Sunday, October 31, 2010

Etsy = Confusion Central = Holiday Sales Fail

We all know Etsy has been asleep at the wheel and nearly comatose during the first half of 2010, then suddenly sprung to life (like a Halloween Zombie) by imposing drastic changes to the entire look and navigation in the last 3 months that have driven both sellers and shoppers to complete distraction and utter confusion. And just in time for the holiday season!

Add to this the recent Announcement about the staggered and limited rollout of the “new checkout” which may or may not work, may or may not negatively affect sales, and may or may not turn off shoppers forever to buying anything on the site for the rest of the year.

Sellers are right on the ball when they express alarm that Etsy is rolling out these dramatic changes to the Shopping Cart and Checkout Process at the start of the crucial holiday retail selling weeks ---- based on the last 20 roll-outs littered with bugs and mistakes, sellers and shoppers alike can expect a very rocky end to 2010 on Etsy.

It’s not like Etsy has a reputation for “timing” and “testing” because they just don’t go there.

On top of all this messing around, Etsy is woefully unprepared for the holiday selling season. No plan, no new promotions, no coupon codes, no gift guides, and no acknowledgment that their sellers need all the help they can get for a tough retail season ahead.

Etsy is a selling venue? We doubt that. Etsy is all about Etsy, not about its sellers, not about its shoppers, and not about ramping up for the holidays.

Etsy is about confusion. Confuse your sellers, confuse and lose your shoppers.

20 Comments:

sark said...

I am stupefied by the recent unrequested changes.

The giant listing pictures? Eh... sometimes it looks okay, sometimes it doesn't.

My profile page is fucked up. My entire profile should display.

Items from MY shop on my profile page are fine. It would be better if I could pick which ones.

It should be optional — as in I click a box that says "display favorites" on MY fucking profile page. My profile page is supposed to be about me, not about leading people out of my shop. Altruism and goodwill my ass. There is already an active link for my favorites.

So, any favorites (whether it be sellers or items) displayed on my profile page should be OPTIONAL.

Whether I want treasuries that I curated to appear on MY profile page should also be optional. Moreover, I would prefer an option to display treasuries that I AM FEATURED in.

As for gift guides? Fuck no. I don't need to see those bitches in curation nation featured anywhere else. Fuck that. If I see one more dumb wire wrapped pendant I think I'm going to have an aneurysm.

Gift guides on etsy would be just as dumb as they were previously when they were full of cardboard animals, plush toys pretending to be "art", art prints that look like they were drawn by a four year old with the palsy, and fucking mustaches, cowls, and ruffle dresses for skinny mormans at cocktail parties (where the fuck else would anyone in their right mind wear one of those?). So, no, fuck no. My fees as a paying customer do not need to be spent on the promotion of staff favorites.

Otherwise, I'm astonished, and yet astonished at my own astonishment, that they're fucking things up right before the holidays — AGAIN.

No one ever fucking learns anything, do they?

WolfCreekMill said...

They are so confused they can't even delete my accout. A thing I desire because I don't want any bad bread crumbs in google that would lead to that hole in the ground into which you pour dimes...coralgate, renew....shortened bios...renew...search unimprovements ...renew....


But it's so wonderful....NOT

boo said...

So, I'm thinking to myself the other day...why would etsy corporation do this during the holidays season? Where it the logic in that? How does this serve them?

And then I realized...confusion, bugginess,revamped look, general chaos, changing pagination returns = overall slower sales. Slower sales = more renewals. More renewals= more dimes.

etsy is like when you take your RV into your mechanics a mont before a big trip for an oil change. You tell the mechanic how you booked off six months, the whole tribes is going cross country, it's going to be awesome. The mechanic changes your oil, but seeing you for a mark, diddle your air conditioner. You return it for repair. Then he screws with your fan belt. Now the RV makes a knocking noise when you drive it. Back into the garage it goes. He loosens the cap on the oil pan...now there's a puddle of oil on the driveway, back it goes and so on and so on.

This is no accident.
It's good dime collection.
It's customer sabatoge and they know, if you're actually trying to scrape out a decent wage on the site, that your not likely to switch up venues mid stream of what should be your busiest time of the year.

Wolf said...

Add to this it now appears that etsy may be closing shops and banning users permenantly, for things they may say on Twitter or elsewhere.

One shop has been perm. closed for reasons that were apparently taken care of weeks/months ago.

Yet that shop, being one of the more vocal in speaking out against what Etsy has been doing lately, is suddenly being banned, along with their 2 other shops, for those so called Violations that were taken care of.
(i have infor second hand that shows all this, but have not been given permission to share at this time.)

No, not mine. I closed mine on my own, though I kept my account. The better to watch the newbies wake up to the screwing their getting from Etsy.

Eveline said...

Every time I think 'Ohh, so this is the annual holiday season fuck up' there's something new. Oh Etsy, you really do spoil us this year!

IhateEtsy said...

Hey look. Etsy actually flipped off all it's customers: http://www.etsy.com/storque/etc/keep-it-weird-angels-and-demons-11041/#comment-397739

Amazing, isn't it?

sellerx said...

it just keeps getting better every time I login!
sales have dried up since oct 22nd - is it just the season or is it new search? fuck if I know.
All I know is I was a 2 sales a day kind of shop all year and now it's been 10 days of fuck all zero.

and what sark said.
word.

Kat - cardinalhouse said...

I'm not happy with the recent changes at all. I agree with the above sentiments that all of the changes are geared towards getting the "buyers" lost on Etsy & the "seller" forgotten unless they are renewing items continuously. And you know what I think of all that. SPAM.

I'm going to set up a basic account at bigcartel.com, see how I like the site overall. If it's easy to work with, I will start transitioning most of my stuff there.

One of my necklaces will be out in a magazine come December/January & if that feeds enough traffic through my site-site.....Etsy will get much less of my biz.

bah.

;-)

The Funny One said...

Etsy fucks around with the holidays every year, but the entire re-vamp, lousy rollouts and rollbacks on top of their complete inability to admit they make dozens of huge mistakes every week hasn't made a dent in their profits. Etsy is still raking in the big bucks because "sellers" are handing over big gobs of money without the actual sales to cover their monthly Etsy bills.

If the stories about Admins trolling cyberspace to boink people over their heads is true (and from past experience, we know they have done this) then THAT is even scarier than their complete arrogance and incompetence.

Gift Guides are not a bad thing, and many shoppers love to use them for the holidays ----- but Etsy never ever got it right and has no intention or desire to use them to sell products. Because SELLING is not Etsy's goal ---- raking in listing fees and more listing fees is their goal.

Gift Guides on Etsy suck big time, but gift guides done right can have a huge impact on real sales.

Etsy permanently ruined the handmade marketplace, and they'll ruin Holidays 2010 just like they did Holidays 2009, and 2008.

Anonymous said...

I am starting to think that etsy collectively banged their heads on a Brooklyn sidewalk and are now ALL walking around with head injuries.

I think etsy hired a bunch of tech heads, who more then likely don’t get the products or handmade and are busy making their jobs seem valuable by rolling out crappy changes.

I think a staff review is in order!!

Lucy said...

I'm shopping on Zibbet for the holidays, and my friend is shopping on Artfire. They aren't perfect, but they aren't Etsy. Etsy acts like it does because it can get away with it. Most sellers can't get the same sales elsewhere. The more support we can give as buyers to the non-etsys the better.

Violets new Vintage said...

All of the recent changes on E are motivating real artists and crafts people to leave in droves and set up another shop where they can actually benefit from the work they do AND keep their integrity. The many happy resellers (liars) on Etsy will continue to put the 'handmade' stamp on anything and everything and remain there as just another caught crab in a bucket clawing its way to the top (everyday). The real artists and serious crafts people will be on other sites.

peanut rancher said...

Why DO they keep messing with stuff right up to mid November? It's so stupid.

And yeah, the new profiles suck. Avatars in item pages going to the profile page is absolutely retarded. I have no idea what these people are thinking, if you can call it that.

G33K GODDESS said...

IMPORTANT WARNING!!!

Etsy is removing User ID #s so people can not import their shops to Artfire!!!
DO IT NOW. Before it's too late.

Etsy has removed our user ID numbers from our profiles, and the only
way to find them is through google's cache. There is a thread on how
to do it here:

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6669211

In order to use an IMPORTER like Artfire's you HAVE to have your user ID #!! Find it, and keep it safe!! You may need it some day as a passport outta there!!

Without it, it will be MUCH harder to move, you will have to re-do every single listing!! If you import it only takes 2 minutes! I am worried about this!! seriously, if I had not been able to import my items, I would have incurred extreme damages to my business and my livelihood. as it is, I was able to walk away from Etsy with little effect to my business aside from change of
address forms on my business cards and having to build in a new place... But still... if I would have had to list all of that over again... I don't think I could have gone on. If I had to do it by myself it would take weeks or months. That is the position they are trying to put sellers in... Please don't let that happen!! Spread the word, and find your USER ID # NOW!!

bustedanddisgusted said...

And, 2007 and 2006(remember v2?)...

sgt bunny said...

I opened up an artfire shop, imported listings, changed my homepage to link to Artfire exclusively and I'm making the switch. I do well sales wise on etsy, but that's probably more due to my sending MY customers TO my shop, and now they're happy to take my efforts....no.

Instead of fixing what needs fixing, now they're all about social networking.

Idiocy. At least I got everything imported to a new shop on AF.

Bunch of freaking morons.

JumpedToArtfire said...

did this person get silenced after posting this in the forums?

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6664858&page=1

E is acting like the mafia!

Anonymous said...

Simply put, ethical artists, will not want to be associated with Etsy.

Serious business people will not want to be associated with Etsy.

That leaves the bored housewives with a dream, an ego, a bill paying husband, and very little talent or business sense.

Indie art hijacked by the WalMart Esthetic.

Anonymous said...

WolfCreekMill can't get Etsy to close the shop, because Etsy doesn't want to close the shop.

How many shops are abandoned by sellers and left for dead? I'm thinking the majority of those inflated statistics are just empty failures.

It looks better for Etsy's number game if those shops are emptied instead of closed.

Jon Stewart II said...

The other items listed on the profile pages are mean to keep people clicking around and buying. They ARE meant to draw in sales, but not sales to the seller whose profile page they are on. They are made to keep Etsy's overall sales number higher. They don't care what sells, as long as stuff DOES sell.

It's like any major store or gallery or shop.

Wal-Mart doesn't care if you buy Tom's of Maine toothpaste. They just want you to get in the door, see end-caps and displays, and buy *whatever.*

Same with galleries. Galleries may have 50 artists. They won't advertise an individual artist's line of pieces unless the buyer is interested--but if the interest wanes, they'll sure as shit escort them to something that will "suit them better." I know. Believe me.

Congrats, Etsy. You're Wal-Mart.