What To Do If An Etsy Customer Isn’t Responding

Sometimes when you make a sale on Etsy, you’ll need to get more information from the customer before you can fulfill the order. If the customer doesn’t respond to your convos, and you can’t fill the order, what are you supposed to do?

As a general rule, if the customer on Etsy doesn’t respond to messages that you send them, you can either continue to try contacting them through the Etsy convo system or by email, you can extend the processing time for the order, or you can cancel the order. Cancellations should only be done as a last resort, but sometimes it’s the best thing to do to prevent miscommunication about the order.

Let’s look at each option in the order that you should use them, because some are less drastic than others!

Table of Contents

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Can you email an Etsy customer?

The only time that Etsy allows sellers to email customers directly is when the message is in regard to an order that’s currently open. The convo system should be used first, but when a customer purchases something their email is provided in the order details, so if there are questions that the customer isn’t answering through convos the seller can email them.

Other than that, you can’t email customers randomly, especially to give them coupons or to promote anything else. They need to opt in to an email list for that, but if the order is still open and you need information, email is okay to use.

The reason that you would NOT want to email them is that it’s better to keep everything on the Etsy convo system so that you don’t lose track of messages.

If you have messages from the customer on both email and Etsy, it’s pretty easy to forget details and to send the wrong thing.

So the first thing to do would be to use the convo system, but if you don’t get a response within 24 hours, you should also try to email them.

How to find a customer’s email on Etsy.

To find a customer’s email on Etsy:

  1. Go to your shop dashboard.
  2. Click on “orders and shipping.”
  3. Find the customer’s order.
  4. Click on the small triangle to the right of the customer’s name.
  5. When that menu opens up, the customer’s email that they provided at the time of placing the order will be available.
Click on the triangle to the right of the customer's name
Click on the triangle to the right of the customer’s name.
The customer's email is in the dropdown menu.
The customer’s email is in the dropdown menu.

Once you get the email address, you can use that to send the customer transactional emails about the order specifically, but not for any other marketing reason.

So you can write to the customer to ask questions about the order, like any personalization they need, but you can’t throw in additional coupons or discounts that aren’t related to the order itself.

It’s also a good idea to ask the customer to respond to you on Etsy in the convo system and move the email communication back onto Etsy. This will keep everything on the Etsy system and make the convos available to Etsy in case there’s a problem with the order at any point.

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What if an Etsy customer isn’t answering emails?

Keep in mind that some people use a different email address for shopping than they use for daily emails, so even if you do use that email they might not be getting it. In addition, some email services put any emails from unknown sources into the spam or promotion folders. So emailing might not work to get in touch with the customer, and you may not receive a response.

I know that it’s frustrating, but because emails aren’t foolproof, there’s no guarantee that emailing would actually help.

You can try emailing again if there’s no answer to your first one, but at some point you’ll need to pretty much give up. I would send one convo and one email, but that’s all.

So if the customer isn’t answering emails, and the Etsy convo system isn’t working, what’s the next step that you should take?

One thing to try would be to extend the processing time for the order.

Should I extend the order processing time on an Etsy order?

If a customer isn’t responding to repeated attempts to contact them through the Etsy convo system and direct email, the seller can extend the processing time of the order. This will give the seller additional time to try to contact the customer, and will give the customer more time to respond.

In addition, Etsy sends an email to the customer when there’s a change made to an order, so that might get their attention more than an email from a seller would!

If you want to extend the order processing time on Etsy:

  1. Go to your Etsy shop dashboard.
  2. Find the order that you want to extend.
  3. Click on the three dots to the right of the order.
  4. Click on “Update ship by date.”
  5. Choose the time frame that you want the new processing time to be from the dropdown menu.
Update ship by date in the order menu.
Update ship by date in the order menu.
Choose the time to extend the order processing time.
Choose the time to extend the order processing time.

Extending the processing time doesn’t count against you on Etsy, so you can do this without worrying about it being held against you.

You’re still obligated to ship the order when the updated processing time says it will be shipped.

You can change the processing time for an order ONLY ONCE!!

So extend it as far as you need to, because if the customer still doesn’t email back after that, you might have to go to the next step, which is to cancel the order.

Should I cancel an Etsy order if the customer isn’t responding?

If a customer isn’t responding to messages, and you’ve extended the processing time for the order without hearing back from the customer, you should probably cancel the order. If you’re unable to get the details that you need, you shouldn’t take a chance on sending an order without those details being clarified.

When an order is canceled, Etsy will send the customer an email telling them, and that often gets their attention pretty quickly.

If they do contact you, you can then go ahead and let them reorder after getting the information that you need.

If they don’t contact you, you’ll have avoided a potentially bad outcome as far as shipping an order that you couldn’t verify!

To read an article about how to cancel an order on Etsy, click here: Can I Refuse An Order On Etsy?

The important thing to remember is that it’s safer (for you) to NOT send an order if you don’t have all of the details, because if the customer complains and/or files a case, you might have to refund.

It’s better to cancel and avoid confusion or sending the wrong item, it will avoid problems in the long run.

Kara Buntin

Kara Buntin has run a profitable home-based business since 1999, and has a background in art, theater design, and cake decorating. She's a top Etsy seller with over 51,000 sales on Etsy and her own website, and helps other home-based business owners with their business goals and SEO. She founded the Artisan Shopping Directory website to promote the artisans who are members of her EShop Success marketing program.

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