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Sun Sept 8 2019 21:12:46

Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

By: Ina Steiner

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Etsy sellers are infuriated at a letter they received from the marketplace on Friday telling them that from now on, Etsy will reserve the first page of search results for items that offer free shipping. An excerpt of the letter follows:

"To continue improving our buying experience, now when a shopper in the US searches for an item, the first page of results - up to 48 listings* - will be reserved for items that ship free and items from shops that guarantee free shipping to US buyers on orders of $35 or more. Keep in mind that 83% of purchases from search on Etsy come from the first page.

"Because you're not currently offering free shipping to the US, you could experience a significant decrease in views to your listings. To ensure your items are eligible to appear on the first page of search, we recommend setting up a free US shipping guarantee for orders of $35 and up."

Feeling "bullied" was the reaction of many sellers posting on the Etsy seller discussion boards. 

"I got this email too and felt very threatened to do it their way or else," one seller wrote of the new policy. Was it legal given the fact sellers pay the same listing fee, they wondered? "Is Etsy going to give us a discount on our listing fee if they refuse to honor a fair place in the search?"

"It's pretty shocking and disheartening," wrote another. 

One seller explained many of their items were under $5 - "if I offer free shipping, I will virtually be giving my items away. I keep my items affordable, combine shipping on multiple items, and refund shipping overages when the calculator goes haywire," they wrote. 

Etsy announced in July it would be favoring items with free shipping in search results, but Friday's letter stating listings without some form of free shipping would be blacklisted from the first page of search results rubbed sellers the wrong way. 

One seller pointed out the impact of adding shipping costs to the item price: "I totally disagree with the idea of cheating the prices with added shipping costs and I hate the idea of messing up Etsy as price reference for the vintage market."

Many of the subset of sellers who posted their outrage at the policy online said they were seeking advice on alternative venues.

The tone of the letter grated on sellers' nerves - "Keep in mind that 83% of purchases from search on Etsy come from the first page," Etsy warned sellers.

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Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: SammyCat This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 10:27:37 2019

PLEASE ... everyone file a complaint and you may want this too (though I can't confirm that its the correct one now):

Josh Silverman Email  CEO@Etsy.com

This debacle his brain-child after all:

https://community.etsy.com/t5/Announcements/A-letter-from-
Etsy-CEO-Josh-Silverman/td-p/126994038

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: toyman This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 11:06:07 2019

I've never seen any real need for ETSY, but this is definitely over the top as far as saying "We control you".

I would simply tell them to Go straight to He!l, Do not pass Go, do not collect $200 (in fees)....and then remove my listings.

Good riddance.

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: fusgeyer This user has validated their user name.
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Mon Sep 9 11:15:43 2019

Funny thing about Etsy's free shipping guarantee. I had shipping included on most of my items, long before Etsy started to coerce sellers to offer free shipping.

Once Etsy put it's final push toward free shipping, starting in July 2019, my sales and views plummeted, even though I did not change anything. Not only does Etsy give priority to items that ship free, but in markets where there are physical items as well as digitally available downloads, preference is given to the downloads. This really has an impact on sellers who sell vintage prints and patterns. Digitized downloads are getting priority over the physical items.

I have started to adjust my shop toward digital items while I develop my own website. This is going to kill the vintage market on Etsy.

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

This user has validated their user name. by: Life During Wartime

Mon Sep 9 12:01:23 2019

Etsy has always offered the option of listing a digital download as a ''vintage'' item, even though such a thing can't exist.  A digital copy of a book is not a book, and a digitized copy of an antique print is not a print.  Etsy has always considered digital copies of vintage text and images more relevant that physical items because they can be sold multiple times.  

I never sold vintage patterns, but did sell framed prints -- and I stopped renewing them after ''vintage'' downloads became an option.  I started getting a lot of rock bottom low ball offers from other Etsy sellers, who were maybe planning to disassemble the framed print to make files for sale.  

Etsy has been shedding vintage shops/listings for a decade now.  Vintage listings in 2010 were about 24% of all listings on the site.  For the past 2-3 years, it's been holding steady at 17%, but the number of non-vintage items included is increasing.  Maybe half the items listed as ''vintage'' right now actually are 20+ years old.  It may be fewer than that.

CEO Silverman said something at the beginning of 2019 about promoting ''vintage'' on Etsy, especially ''personalized'' or ''customized'' vintage.  And he doesn't mean antique silver flatware with engraved initials.

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 12:01:33 2019

Etsy stock has gone from $68 on August 1, 2019 down to $48 at close of business September 6, 2019.  That is a drop of almost 30% in a little over a month, so this is nothing more than a Wenig type move to try and artificially bump the stock price up so that he does not lose his job, which it looks like he should anyway.

I am so glad that my items do not qualify to be sold on Etsy or I would have to remove all of the listings as i refuse to allow a desperate CEO tell me what I must do price wise with my items or they will refuse to show them.  All this is going to do is chase off more buyers just as Ebay has done because buyers are not going to spend a lot of time trying to find what they want when a site is manipulating the search just so they make more money.  Ebay has been watching their site fall apart because of this and now Etsy is following right along behind them.  Desperation causes these idiots to make even dumber moves.

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: macsbaby This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 12:14:50 2019

Im so sick of being charged 7 bucks to have an item shipped, and shipping is actually $3.80? It would only be 3.80 for the shipping if I DID IT! But that item takes 10 minutes to get packed and its free if I do it. And boxes and peanuts and styrofoam and bubble wrap are all free because its just laying around from all of my other free shipments! Printer, ink, paper, labels, computer, and packers must all be free so I am happy to offer free  shipping much less charge 7 dollars for a box that the post office would charge 3.80 for if I did it. If I print it online and they pick it up........its free. Or I have to get it there.....that, I think is free too......

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: an American in France This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 12:26:20 2019

I chose not to offer free shipping, even after Etsy ”encouraged” me to do it.

Etsy hasn't replied to my repeated questions about how this affects sellers outside the United States. I do sell to US buyers, but I pay International rates to ship from France to the US and the rest of the world. I already charge buyers a bit less than it costs me, but offering free shipping either cuts even more into my profits or forces me to raise my prices.

Etsy search has deteriorated over the years, but now they want to hide my items? Don't they realize that if our items can't be found, they won't sell, and Etsy loses FVFs? Are they really that short-sighted?

Let sellers manage their own businesses.

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: Toledo Maude This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 12:57:06 2019

A year ago, sales on Etsy were on an upswing.  Starting a few months ago, the bottom fell out.  This year it has been one or two sales a month with some months nothing.

My hopes of leaving eBay for Etsy are in tatters with my Etsy sales.  

Does that mean that I will lose my one to two sales a month?

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: Buttons This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 13:18:11 2019

Choo Choo or Sammy Cat...I just got lost on the FTC page...where exactly did you go? Thanks.

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: trimos This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 14:25:04 2019

I have been on ebay 14 years,  sadly etsy will folllow ebays bullying.  Its all about geting you prices lower (you will sell more not make more) while they raise their fees and promise you more quote sales.  When I stated on ebay fees were 3% now they are 10% so lets do the math  in my next post

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: trimos This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 14:28:57 2019

So on ebay you sell something for $20.00 at 3% you owe ebay 0.60 cents.  Now if they can get your price down to $10.00 at 10% now they make $1.00 in final fees you are selling for half as much and paying 3 times as much in fees, and they are making over 60% more nice right?  lol  Evey step of the way they are tricks and methods to you your price lower and lower.    

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Mon Sep 9 14:36:00 2019

Well then,
I stand to CLEAN UP  ;o)

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: trimos This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 14:36:13 2019

I am etsy will and has hired peeps from ebay since they went on the stick exchange.  So the short of it will be more exposure if you lower you price (free shipping) for starters.  They will begin to control the search engine based on what they want to show.  And it will all revolve around you price being lower and lower.  Here is the part that gets me.  Every step of the way they will making it sound exciting and promise you more sales.  Never promising you more $$$.   Like this quote form them lol enjoy priority placement when you off free shipping lol  I guess that did not work so now they go right on to you will not be on the first page it that does not get you to free shipping.  It will be the firs 3 or 5 pages LOL

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Mon Sep 9 14:59:25 2019

Actually Etsy is looking at:
Firstly > Etsy  (and I will refer to it as Shipping Included as it SHOULD BE) is "featuring" Shipping Included items.
Secondly > They're looking at feedback / satisfaction.
Thirdly > the quality / availability of the unique product(s).
That's the TRIFECTA .
I've semi begun "hosting" 3 and 4 digit priced products.
The views are through the roof.
Now, let's see if it translates into more sales.....

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: Fahrenheit451 This user has validated their user name.
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Mon Sep 9 15:17:29 2019

1) Most customers don't want to pay for shipping. That is a proven fact.
2) Shipping is a part of Costs of Good Sold. I don't see why I should charge shipping on anything sold, as long as I see a reasonable profit. I price my merchandise to cover all costs. Anyone who swears they will never offer free shipping is a chump.
3) I don't sell on eBay, Etsy, Bonanza, or Ecrater. They all try to profit on the sale. They all charge commission fees and in most cases listing fees. Guess what? That raises the price, too.

From where I see it, you are fooling yourselves to claim you can't afford to raise your prices. That is a fool's argument, and you will never win.

Oh, yes, and that goes for pricing for inflation, too.

Don't fool yourselves. Etsy, like all marketplaces, are in the business of making money off the sellers. That is why they are there. To think that they actually care what sellers think is also foolish. Their actual clients are stockholders, not the sellers.

You would be better off with your own website. You have a better chance of selling, despite the fact that other factors may impede your sales.

If you are not satisfied with Etsy's performance, leave. The loss of another seller may not impact them in the short run, but the loss of revenues from fees will.

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: SammyCat This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 15:44:18 2019

You can't possibly know how much it costs someone to ship something unless you live in their state.   It costs a lot to ship from Canada to the US for instance and it different from East Coast north to East Coast south and West Coast N and S.  In the US shipping from coast to coast also varies. Also, many people buy their supplies and of course cost varies by size, location and value, and adding insurance and tracking adds more to a shipment as well.  Plus, Etsy is taking 5% off shipping costs as well and maybe people have calculated for that.  NO ONE can afford to eat $10.00 or more on shipping an item.  

Here is the link to the form with phone number if you need help:

https://formsnym.ag.ny.gov/OAGOnlineSubmissionForm/faces/
OAGCFCHome;jsessionid=CocXiiSes7LH5E1iPrqweRhK_1Spp3rzJ3FN_PsdnAerpW09OGZB!-1198255251

Here
is the general page:

https://ag.ny.gov/complaint-forms  

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: shellhut This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 17:15:12 2019

Free Shipping on the first page results in Higher Cost Items when I did searches.  People already believe that Etsy is expensive and this chases people away.  IMHO I think that having all the free shipping on the first page is going to fail with less sales instead of more.  I always change my search to Lowest Price First anyway, as I am sure many others do.  

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: choochoo This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 17:23:23 2019

To Buttons:
I'm on page 2 at 8:20AM.  Sammy Cat is the next post.
Try this:
PLEASE ... everyone file a complaint and you may want this too (though I can't confirm that its the correct one now):

Josh Silverman Email  CEO@Etsy.com

This debacle his brain-child after all:

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

by: Eagle This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 17:31:52 2019

I'm not changing my shipping cost to free and adding the cost to price of item. Already increased item price to cover FVF and money transfer fees. Have lowered shipping slightly from what we offer on our website. What's really getting under my skin and I believe is illegal is the fact Etsy is charging FVF on the out-of-state taxes they are collecting that we don't even handle. Etsy collects the tax on their own and charge us 8% on top of it to collect it and supposedly send it to the state that the customer lives in that item was sold too. By the time we add all the fees, shipping costs, and now the % charged to collect sales taxes will price us right out of competition!

Perminate Link for Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick   Sellers Infuriated as Etsy Brings out the Big Stick

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Mon Sep 9 17:47:50 2019

Eagle :
"Etsy is charging FVF on the out-of-state taxes they are collecting that we don't even handle."
CALL THE COPS !

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