The complete guide to Etsy reviews

Many of us purchase on Etsy and fail to leave a review even though we are thrilled with our purchase. Reviews are very important for Etsy shop owners; they provide value for the next customer and improve their performance in search. Here we will look at leaving Etsy reviews in detail, how to leave a review and what do if you can’t. 

Often if you are not entirely happy with the purchase, you would rather not leave a review since it feels like complaining in a restaurant. No one wants to be the first to complain. 

It’s our nature to be cautious when we give feedback. 

This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you purchase after clicking a link I will earn a small commission but it won’t cost you a penny more) Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

What is a review on Etsy? 

The opportunity to leave a review on Etsy is your opportunity to give the seller positive feedback, say thank you for the product, and proclaim its’ the best thing you have ever received. 🙂 (hopefully )

Since the reason for being bothered to do so – is a compliment to those you are interacting with.

Etsy shop reviews are often the most or the first thing to be read in your shop. Like Amazon, we are becoming more and more reliant on reviews and can often be the swing between purchasing and not purchasing.

You can find the reviews for an Etsy shop at the bottom of the listing and in the link at the top of the shop.

Reviews are given stars – 5 stars being the best and 1 star being the lowest score.

image of reviews on etsy
5 start reviews on etsy

Why are reviews critical on Etsy

According to Etsy – 

It may also have a positive impact on your search placement.

So you don’t need to read this whole article – you now know as a shop owner, good reviews do help your shop in search.

Why is this?

The star rating is the average the shop has received over the last 12 month period.

A buyer who finds your shop and is thinking of buying your item – they place the item in the basket and then spot the 3 stars on your shop front.

Now the buyer is caught between continuing with the purchase or stopping to dig around in the shop reviews. 

Of course, they will go back to look at the reviews. After all, they are buying an incredibly expensive baby blanket for a good friend who’s just had her first baby, and it needs to ‘be showcased’ at the Baby shower.

The buyer reads the first reviews, which are all 5 stars, but further down sees a review with 3 stars for the blanket.

It gets worse.

The review was from a customer who complained about the stitching on one side. Hmmm.

Now – the buyer is going cold. 

She is now thinking, can she quickly find something of better quality in a quick search and move to another shop?

I know what I would do. 

(Read on to find out if she did buy the blanket)

Reviews are part of the buyer experience and should form part of your marketing strategy.

How long does a buyer have to leave a review on Etsy?

Reviews can be posted on purchases for 100 days after purchase. The 100 days starts after the delivery date or, in the case of digital downloads, after downloading one or all of the files.

The exception to this is for sales in person on Etsy – where a review can be left immediately after purchase.

Can a buyer leave a review if they checked out as a guest?

No, a buyer who checks out as a guest may not leave a review on Etsy. Only those who have accounts will receive the prompt to leave a review for the shop.

How to leave a review on Etsy

After you have made a purchase, Etsy will send you an email to your registered account email address. This email will contain a reminder of your purchases and prompt you to leave a review. 

If you can’t find the email – simply log into your Etsy account and under your profile on Etsy – click Purchases and reviews, and you will see all of your purchases from that account with a space to leave a review.

The option to leave a review is removed after 100 days as above.

To find out more – please view this post on How to leave a review on Etsy.

When are you not able to leave a review on Etsy

  • the 100 days have passed
  • Checked out as a guest and didn’t have an Etsy account
  • The order was canceled
  • The order was refunded

Can I respond to a review on Etsy?

As a seller, you may respond to reviews on Etsy with a rating of 3 stars or less. Obviously, this is your chance to respond to a review, resolve the review issue, or ask for further feedback.

How to deal with a bad review on Etsy

As an Etsy seller, I can tell you that most of us have received bad reviews or at least one review we don’t agree with.

I remember one review which I received about a Palm print – 

The buyer said the print was not high quality and didn’t represent value for money when printed.

Hangs head in shame.

In my defense ( since I’m not here to justify it) – I hadn’t been selling long on Etsy and at the time was using clip art to produce my prints to sell online. I wasn’t really testing anything, and honestly, after taking on board what the buyer had said – I honestly had to agree with her.

What to do with a bad review

In this instance, I could have defended my corner and proclaimed it was perhaps her printer quality and not my work. But honestly – for the price of a bag of chips – I swallowed the refund and apologized. I removed the listing from the shop and put it in the bin on my Mac.

I know this is easy since my investment in her purchase was basically – nothing, but if you are selling items and shipping them, it might not be an option to refund and move on.

Gosh – I love digital 🙂

Most bad reviews are basically a storm in a teacup, a shake in the sandpit, a mountain out of a molehill. 

You get the idea.

How to navigate bad reviews before they escalate

Communicate with the buyer off the review platform. Send them a private message on Etsy and try to resolve it first. Don’t respond to the review publicly on Etsy – yet.

Ask them for feedback – why they felt the way they did about your items; more information will help you both understand what has occurred.

Had this happened to them before – sometimes you can get a torrent from buyers who honestly are looking to, you know – pee you off. Do it as what seems like a professional day for them.

Don’t act like a small-time Etsy seller – who doesn’t care. Be respectful and professional in your response.

Try to acknowledge their difficulties with positive words and then give your feedback.

Try to resolve the issue privately – and re-read your response before sending it. If it’s a particularly tricky case, ask someone to read it for you. 

If you are not going to lose too much money – it might be worth refunding. At least then you can move on and make the next one better. 

Ask for feedback in Facebook groups. Now, I’ve read and reread many of these threads, which often culminate in a brawl of – hatred for the buyer who can’t possibly be right. Be cautious; not everyone has professional advice to give. 

Please don’t start a slanging match with a buyer – blaming them for everything—no insults or foul langue here. Etsy doesn’t like it. (Save that for later – when you lose the car keys again)

Once the issue has been resolved – you can then respond to the review publicly, explaining how it was resolved and your customer left feeling happy and acknowledged.

Should I ask the buyer to amend their review?

If you have resolved the issue to everyone’s satisfaction, then yes, it is ok to contact the buyer and polity ask them to amend their review. 

They do not need to do so

Back to our blanket buyer

They are now reading the 3-star review on Etsy and wondering if they should proceed with the purchases. They are literally – ‘on the fence.’

But guess what?

Underneath, there are a few response sentences from the shop owner – confirming that a replacement blanket was on its way and a heartfelt apology that it was a genuine mistake and had never happened before in the 5 yrs they had been selling the blanket.

The buyer is satisfied; it was a one-off and resolved promptly by a very apologetic shop owner and was written to show the professionalism of the shop and the quality of the items.

The buyer goes on to buy the blanket for the baby shower; everyone is outrageously thrilled with the beautiful gift – and takes pride in the nursery. Which has to be repainted since it turned out to be a girl and not a boy after all. 🙂

Still, reading. ?


How to use your Etsy shop reviews to your advantage

A useful Etsy shop review can be repurposed to your advantage. By quoting reviews, you increase your brand awareness and add another layer to your authority as a seller.

Where can you use your Etsy shop reviews?

In your product photos – quote a good review, and your buyer is basically begging to process their payment 🙂

Online in your tweets, Fb posts, and especially on Instagram. – it loves quotes. 

In your convos – you could add some of your reviews to your pre-written responses. Especially useful if you have a potential buyer asking lots of questions and just wants to check you are real. 

As an authority in your shop, try adding them to your shop announcements – or shop updates. 

Use them anywhere the buyer might be on the fence about buying from you.

My concluding thoughts on the complete guide to Etsy reviews is to try to ensure you get as many reviews as possible.

Encourage the buyer to leave a review by mentioning it in your message to buyers. But kind and thoughtful in your words and ask gently if they can leave a review. Make it evident that this act completes the sale and is essential to you.

Respond to reviews with professionalism and try to resolve the public reviews issue by communicating privately with the buyer first. Try to resolve the issue at the least inconvenience to them and you – if you sell digital items, it’s often best to refund and move on. Repurpose your reviews to bring authority to your Etsy shop, and use them on social media..

I hope you enjoyed this complete guide to Etsy shop reviews. If so – please feel free to repin the following image to your favorite Pinterest board. 

Guide to Etsy reviews

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