Man. What in the hell happens to these companies when they go public? Anyone else understand what I’m saying?
It seems like every tenth time I logon some furry little corporate pawn with a new set of whiskers is coming up to me and laying a dead mouse on my rug saying “See what I brought you. I hope you like it. Well, either way, here you go."
I got an e-mail the other day (addressed to me as a seller) basically bemoaning that I’d ever ask someone to pay shipping costs for anything ever and promising fire and brimstone for sellers who dare have shipping charges. Quick let’s all kneel down at the alter of some independent scientific study that we’ll get a +1.3% growth in Q4 if we do away with shipping charges! And, oh hey, it’s totally voluntary. For now.
I use this site casually. A reeeeall long time ago I was stupid and I wasted a lot of time tinkering with my stats and asking for advice and derping around in chit chat. Count your hours, folks. Give yourself a week to setup your shop and then stop wasting your time. I have a real job today. I do this to impress the ladies. I list and I sell. But Etsy doesn’t like that. That’s too simple. New jobs gotta be created at Etsy HQ. I know how it works. Responsibilities have to be expanded. The wheel has to keep being reshaped and reformed with a new type model each year or I guess someone’s gravy train stops rolling. I'm imagining the appauling fraud, waste, and abuse I see in my own corporate job--on the backs of the people who actually produce stuff and make things---and then I'm transposing that onto my idea of Etsy's and then imagining you probably have arts and crafts events and strive for the hippest vibe and most positive attitude. How many thousands of employees does Etsy have now?
It seems that every time I want to make changes to my shop Etsy, and its team of mavens perpetually justifying their paycheck, have overhauled the layout. At first I’m learning this stuff and after a while I’m using a whole bunch of language that would get me banned on here while wandering when ya’ll are gonna stop effing overhauling the layout so I can find my bill. Seriously, like twice a year the entire layout is changed on your website to optimize the experience of the few percent of new users you get each year. What kind of drug is going around? Do you guys get, like, zero effing criticism to anything ever? Am I the only seller who isn't bat-excrement insane spending a work-week a year just learning about the changes in a given year?
Oh yay! We can buy different shops now!! I've never heard of that concept before. Boy, who thought up that? Genius. By all means let's not just stabalize the experience for anyone ever. That would be an effing crisis.
Totally with you on all points.
Sadly Etsy doesn't give a poop, but I'm with you.
THANK YOU! I really appreciate your time to post this and doing it with such flair! With everything sellers (and buyers) are dealing with here lately, your post is the first one that brought tears of laughter. Of course, now I can return to the tears of frustration as your points are far too spot on. But you have certainly heped drop my blood pressure by quite a few points.
We've decided to put more of our focus on craft shows and much less on our Etsy shop. We have over 300 items listed and I'm hoping we can sell a lot of them at the shows and then we are going to downsize our shop. We'll just focus on our bestselling items in a handful of categories and probably set them us as made to order listings. That way we can have more room to store items we make for the shows and not have to pay as much in listing and renewal fees to Etsy. We've been open since mid-2016 and we were doing well, building up a good customer base with multiple repeat buyers, but this year has been dead and I don't see the point of continuing to list items and pay those fees when many of them are not even getting viewed anymore. We'll still keep our shop open, but it will be much smaller and more focused to save us time and money.
This strategy is working for me too. Shop is all but dead. My focus the last year has been opening to local events.. which I am killing it on. Every month I am focusing more and more in my own community rather than in my shop here. I have been doing great even with my lowly fb page, and last month for the first time it brought in more revenue than here. And I hardly did anything on my fb page other than posting more often, and people sharing my work.
Things are changing, and you just have to find out where you fit in. If it is off Etsy, then so be it. If it is Etsy, great! Just have to find where your people are.
not even listing new items. No pics no writing copy. I’m ooak and letting a few items ride. Putting my time at shows. 2018 and 2019 made much much more than here. I am small =dead.
What an enjoyable post! I particularly liked the imagery of the "furry little corporate pawn," lol!
Just one thing to add, though. Bear in mind that everything you said about Etsy is also true of every other corporation, worldwide, and indeed, is ingrained into our very culture - the true insanity of insisting on infinite growth in a finite system. You can have a company making a billion dollars a year, but if it doesn't show GROWTH quarter on quarter, it's a catastrophe and a failure. Negative population growth? Horrors! This is capitalism. This is using up every scrap of resource until there's nothing left. This is the snake eating it's own tail.
Agree, BUT....we can offer up a bit of our feelings and rally the troops. Will just this do something? Probably not, that is why we must pass our feelings on to other sights. For me, that means corporate stock conversations. No...I am not with money, but I do NOT do social media, and I still do not have a cell phone.
After a story in the business pages the stock went down a bit. I do not know where it is now, as I'm too busy trying to make a living to follow all the time. Anything that becomes corporate is like a teenager, they all think that they are different, but they all end up looking the same.
This: “but if it doesn't show GROWTH quarter on quarter, it's a catastrophe and a failure” reminded me of something a Polish scientist visiting the West (USA) for the first time observed: that in Poland, as long as you weren’t a conspicuous failure, you were considered to be successful, whereas in the US, if you are not a conspicuous success, you are considered a failure.
The distinction might seem slim, but it isn’t. It’s a society-wide sickness that is killing many. Literally.
We exclaim: “Enough is enough!!!” as if “enough” were a bad thing. Enough, in a sane world, should be: enough.
The most recent email from etsy left me feeling like crap.. but also re-invigorated to keep doing what I do, and sticking it to them!
They want me to offer free shipping to the US, and in exchange they will promote my items to come up higher in searches.
Sooo.... with the price of shipping being what it is, I will make a LOSS on almost every item, but my shop will look SUPER popular.... and of course, etsy will get their fees!
I get it.. and I'm not falling for it. I'll stay happily looking like slow moving shop that sells quality items to lovely customers who I shall find for myself on other platforms, using etsy merely as my shop front :)
I'll continue as I am. I'll make my items, I'll make my profit, and my customers will get what they've paid for. Etsy will get their fees as they always do.
I agree. Not falling for this unless it becomes mandatory. Then I will move on. Also what I want to know is what exactly is a
"unconditional free shipping guarantee". Will Etsy pay for lost packages? what about the buyer then if pkg is lost or something happens. This clearly is not thought out on all ends. So much can go wrong. Also, returning customers know my price point and I am not raising prices $5 to 8 so I can cover shipping. Not cool and your customers know it!
Too funny and unfortunately too true. You are right about things going totally awry once it went public.
I get that change is necessary to be competitive and improve, and it should be done carefully, systematically, and just two or three times per year in batches. Changing things constantly in hopes that corporate heads will think they're getting their money's worth is just stupid.
Hey guys, for those of you who are feeling upset by this recent push to force sellers to offer free shipping, a petition has been started. Not that it will likely change anything, but it doesn't hurt to sign.
I signed this. The more who do (buyers and sellers alike) the more the commmunity can show Etsy corporate that this free shipping change just isn't a good idea.
Etsy should not be deciding how sellers should run their business.
I checked out the link and I noticed toward the bottom of the page there is an update section and it says that the petition is "outdated" and there is the reason why from the author listed underneath. I did notice that people were still signing but I am not sure if it is on auto-pilot.
I tried to sign the petition - I think it's really important for etsy vintage shops (we do have big postage costs) to be heard. Unfortunately the petition on change.org for this one seems scrambled and I could only read how others felt.
But I'd like etsy to know I feel the same!
I signed it, not that I think it will change anything but hey atleast my voice was heard!
I don't understand who they think they are to tell me what's best for me and what pricing scheme I should follow. Did it ever occur to anyone that maybe I ship a lot of local packages and want to be able to save those buyers money? Maybe I don't want to distribute shipping costs evenly from sea to shining sea just because I'm on one coast and people buy from the other?
It's as if my local homeowners association is telling me I need to stop growing so many cucumbers in my garden and start growing tomatoes or they reserve the right to sneak into my yard while I'm at work and hold an umbrella over my vegetable garden so that my cucumbers get an undisclosed percentage less of sunlight each day. That's what's really happening here.
Try not to panic and fall into group-thought just because Amazon is approaching its zenith by strongarming the US Postal Service into a favorable deal (for now) and then convincing millions of chums to sign up for their Amazon Prime gimmick. They'll pop. Sears was never going to be challenged either. Neither was Walmart and now they're under attack from all sides. Etsy will pop too if it doesn't find some principles to stick to which aren't being reformed and reshaped based on theoretical growth someone is paid to pitch to you.
Remember someone, somewhere convinced Walmart's corporate that it was a great idea to hollow out their departments so you can't find help and to understaff their cash registers. Walmart would probably own retail if not for that genius.
I just saw your original post now and this one, and I'm falling off my chair laughing so hard. Your analogies are spot on. I cannot say any of this any better. Cheers!