Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Feb 16 2016 09:34:37

Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

Etsy CEO Chad Dickerson revealed that the company is working on inventory management tools for sellers* (see update below) - these would fall under the classification of Seller Services - in other words, to use them, you'll have to pay for them. 

Etsy currently offers 3 Seller Services that generate revenue for Etsy: Direct Checkout, Shipping Labels, and Promoted Listings (advertising your listings on Etsy).

Interestingly some Etsy sellers had relied on a tool provided by a third party called BETSI - here's a description of how the tool was helping sellers - until Etsy pulled the tool last year, indicating the developer had violated its terms of use. Many sellers said they were extremely disappointed to lose access to BETSI. 

Here's more information about what Dickerson said last week about adding more paid services for sellers, including an expansion of its advertising program.

What kind of inventory management tools would you like to see, and would you like to use tools Etsy provides, or would you rather it work on integrations with existing multi-channel tools?

What inventory management features would you be willing to pay for, and are there other tools Etsy should be working to add to help you run your shop?

*Update 2/16/16: Etsy spokesperson Sara Cohen reached out to note that Chad Dickerson was speaking about potential opportunities and did not announce any new services. It was definitely not a product announcement, she said. "He was simply talking about potential opportunities that we are thinking about based on what we hear from sellers." And, she said, "We haven't announced anything new at this point." (Note revised headline.)




Comments (18) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Feb 16 13:30:23 2016

I don't know if it is just me, but if I sell on a site, I expect that site to have basic inventory management tools that I am not charged for.

Will be watching this closely. It's all well and good if they want to charge those who wish to pay for extra bells and whistles, but if they start charging for basic inventory management I would be out the door.

Looks like Chad wants to monetize. How he monetizes will be telling. It is never good when a company looks for ways to monetize (i.e. plastering third party advertising all over the site or charging for services that should be free)instead of actually growing sellers'sales.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: ebay refugee camp This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 16 14:52:29 2016

I hope someone from Etsy reads this.
The promoted listings is completely out of line with bid costs.
Etsy will find a way to eat up your promoted listings budget I have found and you have not gotten a sale, customers want to look, before they decide on a custom item and putting a $2.37 cost for a click for a $34.00 item is totally out of line.
The moral of the story do not use Etsy promoted listings it is not set up for customized items because folks tend to shop and look more at these type of items.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: LeeLoo This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 16 19:33:09 2016

Will Etsy increase float times on DC payments (e.g hold transfers for 24-48hrs before completing the transaction between buyer and seller).
I can imagine that any sort of time delay over this transaction has the potential to generate a lot of interest for Etsy's coffers.

Etsy do say that some delay is 'normal'. But what is 'normal' is in Etys world? Who knows.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

This user has validated their user name. by: Shop and Ship

Wed Feb 17 11:51:00 2016

Admittedly I'm not selling "Handmade, Vintage & Creative" doo-dads, but my idea of inventory management is buy a full pallet, break it down sell it off at a profit, repeat. The receipts tally showing net profit for the tax man is all the inventory control I need.  

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

This user has validated their user name. by: Fly on the Wall

Wed Feb 17 13:12:37 2016

It's nice to see a good company grow, by learning from eBay's greedy, snobbish mistakes.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

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

Wed Feb 17 13:49:45 2016

As an investor I'm delight to read about these changes and certainly hope to see some return on my recent stock purchases at $6.50.

As a seller, I found myself utterly baffled by any moves that hinder by abilities to grow a long term sustainable business. Basic seller services should be the cornerstone of supporting small business especially when keeping in mind the mission objectives of a B-Lab certified company.

While I am happy to see the stock perhaps close higher by the end of 2016, my concern is the long term sustainability of stunting growth by skimming additional money off the top of the ecommerce sellers' pot. That money could also be used for investing in Facebook Ads, Pinterest Ads, Google Ads, and other advertising to drive traffic back to Etsy which is a benefit to both other sellers and Etsy's bottomline.

Instead of taking aim at the e-commerce side for additional revenue, I would have like to have seen Etsy go after brick and mortar with POS based software, inventory management, and other fee based subscriptions. The idea would be to expand into additional market niches rather than coming back to their main market niche to seek additional revenue streams. My greatest concern becomes marginal diminishing returns with each additional fee placed on the online sellers.

Perhaps I'm just misunderstanding the concept and Etsy is announcing an Inventory Management Tool for brick and mortar and POS instead of for the online community. The idea is very sound as along as it applied to the proper group of users.


*Update 2/16/16: Etsy spokesperson Sara Cohen reached out to note that Chad Dickerson was speaking about potential opportunities and did not announce any new services. It was definitely not a product announcement, she said. "He was simply talking about potential opportunities that we are thinking about based on what we hear from sellers." And, she said, "We haven't announced anything new at this point." (Note revised headline.)

Since Sara Cohen confirmed that is just an idea in the preliminary stage it might be worthwhile to reach out to her with a little input and feedback.  

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Feb 17 14:19:26 2016

NiciArt, it has been my experience that once a company goes public, they are beholden to Wall Street. Nothing could be worse for a seller (i.e., the customer).  It's monetize, monetize, monetize. It's all about driving up the share price and returning profit to the shareholders.  It is what destroyed eBay.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

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

Wed Feb 17 19:05:11 2016

"$2.37 cost for a click for a $34.00 item is totally out of line."

that is pretty hefty I agree.. ;-)

Some sites will promote you for a month for $2 and certainly you would get more than 20 clicks a month.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen

Wed Feb 17 22:15:20 2016

@Rexford,

"It's all about driving up the share price and returning profit to the shareholders. It is what destroyed eBay."

Not quite so: eBay shareholders have never received a penny in cash dividends!

Aug 2007: (pre John Donahoe) EBAY ~$40; AMZN ~$40;
Jul 2015 (pre eBay-PayPal split): EBAY ~$66; AMZN ~$480;
Jul 2015 (post-split): PYPL ~$37; EBAY ~$28; AMZN ~$530;
Currently: PYPL ~$36; EBAY ~$23; AMZN ~$534—LOL ...  
eBay is effectively going backwards, at a rate of knots ...

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: Garcia This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 18 00:20:59 2016

"$2.37 cost for a click for a $34.00 item is totally out of line."

That is because you have your daily budget and your bid prices too high.  It is up to you to make sure you do not pay that much for a click.  You have an option to pay as little as .01 per click, so if you are paying more than .05 you are paying too much.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Thu Feb 18 07:32:11 2016

Philip, you are correct, but that is what the intent is. It doesn't always turn out that way.

I am trying to think of the name of the CEO who was interviewed by a major USA news show. I believe that it was the CEO from Johnson & Johnson.  He was clearly focused on growing the business and not pleasing Wall Street. It was refreshing to hear. He didn't give two hoots about what Wall Street thought. He knew that if you grew the business and grew the customer base earnings and stock price would take care of themselves.

Some CEOs have it backwards. Instead of focusing on the business and the customers they are focused on Wall Street. A certain ex-CEO of eBay clearly comes to mind as it relates to the latter.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: ewegolf This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 18 07:51:08 2016

Etsy's Seller Services revenue has grown 67 percent YTD through 3 quarters compared to 21 percent on revenue from Gross Merchandise Sales. They find it much easier to focus on the former rather than the latter.  Fourth quarter results are due out on Feb. 23.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 18 12:40:06 2016

it's bad when companies start doing this kind of stuff,

I mean really? doesn't etsy benefit from sellers being able to process more items, don't they get a FVF?

This just amounts to double dipping, and in the end, few will actually pay for it, and etsy looses in the end,

You have to sometimes question the mentality of these people, companies like etsy and ebay, they have absolutely no other creative ways to expand their business, other then squeezing more and more from sellers,

It's quite shocking,

Our website outperforms all other venues COMBINED, we have all the tools we could ever want, for free to manage our inventory, sales, etc.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

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

Thu Feb 18 14:14:18 2016

that is pretty cool on your website Mad. glad to hear a few are making it on their own.

Didn't Ebay a one time try something similar? I can't quite remember but it seems you could pay to get a better ranking in search? I never paid and it really ticked me off that they did it.

I see Etsy doing this as a rip off to all the ones that refuse to pay to be seen in search. my opinion of course. Very unprofessional and certainly taking advantage of most of those that do pay. But i guess nothing that can can be done about how they run that site.

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Thu Feb 18 16:37:37 2016

@Rexford,

I am a retiree, a “long” investor in equities; personally, I am less interested in a capital gain than I am in a steady income stream; eBay has provided its public shareholders with neither; regardless, investors are entitled to a return on their investment in a supposedly successful public company, either as a capital gain or a regular cash dividend. If company directors are not interested in rewarding their shareholders with a share of the profits, then they should keep their company in private hands and not take the mug public for a ride, as eBay has done. Senior executives will always have their eye on “Wall Street”: the share price is what their performance bonuses are usually based upon; of course, in eBay’s case that was not the case: Johnny Ho and his gang of hand-picked Keystone Kops managed to pay themselves massive “performance” bonuses while the shareholders who “invested” in eBay and put massive wealth into Pierre Omidyah’s and a few other’s pockets have received absolutely nothing; in the U.S. it appears that, too often, the equities investor is someone to be milked but never to be given a share of the “grass”, and  eBay is a gross example of such exploitation of public shareholders: no cash dividend and effectively a capital loss …

As I regularly say, the share prices of these two clunky operators demonstrate the reality ...

Aug 2007: (pre John Donahoe) EBAY ~$40; AMZN ~$40;
Jul 2015 (pre eBay-PayPal split): EBAY ~$66; AMZN ~$480;
Jul 2015 (post-split): PYPL ~$37; EBAY ~$28; AMZN ~$530;
Currently: PYPL ~$36; EBAY ~$23; AMZN ~$534—LOL ...  

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: Toledo Maude This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 19 12:38:10 2016

When in my 12th year, eBay dumped my business on the side of the ecommerce highway like so much stinking road kill, I switched to Etsy finding refreshingly ''calm waters'' to run my business.

I was ''pleased as punch'' to find funds from a sale deposited in my bank account on the second morning after a sale.  Paypal would sit on my funds for 4 to 5 days earning interest before depositing my funds in my bank account.

I did give up on Etsy's for fees advertising.  It seemed to not generate sales nor did I understand how it worked.

As for the inventory management tool(s), I was a financial auditor for many years specializing in inventory control.  When running a small business or large business, if an owner does not understand nor control their inventory, there will be a small likelihood for success.

I use the trusty old Lotus1-2-3 spreedsheeet to track and control inventory, sales and expenses.  

If a seller does not understand spreedsheets nor accounting, paying Etsy for help with seller tools is a big plus.  

A seller does have to be prudent when consuming for fee add ons to listings.  On eBay, why would I want to add an extra 2 bucks to each listing for embellishments, especially when the listing is free or part of the monthly store fees?  

Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: LeeLoo This user has validated their user name.

Sat Feb 20 03:18:02 2016

Promoted listings, even when being very selective. E.G only advertising a limited number of items (say 3-4 listings) on the minimum budget, seems to do little.
Advertising everything does even less. Particularly when your paid for promoted listings have the potential to be stolen out from under you at checkout.

I have been chatting with a seller today who had an issue with DC payments, she queried this on the forums and has noticed a distinct drop in views within two days of mentioning their suspicions of Etsy deliberately holding back transfers.

Etsy is a small country unto itself, a small regime where dissidents are punished for questioning methods and policies.


Perminate Link for Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee   Etsy Likely to Launch Inventory Management Tools for a Fee

by: cayenna This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 24 00:38:37 2016

Am I misunderstanding something? Why would I want to spend more money? Where does etsy get the idea that as a seller I want to have to pay for more advertising and thus have more expense? I think they are misunderstanding; sellers want more visibility. That doesn't mean we want to pay for more advertising.This doesn't benefit the seller it benefits etsy because they still control the visibility. So we pay etsy for more advertising and still never get seen... Once again sales are slow... I never take anything for face value there's always another reason behind everything these days...



Login is required to post comments.
To sign in to leave a comment using your AB Verify User Name, fill in the form below. If you have not yet signed up for AB Verify, or if you'd like more information, go to the Registration Page
.

Login for AB Verify
Be sure and use your email address and password to log in.

 
Email:
Password:
 
 Forgot Your Password?
 Even though you are signed in with the AuctionBytes Blog, you will have to sign in to the EcommerceBytes blog. But you can sign in with your existing AB Verify info.