Sunday, May 20, 2012

Goodbye Bay, Hello Tsy!

A good friend pointed out an article on the AntiqueTrader website to me this morning.  The article, titled "Online sellers finding new level of satisfaction with Etsy", is about vintage sellers who have decided to make the move from eBay to Etsy.  

Laura Milera, of 'metroretrovintage', is quoted in the article as saying 
“It’s all part of the charm of buying and selling in what is by and large, a close-knit and well rounded community. Where ‘speed of sale’ and moving product quickly is more of the norm on eBay – on Etsy, shop owners can pretty much set a reasonable price for their items, and then wait for the right buyers to come along.”

Click to see more at metroretrovintage
I made this same switch early in 2011, following frustrations with fees, seller protection, and professionalism on eBay.  What I've found on Etsy is a group of artisans, crafters, and collectors who genuinely are passionate about what they do.  As Laura said, it is a close-knit community, and there is a balance of professionalism and service that you expect to see in a market of small quaint shops.  

So... the article got me thinking.  What if we were to take these two site and turn them into real live venues, here's my vision of what the two might honestly advertise to both sellers and buyers:

The eBay Flea Market - 

{to the sellers}
  Come sell at the world's largest flea market and auction, one day or every day!  Sell anything from the trash in your attic to mass produced products made by the little kids in China.  No rules, no regulations.  Booth cost is between $5 and $75 up front and another $20 to $3,000 on the back end.  You'll also need to pay for additional fees associated with your table decor, location, and the moon phase.  A full set of pricing algorithms are available in the vendor services kiosk

{to the shoppers}
  Come buy at the world's largest flea market and auction.  We have over 50,000,000 booths set up, so you're bound to find something you like.  Maybe. You'll find a large variety of high priced items, or you can take advantage of the auction format and really score a deal.  No need to register ahead of time; just show up in the last three seconds and bid higher than the standing bid.  We apologize in advance for the smog that may make the merchandise difficult to see.  

The shoppes at Etsy Village - 

{to the sellers}
  Come set up shop in our countryside retreat / urban market, where we offer affordable rent and a calm setting.  Please remember that shops must reflect handmade, craft supply, or true vintage products.  We do ask that you pay a small portion to stock your inventory, and please know that there are local taxes (3.5%) to pay upon sale.  Thank you and we hope you have great successes in your future.  If you should have any questions, please visit any one of our Visitors Bureau, where a staff member will be ready to help you.

{to the shoppers}
  Come visit the premiere countryside shopping / urban market venue.  We have around 500,000 shops for you to browse through, housing everything from artwork to clothing to crafting goodies to antiques.  Shop owners are ready to answer any questions you may have, and may even offer you their expertise in opening your own shop here in Etsy Village.   

Anyway, that's how I think they'd be.  Maybe I'm just biased.

See for yourself:

Tracy's Shop
Kate's Shop
Chris's Shop


Niftic Vintage said...

I too made the switch years ago, there is no going back for me! Insightful article Mr. Moody!

tracy said...

Great visuals! And so true, although I never sold on ebay I would seems like a vast, cold, non-artistic venue to me :) Great article Scott!!

Whimzy Thyme said...

I opened my Shop on Etsy about 1 1/2 years ago and love it. Ebay never attracted me. It just seemed like a giant warehouse with tons of hodge podge items.

Vintage Renude said...

Great analogy Scott! I feel the same way. Etsy is so much more civilized.

Modred Vintage said...

Such a great post!-and glad to see metroretrovintage quoted. Love the analogies at the end.

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