Going cross-eyed while trying to find what I want on Etsy...
May 22, 2016 6:08 PM   Subscribe

Is there a way to search specifically for shops rather than items on Etsy, with each shop turning up only once in the results?

I'm looking for reusable grocery bags. I'd rather pay an artist for an interesting bag than $SuperGlobalMegaCorp for a bag sporting their $SuperGlobalMegaLogo.

So, to Etsy! Interesting screen printers abound there! Except, my searches get flooded out by bags that I don't like (too girly-girl, too eco-warrior, too precious, nice ones that are too fancy for what I want to use them for, bags that are literally not my bag, etc.) and I get annoyed with the whole process.

Is there no way to get Etsy to spit out a list of screen printers, so I can browse each shop and quickly decide whether their art is what I want on my food'n'stuff-hauling devices?
posted by CKmtl to Shopping (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I've found their search engine to be pretty underwhelming as well. If it helps, my strategy is to search until I find something I consider reasonable, then look at what else that artist is offering. Usually if someone has an item that catches my eye, I'll probably like some of their other products as well. That often saves me from going through a mind-numbingly large number of items.
posted by DrGail at 6:41 PM on May 22, 2016

Yeah, not being able to find shops is very frustrating on Etsy - especially as a seller.
The best I've found is if you search "screen print" then at the bottom there's "looking for shops?" with a more button which takes you here. However that's a slim list and there's hundreds of shops that offer screen printing.

The best way to search would be to run your search with as close as what you want in search terms, so a screen print tote if that's what you want. Close your search in a bit more by location and price if you want. Then if you see something you sorta like, go to the listing and that shop and see what they have to offer.

One thing to note is that you should give the benefit of the doubt to the shop if they have anything like the style you'd be wanting or the price you want before clicking because many shops - like my own - offer a big variety of styles and designs. So I'd first evaluate if it's a style of bag and the right price then check out that shop for more stuff. I often will have tabs of many shops open when I'm browsing vintage clothes or whatever.
posted by Crystalinne at 6:53 PM on May 22, 2016

You can try shopping etsy bags through Google's interface.
posted by the agents of KAOS at 7:41 PM on May 22, 2016

I find that selecting only US shops in my search helps weed out some of the $MegaBagMall shops. (Sorry, smaller international shopowners!)
posted by sarajane at 4:10 AM on May 23, 2016 [1 favorite]

If what you need doesn't easily come up on search it can be time-consuming. For a long time now I've said it would be great if etsy added a feature where someone whose not finding what they want can post a description of what they'd like and those who are willing/able to make it can then contact YOU.

Alas, they do not have this feature yet so what I do is use google search and specifically look for etsy items through that.
posted by rancher at 8:28 AM on May 23, 2016

Seconding Crystalinne - that's the best option I've found.

To rancher's point, they had that option years ago - it was called "Alchemy" - and replaced it with the "Request Custom Order" button in each individual shop. It was fantastic while it lasted.
posted by okayokayigive at 9:17 AM on May 23, 2016

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