Etsy Q&A 2023 | Questions on Pricing, Sales, Listings, Shipping, T&Cs

Jul 29, 2023

I recently held a live Q&A and as usual I LOVED it! So I thought I would share with you some of your top questions I answered in that live. 

How can I price commission pieces? 

So you are still going to have all the usual costs including 

  • postage 
  • packaging
  • usual fees for your sales and marketing
  • oops buffer (just in case)

I would probably start with perceived value pricing and thinking about how many hours it takes you to make the product, so if it takes you 10 hours I would bump that up to 11 or 12 hours just to account for  things like if you get sick or there is a delay etc. So work out what you pay yourself per hour, ask yourself the question -  if you were employing yourself to make your products how much would you pay?  If for example you are making a custom portrait people literally pay thousands for these, that type of thing is definitely a perceived value pricing so think what people will be willing to pay for something that is custom just for them. 

Is it ok to change an Etsy listing if its had a few sales before but not had any in a while? 

This can depend on what you mean by a while? If you haven't any sales in say 1 month I would say leave it but if it hasn't had sales in over 6 - 8 months I would probably change it but if it has had sales I would probably leave it. 

I have some listing to add to my Etsy store, should I list them all in one go or should I spread them all out? 

What I tend to do is the drip feeding method. Where I will  drip it one or two per day depending on how many you have, because what tends to happen is over time your listings come to maturity within the search in the order that you listed them. For example Etsy takes 30-90 days to rank your listing so if you listed one on the 1st then the 2nd and the 3rd and so on they will then be ranked on Etsy on 30th, then 1st and 2nd and so on. 

Etsy words to avoid in your listings 

Etsy received feedback from everyone saying they want Etsy to do more about the listings that are not handmade, are using illegal terms and things so they are now doing that but its does mean that it is AI doing it so thats why things are being flagged. One thing I did get a lot of from people was well Steph I've been using this term for ages and its been fine, and you may continue to be fine BUT there is that risk factor right and I would much rather tell you guys and share the tables I have on my IG account so you are aware before your listings get deactivated or you get a cease and desist notice.  Follow me on IG @handmadebosses

I have noticed a flurry of Etsy orders since the new listing update - Does this sound like its linked to the update or  have I just done something right over the weekend?

It doesn't sound like its something because of the update it could just be that you have done something right! For students in the HBSA you can go to your data sheet in phase 3 to check what you have done and make notes on what has worked for you. 

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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 Is it ok to have some items that have FREE postage and some that have a postage cost you can't absorb into the product cost? 

It depends how much really! My general rule of thumb is fi the postage is less than £10 put it in your item cost, if it's more than that you could maybe subsidise it by adding say £10 into the item cost and then have the rest of the cost in the postage. As long as you can still remain competitive with other people in your space perhaps that charge £15 postage but you only charge £5 I think thats the general rule of thumb.  

Selling themed products without licensing? 

I sell children's fabric for those making kids clothing and I have a licensed barbie fabric from a reputable company so can I sell this? The problem is as far as I know, I am not a legal expert so you can take everything I say around this with a pinch of salt but as far as I am aware the license would need to be with your business name to be able to sell this type of product. If you go to the biggest fabric wholesaler that sells licensed fabrics the license is to them and NOT to you and thats the difference. But again I'm not a legal expert so check it out but as far as I am aware thats how it works. 

Is it obvious if a listing is not ok with Etsy? Do they give a warning or send an email? 

The way it is currently working is, they are just closing listings and sending you an email saying this is something we dont allow, this is this this is that, So I guess they will warn you by closing the listings, whether you know what that warning was for or not is something else as they are testing the AI feature. If you guys get a listing that you think shouldn't be take off. you NEED  to contact them!! This is an AI tool that is learning and it is only going to learn if you guys say to Etsy HEY we think this is wrong! This is the only way that AI will learn if we tell them something is wrong. 

If shop sections work like tags dos this mean if I change them affects the algorithm? 

I would say no! If you need to organise the way your shop looks I would say this is more important so your customers can shop easier. Etsy does say it doesn't crawl your entire shop. However I think this may change maybe next year and I think they will say they crawl your shop and categories it inline with what you sell - Amazon and Ebay for example already do this. So I think they will crawl your shop and categorise it, so say you sell art prints this will be your expertise if you like so if you then start selling earrings the earrings may not sell as well because Etsy sees you as an Art expert for example - They have NOT come out and said this, this is just what I think may happen. 

Why might my Etsy shop be put in payment reserve?

Etsy have released a really helpful guide fro sellers all about shop reserves and why this may have happened to your shop here's the link to the announcement. Etsy Payment Reserves

Some of the most common reasons are 

  • sudden sharp increase in orders 
  • orders not having tracking details 
  • orders not shipped on time 
  • increase in refunds 
  • if you are a new shop 

What can I do if I am placed on reserve? 

  • check your emails as this is where Its will communicate with you 
  • increase your dispatch times if needed 
  • add tracking numbers or use Its labels 
  • respond to all messages from customers quickly

Will the Star Seller badge get you seen more in Etsy search? 

At the moment they are saying no, it doesn't affect the search. However when it can affect things is, if you look on the Etsy search, customers can now alter their search to only include shops with Star Seller in a similar way that they can filter to only show listings with free shipping for example. There is also a little purple Star Seller badge displayed in the listings results for those shops with star seller - so I think this is because they are starting to ramp things up and Star Sellers might start getting seen higher in searches. 

How do you copy listings without raising suspicion? 

So this is something I get a lot fo and it surprise. When you go to any clotting shop but lets say when you go into New Look you will notice  the same items in different places in the store, lets say there is a green dress, you will see it in dresses,  you see it at the front box the store if its new in, you will probably see it in the green clothing section too. So. having one product being in different places works really really well. So if you are worried about having the same products in your Etsy shop try adding it to different sections like the big box stores do. 

Short answer no people will not be suspicious but do make sure you have a good spread of products in different sections in your shop so its organised to help your shoppers navigate your products. 

Will changing my photos and prices affect ranking? 

No it won't, I actually have a really great video with all the things you can and cant change without affecting your ranking, you can watch that here.

Is it too early to start preparing the Christmas? 

Summer is a great time to start your Christmas prep, in fact we are going to be starting our Christmas prep course around July! 


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