Nov 16, 2010

Etsy - How Not To Get Burned

Recently I was burned on Etsy (as in never got my purchase) and let me tell you it SUCKS! In an effort to help everyone else not get burned I thought I would write up a few guidelines about buying on Etsy. First lets start with the story of what happened so you can see where I went oh so wrong.

This summer I purchased a custom parasol from Michelles This and That on Etsy which was scheduled to be painted Mid-July. August came, no parasol. I messaged the seller to find out where my parasol was and she told me she was just getting ready to start it. At this point my spidey senses were telling me there was danger ahead but I brushed them aside.

September arrived but still no parasol. When I messaged her again I was assured she was sending it out right then and she sent me a delivery confirmation number. The package never got delivered no matter how many times I desperately clicked the refresh button on the USPS tracking page. When I inquired back to the seller she said it must have been "lost" in the mail. She then offered to make me a new one and I once again ignored those darn spidey senses.

I spent most of October messaging the seller with no response. When I finally had had enough and asked for a refund she responded within 10 minutes of my message. She said she was waiting for me to respond to her message asking for address confirmation (a message I never got). At this point my brain was screaming at me "Danger Will Robinson. Danger!" but once again I ignored it cause I REALLY wanted this parasol. I confirmed my address and she sent another USPS delivery confirmation number. Two weeks later still no parasol.

At that pointI decided to take a look at her feedback only to see that two other brides within the past two weeks had left negative reviews for undelivered parasols. It is now the middle of November, I have no parasol and there is little chance I will ever see it or my money again.

So lets go over the mistakes I made so you can avoid getting burned:

1.) 45 days is the limit for paypal disputes
If the seller quotes you a date that is more than 45 days from the date of purchase ask to wait to pay until the seller is within 45 days for completing the project.

2.) Pay half down and half when the product ships
I wish I had asked to pay half down to cover supplies and half down at time of shipping. At least this way there was a chance that the second half of my payment would have been made within the 45 days I could dispute it.

3.) Keep an eye on the shops reviews
When I ordered my parasol I saw nothing in her reviews that worried me. Once I purchased the item I never went back to look at her reviews. Had I kept my eyes open I would have seen her reviews slowly getting worse and worse.

4.) Report abuse to Etsy
If for any reason you think a seller is doing something wrong like this you can report the issue to I included full documentation of conversations with the seller and copies of her other negative reviews showing the same issues.

Any other tips I am forgetting about?

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