Avoid These Etsy Shipping Mistakes and Maximize Your Profits

Avoid These Etsy Shipping Mistakes and Maximize Your Profits

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Shipping Too Fast
    • Issue with ETSY Chargebacks
    • Recommendation: Wait 24 Hours Before Shipping
  3. Offering the Free Shipping Guarantee
    • Potential Loss of Profit
    • Controlling Shipping Costs
  4. Charging Customer the Postage Counter Rate
    • Understanding Shipping Label Discounts
    • Choosing the Counter Rate for Profit Increase
  5. Conclusion

The Costly Mistakes Etsy Sellers Make When Shipping

As an Etsy seller, it is crucial to optimize your shipping process to ensure maximum profitability. However, many sellers, both new and experienced, often make certain mistakes that can end up costing them money. In this article, we will look at some common shipping mistakes made by Etsy sellers and discuss how to avoid them. By following these recommendations, you can streamline your shipping operations and boost your profits.

Shipping Too Fast

It is natural for sellers to want to ship orders as quickly as possible to provide excellent customer service. However, in recent times, sellers have faced an unexpected challenge - Etsy chargebacks. Etsy has started issuing chargebacks when they suspect credit card fraud, even after approving the sale and allowing the item to be shipped. This has left many sellers in a predicament where they are out both the item and the money.

To protect yourself from such situations, it is advisable to exercise caution and wait for 24 hours before shipping an order. This timeframe allows Etsy to rectify any mistakes they may have made on their end, reducing the risk for sellers. While it may be tempting to ship items promptly, particularly for lower-value orders, taking this extra step can save you from potential financial losses.

Offering the Free Shipping Guarantee

Free shipping has become an attractive feature for customers, and many sellers have embraced this strategy to increase sales. However, implementing the free shipping guarantee without careful consideration can turn out to be a costly mistake. When the guarantee is turned on, you relinquish control over shipping costs, and it can lead to unexpected fees and reduced profits.

It is essential to calculate the cost of shipping into each item's price before offering free shipping. Otherwise, you may find yourself faced with additional expenses such as the offsite ads fee or a sale or discount, eating away at your profits. While free shipping can positively impact your store's visibility in Etsy's algorithm, it is crucial to approach it strategically. Consider offering free shipping on an individual item level, adjusting your pricing accordingly, to ensure that you do not end up losing money in the process.

Charging Customer the Postage Counter Rate

When it comes to charging shipping fees, it is essential to understand the dynamics of discounted shipping labels. Shipping companies provide discounted rates to sellers, allowing them to make a margin on the labels they sell. However, as a seller, it is recommended to charge customers the postage counter rate rather than the rate Etsy charges for shipping labels.

By choosing to charge the customer the counter rate, you can leverage the discounts obtained from your shipping label supplier (such as Etsy, Shippo, or Pirate Ship) to cover some of your fees and increase your profits. This approach ensures that you are not passing on the entire discount to the customer but utilizing it to enhance your margins instead. While opinions may vary on this approach, implementing it can significantly impact your bottom line.


In summary, shipping plays a vital role in the success of Etsy sellers. To maximize profit and avoid unnecessary costs, it is essential to address common mistakes made during the shipping process. Waiting 24 hours before shipping, carefully considering the free shipping guarantee, and charging customers the postage counter rate are all effective strategies to optimize your shipping operations. By implementing these recommendations, you can enhance your profitability and provide an exceptional experience for your customers.


  • Shipping too fast can lead to ETSY chargebacks, causing sellers to lose both the item and the money.
  • Offering the free shipping guarantee without proper consideration can result in unexpected fees and reduced profits.
  • Charging customers the postage counter rate allows sellers to leverage shipping label discounts and increase their profits.


Q: Does waiting 24 hours before shipping really make a difference?

A: Waiting and allowing Etsy to rectify any potential chargebacks can protect sellers from financial losses.

Q: Is offering free shipping always beneficial?

A: Free shipping should be implemented strategically, considering the impact on profitability and adjusting prices accordingly.

Q: Why should sellers charge customers the postage counter rate?

A: Charging the counter rate ensures sellers maximize their profits by utilizing shipping label discounts to cover their costs.

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