The Current, delivered daily.
Etsy is rolling out a new app for sellers, as improvements continue in the months following a fee increase for the makers who offer handmade and vintage items through the marketplace.
The new Etsy Seller app is designed to replace the existing Sell on Etsy app, which will be sunsetted at the end of the year.
According to a post from the company, sellers can use the app to do the following:
- Check order statuses and get insights, like whether they have a repeat customer.
- Add photos and listing videos directly from a mobile device.
- Access order details when messaging a buyer and utilize saved replies to respond quickly to common questions.
- Purchase and print shipping labels via the app.
- Manage inventory and access detailed insights about their shop’s performance.
Etsy said it is making the changes based on requests from the seller community, and will continue to do so.
“The new Etsy Seller app’s technology enables us to more quickly roll out updates based on seller feedback, so we’ll continue to add features and iterate as we go,” wrote SVP of Product Kruti Patel Goyal. “We’ve already planned a number of exciting updates in the coming months.”
This is just the latest development in Etsy's seller community this year. In April, Etsy upped its transaction fee for its 5.3 million sellers from 5% to 6.5% – a 30% increase. At the time, the company said the increase came after its marketing spend nearly quadrupled. The company added that it was set to invest in seller features, including safety and IP protection measures, customer support and a Star Seller program that rewards sellers who have exceptional service with badges.
The fee increase was met with some derision that spilled out in public, as 5,000 sellers went on strike in April 2022. An organizer told the Daily Beast that the transaction fee increase was the “final straw” in relations with the platform. At the time, organizers said they were exploring the potential of forming a union.
For its part, Etsy said the fee increase was in part designed to reinvest back into the platform for sellers.
Along with the initial initiatives it announced, Etsy in June rolled out a purchase protection program designed to provide buyers with a full refund for items that didn’t match expectations. This included an investment of at least $25 million per year to cover refunds up to $250 for sellers.
"Easy issue resolution is a critical part of the ecommerce shopping experience, and our new Etsy Purchase Protection program aims to help make shopping on Etsy even more worry free," Etsy COO Raina Moskowitz said when the program was announced. "This program will help buyers feel more confident when they shop from small businesses on Etsy, while we invest directly in our sellers to provide them an important layer of assurance."
The protection program's details came in June, and it launches August 1. The app rollout is now arriving in July. Even as the strike moves into the rearview mirror, there are signs of continued efforts at Etsy's Brooklyn HQ to show that the marketplace is working to improve offerings for sellers.
Trending in Retail Channels
Walmart's third-party marketplace is reducing commission rates for 90 days.
To kick off 2023, Walmart’s third-party marketplace is continuing to make moves to expand the number of sellers on the platform with a savings incentive.
The news: Starting this week, Walmart Marketplace is running a Seller Savings promotion for 90 days that provides new sellers with a 25% commission rate reduction. This allows sellers to try new tools including:
- Walmart Fulfillment Services, which allows third-party sellers to tap Walmart’s logistics network, and in turn offer two-day shipping.
- Sponsored search advertising, which allows brands to run search ads within the Walmart Marketplace.
- Repricer: An automated pricing tool that automatically updates prices based on other ecommerce platforms, or Walmart Marketplace.
Growing the Marketplace: Walmart’s third-party marketplace has been a focus area of expansion efforts from the world’s largest retailer, and it showed results in 2022. In the company’s most recent earnings report, executives said the Marketplace’s SKU count increased by 50% to 370 million SKUs, and it onboarded 8,000 new sellers in the quarter.
Along with services such as fulfillment and advertising, Walmart said it is continuing to upgrade its experience for sellers, including introducing a faster onboarding process. In September, the company also provided access to an advertising tool that boosts products to the top of search results called Search Brand Amplifier, and provided automatic onboarding to Walmart's ad portal upon launch. In a move to grow internationally, the company opened the Marketplace to Canadian sellers.
The flywheel spins: For Walmart, the Marketplace is a key part of its bid to grow ecommerce. Adding more sellers allows the retailer to expand the assortment of items available on the platform. This helps the company offer more items that keep shoppers coming back, and keep prices down. At the same time, Walmart is working to engage more repeat customers through its Walmart+ membership program. A bigger Marketplace also bolsters the importance of advertising on Walmart ecommerce, as brands seek ways to stand out on an ever-growing platform.
“We're scaling our newer businesses and connecting them to our larger, established retail businesses, primarily by how we design digital interactions,” Walmart CEO Doug McMillon told analysts on the earnings call. “One example is how our growth in ecommerce, especially the marketplace, fuels our ad business. More items and sellers drive GMV and improved customer satisfaction. And it also drives success in advertising. They're mutually reinforcing.”
What it means for marketplaces: Any discussion of third-party marketplaces would be incomplete without mention of Amazon, which pioneered the model and continues to operate a juggernaut through its Fulfillment by Amazon program. However, Walmart's emergence is one of the clearer signals that sellers are increasingly looking to have a presence across multiple marketplaces. Increasingly, ecommerce platforms are marketing to sellers, just as they are to consumers.