Actual Facts About Adding Etsy Customers to Your Email List
The question that I see come up at least once a month in various places around the internet where Etsy sellers hang out: “Can I add my Etsy customers to my email list?” It is a valid concept – add your previous buyers to your mailing list, yes, I agree that seems like a good idea. But! And this is a major but! Just because it is a good idea in theory doesn’t mean it is an okay idea in practice. This seems to be questioned a lot and I don’t know why, because it is very easy to find the explicit stance Etsy takes on this situation and their rules for sellers regarding it.
Here’s What Etsy Says:
“For example, you may receive a buyer’s email address or other information as a result of entering into a transaction with that buyer. This information may only be used for Etsy-related communications or for Etsy-facilitated transactions. You may not use this information for unsolicited commercial messages or unauthorized transactions. Without the buyer’s consent, and subject to other applicable Etsy policies and laws, you may not add any Etsy member to your email or physical mailing list, use that buyer’s identity for marketing, or obtain or retain any payment information. Please bear in mind that you’re responsible for knowing the standard of consent required in any given instance.”
You Cannot Add Customer’s Email Addresses to Your Email List
You CANNOT use your customer’s information to communicate with them about things other than their order. You cannot add them to your list to market to them. Sure, it sucks, but it makes sense. Email providers also have rules about this – hell there are actual laws about this as well. The best bet is to have people OPT IN willingly – freely provide you with their email fully knowing that it means they will receive marketing from you in the future. Not only is it against Etsy rules, bad practice, and against various other rules and regulations, it is also frankly quite annoying to the customer. We have all been on the receiving side of spam, it’s not fun. Even when the company sending it is one you generally like, the intrusiveness of sending an unsolicited email is a huge turn off. Don’t do that to your customers.
Sell On Your Own Site
Among a laundry list of other benefits, this is one of the reasons you’ll want to consider selling on your own site in addition to Etsy. On your own site you’ll have the freedom to solicit for people to opt into your mailing list and unlike Etsy, you’ll also likely have the functionality built in or at least very attainable. Etsy doesn’t offer any streamlined or built in ways to ask people if they would like to be added to your mailing list. The best you can really do is ask them in a follow up thank you email whether that be automated or manually administered.
If building your contact list is important to you, you really need to prioritize soliciting opt ins via social media and other channels, and building your own website where you have the ability to create pop ups or opt ins with purchase.
It’s a good goal to set for the new year!
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