Etsy email explaining to sellers that they'll need to offer "free" shipping to remain competitive

July 9, 2019

This email was received this morning July 9th, 2019. I am sharing it so that my customers can have a better understanding on why they will see a "price" increase soon.



Dear Seller Community,

Shoppers come to Etsy because they want something special, something they can’t find at a big-box retailer—and that’s all because of you. But these days, online shoppers expect free shipping everywhere they go. Etsy is no exception. I believe our job is to make sure you have the tools you need to compete and succeed in this fast-changing world.

Time and again buyers tell us that having to pay an additional shipping cost is what keeps them from shopping on Etsy more often. It’s become commonplace for online sellers to include shipping costs in the item price, so we’re launching tools to make it easy for you to do just that. This way your shoppers will never be surprised at checkout and they’re more likely to complete the transaction. In fact, we know that shoppers on Etsy are 20% more likely to complete their purchase when the item is marked as shipping for free.

So we're making changes to the shopping experience to make it easier for buyers in the US to find items that ship free. When we meet buyer expectations, shopping on Etsy becomes more competitive with the rest of e-commerce—and that could mean more sales for you.

Starting on July 30, 2019, we’ll give priority placement in US search results to items that ship free and to shops that guarantee free shipping to US buyers on orders of $35 or more. This means that shoppers in the US will primarily see items that ship free and shops that guarantee free shipping on orders of $35 or more in the top and most visible rows of search. We’ll also begin to prioritize these items wherever Etsy advertises in the US—in email marketing, social media, and television ads.

Offering free shipping doesn’t mean you have to pay for it yourself. No delivery service will ship a package for free, but, just like the cost of your materials and other business expenses, it’s a cost you need to consider when setting the price of your item. Our data also shows that Etsy buyers will spend more to have their order shipped free. So, offering a free shipping guarantee could mean you’ll make more per sale, helping to offset your shipping costs.

To simplify the process for you, we created a tool that lets you guarantee free shipping to US buyers when they spend $35 USD or more in your shop. The tool will be available in the next week. 




For shops with items priced at $35 or more, we also created a way to bulk edit listings so you can adjust your item prices to recover your shipping costs. That means you don’t have to take on the cost of offering free shipping yourself. Keep in mind that how you determine and set prices is up to you.

In addition to these new tools, we also offer Etsy Shipping Labels with the United States Postal Service and FedEx, giving you the kind of discounted rates that big ecommerce retailers benefit from.

Watch our video to learn more about this change and how you can start offering a free shipping guarantee. We also created in-depth shipping education so you can create a pricing strategy that’s right for you. We’re excited to continue working with you to deliver the shopping experience buyers expect, and to help your business grow.

Thank you for making Etsy a one-of-a-kind marketplace.


Author: Josh Silverman, Etsy CEO

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