The #Etsy Seller’s #PSA : Why Processing Times Are Important

Okay, guys, it’s time for me, an Etsy seller, to get real with customers. 99% of Etsy customers are great, and although I really hate putting out anything negative about that other 1%, sometimes something needs to be said. 
 
Over the last few days I have dealt with multiple…too many to count on my fingers and toes…messages saying “oh, and I know your processing time is 5-10 days, but I need that shipped across the country in 2 days or I’ll leave a bad review!” If the buyer had contacted me before purchase, I would kindly let that person know if it is possible or not to get an order out in that time frame. If not, I would be happy to point them in the direction of another seller who can.
But, sending a message after purchase basically threatening the seller if they don’t work a miracle? That’s just not okay. 
 
PLEASE be mindful of processing and shipping times when placing an order on marketplaces like Etsy. Sellers list the time it takes to make an item, let me rephrase that, make an item just for you upon order, and they do their very best to make them as fast as humanly possible. 
I get it. We live in a world where everything is expected as an instant gratification. We want what we want, and we want it NOW. No one likes waiting around.
But, the truth of the matter is handmade and instant gratification just don’t go hand in hand. We have to have processing times in place for a few reasons.
 
1. While we do keep items in stock, sometimes we run out of a particular color or size. As much as I wish, snapping my fingers does NOT make the exact thing you need appear in my shop any faster. The same applies to large orders or “hot” items. Our processing times of 5-10 days allows us to restock anything and still get your order out to you…just like most brick and mortar stores.

But, we aren’t a brick and mortar store. Most of us are small crafters, hobbyists, and work at homers who do not stock thousands of items in every option.
 
Just because you need 20 pink 2xl raglans with purple sleeves does not mean we have 20 of something we don’t usually carry in stock ready to go at this exact moment.
 
2. Everything is made to order, and all orders are made in the order they are received. We cannot bump your order to the front of the line just because you send a threatening email that you must have it in hand 2 days from now or you will leave a bad review. We do offer a rush processing option for an additional fee (as do many sellers), but we can’t bump all our other customers to the bottom of the line just because you said so.
 
3. There are only so many hours in the day, and we do have to eat, sleep, and do all those other things like keep the kids alive! Some sellers have “regular” jobs. Some of us work around the clock. No matter what, there are only 24 hours in a day.

 

4. If you order something that is “made to order”, you may be unaware of what the actual process to make that item entails. Some things may only take a few minutes to make, but others may involve a process with multiple steps. There are drying times, curing times, etc, for some items. Always keep in mind there may be a specific time frame the seller needs to create that item, and the seller creates their processing schedule around the time needed to create that particular item.
 
Please know we personally work as quickly and efficiently as we can to get your order out the door, but we are only human. We pride ourselves on getting your order out asap. In fact, most of the time our orders arrive at your home well before the “to ship by” date on Etsy. 
 
No matter how fast we process your order we cannot control the postal service. No, you can’t pay for first class shipping and have our item delivered 1 day express. No, I can’t call the post office and ask them “nicely” to rush it (yes, someone actually requested this!) because that’s not how the system works. Trust me, if I could control the post office I would rule the world, but alas, I control them about as much as I control the weather.
 
If you would like to order something and are unsure if it will arrive in time, all you have to do is ask! We will gladly discuss your options BEFORE you order. There is no need for rude emails AFTER ordering. Plus, if it’s an Etsy order, threatening us if we don’t get your order out the door faster than our processing time is against their terms and could get you banned…just saying.
Kindness people…it makes the world a better place! And personally, I would rather spend my time making orders and getting them to you faster than responding to numerous emails with unreasonable demands. I’m sure most of the other sellers feel the same way. We love our customers, and we want our customers happy. We do everything reasonably possible to get your order to you on time, but we need you as the buyer to be understanding, too. 
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Jenn is from Upstate, SC, and loves that she gets to work from home to be with her two little girls. Jenn has been happily married to her very own Superman, Ben, for over a decade, and spends her time reading, writing short stories, doing freelance work and blogging, crafting, riding motorcycles, watching Clemson football, and enjoying life with her family.

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