How to Make the Best Etsy Shop Policies + Free Templates You Can Copy

How to Make the Best Etsy Shop Policies + Free Templates You Can Copy

First of all, you picked a very good time to sell through Etsy. The popularity of eCommerce is rising, clothing customization is increasingly mainstream, and Etsy itself is enjoying a rapid pace of growth. 

But, when it comes to running a print-on-demand shop, clarity and effective customer communication are key to preventing misunderstandings and building relationships. It’s very possible that you’ll work with clients that don’t fully understand the process. 

As such, this article offers a bit of advice on how to build your Etsy store policies.

Why Bother Writing Etsy Shop Policies?

True, Etsy shop policies are optional. You don’t actually have to do them. However, they serve as protection – for both for you and your customers. When clients have a clear understanding of what to expect, there are fewer complications, business flows more smoothly, and visitors end up trusting store owners more. 

Furthermore, you can always change or edit your Etsy shop policies. There’s no pressure to do everything all at once.

But, Aren’t There a Set of Recommended Etsy Shop Policies?

Yes. Etsy does provide a set of Etsy shop policies for merchants to use and abide by. If you are interested in using some of these pre-built options, feel free to see the Etsy Seller Handbook

Please be aware that these freebie policies aren’t perfectly tailored toward your needs. They’re a great place to get started, but the final version may need some tooling. If Etsy doesn’t agree with your policies or notices a hole in them, they’ll most likely side with the customer against you.

How to Edit Shop Policies on Etsy

– Etsy shop policies cannot be edited on the Sell on Etsy app

  • Go to Etsy.com and click “shop manager”
  • Under “Sales channels” click the pencil icon
  • Scroll down a bit and voila

The 6 Sections of Etsy Shop Policies

According to techpenny, Etsy is an eCommerce platform occupied by a crafty, predominantly female audience between 18 and 35 years of age. So, it’s worth considering the perspective of this crowd when writing your Etsy shop policies. They’re the most likely candidates to visit (and buy from) your store. 

  1. Welcome: This is a place for giving an opening statement, detailing your philosophy, and sharing any other information you’d like to include. A bit of creativity here can seriously pay off in garnering attention.
  2. Payment: Here, you can detail what types of payment methods you accept. If applicable, include payment terms, deadlines, payment plans, tax policies, cancellation specifics, etc.
  3. Shipping: Here, list the shipping methods your store use to get goods to customers. Information like upgraded shipping, the possibility of international shipping, and address policies are potential inclusions. 
  4. Refunds and Exchanges: This is the spot to explain if you offer any refunds, exchanges, or make other special policies during certain circumstances.
  5. Additional Policies and FAQ: This broad category is perfect for specifying custom order policies and other information that doesn’t fit in elsewhere. 
  6. Seller Information: Here, general information like seller names, business address, email, and other optional information.

Avoid Troubles With Etsy Shop Policies

Anyone familiar with shopping online has likely encountered some sub-par, or disappointing items. All in all, it’s perfectly normal for people to be a bit skeptical (at least at first) when trying a new store. 

As such, using Etsy shop policies is a fantastic way to personalize (legitimize) your store. By clearly labeling how business is conducted, you’re much more likely to avoid miscommunications. Furthermore, putting some thought into presentation helps a brand become more humane and less of a faceless robotic transaction.

The 5 Main Problems to Avoid

Starting at the top, these are arguably the most important points to cover with your policies. It’s best to be very specific regarding circumstances and responses. Explore what questions might come your way, anticipating the customer’s needs, problems, and concerns. 

While these directives are almost entirely within your control, please consider the following points when brainstorming for your Etsy shop policies. 

This section is a series of issues and questions, followed by Printify policy on the subject. There are also some Etsy shop policy examples that you can use. However, it may be a good idea to tailor them more toward your store’s needs. 

– If an issue does pop up, odds are you’ll have to reach out to the support team so they can help out. Here’s a good place to reach them.

Etsy Shop Policies Canceling Order

1. Cancelations

  • Do you accept cancelations?
  • If you do, is there a time limit? 
  • Does it matter if a customer doesn’t like a product after it has arrived? 
  • If the order is a custom order, does this make a difference?

Printify and Cancelations

A placed order can be canceled without any problems if the order hasn’t been sent to production yet. If the product is already in production, that means that data and money have already been transferred to the print provider. However, our support team is happy to contact the procedure and attempt to cancel the order (for a refund).  

We will do our best to prevent waste. However, there are no guarantees once an item has entered the production process. For more information on cancelations, please check out this helpful article

Etsy Shop Policy Template to Copy:

You’re free to cancel an order anytime before items have been created. If a cancelation is requested after an item has been made, money and time have already been invested. At this point, it’s unlikely that a cancelation is possible. 

Etsy Shop Policies Refund

2. Refunds

  • Do you offer refunds?
  • What are the circumstances through which (damage to the product, an item is poorly made, etc.) you offer refunds?
  • How long will it take to secure a refund for a customer that warrants one?
  • Do you do partial refunds? Are there any conditions?

Printify and Refunds

If a product arrived damaged or flawed due to some manufacturing error, Printify will happily offer a refund (or free replacement including shipping) of the damaged item. Make sure to reach out to merchant support within 30 days (for domestic orders) or 45 days (for international orders) of the damaged product delivery. There is no need to send the product back to us at Printify.

Etsy Shop Policy Template to Copy:

We’re happy to offer a refund if there is any damage to an order. This can be things like manufacturing errors, items arriving with holes, or the order arriving with clear, demonstrable damage. To do so, please reach out with photo evidence of the item’s improper condition.

Etsy Shop Policies Returns

3. Returns

  • Do you require returns in certain situations? 
  • Will the buyer have to return the item to receive a refund? 
  • What if a returned item is damaged?
  • Are there any conditions (like a time limit) on a buyer providing a return?
  • Does the customer have to pay for shipping on a return?

Printify and Returns

We don’t require sending in any flawed or damaged items. If one of these unfortunate circumstances does pop up, we’re content with photo evidence. Our merchant support teams are happy to assist with any questions, comments, or concerns.

Etsy Shop Policy Template to Copy:

We do not require customers to return any items. Photo evidence will be sufficient for any discussion.

Etsy Shop Policies Shipping Questions

4. Shipping Issues

Here, you can detail what services are used to get a product to a customer’s doorstep. Here are a few considerations for your take on Etsy shop policies related to shipping. 

  • How long will shipping take?
  • Do you provide expedited shipping?
  • Where do you ship to? Just within the USA or internationally?
  • Do you provide insurance against damage or non-delivery?
  • Are tracking numbers provided?
  • Are any costs added to the final total when an item moves through customs?
  • What happens if an item arrives damaged?
  • Where are orders shipped from? What if I work with multiple print providers?

Printify and Shipping

All sales channels have a standard shipping option. This “flat rate” is the most common method. Fortunately for you, there’s a resource that tells you all the basic information (rates, delivery times, etc.) relative to the print provider(s) you choose to work with. 

Now, there are expedited shipping options available. However, it largely depends on the print provider you’re using. Here’s a list of the print providers that offer express shipping. Printify teams do their best to get all tracking information to our merchants as quickly as possible. This information is great to forward to customers, so they can update themselves. 

It can be difficult to specify every print provider you’re using (and their respective addresses). Instead, it’s possible to provide the general address of Printify (108 West 13th Street, Wilmington, Delaware 19801) instead. 

Hint: Many buyers use incorrect or incomplete information when purchasing. Be sure to specify how errors of this nature will be received in your Etsy shop policies to prevent unfortunate misunderstandings.

Etsy Shop Policy Template to Copy:

After an item is shipped, things have moved beyond our control. Shipping (particularly for international orders) is affected by many outside influences, especially COVID-19. If you’d like an update on your order, please contact the shipping company with your order number or use a tracking number or link.

Etsy Shop Policies Customer Changing Mind

5. When Customers Change Their Minds

It’s an unfortunate reality that buyers sometimes regret a decision to buy after spending that money. Unfortunately for print-on-demand merchants, Etsy tends to side with the regretful customer. As such, it’s a good idea to specify your inclinations regarding the situation in your Etsy shop policies.

Etsy gives all its users the option to open “Item Not As Described” cases against merchants – if they feel a grievance. This can be because they didn’t like the final product, it wasn’t what they imagined, or even if they were unsatisfied because they misread (or didn’t read) a product’s description. All in all, this can occur, even if it’s 100% not your fault. 

Protect yourself by setting up some ironclad Etsy shop policies.

Printify and Buyer’s Remorse

Printify does not formally recognize the phenomenon of buyer’s remorse. If the desired order arrives at a buyer’s specified address in a reasonable time, in good condition, in the correct size, and possesses no production errors, we believe the job to be complete.

Etsy Shop Policy Template to Copy:

If an order arrives with manufacturing errors, in the wrong size, or has other obvious errors, we’ll happily work with you to find a solution. However, if a customer simply changes their minds regarding a sale, it’s unlikely that a refund, exchange, or other special treatment will be offered.

Continually Improve Your Etsy Shop Policies

While the odds of finding the perfect Etsy shop template are slim, you’re encouraged to check out what other Etsy store owners are doing. It’s a great idea to see how fellow merchants are protecting themselves. 

From there, you’re able to tinker and better align those policies with how you’d like to conduct business. And remember, it’s not just the content, but the tone of delivery counts, too.

We’ve got your back when it comes to anything related to print on demand. Our assistance teams are standing by to help with any relevant questions that pop up regarding your store, customers, Etsy shop policies, and onward.

Make It Happen Today!

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26 comments

  1. Kat
    January 26

    as the owner of the etsy shop do you handle cancellations/refunds on behalf of the buyer/Customer?

    1. Florence Kingsley
      January 27

      Hi there!
      Currently we do not offer such service, however, in case of a damaged product or a manufacturing error, we do offer a free replacement or a refund if you contact us within 30 days of product delivery. Please see more information here.
      If the order hasn’t been sent to production yet, the order can be canceled, as well as edited by yourself in your Printify account. You can also add or remove products, as well as edit the shipping details. More information and a step-by-step guide can be found here.

  2. KMT
    January 1

    Etsy doesn’t let you write in your own policy’s though …so how can this be applied?

    1. Martha Simmons
      January 2

      Hi there,
      You can edit and set up your own Etsy store policies, however, you must do it via the mobile web or desktop versions of Etsy.

      To set up your shop policies:

      – On Etsy.com, open Shop Manager.
      – Select Settings.
      – Choose Policy Settings.

      Your policies have several sections and are separated into different tabs: Returns & exchanges; Cancellations; Privacy, and Fixed.

  3. Kelsey Johnson
    December 30

    I don’t see anywhere to actually write any of these? I just see sections with selectable options. Where can I use these nicely-worded policies??

    1. Martha Simmons
      January 2

      Hi Kelsey,
      This is something that you need to do on Etsy’s side. To set up your shop policies:

      – On Etsy.com, open Shop Manager.
      – Select Settings.
      – Choose Policy Settings.

      Your policies have several sections and are separated into different tabs: Returns & exchanges; Cancellations; Privacy, and Fixed.

  4. g
    October 25

    Where is “sales channel” located in the shop manager? I’m in my shop and not seeing it anywhere…

    1. Florence Kingsley
      October 26

      Hi there!
      It is right next to the Account button. Please see this article about how to connect a store. In case any other questions arise, feel free to get in touch with our Merchant Support team here or via 24/7 live chat on your Printify account.

  5. Abby
    October 20

    Hi!
    I appreciate this article. I will like to know if I can copy these policies to my store or is it a violation?
    Second question: the printify policies is referring to the seller only or can I copy both Printify and Esty policies to my store ( in case it’s legal to do so)?
    Thank you

    1. Florence Kingsley
      October 23

      Hi there!
      Yes, you can use these templates. Our Terms of Service are referring to sellers, however if anything can be useful, feel free to adjust it and add it to your store.

  6. Nilesh
    September 30

    I can use these templates on my Etsy seller’s account, right? Just want to make sure there is no violation. Thanks

    1. Martha Simmons
      October 3

      Hi Nilesh,
      Yes, you can!

  7. Sei
    September 6

    Do you have a “How to Make the Best Shopify Shop Policies + Free Templates You Can Copy” article?

    1. Florence Kingsley
      September 7

      Hi there!
      Thank you for your suggestion, perhaps we will have to make one in the future.:) However, there are some other articles about Shopify, please see here.

  8. Mavis
    August 10

    Am I allowed to use these templates on my Shopify store as well?

    1. Florence Kingsley
      August 10

      Hi Mavis,
      Shopify might have different policies, so we would advise to double-check if any of those templates cover all the necessary information.

  9. Abinayasree Prabhakaran
    July 16

    Hi…
    If in case a customer cancels my order on Etsy, then should I cancel the order with printify manually or will it be automatically cancelled by printify???

    1. Martha Simmons
      July 18

      Hi there,
      You should immediately cancel it on Printify manually, as the orders do not get cancelled automatically.

  10. Rob
    June 27

    I can see the policies under “Policy Settings”, but there is no apparent way to change or add policies, other then the privacy policy.

    1. Martha Simmons
      June 27

      Hi Rob,
      To set up your shop policies, go on Etsy.com and open Shop Manager. Select Settings. Choose Policy Settings.

      Your shop policies should have several sections. Each section is a template, and you can select the options that you want for your shop. However, please note that you can’t add your shop policies from the Sell on Etsy app. You can only edit your policies on the app once you set them up.

      If you still can’t locate them, please reach out to Etsy support.

  11. Kat Downie
    April 28

    This was very helpful! And sparked ideas for what to write. I went into it not knowing what to say or do.

    1. Florence Kingsley
      April 28

      Hi Kat,
      Happy to hear you liked the article!

  12. Tara
    April 13

    Thank you so much for this! Just updated my policies!

    1. Martha Simmons
      April 14

      Hi Tara,
      Glad you enjoyed our article.

  13. Brandy
    April 8

    Thank you, this article was very helpful, as I am new to this and wouldn’t have thought of it until something happened and then I would have been out of luck! Also, the advice on the delivery of the policies were spot on!

    1. Martha Simmons
      April 11

      Hi Brandy,
      Glad to hear you enjoyed this article and found it helpful! We appreciate your feedback.

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