Josh Silverman, CEO Etsy: Please Listen and Act. #EnoughEtsy
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Recently, the online handmade site Etsy appointed a new CEO, Mr. Josh Silverman. In that time the sellers have experienced many unwanted changes. These changes have resulted in a major drop in views, sales and overall confidence in Etsy. Etsy is a site that provides a service to handmade artisans around the globe, this service is not free. Sellers are required to pay various fees, such as listing fees, promoted listings (optional) and a percentage goes to Etsy if an item is sold. And last, but certainly not least there is another fee for Etsy Payments. The sellers are Etsy's customer, sellers aren't given these services free, they pay for them, all of them. Sellers pay fees whether they make a sell or not that month. You see the buyers are seller’s customers, they purchase an item from any one of Etsians talented artisans. What seems to be lost is that the sellers are YOUR customers, we pay Etsy for a service. Without the sellers, there wouldn't be an Etsy. And as Etsy's customers and I think I can speak for quite a few sellers when I say these changes have been a disaster for so many shops. Many long term shop owners are leaving Etsy because they feel continually ignored.The forums are filled with posts that according to the sellers are by and large being ignored by Etsy and you Mr. Silverman. including the new CEO Mr. Josh Silverman. Your lack of response is deafening.
- Why aren't sellers given a choice concerning seller tools? If they would like to keep the old seller tools or go with the new tools. The old stats page were a dream compared to the new one. Sellers only needed to access one page and view all of their stats and information. One page. It allowed sellers more time to work on their shops or whatever needed attention, it was efficient. The new seller tools are a nightmare of clicks to Neverland. I say Neverland because buyers and sellers alike voiced concerns that they never find what they are looking for. It isn't efficient. We know having a choice can be done because until 6/5 everyone had that choice.The 3 to 5 hour delay/update is beyond asinine. We need real time data, not information that has been delayed. A lot of sellers used the real time data in the old seller tools to decide what to push that day or to list something because of our real time stats. Just because people can make changes, doesn't mean they should.
- Why are programmers allowed to run LIVE tests on shops without their knowledge? These tests have caused harm to many seller’s bottom line. The fact that sellers aren't notified is inexcusable.
- Why hasn't an apology been given for adding obscene, vulgar and racist tags to the market pages? It took a full 4 days of the sellers demanding answers in the forums before Etsy acknowledged it. Once they did cop to it they concluded the test was "positive". How could a test that uses these words be "positive"? These words offend just about every group of society. Yet, no explanation or apology other than it was a test has ever been given. Sellers work hard on their shops, branding and make a name for their products. Why would a page for children's onesies show in their tags butt plug, sporty slut, Quaker factory anyway?
Why doesn’t Etsy have a customer service department or CSR #800? In fact, there is no number to call when there is a question or problem. When an Etsian has a problem, or question it's most likely answered in the forums. The Etsy community is an amazing group of people. They're always around to give suggestions, instructions or answers to questions. That's all well and good, but Etsians don't work for Etsy, Etsy works for us. WE pay you to have a viable site to sell our creations. After all the recent changes, if you were really in tune with your sellers you would now buyers and sellers have complained about this for years. This would be a welcomed change.
- Etsy sellers were informed that if they didn't switch to accept Etsy Payments by 5/31, their shops would be suspended on 6/1. Sellers were no longer allowed to be a PayPal only shop. By 6/2 there were at least 20k shops closed and counting. There are many reasons signing up to EP is problematic. Etsy has no customer service department or number to call should a seller need help. If you purchase an item through EP, the earliest a seller has access to those funds is the next business day. Only, if the deposit meets the minimum dollar amount. It's quite possible sellers will have to ship the item before they have access to the payment. Etsy is forcing sellers to sign up with EP, but there is no phone number to call to assist the sellers. In contrast when a purchase is made through PayPal its immediately deposited into the buyer's account 24/7/365. Whether its a holiday or the weekend, immediately! PayPal also offered loans to sellers based on what their sales were. This will greatly reduce their ability to get any loans going forward. If this is about buyers having a more cohesive payment choice, why wasn't Etsy Wholesale required to change? Aren't they a part of Etsy? PayPal offered the same Payment Options without needing a PayPal account, anyone can checkout as a guest. It's really about Etsy making more money as they should, its a business. But, they shouldn't be making it by nickle and dimming the very people who bring in the revenue to Etsy. If it weren't for the sellers attracting buyers to the Etsy platform, seriously doubt Etsy corp would be in a new 200k+ square foot building with all the perks.
Why have sellers views and sales taken such a quick and dramatic nosedive. It happened right around the time Etsy began messing with the search engine and unfortunately it hasn't been the same since. Please don't insult sellers intelligence by suggesting we need to work on SEO or our listings in general. We know that is not the problem. These tests have been ruining REAL people's lives, they have families to support and bills to pay. But, Etsy thinks its okay to run tests that directly and negatively affect a sellers bottom line? Many shops sales, views and inquiries have had a drop of up to 80% right after another one of Etsy's tests. There is a thread about this with over 13k posts, but again no one from corporate has said a word. The same sellers that MADE Etsy are leaving because of all the new changes that are harmful to their businesses. We're talking successful stores that have been on Etsy since the beginning, they are obviously masters at online selling. If you truly want Etsy to be successful, as Etsians do. Please listen to the Etsy community, they have their finger on the pulse of this site.
- Recently, Etsy has been running another "experiment" with shops. When a potential buyer clicks on a seller item, listed across the top of a seller's page are listings from other shops. In other words, the item that the sellers paid to list and in some cases paid an additional fee to promote has another sellers items being promoted as well. Unfortunately, it is happening internally also through search. At this time the only way to find a way around this is by inserting your shop name in your links like this: www.etsy.com/yourshopname /listing. Another slap in the face to Etsy sellers. This will be very time consuming to say the least, but the only fix it seems.
What are you going to do about our concerns Mr. Silverman?
Mr. Silverman, this petition was started to bring attention to our concerns. It would be fantastic if you respond and at the very least let Estians know that you care about their concerns and voices. Etsy is a beautiful site made up of talented artists around the world that share Etsy's original vision of authentically handmade items sold on a site we love(d). The Etsy community is like a huge family, sellers don't just want success for themselves, but for all sellers. That's why they go the extra mile to answer questions, critique shops, give suggestions, etc. WE are Etsy! It is the sellers that know what is going on, what works and what doesn't. Sellers are a wealth of information and can teach corporate Etsy a thing or too about making the site a success. Instead of tapping into that insight, Etsy began making sudden changes that have been harmful to the sellers and their shops. Instead of making changes that weren't asked for, but directly affect our businesses... go to the forums. Hopefully, you will read, learn and listen to our concerns. Etsy's community is the best anywhere, hands down. Etsians LOVE Etsy and want to see it become the successful viable site it once was. Etsians are wise enough to know that we must all work together as one to make it successful. Many have put their blood, sweat and tears into making their shops better which also makes Etsy better. Its gut wrenching watching something you have worked so hard to perfect, have the rug pulled out from under you with no explanation. You see if Etsians had an explanation, they will work to fix it, change or work around it. Its like watching a train wreck. It's bittersweet to remember the good old Etsy and at the same time wondering how do we get back there? Can we get back there? Thank you for your time.
This does not speak to every Etsy seller. If this hasn't been your journey on Etsy, fantastic. Wishing you continued success. But, this petition is for the sellers who have various concerns that aren't being addressed or acknowledged. Please honor and respect that and keep this space as positive as possible.
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