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Etsy adds wedding registry for couples looking to personalize gifts

The marketplace has seen an 872% increase in searches for handmade gifts.

man and woman holding hands focus photo

Forget the blender. Couples can now signal they want one-of-a-kind wedding gifts.

The marketplace on Wednesday launched Etsy Registry, which allows couples to register for personalized or handmade wedding gifts.

Through the feature, couples can create and share their wedding registries. True to Etsy’s penchant for unique items, couples can be very specific in their requests. They can add personalization to the items, such as names and colors.

“In addition to handmade and vintage, couples can also register for personalized items and specify the exact customization for their guests, making Etsy a one-stop-shop for gifts, wedding decor, and even bridal party items – all while supporting small businesses,” Etsy wrote in a blog post.

Etsy is already a destination for wedding gifts, so the registry feature was a natural extension of a behavior that is already being observed on the marketplace. Etsy said it was further fueled to create the new feature when it noted an 872% increase in searches for handmade gifts.

The registry is part of a wider effort to underscore that Etsy has specific categories, so that consumers think of the marketplace for a certain item when they are shopping. While there’s benefit to having a wide assortment, the marketplace wants to be thought of in “top of mind consideration” in certain shopping journeys.

“The more specific we can be, I think there's a tremendous opportunity because we know when they do come to Etsy for home furnishings, when they do come to Etsy for style, when they do come to Etsy for gifts, when they do come to Etsy for pets and babies and all weddings and all of the other things, there's a tremendous experience,” CEO Josh Silverman told analysts.

Intriguingly, the feature arrives at a time when another famed registry appears to be on the brink of extinction. Bed Bath & Beyond’s popular registry now has an uncertain future after the retailer filed for bankruptcy. Analysts have said Bed Bath’s failed adoption of ecommerce helped lead to its decline. In fact, the wedding registry happened to be one of the few examples of Bed Bath recognizing the digital shift.

As Gavin/Solmonese Founder Ted Gavin put it to The Current, “Nobody is going to buy online at Bed Bath & Beyond unless it’s a bridal registry.”

With Bed Bath teetering, Etsy no doubt stands to pick up some of its market share.

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