Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Etsy Shop Closing

Those of you who are my Facebook friends or follow me on Twitter know that my Etsy shop will be closing soon. How soon? As soon as my last listing expires. The very last one would expire September 12th, but there are older listings that will expire only a few days from now, and will never be offered on my website in the future - i.e. the Zodiac perfumes.

Since Etsy seems like such a fun online community of crafters and artists and their shops - and since I have met some amazing people and very wonderful clients and customers as a result, I think it is important that you know why I made this decision. It has nothing to do with the people who frequent it. It has to do with how this site is managed and how Etsy treats their customers and sellers.

In all my 9+ years of business, I've been priding myself on giving the best customer service I can possible provide, even though I am a one woman show. When there is a problem with orders (i.e.: lost, stolen, or spillage en-route, which is inevitable when you make your living off volatile liquids) I always managed to successfully solve the problem to my customers satisfactory. And up till recently (being a bout a month ago), I've never had a single chargeback in my entire business history.

Unfortunately, when dealing with an intermediary website, some things go out of control. Especially when the said website has business practices of ignoring emails of both customers and their own sellers (which is how they make their money to begin with). The manner in which Etsy has handled customers inquiries (ignoring them) and how accountable they were in the process of chargeback negotiations (again: ignoring them, unless you count automated responses as dealing with the issues at hand) forces me to conclude that this is a risky place to be doing business at.

Ignoring customers and sellers inquiries and providing no information whatsoever to help me recover lost money AND merchandise from a customer who "changed their mind" about the order some 5 months later is what I experienced. And even though it is one very isolated and rare case, I'm at no financial position to take that risk of losing my business reputation and credit, not to mention the money and merchandise I've lost in this incident. And all because of Etsy's poor business practices.

And to top it off, it turns out that Etsy now allows sellers to list products that are not made by themselves, but by their "employees". This is where art and craftsmanship ends and sweatshop and commercialism begins in this website. I bet we will be seeing a lot of "crafts" with a littelg olden "Made in China/Taiiwan" stickers on them listed on Etsy soon.



At August 03, 2010 1:26 AM, Blogger womo531 said...

That is very sad to hear especially since Etsy had been such a great place for artisan crafts. I do hope that Etsy will improve their policies so that folks around the world can enjoy artisan products. btw, it is Taiwan.. not Taiiwan =P as I am a resident of this small island country~

At August 11, 2010 12:12 AM, Blogger Ayala Moriel said...

I think Etsy is changing in many ways. They even had a listing of a "vintage" iPhone from 3 years ago. So soon it probably won't be much different than eBay.

I think that soon enough everyone on Etsy who is serious about their art will be opening their own webstore, if they don't have one already.


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