Thinking of travel.

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Survey about Etsy 2011

The Survey about Etsy February 2011

A survey was prepared by zalt57, who is a shop owner on Etsy.
It is anonymous, so the respondents can answer candidly.

The aim of the survey was to try and find out if there was real discontent with Etsy's direction during the past month plus.

It is a short survey but I believe it reflects the feelings of the Etsy members both seller and buyer. The Survey was carried out over a six day period to give Etsy members sufficient time to discover that a survey was underway and to give them the opportunity to participate.

The collection graphs shown below give a visual description of the results. I have made them xlarge for ease of reading.  I am not a statistician nevertheless; I will add my comments where I feel that more information is needed.  Readers are also invited to comment on the results. 

The total number of respondents was 812 at the time of this writing.

 Looking at this graph to question number one, I am inclined to say that Etsy has shown a continuous growth over the past three to four years.

It also tells us that approximately 64% of the respondents are members with of two or more years of Etsy loyalty, with 84 percent of the population having one year or more as an Etsy member.  This tells us that the respondents are experienced with Etsy past operating methods.

The Etsy administration should find a way to consult with the members of Etsy prior to making major changes to the operation structure.  They should be aware that their decisions affect the revenue of a large number of people whom have shown a loyalty to their organization. Major changes without consultation could result in membership loss.

The data from question two tells us that 88% of the respondents are both buyer and seller. 
This fact points out that Etsy has been successful in developing a synergy of return business. Disruption to this cycle could result in revenue losses to both the Etsy seller and the etsy administration.
The administration needs to study the interaction of both seller and buyer prior to making major changes to the way of doing business.
Retiring the Alchemy affected about 20% of the population.  This may not seem like a large figure however it does show that there Etsy had cultivated many of if its members to use this tool for revenue generation. It was also a major source for Etsy members to find custom items.  The administration has talked about making etsy more of a social site yet they removed one of the stronger networking applications that were a part of the social life on Etsy.
The administration should look at reintroducing the Etsy Alchemy application soonest and to make it a major part of Etsy’s marketing devices in order to encourage a great participation of its membership.
One way of increasing the use of the Alchemy would be to have a way for the respondents to be able to present a portfolio of previous Alchemy projects to prospective clients.  Clients would then be able to make a more knowledgeable decision.  There would be a cost involved but this could be recovered though a fair pricing system.

The administration changed the Forum structure. They continually talk about making the site more social when they already had a strong social network with the way the forums were set up.  It is evident from the above graph that the previous Forums were visited by the members at least once a week but more often daily.  This was the true social page of Etsy. The changes to the Forums were such that it caused a significant migration of members to what is called the UEF web bulletin board. The social fabric of Etsy was diminished due to this decision.
Rethink the recent changes to the Forum structure with the possibility for a return to the previous structure.  

The majority of members 75% would like to see a return to the old Forums structure, 9% do not want a return and 16% couldn’t care less.  This graph also helps to confirm that the previous forums were the social hubs of the Etsy members.
The same recommendations as in question four are suggested.
It is evident by this graph that the Etsy membership is not fully behind the team structure proposed under the new Forum structure. The membership is trying to figure out how they can best cope with the recent changes.  Combining the yes with maybe tells us that the members are trying to decide how best arrange the new structure to resemble the old forums structure. The discussions on the remaining Forum structures are often diverted to rants about the loss of the old forum. This in turn can cause new members, buyers and sellers, to look at Etsy in a negative light

Etsy should Re-evaluate their direction with teams and forums.

The membership believes that the administration has lost touch with them.  The 67% of the members are firm with this response while 18% are undecided.  The figures show that the number of changes taken place on Etsy during the past month have caused difficulties for the members resulting in revenue loss, loss of social interaction with other members and angst about future sales.

It is suggested that Etsy review their original Aim, Goals, and Strategies in order to ensure they do not lose any more of the trust that they have built up during the past years.

The main thrust of this graph shows that the administration has lost the confidence of the Etsy members. The contentious areas are The Forums Format: 56% feel that they are not good, 37% feels that the monitoring of the threads needed improvement, 38% feel that the help response time needs attention due to slowness in getting the answers to their questions, promoting the site shows a very high negative rating of 57% and Maintaining Harmony was also a point that received negative feedback.
The areas of contentment were: the Checkout system, the ease of listings, the documentation, the confidence in purchasing and selling venues and the overall Service.

It is evident from the above results that there is a better need for the Etsy administration to interact more positively with the members. The social network that is being planned should be packaged in total and proposed to the members for evaluation and acceptance.  The Etsy membership is the revenue generator for Etsy.  They should have some say in major re alignments of the site.

This question was proposed in order to find out if there was a real trust in the direction that Etsy was going.  When one is confident of the leadership of a company that makes revenue they tendency to purchase shares in the company increases.  This graph shows that there is about a 50/50 split. 

This information is more for information only.  Nevertheless Esty must be aware that the confidence level is not really that strong amongst the respondents.  See recommendation for question 7.

This graph shows that there is a strong desire of the respondents to participate in the direction of the Etsy administration.  Etsy is a business and the membership is the partners in this activity. They want their voices heard.

Etsy administration should run similar surveys from time to time to gauge the feelings of their partners.


The Etsy Website is a private organization that can make its own decisions and thus disregard this survey.  They would however, benefit from the information in the document before they make any more major changes. 
It is also important for them to review their original mandate in order to determine if they have strayed from their original goals.

Please note:
This survey came at an expense in both time and money.  The size of the survey required that I subscribe to the company collecting the data.  If you feel that this survey was important to you and that you wish additional surveys in the future please consider a donation.  The amount is up to you. 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A poem for Valentine's day

With Valentine's Day coming tomorrow, I thought a poem for my wife would be a special gift.
I also added a dozen red roses. 


I walk in peace and run in war
Sleeping the night and working the day
Seeking places too far to see
Looking for paradise to play
Where I am going and what I am going to be
Is insignificant you see
I must still find out what is behind that door
Following the herd of men
I hope life will give the gift to me
That will allow me to rise
The see the clouds and to ride the tides
Reach beyond the reach, teetering on the edge
Taking what is too far to touch
Holding close what I have gained

    Porcelain vase peach bloom copper red

Following my dream and holding my thought
I grasp tight to my carpet
As it takes flight
My destination far and away
I cannot see you clear
But there you are
 I know it is
So I go forth without fear
Through wind and storm
And days on end
Looking for the gift special rare indeed
The few real joys far and true
The reward I seek is a treasure trove
The gift is special much like the morning dew
The gift my dear, is you.

Terrance Frank Lazaroff, CD 
Copper red Vase - by zalt57

Monday, February 7, 2011

Mona Lisa Smile

I guess I am getting old and soft.  
I just finished watching the movie Mona Lisa Smile starring Julia Roberts.  I am sure my eyes were moist five or six times during the film. Julia really touches my heart with her acting.  She played the part of a young art teacher who set about to influence the young girls in a private well to do college.  She wanted these young people to think for themselves rather the just regurgitate the traditional way of thinking.
The movie also touched me because I always wanted to teach art at a small college somewhere near a small town.  I wanted to be a part of the forming and training of young aspiring artists and craftsperson’s.  There is something special about influencing young and watching them grow and create.  Perhaps I am just a romantic. 
Snowy Sunrise - Original Painting By Anne Carrozza. 8x10 inches AnneCarrozzaFineArt
I could never find a position at college level as I was fairly along age wise when I entered the art community.  I had just graduated university shortly before my retirement from the military.   I was fortunate to be offered a position at a local leisure art school teaching basic pottery.   It was a great experience yet I still longed for the teaching at a higher level.
Now I am not complaining.   I was fortunate to have the opportunity during my military career to command a training school.  It was always a moving experience when the young people graduated.
White Water Lily, JPEG bleung123
The Mona Lisa Smile was a good movie.  There was young love, mature love, hatred, egoism, power and rebellion.  It was a movie that played with themes that life throws at us.  Maybe that is why I enjoyed this film.   I think the scene that touched me the most was when Julia took her class to visit a gallery in the city.  They arrived just as a Jackson Pollock painting was being uncrated.  I like the art of Pollock.  He was the subject of numerous papers that I wrote during my art history classes.  So I agreed one hundred percent with Julia’s when she told her class to just look at the painting.
 Bronze Sculpture - New Release - Fine Art Sculpture zalt57
Now we can all search for the art of the great artists, but really now is it necessary?  Etsy’s art community is so vast it is practically impossible to not find a painting, sculpture or a hand crafted item that is pure art in itself.
Print -Royal Elephant 7.5x8 NoelleTessRousseau

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Little duck in the red Shoes

Catbooks1940s equals
Well…….. I finally took a shot at the duck hiding behind the read stilettos.  For some reason, I assumed that shop was into some sort of erotic sales.  I think it was because the red shoes set my hormones at work. I was surprised however, to see that it was a shop specializing in vintage apparel.
I am not into this market but I could not help looking further to see what the shop had to offer.  After all I am an artist and they say that shoe design is truly an art form. As I scrolled down through the listings I began to reminisce about my studies at Art school. We studied an artist was one who was deep into women’s shoes.
Strappy Silver Vintage 60's Kitten Heels - Woven Mercury Size 7
His name was Andy Warhol. I smiled to myself as I tried to envision my senior year Pop Art Professor standing in front of the class wearing these striking red shoes discussing Warhol’s famous Norma Jeane, (Marilyn Monroe) silkscreens.  Marilyn would wear these shoes but my prof; she was always dressed so conservatively. She knew art and art history but I don’t think she would fit the template necessary to wear these luscious ripe delicate sculptures.
Handpainted Vintage Late 1940s / Early 1950s High Heels Size 8
My Art class was a not like a regular Art History class.  It was a symposium.   I believe our professor was preparing us for a life of marketing art.  We had to role play for many of our projects.  One time we were all required to research a given artist in order to advise her the best time to buy the artist’s work, as an investment. 
Another occasion we were all assigned a character that was in the six degrees of Andy Warhol’s activities.  We were to dress the part and to give a presentation on how we came to know Andy. It was make believe but we still had to research all the facts as to when the character was in contact with Andy. I was assigned to be Tennessee Williams.  I remember looking up photographs of how he dressed and read much about his writings and plays. We gave our presentation as a press release and the students in the class in turn acted as news reporters.  They asked questions to the characters and we would do our best to answer, as if we were really the character.
Vintage LUIS ESTEVEZ Flame Red Silk Dress - Dramatic Handkerchief Scarf Skirt XS
It was really interesting.  Other students were given characters such as Jacqueline Onassis, Tom Wesselmann and Judy Garland.  Everyone showed up dressed the part in vintage clothes.   That class was a real blast.  I also noted that in our class of about thirty students, there were only two people who lived the era of Andy Warhol.  My professor and myself.  I realized at that time that I was no longer a spring chicken.
Back to Andy Warhol, He knew about shoes because he had to work as an illustrator drawing shoes for a department’s store. His duties also required him to do the window dressing with shoes.  I remember seeing a large coffee table book on shoes that Warhol had written. It was a collection of all of his drawings of shoes.  So shoes are import in the world of art.
Vintage Purple Two Tone 1950's Style Peeptoe Pinup Heels 7
The duck in the red shoes would surely be Andy Warhol’s best friend.  She has a great selection of vintage fashion.  I would place most of the pieces in the category of Haut Couture.  I am sure that some of these fashions were worn by the major history makers of the sixties and seventies.  The clothes are still fashionable today.  I can hear my wife’s words in the back of my head, “quality fashion and workmanship will always be in demand.”  I think she is right.
Shoes and clothes are a real art form that will be displayed in major museums well into the future.
Why not wear a bit of history, a bit of fashion and a bit of flash.  Just think of those red shoes and the little duck behind them.