If you're a buyer on Etsy, Josh Silverman is watching you! The CEO told Wall Street analysts on Wednesday that he's focused on having the company learn all it can about buyers so it can then personalize the experience. Sounds like a move right out of Amazon's playbook, right down to using saved searches to intuit what customers want.
What do you add to what lists? How do you name that list? All of that gives us more data about you, the CEO said.
Even what region of the country shoppers are from may ultimately influence what they see in search results. "Up until very, very recent times, everyone in America searching for a certain keyword would get the same search results" on Etsy, he said.
The Saved Searches feature is one example of how Etsy is learning more about buyers, which will help it provide a better and more personalized experience, which will give buyers more reasons to come back more often and help conversion.
"We're working super hard to make sure that our customers have a fantastic customer experience, and that we're engaging them, learning what we can about them to deliver even more personalized experiences to get them to come back. That's really our whole focus right now."
Etsy had a very strong second quarter, reporting Etsy marketplace GMS growth of 125% in the quarter. Consolidated GMS reached $2.7 billion (up 147%) - including Reverb - with $429 million in revenue (up 137%).
- In the second quarter, the Etsy marketplace attracted 11.5 million new buyers (compared to 19 million in all of 2019) as well as 7.2 million reactivated buyers who hadn't purchased in a year or more.
- Active buyers grew 39% to 60 million for the Etsy marketplace, and repeat buyers grew 51% to 26 million.
- New sellers were up 100%, driven in part by mask sales, of which new sellers drove 23% of mask GMS (Gross Merchandise Sales).
- Etsy sellers sold more than 29 million masks, with nearly $350 million in mask-related GMS. 110,000 sellers sold at least one mask in the second quarter (April, May, June).
- Etsy's top 6 categories made up over 75% of GMS. Notably, Home & Living was up 128% year-over-year and Craft Supplies was up 138% year-over-year.
Silverman credited his decision in 2018 to migrate to the cloud ("which was completed on schedule in the first quarter of 2020") to being able to realize the full opportunity presented by the pandemic-induced shift to online shopping.
He also credited the hard push for sellers to offer free shipping beginning last year with helping to meet buyer expectations as they flocked to the site during the COVID outbreak. He said Etsy will next focus on providing information to buyers about when they can expect their item to arrive.
Silverman said sellers see value in the offsite ad program with only a 2% opt-out rate. (Note that only lower-volume sellers have the ability to opt out.)
Some additional factoids:
- This week Etsy boosted the selling fees on its musical instrument marketplace Reverb from 3.5% to 5%.
- Etsy is showing buyers a Bundles feature, displaying items to buyers that will boost their transaction to $35+ so they qualify for free shipping. (edited to clarify Etsy is showing buyers the Bundles feature)
Silverman said companies rarely get the opportunity to reshape consumers' habits. Now, everyone's habits are up for grabs. Suddenly before you go buy anything, you have to stop and think about where you'll get it - you get a 30-second pause, and "in that pause, Etsy is winning."
In more normal times, you don't get 30 seconds, he said - you've got maybe a fraction of a second. Etsy wants to rewire those habits. "If we're on the tip of their tongues and they come find us, they're going to have a great experience."