Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Sun Apr 12 2015 21:47:03

Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

By: Ina Steiner

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An Etsy seller uncovered a large scale doorway page attack on Friday afternoon that has gone undetected by Google. A site is using listings copied from Etsy as bait, then redirects shoppers who click on the Google results to an ecommerce shop in China.

Presumably the scammer scraped Etsy's website. In a thread started Friday afternoon, sellers discussing the incident found the original poster was not the only victim - many found their own listings on the scam website.

We wrote about another case of doorway pages in the fall of 2003 that was also documented in a book about Google called The Search. In it, the author John Battelle noted that 2 weeks after EcommerceBytes broke the news, Google rolled out "Florida dance," a major change in its algorithm that was meant to crack down on sites using black hat practices but that proved incredibly disruptive to online sellers. Could the current doorway page scam lead to another Florida dance?

In the meantime, sellers on all marketplaces may wish to routinely search Google for their shop names, as this is a problem that clearly can recur.




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Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: sundance This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 01:11:01 2015

Oh, joy!  More issues with Google filters looking for illegal doorways and now involving Etsy.  Sigh. More searching I have to do to protect my items and reputation.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: Watching the Wheels This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 02:57:20 2015

So, is this going to be the "official" reason for the latest falloff in views and sales on Etsy?

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: Watching the Wheels This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 04:39:20 2015

The drop off in views and sales has been going on since last summer. Etsy has also just recently added the capabilities for Goggle wallet, so I'm thinking that if the above article is a problem that there are also other forces at work here.

Every single time a new feature has been rolled out on Etsy there have been blocks of sellers who experience drop offs.

This one is by far, the worst, to date.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

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

Mon Apr 13 09:08:55 2015

Gee, with all the major problems constantly affecting Etsy sellers, it's hard to believe anyone even noticed the latest travesty. The first commenters were spot on in their assessments- the Etsy search engine has been broken for years, and instead of fixing it, the creepy admins and powers that be just keep coming up with new bells and whistles to make it easier for you to ship your items in the unlikely event that you actually sell something. If you read the forums you will see that many astute posters are afraid to even bring up these outrageous violations for fear that one of the fascist admins will remove them from the forums and take away their freedom of speech which is something that Chad & Co. don't recognize.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: funkygrrl This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 09:43:34 2015

I actually think the drop off in views and sales has been going on at Etsy ever since they instituted "browse" back in fall 2012.  The effects of that change hit Etsy sellers (particularly vintage sellers) hard in summer of 2013.  

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: FJV This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 10:42:54 2015

It's worse than just cell phone cases. One of mine went to a porn site. I've reported to Google but this is horrendously distressing.  

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: bellafabric This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 11:21:31 2015

I've been following the etsy discussion since it was first posted last week. There's a cell phone case website linked to some of my etsy items, too. I sent google webmaster a link to one of my items effected. The webmaster asked for another example and I sent a second listing with a cell phone case cache link.  

This was google's response today, " If content from Etsy is being scraped and posted on another site, then that's really not Googlebots fault. It simply lists pages it finds online. Lots of sites get scraped. Site owners can file DMCAs if warranted, or contact the host of the other site to get it taken down."

So, I guess Google's position is they're not going to step in to resolve the problem.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: csmih731 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 11:41:08 2015

At least one of my items went to the cheap cellphone website. I just hope it gets taken care of soon.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: StayClassy This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 11:44:55 2015

I don't think I can know one more bad thing about Etsy, not one more.I find myself every morning wishing I didn't sell there. It makes me feel beat down.Like many other sellers I am moving things over to ebay waiting for another venue that doesn't make me feel like crap.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: NoFightingInTheWarRoom This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 13:16:48 2015

Given that the IPO launch is tomorrow, one would think Etsy admin would be doing everything in it's power to reassure both sellers on the site and investors that the problem is under control and that they are working with a Google to rectify.  But no, just silence since that post saying "Google is aware of it"

You'd think having their traffic redirected to other sites, which now includes a porn site, might be a tad embarrassing at tomorrow's big rollout bash.....

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: Ebay Seller-Ebay Buyer This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 13:59:32 2015

It makes for a creative conspiracy theory to speculate that an Ebay board member or higher up, created this virus to coincide with Etsy's IPO.  Etsy's success was made possible by the idiots who run ebay

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

This user has validated their user name. by: Diaper Mess

Mon Apr 13 14:01:04 2015

Look closer within the Community Forum. Members are eager to give out private information about themselves and not very bright to realize what they just did.

What is the valid reason why these questions are asked? Could OP members be storing information knowing quite well that this remains online for Public (scam) viewing? What is their reason?

Looking at the past week, here are topics currently being asked and the members are so naive to possibly provide security information they apply within their own online activities;such as, banking passwords, self-identity facts and personal data.
Take a look at these topics in the Chitchat Forum:

* Credit Rating
* How many pets do you have?
*WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE COLOR??
*How many kids do you have?
*Need advice, should I buy a house?
*How much of your personal life do you share on Instagram?
*What is your cat's name?
*What is your phobia!
*What charity are you most passionate about?
*What pets do you have?
*How and where did you meet your best friend?
*Getting a new puppy in 2015.. name suggestions?!
*What's Your Favorite Type of Dog?

(Oh, and this OP stores way too information from members in the forums) publicly informing them:

*Here is an Warning to all Etsy sellers!!!

===============

The daily list of free information members provide is absurd. Etsians giving out too much of their info - why??

What a diaper mess!

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: whipnet This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 14:01:59 2015

StayClassy - Stay classy and stay far from eBay.  If it's seller abuse you don't like, eBay is legendary for it.  Just a friendly tip.  ;)

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: gizmo This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 13 19:32:49 2015

A lot of conspiracy going on. Every site is being , or will be hit. Scraping is just scraping the surface of online sales problems, on every venue.

I like to put a USA ONLY over my pics. No one really wants to go after a hard one to get. Theres many things to protect yourself.

No-one is going to step in & wave a magic wand , & see it all go away. You all need to invent ideas , to combat such things.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

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

Mon Apr 13 22:16:05 2015

Thank you Ina.
How to check your etsy listings:

- if you are confused on how to check your shop listings/pages

-type exactly as follows into the google search box, including the dash (minus sign)
Replace SELLERNAME with your shop name (no spaces) hit enter/go

-site:etsy.com SELLERNAME

- this will eliminate the etsy pages to help you find the hijacked sites page much more easily. Then you can submit these sneaky redirects to google / webspam

Blessings,
Kelly  

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: Watching the Wheels This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 14 05:37:57 2015

We can only hope that the precious IPO BOMBS.

The board might be open to suggestions at that point.

The entirety of Admin is dancing as fast as they can, between the demands of the board, and all the foulups that wind up occurring because NONE of them have the fortitude to ever challenge the board.

Admin are mere employess, and concerns brought up in the forums are essentially wasted time. Write the board. Stay professional, but in order to get changes you need to bring problems to the REAL decision makers.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: StayClassy This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 14 10:14:16 2015

@Whipnet
At least Ebay doesn't pretend to be your hipster boyfriend while sleeping with overseas skanks behind your back ! Ebay is upfront about what it is. Etsy drowns it's self in flowery buzz words about how "transparent" and "responsible" it is while they screw small sellers out of the sales & site they helped build.I think half the board members have Ebay ties so it's all the same thing anyway. Corp is as Corp does.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: NoFightingInTheWarRoom This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 14 13:18:18 2015

@stayclassy
That pretty much sums up Etsy.  Hypocritical to the max.

Chad's good with buzz words and stroking the right people.  It's a shame most of them aren't smart enough to look at the actual way the site is run.  Amateur hour to the max.

And all the while, Etsy links are redirected to cheap cell phone cases and in some instances, porn.

If it wasn't so sad for the sellers, I'd find it utterly hilarious.  Visual: Mom & daughter are searching google for a special hair bow...find a link, click it and bam!  Porn.  Guess who won't be clicking on anymore Etsy links.

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: Bogart This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 15 11:08:52 2015

Hi Ina,
Etsy blames Google always when there is a issue and passes the buck. Nothing new there. The truth is that this is not the first time that a scraper site has published etsy's listings. Nor will it be the last.
It is Etsy's responsibility to report it to Google and file DMCAs if warranted, or contact the host of the other site to get it taken down.
They use Google as a scapegoat and always have.  

Perminate Link for Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google   Etsy Sellers Suffer from Doorway Page Scam Undetected by Google

by: lilbit This user has validated their user name.

Thu Apr 16 16:41:27 2015

Etsy admin is basically IGNORING requests from sellers for help. Claiming it's a "Google" issue. They are not helping in any way. They have knowledge of what is going on but are not sharing. They are screwing the hands that feed them.

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