[Note: I've used example.com as the web address in this article, since the exact address is still not decided upon.]
So, the act of renewing an item changes its listing ID. Take, for example, the rather charming replica of Tux by GeekToys at http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=12008781. When that item sells (go on, buy one now, I’ll wait) that URL will link to a page that says “this item sold out on…”. If GeekToys relists the item, then the “more items” section at the top will include a link to the relisted one so that a customer who has the old URL can still buy the item.
But, they need to notice that that link is there at the top. My plan is to offer a service sort of like TinyURL but for Etsy. The web address “http://example.com/GeekToys/Tux_Statue” would link to a currently-listed “Tux Statue” item, or the last listing for that item if it isn’t currently listed.
This would provide the following advantages for off-Etsy promotion:
- It’s human-readable - can go on printed promotional materials and make sense.
- It’s easy to type (probably… depends on your shop name and item titles).
- It takes your user directly to the available-to-buy item straight away - you don’t have to hope that they’ll notice the relisted item at the top of the page. Good for often-sold items, less useful for OOAK items!
You could use it on printed promotional materials - leaflets, posters, catalogs, business cards, etc. - or anywhere where the link is going to hang around for a while. Use it on product labels so that people who receive your items as a gift know where to go to find more.
This would be free, and automatic - you wouldn’t need to configure anything, or sign up for anything. The service would periodically check your shop’s listing and update the link as needed.
Then I’d also offer the following options for a fee:
- Links like http://example.com/GeekToys/Tux_Statue and http://GeekToys.example.com/Tux_Statue
- A “custom short link” option for those of you with verbose item titles, so you could have http://GeekToys.example.com/Cephalod_Ears rather than http://GeekToys.example.com/Cephalod_Ears_-_Dangly_Tentacle_Earrings_Sterling_Hooks
- A “custom very short link” option with links like http://example.com/Tux for times where space is limited (like on a business card or product label, for example).
- An “update my links” button, so that you can refresh the links immediately after you’ve relisted.
- Click-tracking statistics so you know how often your links are getting clicked on and from where.
So, what are your thoughts? Does this sound like a good idea? Useful? Would you use it? Pay for it? Are there other related features you can think of that you think I should provide? Do tell. Comment here, or email me at ian at etsyhacks dot com, or send me a tweet.