|Thu Aug 16 2012 16:41:11|
Etsy Tests Major Change to Search, Homepage Redesign
By: Ina Steiner
Etsy is testing what would be a major change to its search engine along with an accompanying redesign of its home page, and many sellers say they fear their listings would get less exposure as a result of such changes.
Etsy sellers list three main types of goods: Handmade, for which it is most known; Vintage; and Supplies. Its search box at the top of the page has a pulldown menu to help searchers narrow down their search, and Etsy's home page also contains a prominent list of categories.
Now, some visitors are no longer seeing a pulldown menu when entering a search term, and the category list has been reduced to only seven categories.
When those encountering the new Etsy test enter a search term, and search results contain items from all three sections - handmade, vintage and supplies. A search for "comic" today came back with 34,837 listings in search results. On the upper left-hand side of the page were radio buttons to narrow down results from "All Items" to one of the three main types of goods:
Threads popped up in the Etsy discussion boards lamenting the removal of Vintage from the search drop-down box and upset over the removal of categories such as Vintage and Art from the category list. A moderator explained it was a test that was only some visitors were exposed to:
"Just jumping in to let you all know that some of you have encountered a product we have recently been testing. Occasionally, we test new products and tools on a small percentage of visitors to Etsy. This test is conducted to gather information and feedback on how they work. From this data, we can develop the product to the best of our ability.
If we learn anything valuable from an experiment and decide to make changes to the site, we will openly announce these changes, often on the Etsy News Blog, the Forums, or through other channels.
If you are a seller encountering this experiment, we recommend that you do not change your normal selling processes, as again the experiment is only exposed to a small percentage of visitors.
Let us know if you have additional feedback on this experiment, you can always send it to firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave it here on the Forums!"
Etsy spokesperson Adam Brown is researching the issue for EcommerceBytes, and we'll update this post when we learn more.
Note: See this followup piece from August 17, Etsy Reassures Vintage Sellers after Major Changes to Search.