Etsy How-to

How to Resolve Negative Feedback on Etsy | Analyzing Customer Reviews

Etsy is a platform built on creativity and individuality, which can lead many sellers to become enamored with their own ideas — putting the customer second. However, the most successful Etsy sellers recognize the fundamental importance of evaluating negative and positive customer feedback. To resolve negative feedback on Etsy, sellers should use any feedback as the driving force to innovate and excel in their business.

Why should you evaluate negative feedback on Etsy?

Two customers chat inside a cafe.

At its core, customer feedback represents the collective voice of your target audience. Are your customers hot or cold on your listings? Are most of them satisfied with their purchase? Overjoyed? What ratio of your customers offer negative feedback after receiving their order?

Whether you’ve been in business for a decade or just a month, these opinions provide invaluable insights into what’s working and what needs to be refined.

How to Gain Insight From Your Etsy Customers

Successful Etsy businesses don’t just happen by chance. They thrive on insights, continually learning from their most valuable stakeholders: their customers.

Let’s take a closer look at some tried and true strategies that can help you connect with and understand your audience better:

Gain insight into your Etsy product by connecting with your audience directly.

Consider reaching out post-purchase with a personalized message thanking your customers and seeking their thoughts.

The Personal Touch: A personalized note will stand out in the age of automated messages and bots. After all, personalization is a large reason many buyers turn to Etsy for their online shopping needs. A personal note can make your customers feel valued and more likely to share genuine feedback about their buying experience with your shop.

Post-Purchase Reach-Out: This is a pivotal moment when the product experience is fresh. When customers first receive their order, their first impressions will significantly influence their overall opinion of your products. This is a great time to politely ask for their insights or suggestions for improvement. Such initiatives can also lead to repeat business.

Not sure how to reach out to your customers? Here are some great examples of how to ask for reviews on Etsy.

Resolve negative feedback on Etsy by surveying your customers.

Resolve negative feedback on Etsy by surveying your customers.

If your customers are passionate enough about your product (whether they loved it or hated it), they’ll be more likely to leave you feedback. And that’s where surveys come in. If you’re a savvy Etsy seller, you’re likely building an email list from your Etsy customers.

To gain insight from your customers using this method, an email list is the perfect resource.

Of course, if you don’t have your own email list, you can also use social media to send links to short, post-purchase surveys asking about the buying experience and product satisfaction.

Brevity is Key: Keep it short. Time is precious. A few well-crafted questions can yield more responses than a lengthy questionnaire.

Tools at Your Disposal: Tools like SurveyMonkey or Google Forms can be invaluable. They facilitate data collection and assist in analyzing customer responses for trends or patterns.

Analyze all feedback from your Etsy customers, negative and positive.

Regularly review feedback on your Etsy shop. Look for patterns, repeated compliments, or criticisms. Your past customers are your great asset when it comes to landing more sales. Find out what they liked (or didn’t like) about your product, and you’ll be on your way to refining your Etsy listings for future customers.

Recurring Themes: Whether it’s repeated praise for a product’s quality or recurring complaints about packaging, such patterns can spotlight strengths and areas that need attention.

Beyond the Star Rating: Take a closer look at the content of your Etsy reviews — not just the star buyers leave. Their response provides context to their rating, and a pattern can reveal nuances about your customer’s experience with your shop.

Staying active in Etsy forums to learn from other seller’s successes and mistakes.

Resolve negative feedback on Etsy by staying active in community forums and seller pages.

Etsy has a large community of sellers who are open and vocal about their wins and losses. Browse through the Etsy community pages or consider joining a Facebook group to engage in discussions with sellers and open yourself to suggestions or criticism.

If you’re looking for a tight-knit group of Etsy sellers that benefit from community feedback, consider joining our SEO & Market Research Group for Etsy sellers.

Community Insights: Etsy forums are buzzing with both sellers and buyers. It’s a rich source of feedback, suggestions, and sometimes even product ideas.

Constructive Engagement: Use the platform to ask questions, seek advice, and be receptive to feedback. Avoid defensive stances; remember, every piece of feedback is a step towards betterment.

Resolve Negative Feedback on Etsy with Marmalead’s Customer Voice Tool

Maramalead's cutting edge Customer Voice tool is designed to help you resolve negative feedback on Etsy.

Marmalead’s revolutionary feature, Customer Voice, is an absolute game-changer when it comes to analyzing feedback from Etsy shoppers.

Harnessing the power of AI, it analyzes feedback from leading Etsy listings within specific keyword spaces. Not only does it highlight what customers are saying, but it also provides actionable recommendations.

Imagine knowing what hundreds of real customers feel about products similar to yours with the click of a button.

A screen shot of positive and negative feedback on Etsy from Marmalead's Customer Voice tool.

Use Marmalead’s Customer Voice to:

  • Sort through real customer reviews— positive and negative—to gain invaluable insight into what truly resonates with customers in your niche.
  • Use real-time insights to help you understand customer preferences, pain points, and desires like never before.
  • Understand what real customers value from their Etsy products to help you make impactful improvements to your shop and enhance your products.

→​ Try Marmalead to use Customer Voice and gain access to game-changing insights from real Etsy shoppers

Addressing Negative Feedback From Your Etsy Customers

Negative reviews, often dreaded by sellers, can evoke strong emotions. It’s not just about a tarnished star rating; it can feel like a personal critique. Yet, the most prosperous businesses know how to pivot this perspective.

The Perception Challenge: Negative reviews aren’t an indictment of your entire business. They’re a customer’s specific experience. It’s important to remember that every customer’s expectation is shaped by the information you provide, their past experiences, and their individual preferences.

There’s a stigma attached to negative reviews. Many Etsy sellers view them as a blemish, and some even resort to confronting the customer. However, it’s essential to shift the perspective.

A negative review is an opportunity. It represents a gap between customer expectation and their experience. Instead of seeing it as an attack, view it as feedback to help you grow.

Here’s how:

Resolve negative feedback from your Etsy customers by taking ownership of your faults.

A glue gun and loose leaves.

When you receive negative feedback from an Etsy customer, it’s important to understand that their experience didn’t match their expectation. This is your opportunity to assess if your listing clearly and accurately reflects the final product that your customer received.

Self-reflection: Before responding, evaluate the feedback objectively. Could the product have been better? Was the product description misleading?

Transparent Communication: If there was an oversight, admit it. Customers appreciate honesty. It showcases your commitment to improving.

Engage with customers in a constructive manner.

When a customer leaves a negative review on your Etsy shop, it’s up to you to help resolve their situation. If you can resolve their issue, they may delete or modify their review.

However, if you’ve exhausted all avenues and the customer is unwilling to modify their review, it’s recommended that you respond publically.

Respond to negative reviews professionally. Thank them for their feedback and address the issue if possible.

Tone Matters: When addressing negative feedback, maintain a calm and professional tone. Aggressive or defensive responses can deter potential customers. Remember, a public response to a negative review will remain on your public listing page — this is your chance to win over future Etsy customers.

Resolve Actively: If possible, offer solutions. Whether it’s a replacement, a refund, or a discount on a future purchase, such gestures can turn a disgruntled customer into a loyal one.

Resolve negative feedback on Etsy by revisiting your listings for future customers.

Resolve negative feedback on Etsy by revisiting and fixing your listings.

Do your product descriptions, images, and other details accurately depict what the buyer will receive? If you’re lacking in any of these areas, then it’s clear that your customer’s expectations are not being met with the end product you deliver.

Clarity is King: Ensure your product descriptions, photographs, and associated details leave no room for ambiguity. A clear listing sets the right expectation from the start.

Continual Updates: As you introduce new products or make changes, ensure your listings reflect the current offerings accurately.

Parting Thoughts: Embrace the holistic feedback loop. Every positive review is validation, and every negative review is an avenue for growth.

The key lies in listening, learning, and iterating.

A Note About Etsy’s Purchase Protection Program

A broken vase on the floor of a studio apartment.

Etsy’s Purchase Protection Program is, at its heart, a pledge. It’s a commitment that Etsy stands between the buyer and the seller, ensuring transactions go smoothly. When they don’t, the program assures buyers that Etsy will step in to mediate, helping to resolve discrepancies.

This program is Etsy’s way of building trust between buyers and sellers. It ensures that if there’s a discrepancy between what was promised and delivered, there’s a system in place to address it. This comforts the buyer that they’ll receive the product they ordered or get their money back — and this motivates the seller to maintain transparent listings.

While Etsy’s Purchase Protection Program is designed to foster trust and secure transactions, not all sellers view it favorably. There are known instances where buyers might falsely claim an item was not as described or didn’t arrive, leading to financial losses for the seller.

In the event that a customer leaves negative feedback on your Etsy listing in an attempt to abuse the program, it’s best to work with Etsy to the best of your ability to help resolve the situation.

If your listing descriptions, photos, and fulfillment methods are water-tight, you’ll have less to worry about.

Over to you

When it comes to running a successful Etsy shop, feedback, both positive and negative, is the lifeblood of continuous improvement.

For Etsy sellers, tools like Marmalead’s Customer Voice offer an unprecedented advantage in understanding the market pulse. But equally important is the attitude towards feedback.

As an Etsy seller, you can resolve negative feedback by embracing it. Learning from it and improving based on it are the hallmarks of the most successful Etsy businesses.

Grow your online business, develop your SEO, and launch your sales into the stratosphere.

Read The Squeeze each week to see what’s new with Etsy and the growing industry of eCommerce. There’s a lot of noise out there getting in the way of your success. Cut to the chase with tips and tricks you can implement in your business right now. Let The Squeeze be your guide.


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