Why I would NOT use Pattern by Etsy

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Yesterday Etsy rolled out a new platform for Etsy sellers called “Pattern by Etsy”. This new site is supposed to help sellers who want their own standalone website build one with little no or technical expertise. While this sounds good in theory, Etsy is totally missing the point of what Etsy sellers need and why they want a standalone website to begin with.

What is Pattern by Etsy
Pattern by Etsy is a platform that pulls in an Etsy shop’s existing items and gives you a easy to use interface to build an online shop.

  • There are 5 premade, mobile optimized themes you can choose from
  • You can customize the colors and font on your theme and modify the shopping cart and listing pages for buyers
  • Everything you do on Etsy will be reflected in your Pattern by Etsy shop. This includes listing new items, changing inventory quantities when something sells and automatically updating variations on your Pattern site when it is changed in your Etsy shop.
  • Orders can be fulfilled right in the Pattern shop, just like you do it through your Etsy shop.

The cost of Pattern by Etsy is $15 a month plus a transaction fee of 3.5% in addition to payment processing fees. It is open to sellers who have Direct Checkout enabled.

Why Pattern by Etsy is a Bad Idea
Etsy really missed the mark on this one and it’s disappointing to see. They say that they developed this site to help Etsy sellers with their marketing, but the way the site works now it really does not do that at all. Here are some of the reasons why this site just doesn’t work for Etsy sellers:

  • If Etsy shuts down or closes your shop, your Pattern by Etsy shop goes away with it. One of the biggest reasons sellers need to have a website for their merchandise outside of Etsy is to protect themselves if something happens on Etsy itself. If Amazon Handmade starts taking over this space and Etsy shuts down, or if your Etsy shop is taken down by Etsy and cannot be reinstated, then you’ve lost both of your selling platforms. An independent website protects sellers from this and provides them with a an alternative way to keep selling if something goes wrong on Etsy. Also, since your customer data is stored on Pattern, Etsy owns that information. It will be lost if something happens to your shop.
  • Not enough customization. While you have some options for changing the way your new Pattern by Etsy shop looks, it does not offer enough customization to sellers. Etsy says that they created this platform to help Etsy sellers’ market their shops, but they still don’t offer an option to have buyers subscribe to a seller’s email newsletter. As many of you know, I recommend this as the #1 way to market your Etsy shop. This is the method that takes the least amount of time and gives you the best return on your investment. Etsy completely missed that opportunity with Pattern. (If you are interested in learning about our workaround to get an email newsletter opt in page for your regular Etsy shop visit http://www.HandmadeNewsletter.com).
  • The site doesn’t allow for SEO optimization like a regular website would. There is no place to change your title tags (very important for SEO!) or include meta description tags. Any good standalone shop would allow you to edit these fields to help you get found in search engines. Your Pattern by Etsy shop will not get found by search engines easily, your regular Etsy shop has more customization opportunities for SEO.

Also, I do not understand the reason why Etsy sellers need to pay a transaction fee for every sale on top of a credit card processing fee and a $15 a month subscription fee. I can understand the transaction fee on Etsy because we’re not paying for the shops themselves and Etsy needs to make money (and they also help drive traffic to listings which brings the seller sales), but the transaction fee on Pattern by Etsy on top of the subscription fee makes no sense. Because there is not a lot of room to SEO the Pattern shop and there is no internal search engine to help your items get found like there is on Etsy, all traffic will be from marketing the Etsy seller does on their own.

Is There Anything Good About Pattern by Etsy?
It looks nicer. If you’ve been to the Etsy forums lately you may have seen people worrying about the new shop layout rolled out on April 5th. While the new layout definitely has it’s pros and cons, some sellers say they would like more customization opportunities and that they don’t like how everything is visible on the front page, taking away from shopping the products themselves. If you don’t like the look of your regular Etsy shop and want to set something up quickly to have a clean presentation to pitch your items to the press, to show potential wholesale buyers or for marketing purposes then this could be a good option for you. You can think of it as a line sheet for wholesalers without the wholesale prices and terms on it.

What Are Our Other Options?
I understand the need for Etsy sellers to have a standalone website that works for them and is easy to setup and maintain. I wanted to get this article out ASAP so Etsy sellers have some additional information before choosing whether or not to subscribe to Pattern. Right now I don’t have a cut and dry alternative. I’ll be trying out Shopify this month and will let you know if that is a good option for Etsy sellers. Another option is to go to Etsy and search for a website designer who can help you build a custom shop on a platform like WordPress. If anyone has worked with one in the past that they have liked please let me know and I’ll see if I can set up a deal for anyone looking for a custom site.

Comment below and let me know what you think about Pattern by Etsy. Do you like it? Do you hate it? If you think Pattern by Etsy IS a good idea, let me know your thoughts in the comments so we can hash out all the pros and cons so Etsy sellers can make an informed decision themselves.

53 thoughts on “Why I would NOT use Pattern by Etsy

  1. Great outline of the pros and cons of this new effort from Etsy.

    One thing that’s surfaced in the forum comments is the surprise of losing standalone Paypal with test driving Pattern. Earlier this year Etsy made a huge push for sellers to integrate their Paypal payment option with Etsy’s Direct Checkout, essentially having buyers pay through Etsy’s Paypal account rather than the individual sellers’; lots of sellers, including myself, decided to keep standalone Paypal.
    Several folks have commented on the forums that while signing up to test drive Pattern, their standalone Paypal disappeared…. Permanently.

    As far as I can tell, nowhere is this disclosed. Yikes!

    • That is a great call out, thanks for bringing it to our attention! I have not seen that disclosed anywhere either, but I do see a lot of people talking about it in the forums. I don’t know if it’s a way for Etsy to convert more people to DC only, or if there is another reason but they should let sellers know before they start the trial. I have a feeling Pattern is a way for Etsy to try to make some more money, but I’m not sure if this is the best way to go about it.

      – Michele

    • My email to the CEO of Etsy followed by a letter about their World Pay payment gateway problems. The CEO’s email follows.
      LETTER TO THE CEO OF ETSY 08/05/16
      Isn’t it clear that Etsy is too busy promoting a mirror site with Pattern and less time seeing that Etsy users past, present, and future are being compromised.

      Etsy sellers have been in an uproar since the introduction to the Pattern mirror site. Many people using classic Etsy wonder why Etsy didn’t put more effort into the original site to make it perform better.

      Pattern is an interruption to regular Etsy user’s quality experience. Many of us started losing sales immediately despite every effort to tweak our individual sites.

      Many regular Etsy site users realized less than dynamic results since Pattern was initiated. Pattern is only a carrot dangled in front of the mule in hopes it will walk forward.

      As CEO, do you realize the damage Etsy has done to public relations with its users? If Etsy wasn’t so busy trying to push Pattern, like a pusher to a heroin addict, perhaps the Etsy site would function properly.

      Most Etsy users have been up in arms about Etsy’s push against our regular stores. I personally don’t need a fake web site. What originally attracted me to Etsy was the focused platform and its simplicity.

      I gave up my stand alone site for more simplicity and less maintenance. I only pay for the listings and fees for selling on Etsy. I am good to go with that format.

      When speaking to a Google Ad Words representative. They told me that I could not use my Etsy store URL with Google. This is due to my Etsy store not being a store I own. Furthermore. sites like Godaddy and many web hosting sites are less than up to date with present functionality.

      That means Etsy store owners cannot promote their individual stores on search engines. Also, Etsy does not provide an email marketing option for its users based on business within the Etsy structure.

      Etsy does not have sufficient marketing of any kind. Social Media moves fast and does not provide stable advertising. It is a gamble each time we show products because every marketer in the world is overriding the internet with their own ads. How many people does it take to get seen?

      In my last stand alone site I invested in SEO and despite efforts my Alexa page rank was over 23 million pages back. It is incorrect for Etsy to project false hope to its users.

      The Pattern site is not the users site officially because Google has informed me that those sites are not up to Googles standards, and Pattern is a mirror site of the Etsy site. Google does not provide advertising to a mirror site as that is internet spam.

      Any individual can download business applications from Google Chrome for free. These are free software for rating page rank of any given web page you visit. My etsy store had a 0 page rank. Etsy stores do not rank at all. Pattern domains do not register because it is not the property of the store owners, but still in full control of Etsy through Etsy payment processors and Etsy based software.

      I am totally happy with Etsy as a domain similar to eBay. I pay insertion and final value fees. For $1000 I can buy 500 20 cent listings. That budget on a street based store would provide nothing more than a sub-standard no traffic old downtown location with a bunch of can kickers.

      The Etsy site is now producing negative feedback amongst its users. For many, Etsy was the escape mechanism against eBay. Both sites provide its membership with terms of use and privacy. In other words,” If you want to run your Kool-Aid store in front of my house I get a cut.”

      That is perhaps the simplest way of saying it. Etsy users must understand that Etsy CEO and administration are bored with what worked and had to initiate Pattern.

      Etsy users are wondering why Etsy didn’t take all the money we earned them and invest it back into the traditional Etsy platform? All the features on Pattern should have been installed on the peoples Etsy site.

      eBay gives me listings for free, 13% payment to PayPal and eBay only if I make a sale. Apples to Oranges, both sites are different. They are similar in the fact that both do not provide SEO per store. The only SEO is through the site and does not represent each store individually.

      How to Improve Etsy Store Performance:
      1. Fix the store pictures icons so all photos are not squared. The store owner’s pictures should have the whole picture represented.
      2. More site builder tools for the shop owners for a better customer viewing experience. The landing page of diverse shops should reflect the user’s individuality. This is also a problem I had with Godaddy web store. If all shops carry the same generic design and limited templates.
      3. 12 menu departments do not reflect all categories possible. If Etsy provided more department slots for the menu it would make for a more focused store site.
      4. As Google rep told me in similar words, “It is better to focus on one shop if you are a sole proprietor. When one individual tries to run multiple stores, both shops will suffer.” Etsy should know that overall sales will suffer if their users are trying to run two stores. That is also a loss in profits for both store owner and Etsy shareholders.
      5. Assuming Etsy will invest in its loyal community instead of Pattern, with the initiation of better site building tools, Etsy will provide its users with store design tutorials. Not the generic approach.
      6. Etsy shop name is limited to 10 characters. This is fine for a user name. It should not be the Shop name. My user name was a last ditch effort to not use more than 10 letters, no spaces. My user name does not reflect the shop.

      Don’t get me wrong, before the broken promise of a new better shop, I was disturbed to find Etsy pushing Pattern instead. I looked it over but was offended that Etsy would import my shop content to a site I didn’t want to join.

      Be very aware that there are many shops in a state of confusion. A company (the Etsy community) divided in two (Etsy and Pattern) will become counterproductive if not totally confused to the mirrored Pattern sites purpose over and beyond each shop owner’s efforts?

      A house divided falls. Let’s get it together. I thought a new store design was meant for the Etsy community on the original Etsy site. Unfortunately, sales have been miserable since Etsy initiated Pattern.

      It may be, that Etsy (the entity) is being rejected because of Patterns mirror. I will investigate with Google. If Etsy, the entity, is losing SEO because of Pattern, that may contribute to the poor sales for existing Etsy shop owners?

      I am waiting for the Etsy shop software to improve. I am more than willing to choose a Google represented domain (I own 4) to be capable of SEO to benefit my Etsy shop. I am more than willing to pay Etsy for my regular (and improved) shop with site building tools as a web host (providing it isn’t a mirror.)

      I am unsure if Etsy is aware of the chaos and division Pattern has caused. For Etsy it was a bad business move, for its shop owners it is a disaster not recognized as valid with any SEO.

      Pattern is not a recognized or valid site with SEO because it is still under Etsy as its domain. Nobody can buy advertising for their ‘Pattern’ shop owned by the host Etsy, also holding the domain. If people want a genuine domain have them purchase one from Google…can’t do that on Pattern.

      I hope this helps you see the frustration of many loyal Etsy shop owners. Many of us are shocked that Etsy would invest in another pay site instead of its users.

      I am new to Etsy…about 6 months. Aside from lousy shop graphics I love Etsy and its community. I found that most Etsy shop owners are proud of their affiliation. Pattern broke a trust between shops and the Etsy administration.

      I am a 62-year old man involved with marketing since 1980.

      I have to go to work on eBay brianwestfourthblvd where I am setting up auctions daily. I hope that after tourist season Etsy will have resolved the rift being experienced by its community?

      B.A. Forsberg

      Hi everyone,
      I’d like to take a moment to address the recent payment processing issues Etsy experienced. From July 1st through July 24th, Etsy’s payments processor World pay experienced a long, frustrating service disruption. As a result of this outage, many Etsy sellers were unable to fulfill their obligations to buyers in a timely manner, leaving those buyers with a less than optimal shopping experience. We know that to our members, Etsy and our technology partners are one and the same, and simply put, we let our community down. Our community of sellers depend on Etsy’s platform to grow their businesses and build positive relationships with buyers, and this disruption stood in the way of building those relationships. For that, we deeply apologize and commit to doing better in the future.
      We take our responsibilities to our community extremely seriously, and I want to take this time to be transparent about what happened, what we did to address the issue, and what we’re doing to prevent this from happening again.
      On Friday, July 1st we started to see payments for new orders get stuck in a processing state. Our engineering team and payments operations team were alerted immediately to assess the situation. We quickly discovered that our third-party payments processor, World pay, was experiencing issues with one of their gateways which prevented transactions from completing. During the first few days of this outage, it appeared that resolution was just around the corner, as payments were intermittently completing. But what we thought would be resolved within a few hours, ultimately took 24 days.
      While World pay attempted to identify and resolve the issue, our team determined that we could not wait for a fix, so we acted quickly to mitigate the issue. We architected a new payments process to allow for orders to complete even as World pay’s outage persisted, and implemented it within two days. While it doesn’t make things better for members who were impacted, I am thankful that we were able to limit a large majority of the user-facing issues that could have stemmed from this outage. Had we not proactively engineered a workaround leveraging the flexible infrastructure we have built over the past several years, what was for most members several days of processing delays would have been a 24-day ordeal of exponentially greater magnitude to us and our community. Our solution did not fix everything, however, and because World pay was still experiencing an outage, our community encountered residual issues, primarily with refund processing. (Because we ultimately do not control the last step in refunds, our technical solution did not resolve those delays).
      As all of this was unfolding, we did our best to communicate proactively and transparently through daily and sometimes twice daily updates in our public forums and through direct emails to impacted members. Our communications were limited at times by the information we received from our partner, our dedication to convey accurate information, and the volume of inquiries we received. We dedicated a payments task force to be on call for any impacted buyer or seller to help them resolve their issues. We had teams working around the clock to serve our community. We read every one of your forums posts, tweets and emails.
      On day 24 of the outage, we received confirmation that World pay had instituted a permanent fix for their gateway, and transactions began processing normally on their end. We have been closely monitoring the status since then and have been working through our backlog of refunds. We are now able to confidently say that all new payments are functioning normally. There are still some residual refund processing issues for a set of past orders. We are aware of each and every order affected, and, in partnership with World pay, we are committed to resolving these issues as quickly as possible.
      We know the impacts this outage had. Generic apologies are insufficient, but I will say that we did not deliver for our buyers and sellers, we are deeply sorry for the difficulties our community endured, and we have not taken this lightly. Etsy lives and breathes its sellers and we feel it deeply when we let you down. We are committed to preventing this from happening again. We’ve already begun making our platform stronger by adding redundancy and resiliency. We’ll be making more changes over the next few months, devoting all of the resources it takes to ensure that checking out on Etsy is reliable, convenient and secure.
      Thank you for bearing with us during this time and for being part of our community.

      Chad Dickerson, CEO of Etsy

      • Thank you for your info! I’ve been fighting with google to index my site and couldn’t figure out why they are blocking it. The mirroring issue make sense. Now I am definitely going to invest in building my own site to get proper SEO. Pattern seemed too good to be true, turned out to be. Bummer!

        • I have used Google ad words on a stand alone site before. A representative from Google told me that our Etsy stores cannot be indexed. I called to see if I could use ad words at etsy.
          Etsy shop URLs are the property of Etsy. Thus our Etsy store domains cannot be indexed on Google as we don’t officially own the domains. Same as eBay or other listing services.
          My Etsy shop name was changed to Vics Stamps. I decided to open a stand alone dot com site of the same name, now under construction. The problem with etsy is its menu. 15 categories does not allow for enough navigation links to specific types of items. On my new site I categorize and sub-categorize items on the menu.
          Each time an etsy item runs it’s 4 month course it goes to by domain site. As I work each day I list new items on both sites.
          The store is open but has many items lined up for listing.
          Check out my stand alone site and compare it to the Pattern site. Owning your domain is not that expensive. On an official web site your domain can be indexed.

    • This is very true. I think that is exactly what Etsy is going for, something inexpensive that is easy to maintain and looks nice. It just doesn’t have a lot of flexibility for expanding individual sites into something more than a straight forward shop.


    • Obviously everyone can’t afford tens of thousands to get a slick Magento Enterprise website but thinking in terms of price alone pretty much keeps a seller in the “I do this business as a hobby” level.

      I wasn’t able to go full time into my business, let alone support myself, until I had invested time and money for a standalone, full ecommerce website. My site pulls in far more revenue than my combined five Etsy shops’. And it’s work. Full time, this-is-what-I-do-for-a-living work.

      I think for the hobby or part time seller, something like Pattern might be the best choice.

      But for someone with the goal of full time business you *must* have your own, separate and fully functional website. With that as a goal the better choice would be to find a cheap hosting package and put up a placeholder website that points to the Etsy shop – and then take the time to develop branding and do research. Google actually boosts websites that have been around longer so making a simple placeholder site makes sense, even if you’re not ready for the entire ecommerce experience.

      • You’ve explained that well, Booth – about a placeholder stand-alone website. When I registered my business name “Sunset Seams” in Australia in October 2011, I also purchased the .com domain name and the .com.au. The relatively small annual cost to keep these is an excellent investment, in my view. I set up a basic website via Weebly (for free) back then (mainly for information). Weebly’s shopping cart options at the time were clunky, so I concentrated on my Etsy store, and placed a link to Etsy on my website page. With every purchase I post to an Etsy customer, I also include my business card with my website address, as well as my Etsy one. The stats show that a significant number of Etsy sales do originate from my website referral. These recent badly implemented and buggy Etsy layout changes have caused headaches for weeks. I’m so glad I’ve got my own website. I may soon have to explore upgrading my Weebly site to a paid site, and move some products there, so all my eggs aren’t in one basket.

        • I should add that I chose Weebly in 2011 because I had zero website or html experience, and it seemed straightforward (and I didn’t have much time, as I was also working full-time back then). There are probably a range of similar style build-your-own website platforms out there – it’s worth doing the research.

      • Yes, you did explain that very well. I have a Pattern site and plan on getting rid of it but can’t decide if I should do it before Christmas season. Etsy Pattern subscribers be ware. My site was down for over a week and when I complained all I got were form letters via email. Eventually they fixed it after receiving a SUPER iterate letter from me.

    • Thank you for reaching out and posting this very relevant article.
      I am an Etsy store owner and I will not use pattern, it is not a ‘stand alone website’
      and from a credible source, it completely affect the google analytics and configuration
      as to where the pages land in the shop themselves. I don’t profess to be a SEO or programmer
      but I do know this the traffic has fallen off as a result, and sales too. The latest is that Etsy has
      manage the management decision to not allow treasuries to be used as a community too.
      The argument is that buyers do not use them!!! It stands to reason they wouldn’t have any idea what it was used for relatively speaking.

  2. There is a lot of information in The Etsy forums. It’s not like having your own website at all.
    Duplicate content, forcing customers to join Etsy, no customization, and ETSY POLICIES – NOT YOUR OWN which can protect you.
    Frankly I think the templates are ugly and look homemade – these days if you want your product to shine
    you better have a very snappy looking internet storefront. Etsy Pattern will NOT do!

    • Thanks for sharing this, you hit a lot of points we didn’t discuss in the article. Yes, you would be tied to Etsy policies through Pattern and if that is the case then the customers are in essence theirs, not the sellers. If an Etsy shop owner’s site is taken down or if Etsy goes out of business, all that sales history is gone.

      The duplicate content will hurt a sellers SEO and the way Pattern is set up there is no way to improve the SEO like you would on a regular website. I agree that sellers should have a separate website for their businesses, but this isn’t the right way to go about it.

      – Michele

    • I have just spent an hour on the phone with Google Ad Sense about optimization of my main site baforsbergbooks.com. During the conversation I touched base with a representative who informed me that the Pattern site will be considered a mirror site. I explained that when I first visited the Pattern site, Etsy migrated all my UpOnHill61 content there. I haven’t signed up to Pattern though and Etsy keeps that annoying reminder to join on the listing manager.

      Because two web-sites mirror each other (have the exact same merchandise) that is considered spam by Google and will result in both sites not appearing in search. SEO is a very touchy subject and needs to be optimized precisely on the site or you wont get visitors.

      Google Ad Sense has a tool to show the click rate of each keyword, impressions and click thru to your site. I was surprised how many keywords I used were lame. What seems obvious for keywords may actually hurt your overall impressions and click thru if you don’t see how all keywords together make or break your site rating.

      Google is sending me some stand alone sites they recommend (works best with google SEO) and I will get back to everyone when I check it out.

      I will say this again. From the month previous to Apr 5 to present Sales have dropped with the advent of the Pattern mirror sites. There is a possibility that Etsy may also be experiencing SEO problems themselves for sponsoring a mirror site? I will talk with Google about that more when time permits.



      • Hi Brian,
        Thank you for your thoughtful reply and for contributing to this discussion. We’ve talked about how the Pattern site may not get found in search engines due to duplicate content but you bring up the interesting point that it may hurt the shop owner’s actual Etsy shop itself. What amazes me is that Etsy either did not do this research beforehand, or did do their research and decided to have the Pattern site create duplicate content anyway. We’re all doing the best we can to get our items noticed and this seems like a huge step backwards. Yes, please keep us informed of anything you learn when speaking to Google. I have not heard many people say their sales have dropped since Pattern started but I’d love to hear from more people on that as well.

        – Michele

  3. I really don’t see the point. If you want a stand alone website, then get a stand alone website. But Pattern is controlled by Etsy not you. Reminds me too much of the games played by the boys at Zibbet.

    • It does feel like they are playing games a little bit… to me it is odd that they announced Pattern the same day the new look of Etsy shops rolled out. I love Etsy and I try to remain positive about most of the changes they do (especially when we as sellers don’t have a choice in the matter) but I’m still looking for the upside to this one.

      – Michele

  4. My first reaction was to grab it. The stomache ache told me not to. I already own a premium website that need about another $1000 to push it. I purchased a Premium Store from GoDaddy last fall and there is a lot to say about SEO despite all social media claims. Seo still dictates all major search engines and social media doesnt control all advertising. All advertising is good. Some beetter. Does Etsy have high ranking SEO? You betch’a. #1 in SEO results. 1) Why did Etsy cry about me customizing my shop a month ago? 2 days ago they dumped Pattern in my shop instead of a new site design. This thing about mishapen icons in etsy stores is ridiculous. Etsy is big enough to afford a better picture hosting program. I have listed on ebay, craigs list, etc. and they seem to have a handle on fitting cropped pictures when uploading. 2) Etsy had me fooled into believing they were going to improve the etsy site? 3) Pattern is not a real seller web site it is a tack-on from etsy that may be a hard earned lesson for people who already started with sites like flyingcart and others. It costs a lot of money. Visit homestead/intuite, GoDaddy, and other web hosts. They sell you a domain, give you a store for additional fees and email marketing + SEO for more and more money. 3) A visitor impression is not click-through to your site. 4) SEO engines these days reward people with contests and such to encourage more clicks on sites you pay/click for. Twitterfu gets me lots of visitors but few conversions (I will keep them though). 5) How many artists have left an impression like Jackson Pollock, Warhol, Picasso, and the famous dead artists? The artist market is brutal. On SEO Bing Results: artist 474,000,000; art gallery 91,900,oo (online 31,300,00); and others you can check to see the competition. 1st page is who pays the most/click. 6) Will etsy let me list books after 1996 on Pattern? No all etsy rules apply to Pattern.

    So what is etsy trying to do to its reputation. To me etsy is just a cute alternative to ebay (who has tromped its sellers for years). The only reason to open a Pattern site whould be for better icons, mouse-overs and such. If etsy just wants more money in their pocket they can just tell us so. Let their sellers decide to stay with them.

    I see a real blow-up, especially for sellers who caved in to this ludicrous fake store front. Many of you know what I am talking about running websites? I say we need to demand a better etsy store design as a reward for hanging in there.

    etsy store UpOnHill61 is an extension of baforsbergbooks.com, not the other way around. I agree that you should use a reputable web host away from etsy to prevent possible meddling?

    B.A. Forsberg

  5. Thanks – I didn’t plan to use it but I’m glad to know this. I don’t put much stock in Etsy anymore – it’s just an extra for me. My own website is far more important.

      • If you build your eCommerce shop with WP, the best are
        wpengine.com, not cheap but the quality of service is the best possible.
        About a stand alone store: We started our WP website two years ago, We now sell 95% on out site and it is growing Etsy was great, but for a long time the sales are slower and slower. If you are serious about your business, you must have your won domain, with full SEO control. Evry dollar we invest in our store goes to build our brand.

  6. We have Etsy, Amazon and our own website. Although word press is supposed to be simple, I think it is only simple to website builders. Hence, we hired a designer to help us. It is not cheap and takes some time to develop, especially if you have a lot of products as we do. We are currently trying Spotify with not much luck at the moment, but very easy to put together. I think I just need time to manage it. You have very little work to do since Spotify can link to Etsy. I think an app needs to be developed to be able to merge them all so when you sell something you can manage it thru one location. Each has their pros and cons. The difficult part is the time required each day to stay current, seo’s and posting on all the social media sites etc.
    I don’t like Etsy owning anything of mine and that just seemed another way to charge more. My only concern is as time goes on Etsy will undoubtably charge for searching on google and I was wondering if they will put their Pattern customers first.

  7. You mentioned shopify.
    Is that stand alone from etsy? Does it import etsy store for you? I too would like my store in another place for security but would also like it to upload my etsy store for me 🙂

    • Shopify is a website platform, one of the build-it-yourself types.

      Wix, Weebly, Shopify, Square are all classed in this group; they guide you through building your site and generally do not need a developer. You have your own URL and they provide hosting as part of the package.

      Platforms like Zencart, Magento, Opencart, Prestashop, are full custom and need a developer.. You have your own URL and you provide your own hosting.

      Platforms like Etsy and Ebay are called marketplace and you use their URL, their rules, etc.

      • Thank you, yes I have on other site I built with godaddy but I do not sell product.
        I own my domain name for my etsy store and tried orange twig for a while. My question is, is there a platform that will upload our store for us like orange twig but is not associated with etsy for protection? I hope I made that clearer lol.
        I do not want my site connected to etsy for protection but I do not want to transfer 1200 items:)

        • Shopify has an app that will import an Etsy shop’s list of products – you should visit Shopify and familiarize yourself with the platform first to see if it will meet your needs. Then explore the apps section for assistance with Etsy imports; the basic app is free. The developers of the app also offer a one time charge service for importing an Etsy shop – something to explore if you’re not tech savvy.

          There are other platforms that have Etsy importing – you may also wish to explore the Etsy CSV app to get your listings out of Etsy in CSV format – something that would give you more options for your eventual website

      • But Orange Twig is not a website selling platform –

        Do your homework. A simple Google search for “import etsy listings” gives a wealth of topics to look at. Not a good idea to choose a website based on it’s ability to import Etsy listings. The import process, by hand, might take days – your website is for the life of your business.

        • It has occurred to me that the Spreesy site has not earned me one penny. This was an app pushed by etsy before this pattern site. Spreesy was free with seller choosing percentage for promoting and percentage to etsy and spreesy (are they the same entity?) Pattern is not free.

          I have a great web site at GoDaddy but lately have been pulling product. The only reason I keep it is for my books later than 1996. I still havent been able to make a sale on my stand alone? Since September I sold 22 items at etsy. Actually lost money.

          If I was CEO of etsy I would put the profits into improving the picture hosting tool, and expanding the category list. Most of all I would not offend sellers who stick with a site that has crap icons like etsy.

          Experience has taught me pictures of product should be devoid of background. A simple scanner set at 300 x 300 takes better pictures of books and other flats than a camera. I would not think of posing with a book or putting it with props. Buyers are interested in product details and pictures that define these. Therefore a well cropped picture of a book showing its outer edges does not fit the etsy square format.

          I was almost seduced by Pattern because the Mosaic theme looked good with description appearing with mouse-over. That was cool but I started thinking. Why does etsy not invest in it’s sellers by providing a great picture hosting service?

          The old etsy store page allowed for drag and drop of pictures or sending them to a back page. That was simple enough. Now all the pages appear as a blog and the visitor must scroll down and click for more listings. There are no page numbers. Editing is more difficult. AHA!

          Pattern, in my opinion, along with the new etsy store design is good guy/bad guy scenario. As etsy makes the original store harder to manage arranging products with crummy icons, Pattern was supposed to come to the rescue.

          This whole Pattern site is still controlling the sellers free will in patnership with etsy. How much money did any of you make from Spreesy.com? Those store pages were nice mixed with other sellers items. Very neat. But no sales.

          Whoever gives etsy money for Pattern should compare it to Spreesy. My stand alone baforsbergbooks.com is a GoDaddy web hosted e-commerce site complete with paypal integration, office 365 email marketing, and SEO. Unlimited pages.

          Etsy is a diversion from my main store. I like etsy aside from its poor appearance. Until I have people sign up for email notifications and campaigns I will pay the monthly to GoDaddy. It takes a lot of work to fill an online store with enough merchandise to justify advertising campaigns.

          What I would like etsy to do is, provide sellers with more information than the promo that trumps Pattern up. It lacks details and etsy’s intent. Is it for the sellers. Wasnt my $30.60 for llimited site use not enough this month?

          Now that i see what Pattern could do…why hasnt etsy just made their site better to attract more business.


  8. I have read all the comments and find them very informative. So thank you.
    I too can not see the point in pattern and have been working on really up grading my Etsy shop ready for the “new look” that didn’t happen we got an offer to go with pattern. A bit disappointed there.
    I actually closed down my stand alone website last year as I found it hard time wise to maintain both and have just concentrated on Etsy and have found the traffic has been incredible for me as my own website was costing me money, paid a monthly fee through vista print which was probably not a real good choice in the beginning but I did that way before my Etsy shop. I got s bit of traffic but not enough for it to be very profitable .
    Where once I just concentrated on Etsy my budiness really expanded especially in the US and Europe. I live in Australia.
    I have found it interesting reading your comments so may revisit the idea of a seperate website.
    I would be interested in any of your comments to this.
    Up until now I have felt very confident with Etsy and sercure but you all talk about if Etsy shuts down? I thought it has been around for quite a while, has a good following and has been great for me personally with my store it concerns me to read maybe it is not that sercure.

    • Hi Di,
      Financially Etsy is in the red. While they have no plans to shut down, they need to start turning a profit. Pattern is one of the ways they are trying to generate more revenue. I wouldn’t be surprised if they need to start implementing a monthly fee for all Etsy shops and/or if they raise their fees.

      There are many reasons you should consider having your own site, even if Etsy doesn’t shut down. You control your own customer list, you set your own policies and you have much more control over your website’s SEO. If you’re driving traffic to your shop through marketing it’s better to to do it to your standalone website so you can easily ask customers to opt into a newsletter and you can make it easy for people to Pin your photos to Pinterest.

      I wouldn’t worry so much about Etsy shutting down, but consider diversifying your business in different platforms just so you dont have your eggs all in one basket.

      – Michele

  9. Really great summary. I was so annoyed by the rollout I blogged about it too.

    They also do not seem to have a way to handle duplicate content which potentially could effect how shops appear in Google. You would have to go into every single listing and reword or change enough – which defeats a lot of what Etsy is touting as “easy to use”.

    I suggested a few other options in my post. But the bottom line is this feels like Etsy looking for a new revenue stream to satisfy investors who are miffed now that the curtain has been pulled back.

    • Thanks for your comment, I just read your article and it hit a lot of new points that I don’t think we’ve heard here yet. The biggest news to me was that Pattern does not allow you to link to sites outside of Etsy, just like the regular Etsy platform. That further proves that you are tied to Etsy and that the site is theirs, not yours. It almost feels like they are afraid of losing sales through the site if someone were to link to an item off of Etsy, but that seems paranoid to me. The lack of control a seller has over their own Pattern shop is baffling.

      I laughed out loud when you said you would try to be objective and then said that you just couldn’t… I felt the same way writing this post. I like Etsy and try to be open minded about their new endeavors, but it’s tough on this one. I’d waiting to see an article from someone who really likes the new platform but I haven’t seen one yet.

      – Michele

      – Michele

      • Thanks for reading my post.

        Ha – I tried to be objective but really – just couldn’t get there. I WANTED to love it. I wanted to be like OMG this is amazing. nope. It just feels like a cheesy grab at a new revenue stream.

        I tried various tests and things to see just what the parameters were. It is extremely limited.

        What I typically suggest to those who want to begin to build their stand alone site off presence “off etsy” is 3 steps process.

        1. buy a domain and start using it – you can do it cheap at GoDaddy and then just redirect it to your etsy shop while you get your ducks in a row but you get to start your branding and use your own domain

        2. start with a web site program like indiemade or supadupa where the bulk of the work is done for you on the back end but you still get to customize and build your brand. Both allow Etsy import too and both have really affordable options to get you started when you are ready.

        3. start driving ALL your traffic to your site and make sure that has different verbiage to avoid google search challenges. In no time you will be on your way.

        I keep my etsy site active because well, they have a huge platform. But it is now a small percentage of my business.

        Again – thanks for this great discussion and your post!!!

  10. and yeah – something very unsettling about them touting it as your own “branded website” all the while it sinks you in deeper to THEIR brand and their control over sales and marketing.

  11. For this shameful money grab to boost their quarterlys Etsy is counting on its sellers being naive and uninformed. Pattern is by no means a stand alone website. If Google picks up that a seller has double listings they will remove you from search. Your listing titles and text body will have to be completely re-worded on this Etsy mirror site or you will be banned by Google. Etsy failed to provide this vital information, they are trying to dupe sellers into thinking that having a duplicate mirror site is perfectly fine and will help with sales and marketing when it could actually ruin you. Do some extensive research before you jump on this swindle.

  12. Don’t make any fool comments or articles,without trying it how you suppose to know? I think everything has risk.Why people so nasty on etsy. My opinion is etsy is a great place with incredible designers.

    • Hi Joney,
      I don’t see anyone here criticizing Etsy sellers or being nasty… we have a great community of people here looking out for each other. If your read through the comments here you will find the opinions of people who have tried Pattern and also of SEO experts who can see that having a Pattern site will actually hurt the SEO of your regular Etsy shop and decrease your views there. Even if you did 100% of your own marketing and did not rely on getting found in search results at all, Pattern would still not be a good idea because if Etsy shuts down or closes your shop (for reasons justified or not) then you would lose your entire business. It’s better from a business perspective to have your own standalone website in addition to an Etsy shop to protect yourself. Have you tried Pattern? If you have and you like it we’d love to hear your opinions about it and why you like it.


    • Hi Joney.

      I can speak for myself and others, my comments and my blog post are based on my experience using the program. That is not being nasty toward Etsy. But as a user I do believe we are entitled to and should be able to voice our views.

      These comments in this thread, which btw – shoutout to Michele and My Craft Assistant for a GREAT conversation – may be critical but I do not see anyone being nasty.

      As I mentioned, I posted based on my own experiences. If Michele is ok with it I will share that link here as well as you can see my comments above. I am also adding an update to my post based on conversations DIRECTLY WITH ETSY in the last 5 days.

      Do YOU use pattern? Would love to hear your experience.

      • Hi Michele – I thought your article was great. Feel free to post the link directly in the comments so others can benefit from it.

        P.S. I think it’s so funny we have the same name with the same spelling.

        – MCA Michele

  13. Hi all,

    This has been an interesting post and comment thread. I’ve been really struggling with my Etsy shop and have about decided to close up shop after this year. Two years in a row now, sales are down. I’m now down to 2012 sales levels and falling. It’s very depressing. I don’t have enough money now to do much of anything about it either.

    One thing I’d like to mention to those thinking about a stand alone website. Although I’ve not used it, Spotify can be linked to the Buy Now buttons on Pinterest which could help drive traffic to your shop. i have no idea if other websites have the same capability.

    Thank you for taking the time to put this together,

  14. Good article. Seems etsy is trying to go for economy coupled with decent looks. But my experiences as a seller with etsy have been very disappointing to say the least. Totally non existent customer service and they do not care for their sellers for whom etsy actually operates.

  15. Another thing to consider is that if you do go with Pattern, Etsy owns the Domain name so you can never use it yourself as a stand-alone website. Nope. Not going to do it. I think every smart true small handmade Artist (not the mega factory machine-made mass-produced foreign conglomerates that dominate Etsy now) need to have an owned, stand-alone site. Catch your customers on Etsy, then move them to your own website and repeat:)

    • Personally I think nobody should open a website with less than $10,000 to invest. A real website is like buying a house. First you pay for the abstract. These are your ideas and intent. Your ambitious aspirations.
      You pay a web host like Godaddy or similar.
      Now you have the website builder and a bare naked website with nothing on it. Next you start deciding on a theme for your index page (the most important) as this is the page people will land on.
      What is it that you are selling that people care about? In my etsy store I had 3380 visitors in the last 30 days with $25 sales total. It is your lucky day when somebody actually buys something. I am thinking that my content is not desirable.
      After paying 6 months for a stand alone site, web host fees, Google Ad Words and emailing people You may find you have no indication of any visitors except your friends who take a peak and tell you your site is cute.
      Cute doesn’t pay the bills. So what is it that you are selling? Know your audience. Generally, according to past Arbitron readings (I was in radio), reported that the target group of best buyer is 18-34 years old.
      People in that age bracket have more money to spend. Older folks like me are scratching out an existence and living on a fixed income. Bad target group.
      When people reach their 30s many of them have birthed children and all their money is invested in diapers and other baby stuff. Bad target group unless it involves babies and kids.
      Websites like eBay, Etsy, Craig’s list and others already have visitors tailor made for almost any type of transaction. Unless you have thousands of dollars to invest in professional search engine optimization (trust me you need to hire a pro to succeed,) on a stand alone website, you will have a poor Alexa page rank.
      When I was running my own stand alone websites I didn’t have advertising money. After 6 months of hard work my Alexa page rank was 23,480,000 pages back. Yikes! It was a total disaster.
      If you are itching for a real website get out the money. It is a sad day thousands of hours later to close your site.
      People who want to build a website should investigate how many similar sites are on the internet? Go to eBay and look at any category of auction or buy it now ads that close after 7 days with no buyers.
      The good thing about ready made sites like Etsy is that when you get disgusted, you can pull back a day or two and won’t lose money. The cost of maintenance on a stand alone site is every day. Each day cost you for a fraction of the total amount you spend on your site.
      The beautiful thing about the Etsy store is 20 cents for 4 month listings. Imagine listing 200 items/month. That is $40. On eBay for $24.99 you can get a basic store with 250 free listings/month. A Premium Store is $75/month with 1000 free listings/month. An Anchor store is $350/month with 10,000 free listings.
      Talk to any stand alone website owner that is productive. Their advertising budget exceeds the very little expense in running any ready made store. Etsy doesn’t charge a fee/month other that for cheaper postage, and 20c for a 4 month listing.
      If any of you want to pay etsy $15/month for Pattern consider this. $15 will buy you 75 listings for your etsy store. If you list 75 things (etsy 20 cents each) and also pay for Pattern it cost $15 for the etsy listing fees + $15 for Pattern. In the end that $30 could buy 150 listings for your etsy store.
      The internet is flooded by websites. It costs big money to be on page one of the search engine. ) It will cost money to appear on the 1st 5 pages of listings. All low click bids are ranked way back, as I have mentioned.
      On a stand alone website you pay every time someone clicks on your ad. If you pay 20 cents/click and 100 people click you owe Google $20. Even if people just look for 15 seconds and split. That could be another 100 listings for your etsy store.
      I was shy about opening an etsy store at first. I was still running baforsbergbooks.com which is now closed. Another attempt failed. It is brutal after 6 months of hard work. It cost a lot of money to self promote.
      Social media depends upon followers. Older folks like me may not have many friends left and are a bit sheepish to invite the younger crowd. I am using etsyfu/twitterfu for $4.99/month. It has worked so far. Ishow one item from my store every hour on Twitter 24/7. I went from several hundred to over 3000 visitors each 30 days. It takes an average of 1000+ visits to generate a favorite and an occasional sale.
      The biggest problem with all Etsy shops is the appearance.I don’t agree with all the templates and think the crew at Etsy should modernize the applications so shop owners can modify the appearance more.
      When Pattern first appeared I poked in and was shocked that etsy already imported my etsy store there. That was a violation of my intellectual property. A quick look around and I split and never went back.
      So think it over people. After many websites and failures over the years I realize everyone doesn’t want my inventory. Etsy is low maintenance.
      I closed my downtown antique shop in `1993. Before I made a dime, the shop cost $1000 rent, electricity, $100,000 liability insurance, and the inventory I had to buy. There were many days you could roll a bowling ball down Superior street without hitting anything. My partner and I purchased an old Daisy ‘Red Ryder’ BB gun and shot junk old bottles at the end of the shop. Very boring. Bitchy people mad because I wouldn’t sell for less than cost.
      If you have $1000s to spend on a website of your own, each month, how many listings could go on your Etsy store without other high maintenance?
      It is just my opinion that you should forget Pattern and focus on tweaking up your Etsy store. eBay and payPal takes 13% of every sale on their site.Etsy 3.5%. Hmmm. Not a bad deal. I know.

  16. The Pattern site is beautiful, I love the look and feel – but every sale I’ve made since launching Pattern is on my basic Etsy site – not one sale from my Pattern site. I don’t sell a ton of items so I am losing money.

  17. Better late than never- but I’ve just started a webstore with shoplo (shoplo.com/gb). I easily uploaded my Etsy CSV file and everything was ready to go. I literally just chose the layout and colour themes and it did it all itself. The team are very very helpful and are around 24/7 to help! Just sharing some love, as I also was very disappointed with pattern

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