How to make a private listing on Etsy

As a seasoned Etsy shop owner selling digital prints, one of the biggest requests I have from customers is – Can you make me a personalized product? In this post, I’ll help you decide whether it’s worth making a private listing for a customer and how to create one on Etsy.

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Etsy is one of the largest online marketplaces today, with a customer base mainly in the USA – they have a huge traffic volume and are continuing to grow. This is a great place to start and is becoming known for personalized products you can’t find elsewhere on the internet.

To sell more on Etsy, you should start selling personalized products today.

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Download a FREE Ebook of everything you need to start selling digital prints today. I’ve included how I got started, the sizes required and what tools you need to become a successful seller.

How to make a Private listing on Etsy?

To make a private listing – open the email the customer sent you with the request. Click the new button, make this a custom order, and create the listing in the dashboard.
As each custom listing is different, you may need to send several communications to your buyer before the listing can be made.

If you don’t see the bottom to create a listing within your messages –

Make sure that you have Custom order requests turned on in Etsy.

How to turn on Custom order requests on Etsy?

Turn on the option in your Etsy store settings to accept custom orders.

Go to settings
Custom order requests – on

Press save.

custom order requests as the button on etsy to turn on

This is also known as a custom listing or custom request from a buyer, and it is made especially for them, and no one else can purchase it.

This ensures no other buyer can purchase this listing.

If a buyer requests a custom order – the message will appear in your notes.

Add the price and the description to the listing and press – create a listing.

A link for ‘request custom order’ will now appear in your shop. So if this is the only one you wish to do – turn custom orders off in settings afterwards.

A private listing or custom listing is where the seller has created a listing specifically for that buyer, and the listing does not appear on the shop’s home page.

This is different from providing custom orders where the buyer adds their ‘name’ or personalized notes at the time of purchase. (e.g. a t-shirt with their name on) See below.

This listing will not appear in the search or on your shop’s homepage, but it will appear in your sold items if you have them displayed.

Only the buyer will receive an email with an order link for them to purchase.

Is a private listing the same as a personalized product?

No! They are different.

A personalized product is a listing that allows every buyer to add their details.

For example, a family door sign will require the buyer to input the family name in the information for the sign to have the correct details.
Of course, you wouldn’t want to make a private listing for each buyer, and the seller only requires the details of the person buying and their request.

This listing will automatically renew if it is set to by the seller – and the listing appearance remains the same.

We used to do this via a private message to the buyer, but now you can do this right within the listing before you press buy and pay.

You will often see this as a message to a buyer or add your personalization under the pricing on the listing.

How much is the transaction fee for custom listings? Are there any additional charges?

The fees for custom listings are the same as regular listings.

Where do I find my custom order requests?

These appear in your inbox under custom listings, and the listing can be filtered from your manage listing page – as custom listings.

As the custom order button appears in your shop – a customer can use it to describe what they are looking to purchase, and the message is sent to you – the shop owner.

This new listing will not automatically renew and so has no renewal fees.

desk with worker and text how to make a private listing on etsy

Do shops have to offer custom orders?

No – most shops do not offer this service.

This is because custom orders can be very time-consuming, and if the buyer has taken the time to email and give you the details, they will want exactly what they have requested delivered to them. Which means you must offer the best customer service from the outset.

This can often make customer service more difficult to manage, but it is still a great way to stand out from the crowd on Etsy.

It is easy if you want to get started on personalization and fulfill unique requests without making new product listings with tags, titles, and photos. (Although you need to upload one image, this can be your label or a note saying the customer ordered for ‘buyer’)

After selling thousands of prints on Etsy – it would have been easy to sell a lot more if I had offered a personalization option.

For example, I could have added the child’s name to a print or even the house name to offer something personal.

These listings are becoming increasingly popular on Etsy and are a fantastic way to build an online presence.

Now that you know how to make a private listing on Etsy and upload one photo – your Etsy listing photos can be the key to making huge sales and are one of the most important indicators to a buyer that your product is what they are looking for.

If you are an Etsy seller, read how to maximize your Etsy listing photos in our post.

How to use the 10 listing photos on Etsy and the best way to upload them.

print with text how to make a private listing on etsy

Thank you for reading today.

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