Etsy Shipping Shape Up?

Posted by on Jul 21, 2017 in Copywriting | 9 comments

Etsy Shipping Shape Up?

It seems like you can’t really turn around without Etsy throwing out another test, experiment, or formal change. It’s starting to get a lot of sellers worried, frustrated, and ready to throw in the towel. In case you haven’t heard, the latest and greatest experiment has to do with shaping up the way customers experience shipping costs.

On July 19th, Taylor Combs published the following article on Etsy practices:

Setting Clearer Expectations Around Shipping

This experiment is set to run through August 2017 for selected US based buyers and aims to evaluate how customers respond to seeing shipping prices displayed as the total price. This is certainly an interesting concept BUT it does raise a lot of issues for sellers using psychological pricing. Psychological pricing is the practice of ending prices in 0.99 or 0.95 to subconsciously encourage customers to think they are purchasing something less expensive than they really are.

For example, it sounds a whole lot better to buy a sweater for $29.99 than it does for $32. The difference is rather negligible but the customer can say, “Hey! It’s under $30!”

This also calls into question the ability of the seller to capitalize in on the pricing brackets for search filters. Etsy already announced earlier in the year that customers enjoy seeing results filtered by price and so now if shipping is thrown into the equation that means a whole lot more math for you and confusion as to where the cost will finally end up. After all, the cost to ship from New York City, New York to Boston, Massachusetts is not nearly the same as shipping to Honolulu!

So, let me ask you, how do you feel about this change?

Does this make you concerned for how your shop will fare or do you think there is a silver lining somewhere yet to be discussed.


  1. 7-22-2017

    I’ve never paid more for shipping further, maybe cause my stuff is small.

    This month I took shipping off anyway to see how it impacts sales. Wish me luck. Lol.

  2. 7-22-2017

    I do not like the included shipping. All of my items look higher priced which is fine if they are only buying the one item and know that shipping is included. But how do they know that shipping is combined when you buy more than one item and that subsequent items are shipped at a much reduced rate? When you look under the shipping tab it says “Get shipping costs for multiple items in your cart.” How many buyers read this?? We already know that they don’t always read the full descriptions.

  3. 7-22-2017

    It will definitely impact sellers who typically sell multiple items in a transaction. We all know customers do not read and will miss shipping included. If people are looking for 5 items and just quickly add 5 of the price shown instead of realizing shipping should be lower-thus the overall price will be lower, they will move on instead of buying. I think we all need to contact etsy with this information. (I already emailed them explaining this.)

  4. 7-22-2017

    It’s a gimmick that will backfire and the sellers are going to be the ones that get hurt. The buyers will be confused because every other website makes shipping a separate line item.

    Etsy stop messing with what works.

  5. 7-22-2017

    Not a good idea, buyers can figure prices out without etsy’s help, makes the prices look much higher than they are at a single glance

  6. 7-21-2017

    I don’t like it at all.
    I routinely sell 2, 3, 4, even 10 – 20 items in a sale. This will confuse buyers into spending less because they’ll think the price on each item is $3 higher now..I also sell multiples of items, where many times buyers will purchase 2 or 3 of a particular listing.
    Will customers realize that I combine shipping?

    Also, sellers of oversized and really heavy items will not fair well with this test.

    I’ve also seen it cause confusion with coupon codes. If you give a repeat customer a complimentary coupon of 10% off, they may be confused as to why it isn’t seemingly calculating correctly.
    And the “etsy on sale” app that some sellers use… Their prices may show as higher than the original stated price now with the shipping included. Talk about customers trust and transparency.

    It doesn’t make prices clearer at all. It causes more confusion!

    What would be so wrong with it showing as..

    + $4 shipping

    Instead of simply.



  7. 7-21-2017

    I dont like it. And I am one of the “lucky” ones with the testing feature. It looks “cool” and in gray…but as you say it is not very good to last step on the decision making.

  8. 7-21-2017

    I’m not a seller, but all their changes are just as frustrating for buyers too. And including shipping in the cost is nuts if you ship all items sold for one flat rate. I think I’m only still going to stay because the shops I by supplies from the most are still there.

    • 7-21-2017

      Perhaps if Etsy hears feedback from enough unhappy shoppers rather from sellers they will listen …

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