Thursday, August 11, 2011

Goddammit Etsy, STOP Putting the Cart Before the Horse

What the fucking hell is wrong with you Etsy?

The last 3 days have proved again that you STINK at both rolling out new tools and preparing your sellers with CLEAR, CONCISE, AND BRIEF INSTRUCTIONS about how to use the new Relevancy Search tool.

Switching to Relevancy without preparing your sellers for it, and WITHOUT ISSUING CLEAR, CONCISE, AND SHORT INSTRUCTIONS for:

Plus, how not to get smacked on the head by 3 or 4 Etsy Admins who insist on punishing sellers who are rightfully confused.


Get your damn house in order. You should have revamped the whole damn Tagging system a long time ago. You should have changed it, simplified and streamlined it and made it compatible with your new Attributes Tool.


This latest announcement from stellaloella IS ENOUGH TO SEND SELLERS INTO ANOTHER SPIN.

What the hell are you thinking? After screwing around every single day this week YOU OWE YOUR SELLERS A SELLER EMAIL WITH ALL OF THE ABOVE.



Marilyn said...

This is a massive change, and I love how difficult they make it, they always make it so you have to click through to another thing to find the thing they are talking about. Why couldn't she just post it in her announcement, AND link to it? Instead, if you want to find out, you have to read her wordy words, and then go find the next part, and read those wordy words.
Chad's note is here:

He links to this extremely wordy blogpost that doesn't tell you anything:

That one finally links to the actual policy about tagging:

What normal people do is tell you the policy, in the information about the policy change instead of making you chase it down. And click and click and click until you finally find the pertinent information.

Is it just me or did they change the mature policy too? I don't remember how it used to be worded, but now it says:
"Mature content is defined as: visual depiction of male or female genitalia, sexual activity or content, profane language or graphic violence."

I'm curious because it used to be that they considered nudes as 'not mature". This appears to state otherwise. It's just saying any penis or vagina.

I also think it's snotty to think that anyone reads the forums when they know only a small handful of people read it. It is also ridiculous to think that anyone reads the blog, when again, only a small handful of sellers actually sit around reading all day.

The Funny One said...

Heads up RW, Admins are weighing in with dozens of "non answers" on the countless threads on Relevancy which further confuse the issues. Continued lack of supervision on what Etsy employees are posting in the forums is appalling.

The misinformation that Admins insist on throwing around has made the crappy rollout of the half-assed Relevancy tool so much worse than it was -- but that's what Admins do time after time after time.

They sound like they don't have a clue because they DON'T.

Is there NO ONE IN CHARGE at Etsy?

deadshopwalking said...

OMG>.. Thank you so much! This is the most ridiculous nonsense EVER. They should have fixed the categories as well. They are incomplete as quite a few of us have been saying for years now.

I have had literally one view the entire day from search. One. Why should I even list or relist? And, don't even try to say recency plays a role because that's been proven wrong.

pinkslipped said...

I happen to be one of the larger volume sellers that had daily sales. Now....nothing. I went from a thriving business to being dead in the water. I feel like I've been handed a pink slip and sent home after being fired. People keep telling us that we don't know our SEO, proper titles, tags etc. blah blah. I'm not a dummy and I didn't get successful overnight. I know how to make my shop successful with all of those. Even with some additional tweaking and showing up in the relevancy searches for my types of items, I'm still 100% dead. If this can single-handedly bring successful sellers to a halt, surely it can't be good for everyone else??? And if I'm not bring Etsy dough anymore, shouldn't they care about the other big sellers and their loss of revenue too? Something is just not right.

Anonymous said...

Do you hear their profits going down the drain if people can sell without constant relisting to stay on top?

Last time this was tried, there was such a stink form top sellers about how they paid for advertising by relisting and now they were being cheated?

Let's see righting clear titles and descriptions vs a couple a hundred a month relisting?

The Funny One said...

Most people mature with age. Apparently Admins do not. Because Etsy never admits their mistakes, they never learn from them. Relevancy is no different because forum commenters are already talking about how to "game it" like every other broken tool on Etsy.

Etsy is one big game for sellers with the time and inclination to take full advantage of Etsy's seriously flawed system that favors faves. Relevancy and its crumbling underpinnings throws a huge spotlight on favoritism & gets worse the more Etsy throws out tools that are, in the end, designed to favor the same faves.

Relevancy on Etsy will never resemble the use of this same tool on any other site because Etsy plays favorites and dedicates most of their paid time pushing this select group.

Sellers who game the game learned it from the masters; Admins have a firm grip on this power play and they are not giving it up.

Relevancy and the crappy "tools" to come are nothing compared to Etsy's control of the FP and every other feature on the site. Every tool is screwed by Etsy's policy of favoring faves above all else.

Wonder why nothing works on Etsy like they say it does? That's why. Relevancy will temporily rock the boat, but any positive effect will be short lived. The social tools are a distraction. The real show is how Etsy favors its faves.

sark said...

I was stupefied by the panic in the forums over relevancy becoming the default... STUPEFIED.

But then, uh, I'm actually relevant. I know, that's awkward, isn't it?

And, of course, as soon as they launched the relevancy default every blood thirsty twatwad on etsy is trying to stand on the top of the pile, whether whatever term they're attempting to "optimize" their listing for is actually relevant or not.

What I really hope is that favoritism is the next thing to go. The front page and the finds are ridiculous.

All the bickering and raised blood pressure and displays of entitlement are something - I mean I've been laughing at them for a couple days now.

Honestly, when you make something, if you can't look at it and think of the most obvious words / phrases to describe it - then how the fuck do you think anyone will ever find it?

Relevancy is really weighted on your ability to be adroit. It's not a secret, it's not the fucking free masons. And everyone needs to simply look at the obvious and calm the fuck down.

Recency as the default was bullshit. And people who thought that "renewing" = advertising were morons. Watching the 'power sellers' suddenly show up in the forums bitching and moaning and whining and acting entitled was certainly something. You know, welcome back down to earth.

Seriously, I want the favoritism of admin features to end next.

This has been fun. Kinda half ass, but fun.

MakinTheBestOfIt said...

They say here that they only email users of the most "critical" messages because it is "logistically complex to email several million people." I guess this change doesn't count as critical enough so there will be many that may never know about the change. So glad I got out of this playground while I still had some sanity left.

Life During Wartime said...

The problems started with the introduction of the new listing form. As the listing process works at this point in time, it is possible to list an item so that it shows up with an attribute saying the seller made the item in the 1700s! I can hardly believe it is possible to work for a company the size of Etsy as a programmer, and be so clueless about basic logic. I can only wonder what kind of formula Etsy is using to rank relevancy.

ByNanasHands said...

Now, now, now...let's not get our knickers in a twist! Running your sellers from stem to stern is fodder for happy hour! And please, how many times must you all be reminded that it's Friday...that's the day that Etsy always picks to whip everyone into a frenzy and then leave....

Yup, they have grabbed their owls, their cowls, their fingerless gloves...donned their mustaches and are sprinting for the door.

This latest is the last straw for more "renewing", re-listing or listing at all for that matter. Stick a fork in me...I'm done......our brick and mortar opens next Friday....

Handmade Artists' Forum said...

If they only knew how to keep it simple, they may have a chance. Now lets all try to be relevant! So glad we left Etsy.
Thanks for sharing,
Handmade Artists' Shop

The Funny One said...

Well put sark, but you left out the fact that the high-volume sellers forgot to mention how they benefit from several months/yrs of FREE advertising & promos by Etsy that no one else gets. I'd love to see the dollar value of all those freebies in print.

Entitlement is an-Etsy induced phenomenon that will not disappear with Relevancy because Etsy's insistence on playing faves screws Relevancy - it does not and will never work like relevancy on any other site.

HeyMichele got her 2 cents in (what took her so long?) because she can't resist throwing fuel on the fire. Several odd posts in the dozens of new threads on this issue have Admins running off their mouths about their "personal opinions" - forget any direction, rules or godforbid simple logic.

Is RW on an extended vacation?

Etsy is a popularity contest run amok with Admins at the head of the line, top sellers are running 2nd. Etsy creates monsters in its own image - and the Faves Game is more alive and more blatant than ever before.

TenCent said...

The renewing bubble has popped, and I for one am glad. It was a ripoff. If the search changes back to most recently listed, it will only be because Etsy needs more $$ in its coffers.

Editing works just as well as relisting, and creating new things works best. Who'da thunk it?

RRobin said...

Did anyone else notice in the course of doing a search that the same item now shows up on multiple pages as you search -- even when it's not listed multiple times?

This is what "relevancy" means to Etsy:

"See this? See this? Are you sure you didn't see this? We know you want this, so here it is again. And again. No, really, LOOK AT THIS!!"

Eve said...

I am disgusted with Etsy's recent actions. After a lot of legwork, I found their phone number. I plan on calling them about this tomorrow. My hope is that others will do the same. Maybe we can make them change this before our business die completely. (If anyone has other Etsy numbers, please post them.)
Etsy Labs phone number:
(718) 855-7955

Eve said...

I just found Etsy's fax number. So if you don't think they'll answer our phone messages, you can go this route (I tried it, and it does go through nicely.) Fax your disapproval!
Etsy Labs fax number:
(718) 855-7956

Tenny said...

Whatever algorhyhtm SP? they're using for relevancy seems to have a heavy weight to Newly Listed. Surprise surprise.
Also, I have more hearts on items and shop than ever and sales have stopped. I have no idea how this mousetrap works, but being unemployed, I need those one or two daily sales.
And yes I agree about the new way to title and tag. I saw nothing new, but being "allowed" to say exciting things like "light brown".
And that bit about their extensive research shows that relevancy actually helps buyers find things is embarassing. I tried to like watch a like video ummm, like with XO Danielle ummm like, like teaching how to like add words like girl and toddler like. How does that ninny have a job and I don't?
I'm starting to bang my head on my desk. time to go!

Anonymous said...

Just when you think the chaos and bullshit might end, something else pops up. Sales are down and have been down for a very long time for many of us. My vintage shop has been pretty much dead in the water for about a year because of all the changes they made last time. Much more and I will be off the site completely.

for the hell of it said...

@Tenny and any other person still trying to sell on this site;

My best advise is to do your own research independantly of Etsy. These dweebs DO NOT know what they are talking about, and it is BEYOND EVIDENT that there is no one sufficiently concerned about proper training and any level of acceptable job performance.

I sell vintage and have had to make almost impossible choices in how I go about listing my items since day one. Etsy seems hell bent upon re inventing the listing procedure at every single turn. The choices that are now "drop down" are STILL WTF moments every single time I attempt to do a listing.

The attributes are a joke, and I have no clue whether what I chose is effective or not.

I have found though, that since my perma-mute I am calmer because I have been cutoff from the never ending angst and confusion called the Etsy forums. I mark announcements and pertinant threads regarding changes, but for the most part am tending to ignore them.

I figure out changes after the fact, and do the best that I can with them. <---- LESS STRESS.

I refuse to do ANYTHING in the promo arena, and have learned to accept that any sales are essentially a lucky roll of the dice.

I never bought into the 20 cent renew slot machine and maintain a sales percentage, listing/renew budget.

I don't know if how I've always done listings just happens to jiv with the relevency crap, but my views have begun to re-creep up and my bounce rate is dropping and my hearts are increasing.

I am also enjoying the freak out of previously super star sellers, and unfortunately THAT is because I was 1 of the "official 700" whose shops died, in the sring of 2010. My hopes here, ar that one day, THE ENTIRE SELLER BASE, will wake up and truly smell the coffee, and realise that the only way, WE will ever have any real say in how the TRUE largest investor group's money gets allowcated, is by banding together is a solidified front.

WE as an aggragate pour more $$$$ into these wretched people's hands than all the VC money combined!

AND until ALL the sellers learn to dodge the site sponsered forum infighting, among the "grumpy haters and the cupcake brigade", I'm not seeing any real progress, for US, the largest investor.

The Funny One said...

Relevancy on Etsy is a misnomer because Etsy still controls all promotions. Their faves dominate they way they treat all search algorithms - years of promoting the same shops and limited product-types push those results to the top of any queue.

The persistent complaints about Relevancy proves that Etsy's select promo policies have a huge effect on all Search results.

Posting "Most Recent" large photos of products at the top of the "Relevancy" Search page keeps the re-listing money engine running; lots of sellers who regularly relist are still doing it.

What ticks me off is that Etsy still hasn't issued a seller email that details Relevancy, tagging and titles - it smells like Admins are waiting on the sidelines before they start hitting sellers with "violations" -- watch for it, it's coming.

Violations which, btw, are the direct result of false, bad, and misleading info posted by Admins in the Forums on a daily basis. There are more Admins swimming around the threads than actual sellers!

Stifler's Mom said...

Etsy is going to replace the income they made by renewing by offering targeted ads to sellers.

That's what all the Facebooking, circling, clicking etc has been for - data mining what people like to look at and buy.

It will work like Google ads (which is why they recently hired a former Google bigshot) viewers will see ads on the side that match what they have liked and clicked on previously.

It may end up being money better spent for sellers, since renewing was a crapshoot that only put them at the top of the list for a minute or so.

felice said...

I had stopped caring about Etsy last March (when the privacy scandal looked like it would soil the reputation of the site forever). I had a minimal amount of listings (for buyers who knew me and had Etsy accounts and refused to buy from me on other sites -- oh, well, you can't teach old dogs new tricks).

The views were dismal because I wasn't promoting anywhere (what was the point when Etsy's CEO was pointing a knife at an interviewer and Regretsy was continuing to have a field day with resellers -- not to mention Glamour-gate?)

But as soon as they switched to relevancy my views sky-rocketed from under ten a day to around fifty a day (with sales from strangers -- what an anomaly!). That was huge for me and I began to take a little more interest in the changes at Etsy and was happy to see they had a new CEO.

So, the next thing to fix at Etsy is the front page favoritism and finds. There is a new CEO and now there needs to be a replacement for the admin who does the front page and finds. This is bringing the site down too. Buyers do not want to see the same things over and over and over and over and over and over. Many buyers do not even look at the finds any more and have even remarked that the person doing the picking must be featuring her extended family in them.

Anonymous said...

I am closing my shop at the end of the month due to all the stupid changes. I use to sell over $4000 each month in my supply shop and it has dropped by a third and now closing in on a half.

I do not sell china crap, but handmade supplies, but the new 'relevency' search has blocked all my items in seaches. Now people only get garbage from china mass companies in searches.

God, I so hate etsy and wish them nothing, but 'bad' in their financial future!

Anonymous said...

Please keep the power seller bashing to a minimum. Big etsy shops/sellers don't need to renew a lot, because they sell a lot!

That pays for all the etsy spending that etsy does to benefit, staff (I mean evil staff), etc. If etsy screws the big shops, they will go someplace else (many already have) and etsy will lose all that $ they spend and small shops just don't make enough to pay their bills.

I don't always like my few pieces of jewerly in the middle of the powere sellers, but I am glad they are there paying.

Virginia said...

I'm wondering if it might possibly be possible that relevancy might make something a little better at Etsy - at least for supply sellers like me - for whom relevancy is really the one and only key. I left Etsy over a year ago when search stupidity crushed my shop and admin refused to give honest answers about changes they had made for over 4 months. Now, I don't really want to walk into that abusive relationship again but if there's a chance I could make some cash . . . . I just don't know.

SolKat said...

dont even get me started on HATING ETSY Right now. Im SO ANGRY i dont even need to tell you revelancy was one thing new ceo another but now showing up on 2 shops in GOOGLE uk and signed up out of 100% sales to NONE in the past month to paying for their advertising. I did. And now im advertising in the UK! :(

Anonymous said...

what the heck?! pay to have your "items", viewed at the top of searches? ..instead of relisting at a low price of .20 cents, you'll spend even more now to be seen.

Thanks etsy.

Handmade Artists' Forum and Shop said...

Amen :D

Anonymous said...

I guess Etsy is all fixed now with "relevancy" and their ads since we haven't heard anything since August.

foxaz said...

I miss you gals. Is everything OK?

Dee said...

Why is no one commenting about the latest Etsy CRIMES AGAINST SELLERS!!! Things have only gotten worse since the last post here!!!

Toynga said...

All I can say is I'm so Happy I found this Blog!

Me said...

Between Etsy's new social look and changes, my shop has come to a standstill. Plus the fact that Artfire dumped all the free shops (during the worst recession in 75 years) I basically have so little internet presence, I feel like just giving up.

for the hell of it said...

I guess that it's

RIP Etsy Bitch.


Anonymous said...

where did you guys go??

Anonymous said...

Want to capture someone's attention?...


Stop the cussing, because when someone reads your Blog all they really see is the foul language. Your message falls on deaf ears.

You can get more bees to honey than you can vinegar.

When you cuss you place yourself at the same level of those you're complaining about. Rise above them and stop the cussing. It's class or crass. You decide.

RRobin said...

What happened to EtsyBitch? There is still so much to bitch about!

Anonymous said...

Dear Etsy Bitch where have you gone? There's a bunch of *VINTAGE* Etsy sellers waiting for you to bust the most recent snark coming from Do you know what they've done to vintage sellers? Well they've treated them as less important you see, by releasing their android phone application wherein the default search is all guess what, handmade. Vintage sellers pay the same for listings and shop fees, but don't get the same exposure. We beg Etsy to at least allow people looking for a vintage toaster to find one for christs sakes. We have all spoken out but are in fear of them shutting down our shops and so we suck it up and have had the WORST SALES MONTH EVER. Christmas is when we blow out, we are all very slow. Look in teh forums, the vintage community has had the lowest sales ever, and if you look on the discussion forums you will find this to be true. Etsy bitch needs to get on this story.

Sick of Etsy said...

Where have you gone Etsy bitch? There is a new story breaking on the forums and in the vintage community. Etsy has alienated it's vintage sellers by release of the new iphone etsy application (android?) which gives the storefront showing handmade and searching handmade, nothing else. On top of that, Vintage Sellers have had their worst month ever, usually blowing out christmas time sales, they aren't. Look in some of the forums they are all scared to say anything for fear of their shops being closed, but if they pay the same as a handmade seller for fees and shop listings why arent they treated the same? the forums indicate that etsy wants to get back to it's roots by promoting handmade but come on, then why do you allow vintage on your site/ when will they learn that someone who buys vintage kitchen items also buys handamde, it's the whole martha stewart shabby chic community for christs sake. we need you etsy bitch. where are you?