I know many of you fellow potters are either shop owners on etsy or are curious, so I thought I’d just relate a recent experience. It seems like such a small issue. I would have been satisfied with an apology. But now I worry that this incident is indicative of a larger attitude by the etsy admin of disregarding the seller’s concerns. Fundamentally, it shows a lack of interest in addressing mistakes that are etsy’s responsibility. It calls into question the amount of trust sellers can have that etsy is faithfully doing its part. And unfortunately, something that could have been resolved with an apology is now blown out of all proportion for a number of us, and getting satisfaction is now a matter of principle.
Okay, so this is what happened: For everyone who posted a new item during a few hour window a few days ago, some glitch in their system prevented the keywords or categories we listed from showing up in searches. And since this is how customers find our shops this is not a minor issue. Okay, so its only 20 cents per item down the drain, but the point is that you had to check on your own to discover the failure. And to date they have not responded to inquiries that several of us have sent them seeking clarification. Isn’t that worrisome?
This seems like a straightforward issue of trust. If a restaurant sells a bacon cheeseburger but left out the bacon, what would the buyer expect? Sellers on etsy expect that their listings will be given the appropriate place in the search as part of doing business with etsy. This is the whole reason for relisting an item. 20 cents gets you back to the top of search lists and you are guaranteed to be seen in the order that an item was listed. But that’s not what our money bought us that day. We were sold something we never received, etsy pocketed the money, and they are pretending nothing out of the ordinary happened. So a number of us discovered the problem on our own, contacted etsy, and as of 4 days of waiting for a response from them, nothing as yet has been done about it.
So the question is whether any of us at any time in our dealings with etsy can take for granted that they are holding up their part of the relationship or are willing to make amends when sellers pay their money for services that are not rendered. 20 cents seems so small, but as a matter of principle this is huge. Do we always have to double check to make sure that etsy is listing our items and not just pocketing our money?
I can’t tell you how much time I had to spend going through the searches to see if my items were now being posted. And 4 email communications that have not been responded to leaves me feeling that these efforts have been wasted as well. I hate to say it, but my confidence in etsy is being rattled. Can any of us sellers afford to trust that they are doing right by us? Aren’t we entitled to believe that they will stand by their product/service? Should it be necessary for us to check up on them to make sure the bacon was in the bacon cheese burger?
What do you all think? Is this just me (and a handful of other sellers) going off the deep end again? Is this a serious problem for etsy? Has anyone else had similar issues? Do we have other alternatives besides etsy? Should the better business bureau get contacted? Because they have so far behaved as if they can ignore our concerns does it call into question all our dealings with etsy? Is this something we should make other sellers aware of? Spread the word? Take it to the streets? Artists and craftspersons have such a hard time making a living as it is, do we need to have venues like this take us so utterly for granted except as the poor benighted cash cows they can push around with impunity? Help me people. What do you all think?