Etsy affiliate program… What a sad sad disappointment…
It’s not often, and in fact it’s extremely rare, that you’ll hear me come out and openly say something blatantly negative about Etsy. That’s not because I’m an Etsy lackey and it’s not because Etsy pays me to say good things but because, for the most part, I see the good in what the platform is all about and the benefit it holds for the people it is intended for.
In a recent Etsy Resources podcast episode, I talked about the Etsy affiliate program and how it would be a great way to make some extra money by promoting Etsy shops and products (that aren’t your own… part of the agreement in being an affiliate with the program says you can’t simply promote just your own products and your own shop).
Affiliate marketing has long since been a great way to make money on the internet… Some people have made good money doing it and others, not so good, but it’s still one of the simplest ways to make some income on the internet, especially if you don’t have a product of your own to promote or sell.
The formula is simple with affiliate marketing – promote other peoples’ products and get paid a commission when they make a sale to someone whom you recommended their product to. I won’t delve too deeply into the intricate mechanics of affiliate marketing but that’s it in a nutshell.
So back to my sad story…
I happily and excitedly shared the “good news” about Etsy’s own affiliate program and I even announced proudly that I too was signing up to be an affiliate.
Silly naive me… I guess I expected way too much…
So I happily applied to the program because I knew that my podcast and blog audience are the perfect match for Etsy. I already drive lots of traffic to Etsy so it would be an easy and natural fit… Or so I thought.
I paid the $5 application fee (which by the way folks, is pretty unusual… Most affiliate programs do not require you to pay to join their program. But since the company Etsy has chosen to use to manage their affiliate program was already vetted by Etsy, I trusted them and went ahead and paid.)
I then reached out to the Etsy US-based affiliate program a day or so later to check on the status of my application and a nice lady told me they’d review it.
A few hours later, she emailed me back letting me know that I had been rejected as an affiliate for this ConvoMe.com website because, and get this…
I only promote Etsy shops on this website
Apparently, to be an affiliate for Etsy, you cannot focus solely on promoting Etsy shops. Well, that’s exactly what I do with this site and the Etsy Conversations Podcast, I promote Etsy shops. It is the main goal of this site… It’s what I do!
Anyway, I graciously accepted the rejection… And of course, I also politely requested a refund of my $5 🙂
And quite honestly, I thought I was okay with their decision until I pondered it some more… Why wouldn’t you want to allow a site that promotes Etsy shops and Etsy products to be your affiliate partner?
Could it be out of fear…? Could it be the realization that since I already drive a lot of traffic to Etsy they figured that my payouts might be more substantial than they would like them to be to any one person? I don’t know this for a fact, I am simply postulating…
It just doesn’t make sense to me.
Etsy Affiliate program vs. Amazon Affiliates
I am an affiliate for Amazon and Amazon gladly pays and rewards affiliates that send qualified traffic and buyers to their website. And might I add that Amazon’s commissions tend to be way higher than the measly 4% commission Etsy offers its affiliates.
Amazon is pretty generous to folks who decide to promote their products, so much so that they reward sites that are set up simply to promote Amazon products… Are you listening to this Etsy? >> Amazon rewards such sites!!
I didn’t set up this site to become an Etsy affiliate, let me be clear about that, but when I saw the opportunity I was hopeful. Now for Amazon, on the other hand, I do have sites that I have set up for the sole purpose of promoting their products and Amazon rewards that greatly.
By the way… Thank YOU Amazon! 🙂
But alas, that’s just one difference between Amazon and Etsy… Different businesses, different companies, different philosophies 🙂
Yes people, I know I’m starting to sound bitter right about now, but the truth is that right now, in this moment, I am bitter about the whole thing!
I’m really disappointed in Etsy and their affiliate program for not wanting to partner with me in what could potentially be a win-win situation for us both. But, at the end of the day I realize it’s their company and their prerogative, as much as it is mine to vent about my disappointment.
Alright… I’m stepping off my soapbox now… But before I go… I’m just going to give one more plug for Amazon, just because I’m still miffed at Etsy right now…
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