Saturday, January 5, 2013
I Used to Sell on Etsy
Another friend got a warning from Etsy. She used licensed materials in her product, which is perfectly legal, but she got her first warning. I used to sell on Etsy too.
Etsy has so many sellers and so much money that they really don't care about you. They might pretend that they do, but they don't. When I was having problems with Etsy, I was advised to contact a certain person for help. My friends assured me that this person was wonderful and that he would certainly help me. But almost immediately after I wrote to him explaining my problem, instead of having the one troubled shop reopened, all of my 4 shops were shut down.
I personally didn't violate any policies, as a matter of fact, although my daughter was called out, she didn't either. She was legally reconstructing licensed t-shirts and vintage sheets. Etsy didn't even want to discuss it. They shut down her shop and my shop that had a link to her shop. Yes, if you have a link to a friend or family member, you can be shut down permanently too.
I reopened a shop in my name only, and that worked well, but my daughter couldn't, and she struggled for a long time. We were already struggling financially, so my Etsy bills were at the bottom of my list of priorities. Food for the kids, and shelter came first. I got seriously behind and Etsy shut down my shops and demanded payment in full to reopen my shops. I was already struggling, so there was no way I could pay it off, and there was no negotiating. They would not accept partial payment and a payment plan to reopen. They just wanted to get rid of me.
Fortunately I had another shop open with some of my product, and fortunately I had downloaded my CSV.
Although the information was a bit outdated, I was able to open a new shop at a new venue pretty quickly. As for traffic, that has taken a few years to develop again.
Now I have my own website. I have a shop page, that can be linked to any venue I want to sell at. Today it is Artfire.com, tomorrow it may be storenvy.com or the new Handmadeology.com marketplace.
I also know if you possibly can, download a CSV. You never know what can happen. People have had their shops shut down, just because Etsy suspects they are having items made outsourced. While some shops blatantly violate and still remain, others get shut down for nothing. Oh and by the way, discussing anything negative about Etsy publicly is a violation of their policy and a reason for getting your shop shut down too.
I used to sell on Etsy, and it is so liberating not to have those "evil eyes" watching my every move.