Etsy addressed concerns over its Offsite Ads program, which is mandatory for sellers who do over $10,000 in sales/year. The lack of control is a major concern for some sellers and extends to which of their listings Etsy chooses to advertise and how much Etsy chooses to advertise on their behalf.
Other worries are the added expense – again, outside of sellers’ control – and the fact many sellers cannot opt out.
In a post this week, Etsy set out to debunk three “myths” about its Offsite Ads program. “You’re not paying for your listing to be shown in those places, so it’s a better deal for you – you’re only paying for ads that do convert into a sale,” Etsy wrote.
“Our team of advertising experts works directly with sites like Google and Facebook to promote Etsy sellers’ listings,” it said.
For those concerned that they don’t have control over how their listings are displayed in Offsite Ads, Etsy responded, “Offsite Ads are generated using the information you’ve added to your listings,” and, it wrote, “If you see a drop in traffic from your Offsite Ads to a specific listing, or similar group of listings, it may be the result of an advertising policy violation.”
Etsy also tackled what it called a myth: “The return on investment (ROI) with Offsite Ads is too low.”
Etsy responded by first pointing out that sellers only pay if an ad results in a sale – but that doesn’t address the cost to the seller. When advertisers set budgets, they know their profit margin – but Etsy does not. Etsy didn’t address the possibility that sellers could potentially lose money on a sale through the program.
However, Etsy did say, “Marketing costs like paid advertising are often accounted for in a small business budget as overhead” and referred sellers to a guide on pricing items.
You can find the full post on the Etsy Seller Handbook – let us know if you’ve found the program to be beneficial to your sales and if you’ve modified your prices as a result.