Etsy Introduces Listing Specific Return Policies

Liz Morton ~ Founder
Liz Morton ~ Founder


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Etsy has announced listing specific return policies are coming next month.

New listing specific policies to give you more flexibility over your business
Earlier this year we let you know that we’d be committing to bringing you tools that give you more flexibility to run your business on your terms. We know that as a creative business owner, you sell a range of unique items—some of which may or may not be returnable, like custom made or one-of-a-kind…

We’re excited to announce that you can now set different return policies for each listing in your shop instead of just one return policy for your entire shop. This means you can make it clearer to buyers which items from your shop, if any, can be returned. As always, accepting returns is entirely optional and based on your individual business needs.

Today on Etsy sellers have a variety of return policies. In order to make sure all buyers on Etsy have a consistent experience, we will be moving away from shop wide policies in favor of listing specific policies.

If you have an existing return policy, we ask that you update to the new listing-specific policies by October 31, 2022. With your feedback and input, we’ve created simple to use tools that allow you to edit your policies, and you can make changes any time after October 31.

We understand that managing your listings can take time, so we’ve developed some new tools to make this process easier, including the ability to update policies for multiple listings at once. Get familiar with them here.

Converting your existing shop policy into listing specific policies (sellers with existing shop policies only):

When you go into Shop Manager, we’ll guide you through what’s changing, and you’ll be prompted to review the shop policy that we applied to your listings (this is your existing policy!).

You can either publish now if everything looks okay or make any changes you need before your listing specific policies are shown to buyers on October 31. Don’t worry, you can make changes anytime after October 31.

How to create a new return policy and assign it to your listings:

Create a return policy: Go to Shop Manager > Settings > Policy Settings. You can create multiple return policies on this page that can be used for your different listings. If you decide to accept returns, you’ll be able to customize your policy with information like when the buyer needs to send the item back to you.

Apply a return policy to a listing: You can do this via the dropdown on the individual listing page. If you’d like to apply the same return policy to multiple listings, you can do this via the Listings Manager.

Bulk-edit: Apply return policies to multiple listings at once

In Listings Manager, you can quickly apply the same return policy to multiple listings at once to save you time.

To learn more about this change, along with next steps based on your current shop return policy, check out this article in the Seller Handbook.

But first, we know you’ll have some questions about this change. We’ve put together a list of commonly asked questions below:

Do I have to accept returns?

No, accepting returns is entirely optional and is based on your personal business needs. We recognize that there are certain types of listings where returns may not be appropriate, like custom made or one-of-a-kind items.

Can I include text in a return policy?

No, we’ll no longer support written return policies after October 31. We’ve heard from buyers that it would be helpful to see consistent return policies in the same place across Etsy.. We know that as a small business it’s important for you to maintain your voice and your branding, so you’ll still be able to use the FAQ section of your shop to add a personal touch to your shop.

How do I create a return policy or apply a return policy to a listing?

To create a return policy, go to Shop Manager > Settings > Policy Settings. You can create multiple return policies on this page that can then be used for your different listings. If you decide to accept returns, you’ll be able to customize your policy with information like when the buyer needs to send the item back to you.

To apply a return policy to a listing, you can do this via the dropdown on the individual listing page. If you’d like to apply the same return policy to multiple listings, you can do this via the Listings Manager.

What does this mean for buyers?

Buyers will start to see your updated return policies by October 31, or if you publish them earlier. However, there won’t be a change to the way that buyers see your policies–they’ll still see if returns are accepted or not. If returns are accepted, they’ll also see the return window you’ve indicated. For digital listings, we explain to the buyer that because the item is a digital listing, the buyer can’t return it. However, if a buyer reaches out to you regarding a digital listing they purchased, you’re free to resolve the issue as you see fit. To start a return, buyers will still need to reach out to you if they want to return their order, just like they do today.

Can I update multiple of my listings at the same time?

Yes! In Listings Manager, you can quickly apply the same return policy to multiple listings at once to save you time. See the “new tools” section above for more info.

Is Etsy managing buyer fraud?

Yes, we’ll monitor for buyer abuse of returns to protect the seller community.

How do new listing specific return policies work with Etsy’s Purchase Protection program?

With Etsy’s Purchase Protection program, for qualifying orders up to $250, Etsy will refund buyers and you’ll keep your earnings if a buyer doesn’t receive their order or it arrives damaged (arrives damaged is covered for the first instance per calendar year). Otherwise, all sales are subject to the return policy that you set for your listing(s). If you decide to accept returns, you’ll be able to customize your policy with information like when the buyer needs to send the item back to you.

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