Addressing the BIG Etsy rumours of 2023

Aug 24, 2023

So today's blog is a little different to normal and we will be looking at some of the rumours going around from other Etsy gurus and to me and the team it felt a little bit like scaremongering. So today I wanted to share my take on it and the best way to do that as a coach is to empower you guys to move forward. 

So let's talk about Etsy and a few things that have been happening recently that I dont really agree with. Things like payment reserve, listings being taken down, shops being closed down and a lot of it, if you guys have pieced together the clues, is a lot to do with AI. Although reserves where happening before the whole AI thing exploded it definitely increased, and it wasn't just Etsy. It was Amazon Handmade, Stripe, NOTH and lots of other platforms.

I dont agree with everything that happened with the payment reserves thing, I found it awful that people weren't getting the money that they had made and it was just a bit of a hot mess for a week or 2!

I think the reason they did that is because they had a lot of customer complaints and not just your usual customer complaints but people taking screenshots of shop names and messages and calling them out on the likes of social media, so I think the reason they started to implement this auto payment reserves is because they were getting a lot of complaints quite quick and they were like ok lets be responsive and I believe this is when they upped the criteria and people were getting more payment reserves within this 2/3 week influx.  

Payment Reserves

What I would like to say is all market places do it to some extent, I think it does border on the money laundering laws and that kind of stuff. What you dont want as a market place is someone to come onto the platform, make a bunch a of sales, flip and run and people are never going to get their products. So from that kind of point I can see why maybe for newer shops they may want to see how things go.  

It can feel really unfair for established shops who maybe got featured in a blog, were on TV for example and their sales increase and boom they get hit with a payment reserve.

Its not fair to shops that are in good standing, shops that have never done anything wrong and I do believe this is where the whole AI thing maybe went a bit wrong.  

BUT I do think that Etsy have started to pivot and change, I don't think they are back tracking because payment reserves are still a thing. I think they are just lowering some of the criteria.  

Etsy : Making reserves more dynamic:

  • Decreasing percentage of funds 
  • improving communication to sellers who are newly placed in payment reserves. 
  • making adjustments that are beyond the sellers control. 

Anyway what I will say, this is really positive as these changes happened within a few days from when this thing blew up! For a big company like Etsy that's a really big positive step.

Etsy listens to feedback so if you have feedback on how they should be dealing with certain things like this then feedback because they listen and they act!

So what can we do about Payment Reserves 

At some point you will encounter something that will impact on your profits. Whether it's a slow sales week or month, you paid out to be at a craft fair and it didn't work out, you have a payment reserve on your account. There will be something in your business that will impact on your profits so what can we do about it. 

  • Keep some business runway money to the side - no matter how small just what you can afford for when you may need it to continue running your business when your profits are hit. 

There are only ever 3 constants in life! Birth and Death and in between that, is Change. 

BOSS! Do you want to make more sales on Etsy? Then you need to increase your conversion rate! DON'T PANIC! I'm going to explain exactly how to do that in my FREE 90 minute masterclass - The 3 Step System To Skyrocket Your Etsy Conversion Rate πŸ™ŒπŸ»

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So in your business there will be changes that happen, it doesn't matter where you sell, if you are on your own website , it doesn't matter if you are on Etsy, if you are on Amazon, NOTHS or selling at craft fairs, it doesn't matter,.The main constant is change. Ultimately, it is how you deal with change that is going to determine how little stress and how successful you as a business owner are going to be. It is how you deal with change that matters. 

Listings being taken down 

So this is all about things like copyright, intellectual property infringement, things like Disney, Marvel, Star Wars etc. However when I did a post on Instagram about some of the terms we had learnt had caused issues for people having their listings removed, it was really interesting because some where obvious like BARBIE but others where like WHAT, you cant use Smiley?

General rule of thumb, you can't put any trademarked terms in your listings, you cant have them in your titles, tags, descriptions, you cant put them in any part of your listing because they can come after the listing which is annoying, they can close down your shop and ban you from the platform and they can sue you. There have been instances where people have had an Etsy shop and their own website and they have been banned from Etsy and they have been sent letters and stuff because they have been selling copyrighted products on their website. It is still against the law wherever you sell copyrighted products. 

TOP TIP - If you are in doubt dot use! 

Recommended resources for checking if you can use a phrase / wording 

  • website 
  • intellectual property legal teams to answer your questions 

Another question I get a lot is, what if I am making something out of officially licensed Disney material - for example, in this instance the manufacturer has the license for the material, you DO NOT!  Therefore you cant say you have a license to use it to sell. (I am not a legal expert, this is something I have seen from working with thousands of Etsy shops). 

What can we do to help us keep moving forward with our business and goals? 

Well as I said earlier - feedback is so important so that the platform know you are unhappy with something and can possibly make changes just like Etsy recently did. 

BUT once you have given feedback, move on! Dont got to the forums and fall into the scroll hole looking at all the negative comments. It can impact on your mindset negatively. 

We want to look ahead at all the things we can do. Look at all the positives and impact the things we can control. 

Our new event, The 5 Day sellathon  challenge is a good example of keeping us positive in our business and working towards our goals. It's looking ahead! Its moving forward! Its something we can take control of! 

So what is a Sellathon?

A Sellathon is our 1 week to $1k challenge where we're giving you all the tools you need to make $1000 in your handmade business in a week.

...Did I mention this whole challenge is FREE!?

Sign up now to our free challenge click HERE 


If you'd prefer me to visually teach you this blog post, then you can watch it HERE.

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