. There are cheaper (much) options, but the reason I chose the Glowforge was I wanted something which would do what I want without me needing to try this and adjust that, also, I wanted an interface that would allow me to visually place the image I was engraving and have the accuracy that I could literally engrave right next to stitching, etc. and have it turn out exactly as I wanted. To me, that justified the expense.