Thursday, April 27, 2023

3 Ways to be a Better Etsy Customer

3 Ways to be a better Etsy customer
If you are an Etsy customer, but you don't have a shop of your own, here are three things Etsy sellers wish you would do when shopping:
1. Fully read and understand the listing
Please take time to fully read and and understand the item description and to thoroughly look at the photos of what you are buying. Most sellers will try to describe and show the item as accurately as possible. If you receive something that is flawed and the flaw is easily visible in the photo and/or described in the text description, don't leave a bad review for something that was obvious before you purchased. If an item is described as three inches long but you want it to be five inches long, don't buy it expecting it to miraculously become five inches long. If you are looking for a book with a specific title, don't buy something that's close and then be mad when it's not the title you wanted when the photos and description clearly state the actual title.
In THIS Etsy shop, I sell handmade envelopes, most of which are made from a variety of magazine pages, many of which are quite thin. A buyer recently said she thought I might have magically figured out a way to make them thicker and left a bad review, fully knowing that the envelopes she would receive would be thin. Another buyer bought a book that looked sort of, kind of like a book they wanted and then they were mad and left a bad review because it wasn't the one they actually wanted...even though the title and other details were clearly on display. Don't be like these customers.
2. Understand shipping 
You've placed your order and are eagerly awaiting its arrival . . . but your package doesn't arrive as quickly as you expected. Or it gets stuck in a shipping facility for days on end. Or there's a natural disaster that disrupts package and mail delivery. Or there's a mail services strike in your country.
Once your seller drops off the package, shipping is out of our hands. It is your sellers responsibility to: 
  • Ship within a reasonable time frame
  • Have shipping time frames noted in their Etsy listings/shops
  • Submit a tracking number for all packages valued at over $10
It is NOT your seller's responsibility to make sure the mail or package carrier actually delivers within a certain time frame. Etsy gives you an *estimated* delivery window, but it's still in the hands of the carrier to actually deliver.
If you order an item on a Friday or Saturday or there's a holiday within a day or two of your order, give your seller an extra day or two for shipping to take into consider the weekend. We aren't Amazon. Most of us don't have the capacity to be shipping 24/7! 
Of course, if you item is delayed by the postal or other delivery service, it's perfectly OK to message the seller and ask about their policies. Some sellers may have policies listed related to extended delays. If not, ask. For polite customers and those that have reasonable expectations, I'm far more willing to make exceptions to my policies, including for shipping issues. 
3. Contact the shop owner before leaving a bad review
Before you leave a review of less than 5 stars, please reach out to the seller. Most of us want to make sure you're happy with your purchase. For the most part, my customers have been great and communicated well before, during, and after their purchases. However, a few have opted to leave a bad or subpar review, even acknowledging in private messages that they were at fault for not understanding a listing or expecting something other than what was advertised (see above!).
If you're an Etsy seller (or a seller on other platforms), what do you want your customers to know before they buy? What advice do you have for customers?
Check out my Etsy shops here:

Vintage goods, handmade stationery, crafting tools, and more at Shop the Junk Drawer

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