In case you missed my article I did for Lollipops blog, here it is. I hope you find this helpful for shopping on Etsy this Christmas season!
In case you are unfamiliar with Etsy, it is a website that hosts individual stores for handmade businesses, making it easy for you to shop anything and everything handmade in one location! With the holidays approaching quickly, I decided to share some tips with you when it comes to buying on Etsy.
The first thing I recommend when you find a shop you love on Etsy, is to take a look at their shop announcement and shop policies.
Includes various information that the shop owner wants their customers to know about them. A business description, lead time or networking sites are a few things that could be included in their announcement.
Includes information about that individual shops payment forms, shipping, refunds and exchanges, sales taxes and other important information regarding the sale of their items.
The next thing I would look for in the shop would be the location of the business. One of the great things about Etsy is there are sellers from around the world. Not only can you find great product made locally, but also something handmade with the style and culture from someone half way around the world! With that being said, international shipments can take up to 14 days to reach its destination depending on how far the package is going and the customs process for that country. If you fall in love with an item in Japan, allow an extra week or so for the item to reach you!
Once you have looked over a shop and read their announcement and policies, you can contact (tab found under location) them with any additional questions you might have. For example, if you would like a tracking number included with your order but do not see if they offer delivery confirmation in their policies or announcement, contact the owner to see if this is something they can provide.
The last step (and sometimes the most important for the shop owner) is to complete the feedback for the shop. I recommend doing this once you receive your item in the mail. If you had a pleasant shopping experience, love the product even more in person or just want to thank the shop owner, you can include that in the feedback portion. You can also include an appreciation photo of your new product in the feedback section or through a private Etsy message!
*If the sale did not go smoothly for any reason please contact the shop owner and let them know any problems or issues before leaving negative feedback. Hopefully any issues can be worked out or an explanation given to the customer. Once a feedback (positive or negative) is left for the shop, it can not be changed!!
I hope these steps make an easy and enjoyable Etsy shopping experience for you this holiday season! There is an unbelievable amount of talent and creativity on Etsy and I recommend you looking there first for unique and quality items to give as gifts before shopping large corporate stores. While handmade gifts might take a little bit longer to make, they are exciting to give and you know you are supporting small businesses that put a lot of love into their products!
Thank you and Happy Holidays!