Etsy sellers went on strike in response to a 30% fee increase implemented by the successful e-commerce marketplace. More than 50,000 have signed a petition to cancel the fee hike and to work with sellers to make the online craft retailer profitable for both parties.
News of the fee increase came after another year of record profits for Etsy, fueling anger and resentment from their independent sellers who believe they are the lifeblood of the site.
What Are These Fees All About?
In February, Etsy announced plans to raise its transaction fee from 5% to 6.5%. After this initial announcement, their shares were trading up 11%. However, their sellers were outraged.
“Increasing seller fees by 30% after two years of record sales is nothing short of pandemic profiteering,” says Kristi Cassidy, who drafted the initial campaign.
With the fee percentage doubling in less than four years, Kristi is rallying her fellow sellers against what she considers to be an act of avarice from a business which falsely claims to be interested in that human touch.
“In a time of increasing automation, it’s our mission to keep human connection at the heart of commerce,” says Etsy. “That’s why we built a place where creativity lives and thrives because it’s powered by people.”
The Sellers Speak Out
“There’s just something kind of special about a place where people who make stuff they love can come together and share those things with other people,” says Caroline L, who has sold handmade stickers and buttons in her Etsy shop since January.
Although she is new to the platform, what she noticed first when she started IDon’tCarolineArt were the fees. “It’s disheartening to see the site continue to raise the fees we as sellers have to pay to continue to use their platform,” she says.