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Sat Apr 30 2016 17:27:06

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

By: Ina Steiner

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Etsy made a move to show shoppers on small mobile screens other items they might be interested in, but the feature is not going over well with many sellers after they noticed it became more prominent since launching last year.

When it launched last April, the "Similar Items on Etsy" feature appeared on listings when viewed on the Etsy mobile app - but Etsy displayed it underneath the "Similar Items" section that links to the sellers own items.

But this week, sellers noticed that other sellers' listings were appearing higher in their own listings. After EcommerceBytes published some sellers' objections in Newsflash on Friday, readers brought our attention to additional threads where sellers pointed to instances where their buyers were actually confused by the feature.

In a thread on the Etsy boards titled, "Excitement turned to disappointment," a seller wrote:

"A gal contacted me on facebook asking how to buy my hermit crab foods. I sent her the link to my storefront. She was having difficulty on a new phone and so I was sending screen shots of how it ought to look. I'm walking her through the sale, and she starts having all sorts of options and drop down menus. Then I realize, she's buying from my competitor! Darn! And I walked her right into their store and helped her checkout!"

In another thread, a seller explained that in the past week, she had had customers ordering items but contacting her to ask for designs from her competitors, not realizing those designs were from other sellers. 

"After doing some digging, I realized it is because when they click on MY PRODUCT listing, at the bottom there are photo's/links to other "similar" designs from another shop on Etsy...but they thought it was me," she wrote. "Both customers were very very annoyed, and felt "betrayed" and "mislead". One order I had to cancel as she was LIVID that I couldn't design someone else's product. The other was quite angry, but decided to stay with the original."

A reader told us the problem with the feature is that they appear right in the middle of a shop, leading the buyer to believe those items are from the same seller. "They have also taken away the shop tag in the listing a buyer would not know that they are not shopping with you when they click."

Etsy says it benefits all sellers to engage mobile shoppers and said, "Keep in mind that this change means that as a seller, your listings will also appear in more places on Etsy's mobile app/ mobile."

Etsy is learning some of the same lessons eBay did when making moves designed for the good of the marketplace - buyers are not careful readers (especially on mobile devices), and sellers are territorial about the listing pages for which they have paid.

Update 5/4/16: See Thursday's Newsflash article for an update.




Comments (37) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Sat Apr 30 18:38:53 2016

Hum, Just like Fleecebay, its etsy's playground.

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Sat Apr 30 19:33:59 2016

this could amount to about the most blatant slimy thing Etsy has done to date. Pure greedy evil.

To take the poor shops with slow sales that have been suckered in to paying to promote their shops and then place their competitor's link in the middle of their shop is bordering on criminal theft.

Many are complaining that the ads placed there are chinese factory junk.. with pictures right in the middle of thir shops that they pay for.

how crappy can Etsy get? this is one of the worst to date and you can bet they are desperate to steal all the customers than can from paying shop sellers and redirect to the shops they want the buyers to visit. a very slimy scummy administration at Etsy. the worst of the worst.

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Sun May 1 08:30:43 2016

I honestly think etsy is now in first place, worst then ebay,

They must be totally out of their minds, or so desperate to make profit, they cannot see straight,

if no one complains it's intentional,  it's only a bug if enough people complain, COMPLETE LIARS

We have been on etsy since 2007, with very few issues, but this year is making us think twice,,,,,,


Obviously there is something really seriously wrong with this company, we are very close to shutting the whole thing down, these stupid idiot pinheads do not have a clue what they are doing, and how it will affect their business.

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Sun May 1 10:17:08 2016

they claim it is a bug... as usual their mantra ...."it is a bug"  as you said... when caught!

this never should have been placed anywhere in the seller's live listings!! top bottom or middle... it is theft

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: macsbaby This user has validated their user name.

Sun May 1 17:39:56 2016

A page straight out of the ebay playbook! And, unless etsy sellers quit, or complain en masse....it will become the norm. And it may become that anyway, but why make it easier for them to make a buck on the small sellers back?

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Sun May 1 17:53:00 2016

what needs to happen is no one use the promoted listings anymore. all you are doing is paying for etsy to redirect the customer - potential buyer to the shop of their choice... as in probably commercial factory goods. I personally think they have a vested interest in many shops - just like Amazon.

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

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

Sun May 1 18:52:22 2016

That isn't happening on any of my pages. Not at all.

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Sun May 1 18:57:33 2016

it only happens on mobile which amounts to 50% of all views

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Sun May 1 18:58:36 2016

"When it launched last April, the "Similar Items on Etsy" feature appeared on listings when viewed on the Etsy mobile app - but Etsy displayed it underneath the "Similar Items" section that links to the sellers own items."

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Sun May 1 19:41:52 2016

IMO etsy is killing off the non-performers taking up valueable space, while still trying to get their listing fees,  

Many of the changes reflect this, one example is removing the sold item dates, they now need to hide sellers that have few sales, and at the same time they now need to hide the sellers they are pushing to the top.



I really feel sorry for the sellers who think it's going to turn around, it's only a bug, it's your pictures, it's your SEO, it's your social media, don't worry just put another 0.20 cents in the machine

Sellers at etsy don't know what they are in for, it's actually quite entertaining, and sad at the same time to see this going down.

No amount of yelling will stop them, as JD said, it's just noise,all you can do is chop all payments to etsy to '' bare bones minimum ''

No Direct Checkout, No shipping labels
No Pattern
No Promoted Listings
No Social Media


Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Sun May 1 19:54:00 2016

a comment i read from my group:

:Apparently the scrolling ads that used to be on the bottom of the page are now midway up the page. However, you can't see them if you are logged into your own shop. This change would explain why a shopper asked me a question about a product as if it were one of mine. At the time I did not understand why she had assumed it was my product, but if she saw it as an ad on my home page, then I can see why she assumed it was my product."  

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon May 2 02:38:23 2016

If I sold there, I would be so ticked off!

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Mon May 2 05:15:38 2016

the fact that they coded it so your individual IP address makes is so you can not see something is very disturbing, if this is a fact as the poster stated. this is so you cant see the garbage they are posting on your store.

Why would they do this? Except to deceive, cheat and steal? This same little piece of code could be used in search to make it appear your items are being seen when they are not shown to the rest of the customer base. In a reverse usage. You can always check this on a friends computer.

As i have stated before this site is slimy and corrupt in just about everything they do and slowly they are being exposed as to the levels of evil they are willing to lower themselves to.

Zero moral values, almost every word out of their mouth is a lie and even when caught they resort to changing the dictionary meaning of the words.

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: White Rabbit

Mon May 2 05:18:38 2016

also try logging out?

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Mon May 2 08:49:04 2016

Etsy is getting desperate.  They know that they are going under and they want to grab every penny that they can.
Like ebay-greed took over and ruined a good thing.
Amazon is expanding and has solid growth, warehouses, etc. etc.. I am not a big fan of Amazon. High fees and returns and seller has to pick ups return cost. But for some reason they keep expanding.  Question is will they get tooo big and collapse?

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: Barbbie This user has validated their user name.

Mon May 2 09:55:07 2016

I guess that explains several people lately asking me questions regarding shipping, thanking me profusely for ability to mail it now and will purchase immediately and never purchasing the products!
Sad, I will in the future ask them to be sure they are in my store!

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: Flying Childers This user has validated their user name.

Mon May 2 10:40:53 2016

It's really about time that the federal prosecutor, Preet Bharara looks into Etsy. There are so many potential federal crimes including mail fraud and others that carry a prison sentence, I'm kind of surprised that there's not an ongoing investigation.

Etsy must be well connected in high places.

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: Jewelry By GG This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon May 2 14:04:07 2016

I am one of Etsy's sellers, and no, I do not want to continue to pay for my promotions, when another shop's products are injected into MY shop!! When it was at the bottom of the page, buyers KNEW it represented other shops...it was labeled as such.I do believe EACH of we sellers should notify Etsy about what they have done and how we feel about it. I pay good money to have my listing promoted...and I don't want them to end up in another seller's shop. I don't buy Etsy's '' Well, your listings will get more exposure in other shops too'' comeback remark. Etsy is GREAT...leave it alone CEOs...we can always design a new platform!!
GG

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

by: Jewelry By GG This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon May 2 14:12:05 2016

Amazon keeps growing because they have attracted the ''big'' sellers who can afford to pay thru their nose to have the 'Amazon' name attached to their products. I am small potatoes - therefore I can offer lower prices with no strings attached, or 'big brother' breathing down my neck looking to see what they can squeeze out of me!

Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings   Etsy Sellers Object to Others' Items in Their Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: IDKwhoIare

Mon May 2 14:54:59 2016

''Like other marketplace sellers, Etsy sellers feel that paying insertion fees means the listing page belongs to them and believe marketplaces should be very careful about placing other sellers' listings on their real estate.'' -- From the original article

Ina has pointed out the real truth in that paragraph.  One can 'feel' or 'believe' that these are your listings and be territorial - or one can get a grip and realize that nothing on the venue is yours.  It is theirs (Etsy, eBay, Amazon, etc). Period.  Read the TOU or TOS.  They tell you right there and you agreed to them by using the site.  If you don't like their terms - don't sign up or leave.

It is very ironic when a Seller gets upset by a venue's terms YET wants/demands that a Buyer read their listings and move on if they don't like the term, no?  Getting oneself in an uproar and feeling angry, irate or betrayed over terms is unprofitable.  Why expend all that angst & energy and why be surprised that the corp-beast is acting like a corp-beast? Etsy has a way to go before they reach beast status, but they will get there on your dime, if they make it.

I am not saying that people do not have good reasons to dislike this or that Etsy (& others) are not stepping over a line ethically.  They lure one in with the bait - a simple selling venue where you get a-b-c for X cost - and they switch it up to a complicated monetized organization where you are grist in the mill and you are not getting a-b-c anymore.  I AM saying that when your venue turns Public and/or starts stealing from you and diverting most of the profits into their pockets...it is time to dissolve that relationship.

The big venue that finds a loophole or some way to monetize a listing or site are not going to stop doing so and all the others WILL copy them if they can.

All this corporate greed and subsequent high-priced garbage offered in B&M's - cheap run of the mill products with little diversity - were what fueled eCommerce's birth, IMO.   Now that Big Money is focused on eCommerce and are investing in venues like Amazon, eBay, and even little old Etsy, there is no going to go back to the good ole days for them.  Big Money doesn't want your competition for any of the profits.  If you are lucky enough to bring in customers for them and they can charge you for the privilege, they will allow you to suck hind teat - as long as you don't get in their way.  If one doesn't want their profit diverted into those pockets, then the time to move on is now.

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