This is the story of a big uh-oh that turned into a lesson learned – don’t they all?
Recently I had a customer send me a convo on Etsy asking if I could embroider some handkerchiefs for her mom and mother in law to give them at her wedding. Of course I said, “Yes! Absolutely!” and the customer was so sweet and clever she had the handkerchiefs, which she purchased on Etsy as well, sent directly to me from the other seller.
I told her I’d let her know when the hankies arrived and so when they did I went to respond to her and much to my dismay, I had, apparently, deleted this conversation with her accidentally.
A while ago, I disabled the convo to email feature because it was just clogging up my inbox and so now I had no way to find our deleted conversation. I think this is a major flaw with Etsy’s convo system, but, regardless, I had no way of finding her!
Big uh oh.
I couldn’t remember her username or her full name so I was a little worried how I would find her – then I thought, “I’ll just ask the other seller who ordered them and she can tell me!” well the seller didn’t put her business or first/last name on the package – just a PO box was listed in the return address. And there was no note or business card in the package either… this is when I start to totally freak….
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Between Mom, Veronica and Twitter I got lots of good suggestions. Veronica suggested searching for a shop that sells handkerchiefs by location used on the postal label, I thought maybe I could go through my shop hearts and see if she had added my shop to her favorites – because I did remember her avatar… and lots of Twitter friends made similar suggestions… at one point Veronica and I decided that I could always snail mail a letter back to the PO Box begging for help. Thankfully it didn’t come to this ….
I called the post office and asked who the owner of the PO box was, that was somewhat useful, her PO Box was actually at a different post office than the one she sent the package from but the woman I spoke to actually knew her casually and happened to know her first name and part of her business name.
(Insert huffing and puffing, and other types of disgruntled-ness here)
Eventually, I found both the seller and the buyer – the buyer via my shop hearts on craft cult and the seller via some struggled searching through Etsy.
- Either maintain an off Etsy list of customers who you are “working with” but haven’t yet finalized a sale with or keep the default convo – to – email settings and keep a record of all convos in your inbox… (I’ll be writing these names down from now on and then having the names tattooed on my body…. okay, maybe not that but… you know)
- Always use a full return address! Or at least put A name, something please, anything
- Always include a business card!
- Etsy can be confusing… even to those of us with lots of experience.
Live & Learn!
Mistakes are the best way to learn your lesson, aren’t they?!
I’m sure you’ve got a story… I’d love to hear it!