Right now, my Etsy shop is facing a mess. There are so many people who have placed orders the last month that it reached a point where I was entirely unable to keep up.
The result? Many orders delayed and often partially or fully refunded as apology. By Mar. 20, 2022, the shop was closed, ‘on vacation’ and my message saying why was fairly blunt. It was mostly due to the overwhelming surge of sales that had finally hit a tipping point – I could not keep up even with repeated all nighters. The stress, sleep loss, etc, causing tears coming and going in waves and eventually, at a certain point, thoughts about suicide.
So the shop got shut down for a temporary span, which let me scramble to wrap up all the backlogged and often very delayed orders. When will this Etsy shop reopen? Maybe mid April roughly. The refunds to impatient buyers have erased all gains for March 2022. Hundreds of hours of effort and nothing earned, a pretty typical fail for me really historically. When the shop reopens, it will have prices that are typically 10-15% higher. That may make it sustainable, for a while longer, maybe. But the pricing has been increased 2-3% a month each month since November and still every month has more customers place orders there than the month before. 2022, the three months of madness so far, saw more sales on Etsy than the six preceding years of sales combined.
I will not meaningfully discount or set sales there again for some time.
Itch.Io, however, will be seeing a deep sale for Easter 2022. I hope that it goes well, certainly I have indications that itch is the next Etsy for me finally, just as Etsy promised to be my ‘next eBay’.
It is a recurring pattern, where I promote a shop and its stellar array of unique, labor intensive, and insanely underpriced products incessantly for years and have tens of thousands of visitors and not one buys a damn thing until at some point one person does and reviews what was purchased. Then another, then another. With rising frequency and fervor, this escalates extremely rapidly. I start steadily raising prices and it still continues exploding exponentially. At some point I become swamped and maybe, even have to shut the shop down or at least most of the listings to save my sanity, any shred of it still there.
I think eBay hit that crisis point at least a little slowly. Etsy it happened faster.
I have 410 positive ratings on eBay, 74 positive now on Etsy. Two now on itch.io. No negative reviews anywhere on any of the shops I have run, aside from a single bad rating that changed following a full refund and apology.
eBay crashed and burned in early 2020, Etsy may still fall apart this year…
Itch hasn’t even exploded much quite yet. But it may very soon now that the first couple ratings are there, because usually on my shops that’s when things start escalating faster and faster. Some of you should seriously grab that stuff while the entire contents of the shop are on sale, all bundled for a single dollar, before I am possibly forced to begin raising the prices like what I did on Etsy… and eBay before that. Just pointing this out…
Visit the itch shop maybe during the next (Easter – April 14-17, 2022) sale when it is all still hitting over 90+% off discounts. There is an amazing bundle arriving soon.