What is Etsy vacation mode and who should use it

Being your own boss feels great, – most of the time. The downside of being the only person working on your business is that you often don’t get a chance to take a break. It’s ok. With Etsy vacation mode you can simply stop and put your shop on hold.

In this post, we will talk about Etsy Vacation mode and why it is a good and bad idea. How to use it effectively to run your small business.

  1. What is Etsy Vacation Mode
  2. When should I use Etsy Vacation Mode
  3. How to put your Etsy shop on Vacation Mode
  4. Message to buyer example
  5. How does Etsy vacation mode affect your shop
  6. How long should I use Vacation mode on Etsy
  7. Alternatives to Etsy Vacation mode
  8. What should I do when I return from vacation
  9. Tips for Etsy shop SEO
get started guide to selling prints online

Grab the free Ebook today

  • Learn how to get your art online and where to sell it
  • Tools to get started selling digital online prints today
  • Learn how which file sizes to sell so you can go hands-off right away
  • Discovery why I get a 5-star review every time.

What is Etsy vacation mode

Etsy vacation mode simply means placing your shop as ‘closed’ for a period of time. You may not take orders while in Vacation mode as the buy button is not available. Your shop listings are removed from search during this time also.

A notice in your shop to anyone visiting shows your shop is taking a break and will be back soon. 

It might seem like suicide, but it does have its uses. 

When should I use vacation mode

You should use vacation mode when it is apparent that you are unable to manage your shop in the usual way whether you are merely taking a holiday – or giving yourself some time to catch up on orders.

Other reasons you might wish to use Etsy vacation mode. 

  • You are unwell
  • Giving birth (yes, it happens)
  • any other unplanned emergency

It is only a temporary measure and not the same as closing your Etsy shop.

How to turn on vacation mode

If it’s apparent you need to put your shop in vacation mode for a while; you can easily do so by clicking into the shop settings, navigate to Settings, and then options. and selecting Vacation mode – On.

There is no set period, and when you are ready – navigate back and select – Off. 

Etsy vacation mode image

Message to buyers example

When you place your shop in Vacation mode, you will be asked to write an announcement to replace your current announcement in your shop.

Thank you for visiting my (name of your shop) today. I am currently taking a short break so I can work on all of your beautiful items. During this time, I will still be answering conversations with you and will get back to you as soon as I can. 

I expect to be back in the first week of June.

Take care 


Remember these points when writing messages to your customers.

  • make it clear why
  • give positive dates
  • don’t be shy
  • be natural but professional
  • don’t make promises

You can also add an auto-reply message as well – to anyone who sends you a message on Etsy. This can be found on the same page.

Should I put my Etsy shop on vacation

It is ok to put your shop on vacation, as although it does affect your rankings on Etsy and many shop owners report that it hurt their place in search, it does have a purpose and without it – you might never get a break.

On some occasions, it is far better to take a break, get caught up, and come back stronger. We all need a break sometimes and making yourself ill worrying about your business won’t help in the long run.

I believe if there is a risk that you will ultimately receive a poor review, then put your shop on vacation. No one likes poor reviews, and you can see them front and center forever.

Will this affect my shop

It’s important to manage your time effectively – there is no question about it – it will affect your rankings in search when you return. Depending on your shop, it maybe 3 days or 3 months before you return to pre-vacation mode levels.

‘you might not see the same traffic to your shop from search as before you went away.’

Knowing this gives you a way to manage your shop during uncertain times

But that is certainly not a reason to use vacation mode to take a break, and usually, your items return to their positions in search in a short time. 

What happens when you take a break from Etsy

As your listings are no longer appearing in search, then Etsy is not collecting data on how customers are searching and interacting with your items. They use this information to place you in search – of course, if no one buys your items, then they are not collecting that information, so it’s slightly counterproductive. 

image of while your shop is on vacation mode

How long should I be away from my shop

There is no fixed time to place your shop in vacation mode, but if you can limit this time to what you need—anything from a few days to a few weeks. Bear in mind, the longer you take off, the longer it might take for you to see the order volume return as before. 

Are there any alternatives

Before placing your Etsy shop in vacation mode, know that there may be an alternative way to keep your store running. Perhaps you don’t wish to lose that flurry of new orders, or it’s coming up to your peek season. Or basically, you just don’t want to risk losing money.

You are running your shop – not your shop running you.

But what else can I do?

Here are some ideas on alternatives to Etsy vacation mode.

  1. Extend processing time; this is a great way to manage your customers’ expectations, without actually using vacation mode
  2. Remove some listings (or those which take the longest time to prepare/make)
  3. Can you manage remotely with a good internet connection
  4. Write to customers and check they are ok with longer processing times
  5. Ask someone to run your shop for you in your absence. An excellent example of this is card selling; you can easily teach someone to post items for you and complete orders.

When you return from vacation mode

Don’t return your shop to Active unless you are absolutely ready. It might take a few days to get your first order – depending on what you sell and how long you have been away.

Here are few tips to get your SEO rolling on Etsy again

  1. Renew listings – gives your listings a little push up the rankings
  2. Add new listings – sends a positive message to Etsy you are back up and running
  3. Shop refresh – Creating a new shop banner can revive a shop and make it feel fresh and ready
  4. Suck it up – Don’t spend time regretting, just move on and keep going
  5. Some raise their prices – perhaps it’s time to claw back some of that lost profit with a price increase. Or a sale even 
  6. Try out some new tags – Always a good idea at any point. 

Returning from Etsy vacation mode is not all doom and gloom.

Just know that things usually recover fully with time. Some shops report a spike in sales after vacation mode, especially if you have loyal returning customers who love you and your product.

Plan for vacation mode if you can.

You can even put a message in your shop to say you will not be taking orders during this period. It is especially crucial if you are a seasonal seller and cut off your order time for Christmas. 

Get in some extra help for a short period when you return. If you are expecting a backlog when you return, perhaps taking on a friend or relative to support you is a good option. This way, you can quickly return back to normal. 

Above all, don’t worry; life happens. Sometimes it’s good to take a break, go on holiday and feel refreshed. Remember you run your Etsy shop, and it doesn’t run you. 

A few tips to help with your Etsy shop SEO

Use your Etsy tags wisely

These tags tell Etsy what your product is and what it is used for. Without them, Etsy doesn’t know if you are selling a bag or a brooch.

Make your photos as good as possible.

Your listing photos can make or break your shop. They should be clean, high resolution and include some white space to really draw the eye into the item.

Use your titles correctly.

They should be written as though someone is searching for the item in Google. If I want to purchase ‘wrapping paper’ with a bird theme – I search for ‘bird wrapping paper’, – I don’t search for ‘Pink birdy Horris paper’ Write with your buyer in mind. – or your Grandma, if that helps. 

Keep your shop looking good with branding

A good branded Etsy shop will outsell a messy, sell everything ugly version every day of the week.

Add new items regularly

Let Etsy know you are alive and open for business. Increases your chances of being seen, and gives you move power under the bonnet. 

Avoid the most common mistakes on Etsy

Read our complete guide to Etsy shop reviews

I hope you liked this post on how to use Etsy vacation mode. Please pin me to your favorite Pinterest board.

lifestyle image with text what is vacation mode on etsy

Here is a quick rundown of what we covered in this post on Etsy shop vacation mode.

  1. What is Etsy Vacation Mode
  2. When should I use Etsy Vacation Mode
  3. How to put your Etsy shop on Vacation Mode
  4. Message to buyer example
  5. How does Etsy vacation mode affect your shop
  6. How long should I use Vacation mode on Etsy
  7. Alternatives to Etsy Vacation mode
  8. What should I do when I return from vacation
  9. Tips for Etsy shop SEO
Image with text how to use vacation mode

Use vacation mode on Etsy when you need a break, or time away to fully relax. Return your shop online a few days before you intend to return – allowing Etsy to find your items again. Don’t be scared of using vacation mode – it is better than receiving poor reviews from customers in the long run.

Have you put your shop on vacation mode? – How was it, did it affect your sales? Let me know in the comments.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.