Etsy has officially launched a new policy in which it will send emails to buyers to remind them to leave feedback (called reviews). Etsy will send the email to shoppers who have made a purchase but haven’t yet left a review after a certain period of time. Etsy didn’t specify the time period in its announcement, but a spokesperson told EcommerceBytes, “Buyers will have a couple weeks to leave reviews on their own before being sent a reminder.”
Etsy said it has been testing the review reminder emails over the last few weeks. “This is a new notification for Etsy, but if you’re a frequent online shopper you may recognize this as a common type of reminder,” according to the announcement notifying sellers.
On eBay, such notices have been somewhat controversial. Some sellers believe buyers perceive the emails as nagging requests coming from the sellers themselves rather than the marketplace, and believe they may result in less positive feedback. Sure enough, some sellers reacted with concern to the new Etsy reminder emails.
Last month as Etsy tested the emails, sellers on the discussion boards said they had received a sudden flurry of reviews they attributed to the emails. But one seller wrote, “From what I can tell, a lot of customers are quite annoyed by the emails from Etsy and think that we are spamming them. This is leading to frustration and translate into less than 5 star reviews.”
A seller who wrote on February 18th that she had received 10 reviews added that she was concerned the reminders might result in feedback for a transaction that had a problem, such as a damaged package, that she hadn’t had time to resolve with the customer.
Etsy said it sees benefits to the emails. “From early testing we’ve seen many benefits, including an increase in overall number of reviews,” Etsy said. “These emails allow more shops to collect a larger number of high-quality reviews. By reminding buyers to leave reviews, we’ve seen more come back to Etsy who may otherwise never return, or not return for a long time. Some visitors simply leave a review, but others stay and shop.”
The marketplace also said it emphasizes in the email messaging “why reviews on Etsy are different – that a review supports an independent shop.” Buyers can opt out of the reminders in their email preferences or with the unsubscribe link within the email if they choose.
Included at the bottom of the email reminder is a row of five stars with the text: “Why review? Leaving a review helps support the independent sellers you buy from and shares you unique experience with future buyers.”
You can read the full message about the email reminders in the Etsy announcement.