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Sellers are worried about the 'Amazon-ification' of Etsy and are considering other platforms

๐ŸŒˆ Abstract

The article discusses the concerns of Etsy sellers about the "Amazon-ification" of the platform, as it has become increasingly crowded with mass-produced and dropshipped items, making it harder for handmade and personalized goods to stand out. The article explores the challenges faced by Etsy sellers, including increased competition, SEO troubles, and rising fees, leading some to consider alternative platforms.

๐Ÿ™‹ Q&A

[01] Etsy's Changing Selling Landscape

1. What are the key concerns of Etsy sellers regarding the platform's changing landscape?

  • Sellers feel the platform has become crowded with accounts selling mass-produced, dropshipped, or low-priced items, making it harder for them to compete with handmade and personalized goods
  • Some sellers believe Etsy is operating more like Amazon, moving away from its original vision of being a platform for artisanal and handcrafted goods
  • Sellers are concerned about the number of seemingly mass-manufactured items on the platform, which they believe violate Etsy's policies

2. How has Etsy responded to these concerns?

  • Etsy says it considers it critical to protect the integrity of its marketplace and has removed listings that violate its policies after being flagged by Modern Retail
  • Etsy claims it has increased the number of items it takes down and the number of sellers it has suspended for violating its rules, as mentioned in its upcoming Transparency Report

3. What are Etsy's policies regarding handmade and dropshipped items?

  • Etsy requires sellers of handmade items to label them as such, and permits dropshipping as long as the dropshipped items meet certain requirements (e.g., not listed as "handmade" if the seller did not make or design at least part of the product)
  • Etsy only allows the resale of vintage goods and craft supplies, but Modern Retail found listings for fast-fashion items that were later removed

[02] Seller Concerns about SEO and Fees

1. What are the key SEO-related challenges faced by Etsy sellers?

  • Some sellers use "keyword stuffing" in their product listings, which Etsy has acknowledged as a problem and advised against
  • Sellers who don't understand SEO well find their items getting pushed to the bottom of search results, while those who know how to optimize their listings gain more visibility

2. What are the main concerns of Etsy sellers regarding fees?

  • Etsy increased its transaction fee from 5% to 6.5% in 2022, which some sellers say negatively affects their ability to make a profit
  • Etsy also charges a $0.20 listing fee for each item, which some sellers find problematic, especially if they don't sell the item
  • Some sellers have moved to alternative platforms like Depop, Teleport, and Jamble, which have different or no seller fee structures

[03] Seller Responses and Alternatives

1. How are some Etsy sellers responding to the platform's changes?

  • Some sellers have stopped selling on Etsy, are considering leaving, or have stopped buying gifts on the platform
  • Other sellers, like Danna Crawford, have had positive experiences and been able to sell items faster on Etsy compared to other platforms

2. What alternative platforms are Etsy sellers considering or using?

  • Sellers are exploring platforms like Depop, Teleport, Jamble, Michaels MakerPlace, Artisan Cooperative, and, which often have different fee structures or a stronger focus on handmade and personalized goods
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