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Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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We’re seeing more people searching the site for personalized gifts in 2019, compared to the same period last year—a 22% year-over-year increase! With that and peak Mother’s Day shopping approaching, we’ve partnered with Christine from @BackBayPottery , Simon and Jon from @MishiuFerris , and Madison from the Etsy team to answer your questions about offering personalization in your shop.

We’ve also made it easier for you to offer personalized items in your shop. If you add personalization to your listings, shoppers will be able to enter their custom details before checking out. You’ll also be able to quickly see personalization requests right on your Orders & Shipping page and in your order notification email. Set up personalization here.

Here are the Q&A details:

  • Share your questions about offering personalization in this thread from now until Friday, April 19. We will close the thread that evening at 8pm ET.
  • On Wednesday, April 24, we will answer your questions from 11pm–1pm ET.
  • Pro tip: Be sure to read through all the questions before posting your own. It’s possible yours may have already been asked. If so, give it a like! We will put first questions with the most likes.

Thanks and we look forward to your questions!

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Hi there! I am Christine and I make and sell my pottery through my shop called BackBayPottery. I opened in 2011 and have been offering personalization for a few months now. I’m excited to partner with Etsy here to answer any questions you may have about selling personalized items in your shop.

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Hello! We are Simon and Jon from the shop MishiuFerris. We have been offering personalization in our shop for 3 years now and are glad to partner with Etsy to answer your questions about selling personalized items!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Hi everyone! My name is Madison and I’m on the product marketing team here at Etsy. I help educate sellers about the right tools and resources that will help them grow their creative business on Etsy. I helped launch the personalization tool back in November 2018 and have since been working with sellers to make sure the feature supports them and their needs when processing personalized orders. I’m excited to be here today answering your questions about personalization!

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@Sweet17Cookies wrote:

Do you have any advice on making sure the customer provides all the information I as a seller need to personalize their item? I spend so much time emailing back and forth making sure I get all the right information (and often find a lot of customers never check their messages so I never get the information from them). 


Hi, that's a good question! There is an instruction for buyers box that you can use, also I put common questions and answers at the bottom of my listings and in my shop policies.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@TreeTreasuresCanada wrote:

It is my understanding that the personalization box didn't work with certain apps or on certain platforms when it was rolled out.  Is the personalization now available for all purchasers regardless of app or platform?


Hi @TreeTreasuresCanada! Personalization is now available for buyers using the Etsy mobile app but is not available on Pattern. If this becomes available in the future, we’ll definitely let you know.

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@VintageBookworms wrote:

As an Etsy shop with a specialized niche in vintage books, how can I provide a personalized product or service?


Hi there, that's a great question! I'm always looking for new ideas for my shop. How about personalised book marks?

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@PixieRiver wrote:

I have been reluctant to incorporate this change into my shop since personalization is a paid option on my listings. I'd like to have the text box added only if the personalization option is chosen. Will this work for me?


Hi @PixieRiver. While the personalization feature is not available on the variation level, it can be applied to specific listings. With this in mind, if you want to offer personalization, I'd suggest creating a seperate listing for the personalized version of the item.

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@MIAFlipFlops1 wrote:

What is this EXACTLY? 

I have an Etsy shop too!!

It’s called :

MIA flipflops1 


Hello, Personalization helps buyers let you know what they want to be personalized on an item, like an engraving or pattern.

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@KnitCrochetCreative wrote:

please, show good examples of personalization


Hi there, I use personalization for my house numbers so customers can type in the numbers or letters they need. You can see an example here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/543059676/mid-century-modern-address-numbers

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@Resources4VAs wrote:

I do digital prints with inspirational quotes.  What would be the best way to offer personalization for that type of item?


Hi @Resources4VAs, Good question! How about offering names or custom quotes to add to your prints?

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@WhiteHouseSilk wrote:

Hello there,

My question are that, How can i personalization in my shop.

Thank you


Hello! Step by step directions for enabling the feature can be found here: https://etsy.me/2GlZpUA If you are unsure how you might offer this in your shop, you might consider sharing a link to one of your items here in the Forums. Perhaps other sellers will have some suggestions or advice?

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@skirtinonby wrote:

I enclose a hand wrote  thank you note with every order does that make it personalized.


Hello @skirtinonby, That's awesome that you add a hand written note to your orders. This personalization is so customers can give you the information you need so a product can be personalised, like having their name or an image engraved on an item.

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@CelestialKnitGifts wrote:

I handknit afghans.  I make them is different sizes and list then in different sections.  Do you consider the Personalization box to be where I can list other sizes available?  In the past I believe it was called Customizable, yes or no.


Hi @CelestialKnitGifts, you could potentially use this option to list all available sizes and ask customers to specify the size they need in the Personalization box, however, we find that the Variations option works much better when it comes to sizes. When you add variations to your listing you create a drop down menu which lists all of the size options and makes it easy for customers to select exactly what they need. Follow this link to learn how to add variations to your listings https://help.etsy.com/hc/en-gb/articles/115015664047-Listing-Variations

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@EthelsGranddaughter wrote:

Should personalized items in our shops still include the word Personalized in our titles and tags? Or will search automatically pick it up if we are using the Personalization option?


Hi @EthelsGranddaughter! Excellent question. Yes, we definitely recommend using word Personalized in your listing titles and tags. Creating search terms your customers will use to find your product will help your SEO even if you have the Personalization option already switched on.

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@BeauxArtsbyCynthia wrote:

I've been resisting getting into personalization fully due to the expense for my shop. I make many of my jewelry pieces with genuine gemstones, at least those I can afford, or Swarovski crystals or pearls in gemstone colors. Most of my jewelry is priced individually as OOAK or limited-edition items, but a few styles are offered as variations and may differ in price depending upon the relative costs of materials. I have not yet offered personalization in the form of alphabet charms, inspirational word charms or name charms, etc., partly because many of the charms I've seen are not very attractive, but primarily because of the expense of purchasing so many letters of the alphabet and/or word or name charms. I don't want to be left with a lot of charms that aren't popular enough, yet the alternative of waiting to order charms/words until I have an order for them adds at least a week to the time a customer has to wait for their item(s), which could lose me sales. Do you have any suggestions on how best to handle personalization given these issues?


Hi @BeauxArtsbyCynthia, thank you for your question. If you find that offering personalization in a form of initials or words proves a little tricky for you due to the expense or extra time needed to fulfil such orders you can try to think of other ways you can offer that option to your customers. Perhaps a choice of colours or personalized gift packaging that you could print yourself at home. Have you considered making your own stamped letter or word charms?

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@LinenAndTailor wrote:

What is a difference between personalisation and custom request?


Thank you for your question @LinenAndTailor. Personalization is a feature within the listing that enables customers to let you know how they want their item to be personalized. They can do that when placing an order without having to contact you. Custom request is when customers contact you to request something not readily available to purchase from your shop and made just for them. This normally leads to you creating a private listing priced based on their requirements.

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@MadeByRosaGifts wrote:

I been thinking about this "issue ", how to personalise my felt flowers or strawberries earrings??? And had " eureka moment " ... If I write some nice adressed to that person note ..that made my item personalised :D


Hi @MadeByRosaGifts, that’s an excellent idea! It’s all about being creative and it seems that you definitely are. We wish you more of those Eureka moments!

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@StevenGDesigns wrote:

How can you offer personalization without having a way to charge extra for the service? It doesn't make any sense. If you want to make it an option then all customers must pay the price for it whether they want it or not.


Hi @StevenGDesigns, thank you for your question. If the item you sell can also be purchased without personalization you may want to consider creating two separate listings for that particular item, one that offers personalization priced higher and one that doesn’t - priced lower.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@TheDogsCollarsUK wrote:

It was stated in the Prototype Team back in the fall of 2018 (by Etsy Admin) that the personalisation box would be added to Pattern sites 14 days after the launch on Etsy.  Almost 6 months later it is still not available.  Can we expect this to materialise any time soon?


Hi @TheDogsCollarsUK - thanks for your question! Unfortunately, at this time we do not have plans to make personalization available on Pattern sites. We will definitely update sellers who both use Pattern and offer personalization if it does become available in the future.

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@VeniceEstateSales wrote:

I sell vintage and antiques items. There is no way I can personalize an item. Maybe a special note to the purchaser would be nice? Just a thought.


Thank you for your suggestion @VeniceEstateSales. All buyers are able to add a note to their order when they mark it as a gift. If you’d like to offer a special note on fancy paper or a card you can definitely use the personalization option to that.

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@DoubleDeeDesignShop wrote:

I am trying to offer customatization on my listing - I have tried all the instruction but I’m not finding the personalization button to toggle on- what am I missing!?!


Hi @DoubleDeeDesignShop! You can review step by step directives for enabling personlization on your listings here: https://etsy.me/2GlZpUA Let us know if you have further trouble!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@SparkleKaviCraft wrote:

Most of the time personalization comes with little extra cost at least in my shop I charge extra buck if customer needs to engrave their name on a bags/purses. I still feel this is needed and missing.

As current release personlization box do not consider this its of no use at least for me. And I feel same way for others as well.

Even etsy charges sellers extra for personalization by offering Etsy Plus, and Etsy patterns. I belive you have thought of all the comments on earlier release of this feature.


Thanks for your feedback on the needing charging option for personalization, @SparkleKaviCraft. We realize it’s one of the top requested features for offering personalization and are actively working to create the option for charging. Once this is available, we’ll let you know!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@WanderingLaurFineArt wrote:

Will there ever be an option whereby personalization is a paid option? Right now it seems like it’s only for free but the personalizations (really customizations) I offer all have an additional fee. But a seller might see now that I don’t have personalizations and assume I won’t do them. It would also save so many back-and-forth emails about whether I will customize a print. 


Hi there! Thanks for sharing your question and a little around your experience. We addressed a similar comment in this thread, here: https://etsy.me/2ISVdi0

Thanks again!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@Leatherport wrote:

1. Personalization costs extra. Need the option to earn extra in the "personalization module".

2. Need the possibility to upload picture\photo\file and attach it to the order.

 

Thank you!


Thanks for sharing your feedback with us! We'll take these two suggestions back to the team and keep the community updated.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@WordsAndRainbows wrote:

Can peronalized item be added to digital downloads that are emailed after?  I realize that this can be done by doing a standard listing and then emailing the design, but the problem is when you mark the item as complete - Etsy send a "shipped" message to the customer, sometimes causing confusion.  One answer could be that the shipping screen gives you the option of selecting "Digital Delivery" rather than a courier?


Hi @WordsAndRainbows! Thanks for your question. Digital downloads need to be ready for immediate download, so if you offer a digital item that is either made to order or requires some personalization, I recommend creating a physical listing instead. You’ll just want to make sure to disclose in your listing title, description, and anywhere else you see fit that it will be a digital file.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@CursinginCode wrote:

Being able to customize an item with add-ons is also a way to personalize. Can we have an option to add a customization for xxx dollars instead of having to add another variation? 


Thanks for sharing your feedback, @CursinginCode! We'll take this back to the team and keep it in mind as we plan future updates.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@Taitaya wrote:

Can personalisation be linked to a different shipping profile or processing time? Personalisation often takes longer than items that are ready to ship.


Hi! That’s a great question. Shipping profiles can only be linked at the listing level, so as a workaround, I’d suggest creating a separate listing for the personalized version of the item.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@AliPetrizzi wrote:

Hello all,

1.) What are some of the top selling / most pupular “personalized” items? Why do you think they’re so successful?

2.) Are digital downloads (like printable calendars) worth having personalization for? Is there a feature that can automatically place someone’s name in a particular spot of a digitally downloaded pdf?

Thank you!


Hello! We recently released a marketplace insights report that covers buyer trends with mentions of personalization. You might find some helpful information there: https://etsy.me/2U2DlYM In general, I think many shoppers come to Etsy to find something one-of-a-kind. Offering personalization can take that to the next level. Regarding the calendars, digital downloads need to be ready for immediate download. If you offer a digital item that is either made to order or requires some personalization, I'd recommend creating a physical listing for it instead.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@JuliesHeart wrote:

If  Etsy sees this huge increase in demand for it, then why did they not make the ablility to add personalization a major focus and roll it out correctly?  This would increase sales for the seller and Etsy if it were presented in a format that makes sense.  Either no personalization, free personalization or add personalization for an additional fee.  Also, for those who need photos to complete the personlization for their customer, the ability to upload a high resolution photo.  I just do not understand why this is so complicated for Etsy programmers.  It has been available on many other platforms for years and first now Etsy is taking a serious look at providing it?  And why is no one assigned exclusively to this project to make sure it is the best it can be and that it works for all?  Etsy should be on the top of their game for this.


Hi— thanks for your feedback! We’ve collected suggestions (charging being one of them!) from many sellers who offer personalization and will take these into consideration as we continue to improve the feature.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@LaBellaDoll wrote:

Customization requires a “down payment” listing. When doing a custom order I require a partial pre payment to ensure the customer will follow through. I can’t just turn around and sell the item to a different customer if the original purchaser looses interest. It takes extra time to build or make a personalized item. 

It is confusing and awkward to post a “listing” and mark it “shipped” when it’s not been shipped, when it’s really a down payment.

When designing a “customization” listing, please consider this.


Thanks for your feedback! We understand there may be certain features you still need to offer customization for your items seamlessly. We'll definitely take this into consideration as we build out further improvements in the future.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@InLovingMemoryStudio wrote:

I have tried to use this function in all three of my stores. When I go into shop manager and select all of my products, EDITING OPTIONS- Edit Personalization, enter the wording and hit APPLY, it simply does not work. The listings are never updated. 


We’re sorry to hear this! If you’re having an issue with setting up personalization but want to offer it, we recommend getting in touch with Etsy Support team (https://www.etsy.com/help/contact). They’d be happy to help you troubleshoot this.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@MadKittyMedia wrote:

Will listings with the personalization option active on them tend to come up higher in Etsy's search results? 


Offering personalization for your listings does not necessarily impact your search ranking. However, if you’re interested in learning how to improve your search visibility, we recommend reading Etsy’s Search Ultimate Guide: https://www.etsy.com/seller-handbook/article/the-ultimate-guide-to-etsy-search/366469415790

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@GoodWishesQuilts wrote:

Almost every item in my shop can be personalized with a name, so I was excited about the new personalization option. It’s going to be great, but these are the challenges I’ve experienced with it so far:

> In my shop, adding personalization costs a bit more. So, I currently have to use one of my Variations to ask if the customer wants the item personalized or not, and show the appropriate pricing there. If the customer selects no personalization, the personalization box does not disappear.

> There are two questions I always ask when an item is personalized ~ font choice, and capitalization. It would be beautiful if the personalization box could ask these questions for me. I’d love to just provide the list of fonts and capitalization choices available, and have the customer click to select their choice of each. It would save a lot of convos, and their selections would appear uniformly on all orders.

> I’d like the personalization option to work the same on all apps and platforms, and Pattern websites. Part of the beauty of it is that when you receive a larger volume of orders ... like orders for Christmas delivery ... every order has the same uniform format. It makes order fulfillment faster and more accurate.

Any chance these improvements are in the plans ... ?

Fingers crossed 🤞🏻

 


Hi there, @GoodWishesQuilts. Thanks for your feedback! For personalization, we’re currently exploring how to make a charging option for sellers who offer personalization. We’ll let you know once this becomes available.

In terms of collecting the right feedback needed to fulfill a personalized order, you may consider requesting the font type and capitalization in the guidelines you set when turning the personalization box on (the instructions a buyer can read right above the box).

Personalization is now available for buyers using the Etsy mobile app but is not available on Pattern. If this becomes available in the future, we’ll definitely let you know!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@PhotographMontana wrote:

I have a question regarding personalization, My Etsy shop is called PhotographMontana and I sell digital photographs. I was wondering how personalization applies to what I sell and if so how does it apply to my shop and how do I use this tool to generate sales. Thank you Mark Engbrecht.


Hi @PhotographMontana. We recently released a marketplace insights report that covers buyer trends and touches on personalization. You might find some helpful information there: https://etsy.me/2U2DlYM

Regarding your items specifically, I might reach out to other sellers offering photographs via Etsy Teams or the Forums. Perhaps they have advice or ideas here! And regarding sales, I think many shoppers come to Etsy to find something special and/or one-of-a-kind. Offering personalization could certainly help with that!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@KristenMcGillivray wrote:

It's a great start but there's still a lot of functionality and updates to language needed.

1) I need more than one personalization box and I need to be able to name it as I'm sure many sellers do for a listing that might have two (or more!) personalization components, like a name AND a date. With a single box, the buyer can easily overlook entering one of the necessary personalization requests and the sellers in the same boat they would have been without a personalization box: they have to reach out to the buyer and hopefully get a response back which may or may not happen in a timely manner if at all. It also causes another problem that the seller has to allow plenty of space in a single box to allow multiple personalization requests when it's very possible the item has a line by line limit that needs to be enforced and the only way to do that would be with a single personalization box for each component.

2) Something needs to be done about the "add a note to seller (optional)" text box that is also still at checkout. At the very least the language of this box needs to change since it's now longer accurate to say "Use the space above to add special instructions or personalization details, if applicable." since personalization should/can be added in the personalization box.

Personally I want to see this box go away completely. Perhaps not every seller feels that way so it could optional but the majority of things that go in the box are inappropriate requests or demands that warrant a conversation with me before purchase. Typically I get one of two things in this text box:

a) additional customization requests not included in the listing. So something like, "instead of wine glasses could you do a six pack of beer?" without the buyer ever first asking if that was possible or if there would be an additional charge or extra time required to accommodate a request like that. Spoiler alert: the request might not be possible and any extra request will almost certainly take more time and come with an additional charge :)
Or I get,
b) Demands/Questions about shipping that also should be asked before purchase if they don't understand. So things like "I need this by next Wednesday," "Can these arrive by Friday?" "If I can't have this by x date then I want to cancel". Usually the answer is complicated and something that should be discussed. The answer is almost always something like, "yes, getting the order by that date is possible but probably not with the shipping you selected at checkout so if you want to upgrade here's a link to do that here." The customer may never response back or may respond back too late so it would behoove everyone if an open ended text box like that wasn't at checkout which would hopefully encourage buyers to ask important questions like that upfront before they purchase.


Hi @KristenMcGillivray. Thanks for taking the time to share. We appreciate your detailed feedback here! We do understand there may be certain features you still need to offer personalization for your items seamlessly. We'll definitely take this into consideration as we build out further improvements in the future. 

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@BlackberryDesigns wrote:

I have been wondering for years why they haven't give the personalized fields a professional look.  Handmade items are where most customers will find personalized items and Etsy is woefully behind the times.  A text box is not the solution and very 2000's.  If they want to caputure that market, and they should, they need to up their game.


Hello and thank you for your feedback! We do plan to improve the tool over time and appreciate you sharing your thoughts and concerns here. Stay tuned!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@CelestialKnitGifts wrote:

I handknit a variety of items, faceloths, baby booties, sweaters, afghans.  Due to shipping charges and Vat, I only ship to the US.  I understand that Etsy is a Global Community, but your term of Personalized, previously Customizable is vague.

Can you clarify it or use a common online dictionary?


Thanks for joining our Q&A. If you'd like to offer your buyers the option to personlize their purchase, turn the feature on from the listing's page from the Shop Manager. The Personalization feature helps buyers let you know what they want to be personalized on an item like an engraving or pattern. I hope this helps to clarify!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@CompanyTwentySix wrote:

Thank you for adding this functionality and I hope it's only a first step. Personalization is a big part of my business and it is currently easier for me to build personalized item listings on other marketplaces. On Etsy I am currently using variations as a workaround for features not available in the personalization box, those being: 1. Different forms of personalization (i.e. two letter monogram, three letter monogram, one name, two names etc). 2.Different costs for different personalization.

In an ideal world, a customer could see a photo of their item with the personalization they chose in the style/color they chose. Would be great to have a monogram creation tool that included the letters of the alphabet. Would be great to have write in boxes for Single line & Multi-line text with checkboxes for different styles of text. (case, circular, inline, curved etc). Nice to have a color chart tool too to help customers vizualize their choices.


Hi— thanks for your feedback! We’ve collected suggestions (charging being one of them!) from many sellers who offer personalization and will take these into consideration as we continue to improve the feature.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@PRKJewelry wrote:

As others have mentioned, I offer personalization with a fee. It's an addition to a base product which could be bought without personalization, thus there is a base price and a price upgrade for the personalization. Thus the personalization field needs to be able to affect the price of the item if used. Expecting a buyer to first choose from a drop down menu to buy the base item or item plus personalizaton at a cost and have to put the personalization in another field is not working. They choose the base price and then want the personalization anyway at the base price. This happened in my shop this week. 


Hello @PRKJewelry! Thank you for taking the time to share some of your experience and provide your feedback on the feature. We addressed a similar comment in this thread, here: https://etsy.me/2ISVdi0

Thanks again!

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Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@JuliesHeart wrote:

We need to be clear on what Etsy is defining personalization as.  Many people are referring to "customization" in the same breath as "personalization" and to me they can be two completely different things.  To me, personalization means adding names and dates or a personal message where customization can mean anything from color, to font choice, to size or many other "selectable" options.

Can you please clarify the intent?


This is a great question! Thanks, @JuliesHeart.  Personalization can always mean something different for each seller based on how they run their shop. However, for adding that last personal touch, like name, initial, or address engraving, we definitely recommend using the personalization box. If you offer customizable items that require a little more back and forth with your buyer, we recommend using Custom Orders and Conversations to help get that information.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@zilvera wrote:

Is custom sizing considered to be a 'personalization'? Do you have a definition of 'personalized'? Can personalized items be returned? (my guess, no)


A personalized item can have buyer-provided information added to it, such as names, initials/monograms, dates, etc. Examples include anything that can be engraved, embroidered, painted on, or printed on.

A personalized item is not a custom item, and this new functionality is separate from the seller option to enable custom items. The personalization button is a toggle button, while the “buyer can request customization” is a box that sellers check. Regarding returns, that's completely up to you as the seller. You know your craft and business best :)

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Community Manager
Community Manager

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Thank you to everyone who posted in this thread. We appreciate all your thoughtful questions and feedback.

And a big shout-out to Etsy sellers Christine from @BackBayPottery  and Simon and Jon from @MishiuFerris! Many thanks to these personalization pros!

We’ve closed this thread to further replies but if you have other questions, please reach out to our Support team here: https://www.etsy.com/help/contact

We look forward to hosting more Q&As here in the future. Stay tuned!

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TreeTreasuresCanada
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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It is my understanding that the personalization box didn't work with certain apps or on certain platforms when it was rolled out.  Is the personalization now available for all purchasers regardless of app or platform?

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@TreeTreasuresCanada wrote:

It is my understanding that the personalization box didn't work with certain apps or on certain platforms when it was rolled out.  Is the personalization now available for all purchasers regardless of app or platform?


Hi @TreeTreasuresCanada! Personalization is now available for buyers using the Etsy mobile app but is not available on Pattern. If this becomes available in the future, we’ll definitely let you know.

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PixieRiver
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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I have been reluctant to incorporate this change into my shop since personalization is a paid option on my listings. I'd like to have the text box added only if the personalization option is chosen. Will this work for me?

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@PixieRiver wrote:

I have been reluctant to incorporate this change into my shop since personalization is a paid option on my listings. I'd like to have the text box added only if the personalization option is chosen. Will this work for me?


Hi @PixieRiver. While the personalization feature is not available on the variation level, it can be applied to specific listings. With this in mind, if you want to offer personalization, I'd suggest creating a seperate listing for the personalized version of the item.

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TheDogsCollarsUK
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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It was stated in the Prototype Team back in the fall of 2018 (by Etsy Admin) that the personalisation box would be added to Pattern sites 14 days after the launch on Etsy.  Almost 6 months later it is still not available.  Can we expect this to materialise any time soon?

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@TheDogsCollarsUK wrote:

It was stated in the Prototype Team back in the fall of 2018 (by Etsy Admin) that the personalisation box would be added to Pattern sites 14 days after the launch on Etsy.  Almost 6 months later it is still not available.  Can we expect this to materialise any time soon?


Hi @TheDogsCollarsUK - thanks for your question! Unfortunately, at this time we do not have plans to make personalization available on Pattern sites. We will definitely update sellers who both use Pattern and offer personalization if it does become available in the future.

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CelestialKnitGifts
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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I handknit afghans.  I make them is different sizes and list then in different sections.  Do you consider the Personalization box to be where I can list other sizes available?  In the past I believe it was called Customizable, yes or no.

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@CelestialKnitGifts wrote:

I handknit afghans.  I make them is different sizes and list then in different sections.  Do you consider the Personalization box to be where I can list other sizes available?  In the past I believe it was called Customizable, yes or no.


Hi @CelestialKnitGifts, you could potentially use this option to list all available sizes and ask customers to specify the size they need in the Personalization box, however, we find that the Variations option works much better when it comes to sizes. When you add variations to your listing you create a drop down menu which lists all of the size options and makes it easy for customers to select exactly what they need. Follow this link to learn how to add variations to your listings https://help.etsy.com/hc/en-gb/articles/115015664047-Listing-Variations

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SparkleKaviCraft
Registered Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Most of the time personalization comes with little extra cost at least in my shop I charge extra buck if customer needs to engrave their name on a bags/purses. I still feel this is needed and missing.

As current release personlization box do not consider this its of no use at least for me. And I feel same way for others as well.

Even etsy charges sellers extra for personalization by offering Etsy Plus, and Etsy patterns. I belive you have thought of all the comments on earlier release of this feature.

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YarnJunkyCreations
Registered Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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where do you add the extra money in?  I'm new at this & want to do it right.

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SparkleKaviCraft
Registered Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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 You can create variations inside your listing. And when you are adding variation inside the listing you can mark that for Price Varies option.

I found this list where all is explained in detail: https://help.etsy.com/hc/en-us/articles/115015664047-Listing-Variations?segment=selling

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@SparkleKaviCraft wrote:

Most of the time personalization comes with little extra cost at least in my shop I charge extra buck if customer needs to engrave their name on a bags/purses. I still feel this is needed and missing.

As current release personlization box do not consider this its of no use at least for me. And I feel same way for others as well.

Even etsy charges sellers extra for personalization by offering Etsy Plus, and Etsy patterns. I belive you have thought of all the comments on earlier release of this feature.


Thanks for your feedback on the needing charging option for personalization, @SparkleKaviCraft. We realize it’s one of the top requested features for offering personalization and are actively working to create the option for charging. Once this is available, we’ll let you know!

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WanderingLaurFineArt
Registered Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Will there ever be an option whereby personalization is a paid option? Right now it seems like it’s only for free but the personalizations (really customizations) I offer all have an additional fee. But a seller might see now that I don’t have personalizations and assume I won’t do them. It would also save so many back-and-forth emails about whether I will customize a print. 

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KeensKreationsShop
Registered Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Maybe you could add a section in your description area for the customer to message you about customization. Then you could go a custom order for those.

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@WanderingLaurFineArt wrote:

Will there ever be an option whereby personalization is a paid option? Right now it seems like it’s only for free but the personalizations (really customizations) I offer all have an additional fee. But a seller might see now that I don’t have personalizations and assume I won’t do them. It would also save so many back-and-forth emails about whether I will customize a print. 


Hi there! Thanks for sharing your question and a little around your experience. We addressed a similar comment in this thread, here: https://etsy.me/2ISVdi0

Thanks again!

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Sweet17Cookies
Registered Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Do you have any advice on making sure the customer provides all the information I as a seller need to personalize their item? I spend so much time emailing back and forth making sure I get all the right information (and often find a lot of customers never check their messages so I never get the information from them). 

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BackBayPottery
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@Sweet17Cookies wrote:

Do you have any advice on making sure the customer provides all the information I as a seller need to personalize their item? I spend so much time emailing back and forth making sure I get all the right information (and often find a lot of customers never check their messages so I never get the information from them). 


Hi, that's a good question! There is an instruction for buyers box that you can use, also I put common questions and answers at the bottom of my listings and in my shop policies.

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EthelsGranddaughter
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Should personalized items in our shops still include the word Personalized in our titles and tags? Or will search automatically pick it up if we are using the Personalization option?

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@EthelsGranddaughter wrote:

Should personalized items in our shops still include the word Personalized in our titles and tags? Or will search automatically pick it up if we are using the Personalization option?


Hi @EthelsGranddaughter! Excellent question. Yes, we definitely recommend using word Personalized in your listing titles and tags. Creating search terms your customers will use to find your product will help your SEO even if you have the Personalization option already switched on.

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BeauxArtsbyCynthia
Registered Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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I've been resisting getting into personalization fully due to the expense for my shop. I make many of my jewelry pieces with genuine gemstones, at least those I can afford, or Swarovski crystals or pearls in gemstone colors. Most of my jewelry is priced individually as OOAK or limited-edition items, but a few styles are offered as variations and may differ in price depending upon the relative costs of materials. I have not yet offered personalization in the form of alphabet charms, inspirational word charms or name charms, etc., partly because many of the charms I've seen are not very attractive, but primarily because of the expense of purchasing so many letters of the alphabet and/or word or name charms. I don't want to be left with a lot of charms that aren't popular enough, yet the alternative of waiting to order charms/words until I have an order for them adds at least a week to the time a customer has to wait for their item(s), which could lose me sales. Do you have any suggestions on how best to handle personalization given these issues?

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MishiuFerris
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@BeauxArtsbyCynthia wrote:

I've been resisting getting into personalization fully due to the expense for my shop. I make many of my jewelry pieces with genuine gemstones, at least those I can afford, or Swarovski crystals or pearls in gemstone colors. Most of my jewelry is priced individually as OOAK or limited-edition items, but a few styles are offered as variations and may differ in price depending upon the relative costs of materials. I have not yet offered personalization in the form of alphabet charms, inspirational word charms or name charms, etc., partly because many of the charms I've seen are not very attractive, but primarily because of the expense of purchasing so many letters of the alphabet and/or word or name charms. I don't want to be left with a lot of charms that aren't popular enough, yet the alternative of waiting to order charms/words until I have an order for them adds at least a week to the time a customer has to wait for their item(s), which could lose me sales. Do you have any suggestions on how best to handle personalization given these issues?


Hi @BeauxArtsbyCynthia, thank you for your question. If you find that offering personalization in a form of initials or words proves a little tricky for you due to the expense or extra time needed to fulfil such orders you can try to think of other ways you can offer that option to your customers. Perhaps a choice of colours or personalized gift packaging that you could print yourself at home. Have you considered making your own stamped letter or word charms?

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Leatherport
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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1. Personalization costs extra. Need the option to earn extra in the "personalization module".

2. Need the possibility to upload picture\photo\file and attach it to the order.

 

Thank you!

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Etsy Staff
Etsy Staff

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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@Leatherport wrote:

1. Personalization costs extra. Need the option to earn extra in the "personalization module".

2. Need the possibility to upload picture\photo\file and attach it to the order.

 

Thank you!


Thanks for sharing your feedback with us! We'll take these two suggestions back to the team and keep the community updated.

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WordsAndRainbows
Community Member

Re: Offering personalization: Q&A with Etsy sellers and staff

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Can peronalized item be added to digital downloads that are emailed after?  I realize that this can be done by doing a standard listing and then emailing the design, but the problem is when you mark the item as complete - Etsy send a "shipped" message to the customer, sometimes causing confusion.  One answer could be that the shipping screen gives you the option of selecting "Digital Delivery" rather than a courier?

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