|Wed Nov 13 2013 16:20:45|
Etsy Boosts the Holiday Spirit with Etsy Local
By: Ina Steiner
Etsy is giving sellers a holiday gift this year - the online marketplace is helping shoppers and sellers connect in the offline world with the launch of Etsy Local. Sellers who set up a stall at fairs and markets can use Etsy Local to advertise their presence.
This is a nice way for Etsy to show support for its sellers. Some companies are ambivalent about such arrangements and would be loathe to give up commission fees for transactions that take place off their marketplace. Etsy collects 3.5% of the item price, but only for transactions that take place on the Etsy website.
On the other hand, the directory benefits Etsy: many sellers promote their Etsy stores at these events, potentially bringing many more highly targeted shoppers to Etsy's website who may return again and again and visit other shops while they're there (and possibly become sellers themselves).
In its announcement, the company explained: "Etsy is all about connecting people and communities. We've seen how local craft fairs give sellers new opportunities to expand their businesses, and help our community grow."
Sellers can add their name to an event or they can hit "create a new event" to provide the event name, description, event link, event dates, event hours, and venue name. Shoppers can search by location and timeframe to see where Etsy sellers have set up shop and view a list of sellers who've confirmed their attendance, along with links to those sellers' Etsy shops. Etsy Local is optimized for mobile devices
Right now, the site is limited to events ("events with a start date and end date," Etsy explained); open houses at a store or flea market are allowed. "We've heard from a number of sellers who want to list their studios and stores, and we're working to support that."
Etsy displays events sellers are attending on their shop's homepage within the Shop Info box, and sellers can share Etsy Local events by grabbing the event URL ("to share your event with others, click on its title and copy the website address from your browser's URL bar," Etsy advised). It's still fairly new and kinks are being worked out, and I expect Etsy to promote this more to shoppers once sellers have filled in more events.
Have more questions? See the FAQs.
What do you think of Etsy Local, and is it a win-win for Etsy and its sellers?