Saturday, January 2, 2010

Feedback on Feedback

I recently had the following dialogue with one of my Etsy customers and wanted to share with group to see how more artisans feel about this issue. I have removed the customers name to insure their privacy.

To: Howl At The Moon Gifts
From:[Name Withheld]

I just found a moment to log onto my Etsy account and I am shocked to see that you actually provide neutral feedback for buyers that don't leave you prompt feedback. I just had a baby and leaving feedback for you is the last thing on my mind. I work so hard to keep my shop at 100% positive feedback so it is very unfair and frankly it shows poor business skills for a seller to leave such ridiculous feedback for such a ridiculous reason. I run a shop here; I am not just a buyer so your feedback really upsets me. I like to leave more than just a positive plus sign when I leave feedback. I like to write a few sentences about the transaction and whatnot so I tend to get to all my feedbacks once a month or so. With a brand new baby and tons of new orders I have fallen a bit behind on some of the things that don't require immediate attention. I feel that you are obsessed with feedback and needless to say, I will not be purchasing from you again. I actually planned to take a picture of the sticker I purchased from you and post it with great feedback as soon as I had a chance but now I don't know what I will do.

Name Withheld
4 May 2010 8:16pm EDT

To: [Name Withheld]
From: Howl At The Moon Gifts

I am sorry that you feel that way but when I began to experience approximately 20%+ of Etsy customers failing to post Feedback, I felt compelled to develop some type of store policy on Feedback. It was then that I adopted the published policy that after thirty days from receipt of their purchase shipment, if the buyer still has not posted feedback, I post a neutral feedback as a "Kiss and Make Up" posting. To date no one has ever had anything negative to say about this until now.

Before I adopted this policy, I would periodically email feedback reminders to customers, many whom complained more about being reminded, far exceeding the zero number of customers whom have complained about the newer policy. I have had numerous customers come back 45, 60, and even 90 days after their purchase when recognizing that I had posted the neutral feedback to explain their inadvertent delays in posting feedback. In 100% of those cases we together happily revised the neutral to positive. Despite your aggravation, most of my fellow artisans agree that neutral feedback is not a negative assessment, only a temporary one.

Am I obsessed with feedback? No...I do not think that I am obsessed, but I do recognize the importance of insuring that as an artisan/proprietor, I am doing everything I can to make the Howl At The Moon experience a positive one for my customers. I also have a very busy life but in three decades, I have never failed to leave customer feedback within days after receiving shipments of any of the hundreds of purchases I have made on eBay, Etsy, ArtFire, or any other similar communities. I will be saddened to lose you as a returning customer but I feel that I must retain my policy on this matter until another resolution is developed to end the nearly quarter of my customers, many first time Etsy buyers, failing to come back to my online shops and studios to post feedback on their experiences with Howl At The Moon Gifts.

Have a Howlin’ Good Day!


Howl At The Moon Gifts
North Hollywood, CA

Etsy Community Member/ArtFire Guild Artisan
California Crafters
SRAJD Members
Alternative Artisans Guild