Tuesday, November 9, 2010

How to get Etsy to notice you

Want to make Etsy take notice that you're pissed? We've sorted through the various suggestions in the comments, and have a few of our own, to come up with a list of things you can do to get Etsy to notice you, well the lack of you anyway.


1. Unfollow them on Twitter


2. Use the Twitter hastag #etsyfail or #etsysucks whenever you complain about them on Twitter


3. Unfriend/unlike them on Facebook


4. Stop promoting them! Promote another venue (particularly your shop or a venue you enjoy as a buyer) or your own website (if you're still on Etsy you can have your own domain URL redirect to your Etsy shop until you're able to find a better venue - we know you're nervous about losing sales) Maybe they'll finally splurge on advertising.


5. Comment on news/business pieces about Etsy in a way that is less than sugary - be honest and open about your negative experience there as a seller

6. Boycott renewing, listing, and relisting - you aren't selling anything there anyway, might as well keep the extra change for yourself!

7. Help others transition - offer your story about how you chose a new venue, setup your website, broke the forum habit, or learned SEO and other necessary evils of selling online.

41 Comments:

justwatching said...

There are so many sellers who have just had it with the etsy bullshit. Somehow there needs to be a way to let mainstream magazines know.

Real Simple, Redbook, Lucky, fall all over themselves to feature etsy. Do they know about the Amway type pyramid scheme? Do they know about the factories pretending to be collectives?

Do they know StellaLoella rewrites the dictionary defintitions of words?

I used to think the magazines picked etsy sellers to feature. Then I found out they just tell etsy what they are looking for and Mary and Emily pick out their favs. Mary even picked herself once. ( she's contrary)

OhTheyKnowButDoTheyCare said...

Never followed them on twitter, don't renew unless expired and often not even then: Some very specific staff know I'm pissed, and why.

I am expendable, just like everyone else. So they think. Up against the wall, motherfuckers!

Evermore Organics said...

I'm learning from reading this blog that "relisting" and "renewing" are two different things. Am I to understand that people pay another twenty cents to list an item AGAIN even though its already in their shop and hasn't expired? Do people list things, then list those same things again in another week (or whatever) to make them show up in the search? Really?

If this is true, that should have been your first (and only) hint that Etsy is bad news.


Also, re: this post - I'd have to add "don't mouth off and swear when you communicate with Etsy". I know you're mad but when you come swinging with swear words, they don't listen to you. Try talking like a lawyer. That will get more attention.

The Cranky One said...

Do they really? Yes, Etsy has even *advocated* it as a way to get seen. They promote it!.

In some categories you HAVE to to be found at all. Thats why the uproar is so loud over this new limited pagination thing, only 50K listings will be found, that's about 3 day old (whether newly listed or renewed) SO a 4 day old listing will NEVER be found in some searches, despite being paid for for the next four months.

Violets new Vintage said...

If you have shops on both E and Artfire, you can make custom Artfire coupons and send them with the items that get purchased in your Etsy shop. That way you direct your customers to your Artfire store for a special sale or discount.

G33K GODDESS said...

"Evermore said:
.... Also, re: this post - I'd have to add "don't mouth off and swear when you communicate with Etsy". I know you're mad but when you come swinging with swear words, they don't listen to you. Try talking like a lawyer. That will get more attention."

Oh, if only that were true... If you go back a few posts, you can read my story "Joan Speaks Out". I included the entirety of my 2 letters to Etsy from a few weeks ago. Never got a response to those...

It seems the only time Etsy "notices" you, is when they have "demerits" to pass out. *sigh*

notacopier said...

For some reason I decided to go take a peek at the etsy forums, (the only time I go there anymore is whenthere's a link here or at ECO). Anyway I found this post very interesting. I haven't finished reading the whole thread yet but the OP's point is very valid and clearly put, I'm curious to see what all of the replies are and if the cupcakes turn it into something else.
http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6672022

Felicia Twibby said...

I don't really want Etsy to notice me. Do you still think they're going to change or care?

I know how you feel but to me, it's been obvious for a long time that Etsy will never change for the better unless they're entirely sold and EVERYONE is out of there.

People have already been boosting artfire, zibbet etc. for a long time. Nothing to do on our end but double our efforts to promote ourselves and stop giving Etsy money or support.

Eveline said...

@Evermore Organics: Oh yes, people really do this, and not just a few either. There are Etsy sellers who pay $200 or more a month in just relisting fees.

Etsy actively promotes this as a way to get seen. Relisting and renewing brings them more money than what they would get for an item to sell.

RRobin said...

Quoting Violets new Vintage...
"If you have shops on both E and Artfire, you can make custom Artfire coupons and send them with the items that get purchased in your Etsy shop. That way you direct your customers to your Artfire store for a special sale or discount."

**

Great idea!

Wolf said...

There's 'rumors' now going around the Forum that Etsy is closing/deleting accounts who have empty shops and are only using them to speak out negatively in the Forums and/or have a banner/announcement that breaks the TOU by having offsite links.

My announcement leads to my Fan Page. I speak out about the screwups Etsy has been doing and have for years now. Still waiting for my account to be banned. I expect it'll happen sooner or later.

S'ok though, most of my favorite sellers are on other sites and I have them bookmarked.}:P

JunkMostWondrous said...

I'm curious & wondering if anyone can address it here or with an EB post. What is the etiquette/protocol for asking a seller if s/he sells through another site or venue? I've checked the profiles & policies of many of my favorite sellers, hoping to be able to find them off-Etsy. I'm afraid of 1- offending some sellers with the question (you never know who's a cupcake) or 2- making them worry that I'm trying to trap them or rat them out.

@ Evermore, when I used to read the Feature Seller interviews, many sellers listed "renew & relist!" as their tips for other sellers for success on Etsy. So Etsy definitely pushes this practice - pure profit for them - in a number of ways.

ohbrother said...

#7 everyone needs to read #7 Get a domain name. Open a shop on another venue or Big Cartel. That's free for 5 items.

Do it today. Even if you cannot devote a lot of time to it right now, you can start a presence.

Down load your CSV data from etsy so you will have a customer mailing list, names and addresses for when you leave.

More and more people are writing about the "real etsy" The factories.

(Love what someone said about Stella rewriting the definiton of collective)

Be ready for when etsy implodes, sells out or whatever. Be ready.

The Funny One said...

JunkMostWondrous has a good question but the rule is that it your link sends Etsy viewers to another location where the same items are listed for sale (and that means if ONE Etsy item is available elsewhere, even if you have 350 listings) you can be quartered, drawn, and hung up to dry AND get some really nasty emails from Etsy Admins, a different one every day for a week!

And then again, Etsy likes to interpret that rule based on if they like you or hate you and they hate more sellers than they like.

Etsy faves and Etsy Sanctioned Resellers have no rules at all, and they don't get shit dumped on their heads, they get promoted on the front page and often.

If Etsy finds you've violated any existing, badly written, unclear TOU (which no employee has to follow themselves) they make one up and hit you with it.

And then they make up a brand new rule that only applies to you because they really love to hassle people for the tiniest reasons, the top reason being that they just hate your guts.

That's the facts Jack....the famous Etsy-punishment system taken verbatim from the 14th century.

Lucy said...

Junk-in response to your question, google the seller/user name. If they sell on another venue, like Zibbet, Artfire, etc it will show up. Then contact them on the other venue and ask if they would be willing to list item X on that venue. I had a buyer ask me that, and I was more than happy to move the listing. The goal of most sellers to to sell, not to be part of the social networking site that Etsy is moving toward.

Moving On said...

I purchased some supplies from an Etsy shop recently and they included a glossy postcard with their new dot com address and a nice coupon for their new site.

G33K GODDESS said...

The Funny One Said...

And then again, Etsy likes to interpret that rule based on if they like you or hate you and they hate more sellers than they like.
_________________________

This is exactly the problem I ran into. And those of us who criticize(d) Etsy's policies in the forum got more than our fair share of "attention" from Etsy. Part of it is, if people (cupcakes) don't agree with what you have to say, they start to flag the SH*T out of you. Admin is only too happy to take the opportunity to rid themselves of troublemakers like me, while letting their precious ones slide...

Extremely preferential treatment for some, and extremely prejudicial treatment of others. That's how Etsy enforces it's TOU.

Truthful said...

Social networking is what will murder Etsy off in the long run before anything else. And they know it. FEAR is what keeps people running back to etsy and afraid of speaking out. There are so many tools provided mostly for free on the internet for any artist to create their own shopping network and cultivate their own fan base without having to play nice with etsy But etsy and their gang of craft gangsters will do evil stuff like stalk these artist, create FREE workshops so people can learn how to create the EXACT same product this person sells, and will chose archived products similar to this persons work and PROMOTE it for weeks until these people run back to etsy in tears because they can’t seem to compete.

I won’t say their names but there are so many artists in NYC out of work now because they can’t sell their workshops or products due to the crushing hand of Etsy Gangsters. Those they have not been able to crush they flat out ignore in the hopes that everyone else will too. Good news is sheeple are starting to notice this and are leaving the JONESTOWN FLOCK before the kool-aid gets handed out. I can see it now, drooling hipsters lying on the ground clutching plush owls and wearing vintage puma’s on their feet.

Eveline said...

Just wanted to add that I don't want Etsy to notice me. I want Etsy users to notice me, both sellers and buyers. I want them to see my tweets about all the #EtsyFAILs of the last couple of months and rethink their options.

California Girl said...

Not to spam, but I signed up for Shoply as listed on your page. Great site, easy to use and friendly. MIght want to give it a try.

Evermore Organics said...

@ G33K GODDESS,
I read your story and it infuriated me! Its terrible that Etsy is so.. arbitrary and downright unfair. This isn't the playground; folks pay real money to sell on Etsy and they shouldn't be treated like children. I was impressed with your letters to them, but unfortunately some of the scorned sellers don't respond to the injustices as maturely as you do. If we ALL acted as you had, perhaps they might get the hint and stop treating us so badly. ONE person's well-worded email isn't going to do it.

I'm glad this blog is advocating striking, leaving, and setting up a website or at least hooking up with a better venue. We need to hit Etsy where it hurts: the felted recycled eco-friendly organic pocketbook.

Evermore Organics said...

I've said this before and I'll say it again: read the privacy policy.

I'm not an Etsy seller anymore, and I did not witness what went down when Etsy revealed everyone's real name. I have no idea about that situation so I'm not really the one to do the legwork here. Those of you who WERE a part of that NEED TO READ THEIR PRIVACY POLICY. READ IT WITH A FINE-TOOTHED COMB. This is your one and probably only effective avenue to nail their balls to the wall. If they broke their own TOU then find yourself a lawyer.

Etsy will collapse when everyone leaves. How long can they treat people like this? I wish there was a way to get the word out without risking being sued for libel. New suckers sign up everyday. It has to end.

Anonymous said...

I quit etsy a few months back (I had over 3000 sales) and after severe withdrawal, I really see how crooked they are.

Sellers pay way to high fees and the renewing scam is a head scratcher, but it works well for etsy!!

Their support is non-exsistant, unless you have done something wrong, then they just about pull you out of your bed in the middle of the night to whip you and then close your shop anyway!

I hate that silly front page with items that are featured over and over.....my god, if I see another owl or handmade marshmallow, I swear I will shoot myself--maybe start with the etsy team first, then myself!

I am stunned by the forums and how vicious and selfish the people are. It is the same people from post to post and all day....do these people have lives outside of etsy. I have looked at those freaks (with all the opinions) shops and most have poor sales and really bad items. So, where do they get off telling anyone, anthing about etsy and how to run a shop. What a bunch of unsuccessfull assholes with big mouths and ugly creations!

I am shocked by the number of large shops that are moving from there. I just hope new shoppers to handmade look at other venues, before getting into bed with demon etsy.

Please Hire Real Marketers said...

What gets me about the Etsy Admin apathy is the fact that there are 20 - 30 damn threads on the same dopey fucking subjects over and over, all asking Admin for the same simple answer, or asking for a simple change which is NEVER acknowledged by admin that they've even seen the request. And we know they've seen it, because they've taken the time to move the thread to different forum sections.

For example, all the anti or pro "you might like" threads - why the fuck can't an admin pop in and say - yeah, the algorithm seems to be pulling repetitive results, and this is/is not what we want, so we are/are not doing something about it.

But they don't even care enough to pop in and post a yes-we-like-your-input or no-we-are-going-to-keep-testing-this answer. They just ignore the threads like we don't exist and they don't give a shit.

So they end up with DOZENS of threads which keep lisajune employed by closing with ambiguous comments that clearly indicate she hasn't read more than the OP (typical forum user, that lisajune...) and this of course continues to generate ill-will toward Etsy.

If they just hired 1 person who had ever aced a business course in basic marketing, all this should go away. But no, they have declared publicly that they hire based on instinct, rather than on such idiocy as a resume with business experience.

SusanA said...

None of these things will make Etsy notice. Stop following them, unfriend them, even stop selling there, none of these will make difference when you consider how many sellers/buyers they actually have. Do they really care if one leaves? Even a big one, not really since there will be 100 new cupcakes to take your place.

An article? Unless you can Martha and Women's and Real simple to all say right all Etsy is cheating you but they won't because the actual buyers of Etsy products, don't give and actually most sellers aren't even aware of what Etsy does until something happens to them.

Amenhotep IV said...

Etsy has removed the "keep shopping" button from our shopping carts, in the new checkout.

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6682616

Customers now have to hit their back button repeatedly to get back into the shop they were purchasing (if it works), or they have to navigate back to the shop to buy more.

RRobin said...

Quoting Evermore Organics:

"I'm not an Etsy seller anymore, and I did not witness what went down when Etsy revealed everyone's real name. I have no idea about that situation so I'm not really the one to do the legwork here. Those of you who WERE a part of that NEED TO READ THEIR PRIVACY POLICY. READ IT WITH A FINE-TOOTHED COMB. This is your one and probably only effective avenue to nail their balls to the wall. If they broke their own TOU then find yourself a lawyer."

**

A class action lawsuit is a wonderful idea! Hit those hipsters in their mustache-shaped wallets! Judges take internet privacy VERY seriously. Look at what happened to Google over Buzz:

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2010/11/02/buzzkill-google-settles-google-buzz-privacy-suit-for-8million-donation/

Google was fined $8.5 million. OK, so Etsy will say thay only violated people's privacy for, oh, an hour or so. Well, even if they are fined a paltry $500,000 for that, it will look very, very bad to those IPO investors and whatnot they've been courting.

DancingWindDesigns said...

Well, they noticed me today. Yesterday, a cupcake and I didn't see eye to eye in the Coral Rebuttal post and she basically called me out on my shop announcement which had been up ever since Coral Gate was published in the Dorque. (The thread was closed by Anee right after the last post in that thread-made by me.)It linked to my AF studio. Today came the email that said "since they had already told me to not link to another venue (all I said on the first announcement was google me) and I had gone and done it again, they were closing me down, banning and muting me. Wonder if they think they hurt my feelings?? LOL!
They are in the process of screwing up holiday sales over there, so no matter how many starry eyed newbies sign up, they won't be making much money from FVF-just the relisting fees.
I know the "company of the banned" is much better than the company on etsy.

Anonymous said...

Have you seen the latest mind-boggling stupid move by Etsy:
they removed the "keep shopping" button from the checkout cart.
So now, people are buying multiple items from one shop in multiple, separate transactions! Thus racking up excess shipping charges which the seller has to refund.

Seinfeld said...

Evermore Organics:

"I'm not an Etsy seller anymore, and I did not witness what went down when Etsy revealed everyone's real name. I have no idea about that situation so I'm not really the one to do the legwork here. Those of you who WERE a part of that NEED TO READ THEIR PRIVACY POLICY. READ IT WITH A FINE-TOOTHED COMB. This is your one and probably only effective avenue to nail their balls to the wall. If they broke their own TOU then find yourself a lawyer."

-----------

I have multiple screen captures of the fiasco, which shows a number of names. Let me know if you need them.

The TOU clearly says they will not post or share our personal information without our consent.

Sounds like a lawsuit to me.

Anonymous said...

Dancingwind, I saw that.
And I bet that CC who called you out won't even get a warning for the public call-out.

The Funny One said...

Good points SusanA &RRobin and what's even more interesting is how the tech press and/or any other PR about Etsy is hard to find, unless it's written by a 15 yr old to fill column-space.

Etsy certainly isn't showing up on any "great places to buy holiday gifts" because Etsy so pointedly ignores the holidays, any and all of them.

Lack of press or techie self-congratulatory ink about Etsy is a lot more telling. There might be a few seconds of interest in the reported millions in profits, but Etsy has not made any real improvements or innovations in the ecommerce universe.

Etsy is way behind any other ecommerce sites of its size, and doesn't generate any real public interest because they are so lackluster in their format and presentation.

And, the real problem -- Etsy has not generated any GOOD WILL amongst its sellers, buyers, the press, or the public. The are insular, insulated, cut off, and too damn arrogant to notice they forgot to build up layers of good will.

Etsy is a one trick pony. And they got too boring to pay attention to about 3 yrs ago. There is no real increase in sales because Etsy is missing 99% of the components that make it a trusted ecommerce platform.

Sanguine Bat said...

Quite true, Funny One.

Etsy is often seen congratulating themselves for their achievements, but aside from that, they get accolades from breathless newbies on the forums and articles that mainly focus on their success. Fred Wilson seems to think they have innovative customer service... what a sick joke.

In every aspect, Etsy has completely failed to distinguish themselves on the web - design, function, features, anything. You won't see Etsy getting recognized for having done anything innovative or featuring great web design, because they don't and they don't. Actually, they've made it more than clear that they will never be able to achieve either of those things, because their corporate culture is so wretched. You'd have to fire everyone, get new management and executives and start over.

G33K GODDESS said...

Anonymous said...
Have you seen the latest mind-boggling stupid move by Etsy:
they removed the "keep shopping" button from the checkout cart.
So now, people are buying multiple items from one shop in multiple, separate transactions! Thus racking up excess shipping charges which the seller has to refund.
________________

Seriously??? WJW.

California Girl said...

I see that one of the forum cup cakes has empty shops on "hiatus" but her Artfire shop is up and running. Could it be the banner problem?

Anonymous said...

Yup. Every sale I get now gets a lovely coupon to my other selling venue. Where I have the EXACT same items listed. No need to ask me to list it on another site because quite frankly, I don't trust anyone not to set a seller up. It's sad to be so paranoid, but there it is. People will claw over everyone and do anything to be a favored admin pet. Till they find out the leash is shorter than they think.

Remove "keep shopping" button = more clicks for etsy; drives up average price per sale, among other things. It's not an accident,not a test. They are trying to find multiple ways to squeeze money out of each and every seller.

I truly believe every "improvement" is done with this in mind. This debacle made me spend this weekend doing up my artfire shop to the fullest. I thank them profusely, it was the kick in the ass I so sorely needed.

I don't twitter of facebook anyway, so no need to unfriend them. I never befriended them in the first place.

Your own url is a must. NOTHING of mine has the etsy name on it. Even if I do advertising, I can just change where the url directs to, etsy one week, artfire the next. I have taken off my etsy mini from my artfire shop. Not promoting etsy. Sorry.

Make sure you know what your shop number is. I firmly believe they 're getting rid of it so people can't import form other venues. At the very least, back up yo shit somewhere else. That brick wall could come at any time.

Sam Cain said...

We at Shoply are also pissed off ex-etsy sellers.

We built Shoply to offer sellers another choice.
We care deeply about customer service and empowering sellers. We'd love to have the chance to work with each and every one of you.

Come on over to Shoply.com - Open a free shop. List some products and see how it goes.

If you don't think we walk the walk and really care about you - leave us.

http://shoply.com

The Funny One said...

Removing the shop number is the 2nd part of making sellers use their real names. It's also the pre-steps for setting up Etsy's "social network" so that they can mine member-data and sell it for a steady profit stream. It hangs together (in Etsy's unique fragmented way) with FP "suggestions" based on member data (with no opt out option) and other dangerous sections like "show your Favorites" and "other items you would like".

It goes with Etsy' underlying structure to make profits from listing and showcase fees, not sales, since new listings now outnumber real sales and actual sales are down dramatically in all of 2010. Inventory is up but actual sales are down.

What sellers see on Etsy is not what sellers get on Etsy.

The Dangerous Mezzo said...

DancingWindDesigns: Wow. That's exactly how I got muted and banned -- someone in the fora called me out and I was muted within a day and banned within three. I'm curious if the same CC was responsible for your banning and mine. Off to find that Coral thread!

The Dangerous Mezzo said...

DancingWindsDesign: just found that thread and yes, it's exactly the same CC who clearly reported me, too. Very interesting! I'm not prone to conspiracy theories, but this makes that particular CC someone to watch out for. I wonder why she's so protective of Etsy -- it's not as if she's particularly successful there.

Erika said...

I am a bit surprised to read about all these shop closings because sellers spoke out against something. The reason this surprises me is because myself and another person closed our accounts because of a twunt who administration allows to offend and insult at will.

The seller who drove us off came into a relatively generic forum thread looking for a fight and started insulting and bashing people. One of the forum moderators came in with a "play nice and carry on" lecture and that was it. Despite the personal attacks and insults, the thread wasn't closed.

I had been a non-problematic member since 2005 (a buyer only with perfect feedback over 1,200) and only on rare occasions did I venture into the forums. I hadn't been on Etsy in over a month and went on to shop a little. Things had changed and it was difficult to maneuver, so I went to the forums to find out what changes had been made. Over the years I'd learned that when you don't get on the site daily or even weekly, the changes can be overwhelming when you do get on.

I posted a one or two sentence comment and wham! The twunt jumped all over me and then all over others who were commenting.

When the other person and myself closed our accounts, all we got from Etsy was a generic robo letter telling us to contact Support if it was closed in error. I didn't know the other person (who was a substantial buyer and seller) until she sent me a convo as the twunt was on the attack. We have since kept in touch and she said she will never return.

I am fine not shopping on Etsy. I have no quams about shopping in a more customer oriented venue. What does in infuriate me though, is that I just did a forum search for the twunt, and she's still posting, so obviously she didn't get sent to the woodshed for her behavior. Then I read here how shops are being closed for lesser infractions, if you can even call them infractions.

I find the selective enforcement appalling. I can appreciate that there are members who spend their lives in the forums and for that reason, feel they have some real estate share of Etsy. That shouldn't give them a free pass to insult and berate. One need not frequent the forums much to see the same people get the same privilege of getting away with condescening behavior while others are banned for an utterance of negativity.

Etsy's favoritism and bias have shown since the site launched. They've done nothing to clean up their image of being cupcake loving frosting lickers turned on by the tickles by each others felt moustaches.