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In an age where e-commerce is moving faster than ever, Etsy is working hard to keep up the pace.
By bringing together entrepreneurs from all over the world, Etsy has amassed an online marketplace of over 50 million artisanal products. This network of small businesses has its challenges, like consistency in shipping and customer experience, but they are all part of what Raina Moskowitz, Etsy’s svp of people, strategy and services, believes makes their platform a stand out.
“Etsy’s mission is to keep commerce human,” said Moskowitz. “We really believe that creativity can’t be automated, human connection can’t be commoditized, so we want this experience, both for our buyers and sellers, to feel really human.”
By making investments in improved search functions, seller education and transparency with customers, Moskowitz and her team are trying to create a user interface that rivals other e-commerce sites.
On this week’s episode of the Glossy Podcast, Moskowitz discusses Etsy’s investment in its sellers, how they’re using marketing to drive consumers, and why she believes Etsy is still in its early days. Below are excerpts from the conversation, edited for clarity.
Setting the sellers up for success
“We’re doing more and more to educate our sellers on what it looks like to run a great business. So we focus on making sure that our sellers are clear on how to take a great picture of their item, or about telling the story of their company or item, something we know is really important and drives a lot of connections with customers. We really work to educate our sellers on how to create a great experience through the site experience, the mobile app experience, and through all the traditional marketing channels.”
Tapping into marketing potential
“I think Etsy is still in early days when it comes to people knowing when to come to us and what we stand for, so we are really focused on building that brand. We’re investing a lot in advertising on platforms like Google and Facebook, we are launching our first above-the-line national TV campaign, so we’re just scratching the surface of reaching consumers and bringing them to our site.”
Investing in a better search experience
“We want to make sure that when you come to Etsy, you find what you’re looking for. With 50 million items, you can be inspired, you can browse — there’s a thrill of a treasure hunt to find just what you’re looking for. But not everyone has that kind of time, so one of the ways that we’re investing is that when you search for something, we give you the most relevant items.”
Creating transparency in shipping
“In a world of fast and free shipping expectations, we are working really hard with our sellers, and across the platform, to ensure a consistent shipping experience. What makes Etsy special is that things aren’t just coming out of a warehouse; they’re not coming off the shelf, so there’s not always going to be consistency. If you’re having a customized item made, that is going to take a different amount of time than something coming off the shelf. So what we want to do is be more transparent and make sure that we manage the expectations of our customers so they can very clearly see when something will be delivered.”