Having your shop’s sales history on show (i.e. clickable so anyone can view your shop’s sales history) can be a good way to show off what you’ve sold and if people browse through your sales history they may see an item has sold 50 times which gives social proof that the product must be good and could encourage them to buy from you. Moreover, if you sell one of a kind handmade goods, people could use it to see what style they might like and to request a custom order from you. But in my opinion, the benefits of hiding your sales history far outweigh any potential sales you could make by having them available for all to see.
5 Reasons Why I hide my Etsy shop sales history
If you don’t then you’re helping the competition
Tell me I’m not the only one that snoops on the competition? Admit it, we’ve all clicked on the number of sales to see what’s selling. It’s a good way to see if a product is popular. ‘That person has sold this product 20 times today, it must be a popular product!’
But the problem with this is that it works both ways, I can see the competitions’ sales and they can see mine. I’ve already had dozens of Etsy shops rip off my planner sticker designs.
‘They say copying is the sincerest form of flattery’
I disagree. Having my sales history available for all to see is like handing over the keys to your shop and half the secrets to your success!
Stop wasting time worrying about what everyone else is doing and just worry about what you’re doing. If you spent half as much time focusing on the competition and spent that time on your own shop making new products etc. then you’d probably be making more sales.
Moreover, if you spend too much time looking at the competition, you’re likely to end up copying them in some way or another, whether it’s a color scheme, layout etc. Focus on what you’re doing and your unique style, not on what everyone else is doing!
If you’ve renewed an item that hasn’t sold then people can see that it hasn’t sold
‘Oh this item hasn’t sold in the past 4 months, it mustn’t be very good…’ Actually it could be a brand new product, or it could be that it’s a seasonal product which you listed in December for Christmas and it didn’t sell because the last time someone bought it was on Christmas Eve and it’s been 4 months since Christmas Eve so of course a Christmas-themed item is not going to sell in March.
Note that I recommend deactivating holiday themed items or you could do an after Christmas sale, reduce the quantity to 1 so when it sells it becomes ‘sold out’. I don’t recommend ‘going over the top’ of a listing i.e. replacing it with a new item just because you’re too stingy and don’t want that 20c you paid for the listing to ‘go to waste’ having it expire while the product is deactivated. Because then you’re going to have to re-do it when the product come back in season = wasted time repeating the same thing.Plus if you think about it: it only costs 5c a month for that listing.
The number of sales is not the only way to judge the quality of an Etsy shop
Shop sales are only one indicator of success. What you don’t see are the sales that seller may have made outside of Etsy (on their own website). Plus, if you put your shop on vacation when you went on maternity leave, on vacation, closed your shop to focus on college finals, took a 1 year hiatus from selling on Etsy etc. then it looks like you’ve had a very low number of sales in proportion to the time you’ve been selling on Etsy.
People focus too much on the numbers
If people want to buy from you, then you want them to be looking at other aspects of your shop such as your about page and your reviews. People say ‘oh I’ve made 12,000 sales on Etsy’ as an indicator of quality and success (I know, I’m guilty of doing that) and yes that’s true (I have indeed made over 12,000 sales on Etsy). But like I said before, sales are only one indicator of success. You may have been doing the stuff your selling for years but only just started your shop 2 months ago so you haven’t made many sales yet.
People go through the sales history and want items you no longer stock
People start questioning. Why doesn’t she sell this anymore? I wanted that one or I wanted this product in this color but it’s sold out. And you say I do have these other 5 similar ones in the shop. And they say, but I really wanted that one and if I can’t have that one then I don’t want anything from your shop (because you ‘annoyed’ them by not having the exact one they wanted in stock).
Again, the competition can snoop on what you’re doing. Let’s say you both sell supplies and the competition sees that this was selling well but you’re out of stock of that item. They’re probably going to think ‘I might reduce my price for that and get those customers’. You never want to lose customers this way. It’s easier to get a customer to come back again than it is to find a new one.
If you want to hide your Etsy shop sold items/sales history
Here’s how to do it:
Go to the top menu in Etsy – go to ‘shop settings’ then ‘options’ that will bring up this menu
Then scroll to the last section where it says ‘sold listings’ and choose ‘no, hide them’ then hit save
Included in the course is:
- A 37 minute video where I walk you through EXACTLY how I write a product description (using a product from my own shop as an example)
- A 5 page editable PDF for you to outline your product descriptions – it includes the 14 elements you should include in your product descriptions, what order to place them in and the things most people forget to include
- How I upsell in a non-icky way
- How to choose keywords that help your products get found (including my favorite keyword tools)
- Product photos – how to choose photos, elements all of your photos need and what order they should appear in
- My stock photography directory ebook with over 200 stock photography resources (most are free!) as well as mockup templates for your products