Have you ever considered how much Etsy profits off the Etsy sellers’ hard work? I’m not talking about 20 cent listing fees, or 3.5% transaction fees, or 3+% direct checkout fees (or the interest on the dc funds), or paid ad fees. I am talking about the profit Etsy makes from sellers promoting outside of Etsy, creating treasuries or favoriting items, providing customer support to Etsy customers. Etsy sellers spend their valuable time working free for Etsy.
Every time a shop owner promotes his or her shop outside of Etsy, they are promoting Etsy as well. In some instances, like bringing buyers in the door, shop owners may as well be promoting Etsy only, as Etsy uses every opportunity to redirect customers to other shops: in the checkout process, with an after-sale email, both often advertising competitors. Do you realize the advertising dollars saved by this multi-million (or is it billion?) dollar company by relying on its’ sellers for this free promotion and advertising? And what does the seller get in return? The redirect! (Oh, and don’t forget the Etsy Ambassador
ponzi scheme program where Etsy sellers can earn less than minimum wage $8.00 in free listings for bringing in new sellers.) Think about how many promotional hours are spent weekly by millions of Etsy users. Think of those hours in terms of dollars. Cha-ching, cha-ching! That is tax-free money in the big Etsy pocket!
Whenever Etsy sellers create treasuries and/or favorite another sellers’ items, this creates the front page phenomenon, expertly explained by EtsyTricksy. No dollars to an expensive outside agency for this work! Cha-ching, cha-ching!
The real biggie is the money saved by providing little-to-no customer support. To provide real customer support, especially phone support, would cost Etsy some big, big bucks, in the form of physical space, wages, taxes, insurance, etc. Why do they need to spend their money on such things when they can rely on Etsy sellers to provide support, 24/7? Etsy banks on sellers graciously wanting to help others out, and doing so freely in the forums. Why do you think the forums exist at all??? It isn’t to give buyers and sellers a voice on Etsy issues, or to give Etsy users a place to question Administration. It is there solely for the purpose of customer support. Take a look at the forums and add up those manhours. Cha-ching, cha-ching, cha-ching!
While the deep Etsy pocket continues to fill with dollars, Etsy sellers are losing out through continuous declines in views and sales, and by working free for a multi-million dollar company. The only ones who stand to gain are the Etsy employees (the paid variety) and investors. Oh. And don’t forget the resellers and the 1%, neither of whom have time for promoting or assisting others.