So it seems that lately the hot topic on the Etsy forums has been the issue of resellers and Etsy's stance concerning them.
I encourage you to read my take on the issue, and then leave a comment telling me your thoughts!
It seems that everywhere we turn, there are floods of resellers signing up on Etsy, and selling their not-so-handmade wares.
Now we all know that Etsy strictly forbids this, only making exceptions for supply and vintage sellers...or at least that's what the nice long page full of rules says anyway.
Well that's the real issue isn't it? Why is it that people flag shop after shop after shop after shop but they are rarely (with an exception here and there) actually taken down?
Oh yes, Etsy has a flagging system that is meant for us to use! Etsy clearly encourages it's members to USE this flagging system to report shops that are not abiding by the rules.
So is Etsy ignoring us?
Many theories about this are floating around the closed threads of the forums- they make more money on resellers, and therefor choose to ignore them...they are understaffed....there are so many they can't get to them all....etc.
One can really only speculate as to why Etsy does not make this issue a bigger priority. Because it is an issue that is growing rapidly. More and more resellers are drowning out the rest of us who are abiding by the rules.
With this kind of problem, potentially Etsy is going to go downhill very fast. Etsy will soon no longer be known as the high quality handmade site that it is meant to be. Newcomers to the site will find so many resellers they won't even realize the site is meant to be handmade, vintage, and supplies.
I personally am not ready yet to make any outright accusations againsts Etsy. I do believe that Etsy could use some more staff (and yes, there is also a chance they they are purposfully ignoring them, but I personally would like more evidence of this before making the acusation just yet).
The evidence that we do have is that Etsy is growing tremendously, making the work that much harder. If the amount of sellers grow, but the staff does not, well, that can be a real problem can't it?
Should Etsy hire more? Well most certainly! That's part of business. When a business grows, it grows! Period, end of centance!
If they want to prove they really do care about the reseller issue, they are going to have to start doing a good many things. 3 of those things would be:
1: Stop putting resellers on the front page. Yes, it happens from time to time. Whether the admin simply weren't paying attention and just grabbed treasuries that where visually appealing or not, I don't care. They need to pay attention to what they are doing.
2: The Etsy finds emails and storque have been known to have links to resellers! And I can't even think of an excuse for that one!
3: Take visibal action against resellers. Yes, if they want to convice me they care, they need to DO something. They need to sit down and come up with an effective strategy that will drive resellers away.
If they refuse to do this, more and more resellers will come. If they see other resellers getting away with it, than they will figure they can too. And the result will be a reseller takeover.
So now this leads us to some questions. If Etsy where to hire more staff, will this cause our fees to go up?
Possibley, though at the moment I can't see why. Remember, Etsy is GROWING, which means Etsy is taking in MORE money because of a larger amount of sellers. This alone should allow them to figure more staff into the budget.
But what if they successfully make the resellers go away? Won't this hurt their budget? Again, possibly, but resellers aren't the only new members joining Etsy. There are many other honest noble folk signing up on Etsy every day. I would think that figuring more staff into their budget would be a must!
Are resellers really that big of an issue? The answer is yes. The issue started out small, but it grew. And it will keep growing. I know from experience that a small insignificant problem can turn into a huge monster. I only wish Etsy would realize this!
For those of you who are resellers that may be reading this, I am not against you! But quite simply Etsy is not the place for you. Etsy is for handmade vintage and supplies.
If I want to buy from a reseller I go find one elsewhere.
So, I have stated my opinion, I'd love to hear your thoughts! What do you think? Is Etsy ignoring us? Do they think they are understaffed or do they think they can make more money by pretending to be understaffed?
What strategies should Etsy come up with to resolve the issue?
Leave a comment letting me know what you think!
And if you would like to read what Etsy says about resellers, visit that section on their Dos and Don'ts HERE.