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Sarah Waggoner

Are your Etsy sales down after Vacation Mode?

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It happens to most handmade shop owners at some point in time. You go away for a week or two, put your Etsy shop on vacation mode, and then come back to find your sales are way down. What can you do to increase your sales again after using Etsy vacation mode? Keep reading.

What is vacation mode?

Vacation mode on Etsy is a way to turn your shop off for a set time. It’s best used when you’ll be away from home and won’t be able to complete orders or reply to customer messages.

Your listings won’t be found in search results, but you can work on your shop and edit listings while using vacation mode.

Click here to read more about vacation mode from Etsy.

Does vacation mode hurt your Etsy sales?

If you look in the seller forums, you’ll see a lot of Etsy sellers complaining about vacation mode and returning to slow sales. I encourage you to take these anecdotal accounts with a grain of salt for a few reasons.

One, Etsy has come out and said that vacation mode does not hurt your search rankings when used for short periods of time.

What happens that makes most sellers think that their shops have been hurt in search placements, is that they use vacation mode for a long time or they come back from a short vacation right after a major holiday when traffic has decreased.

Think about what happens at the end of the typical Christmas holiday season for example. If you went on vacation mode at the end of December, when you come back in January, of course, your traffic is lower.

This same thing happens in spring right before the summer slump.

Vacation mode alternatives

It’s okay if you’re still concerned about using vacation mode in your Etsy shop. Let’s talk about some of the alternatives and see if they’re any better for your business.

Extending Processing Times

Most sellers who don’t want to use vacation mode will instead extend processing times for their listings.

While in theory, this allows you to avoid vacation mode, unfortunately, extending your processing times hurts your conversion rate on Etsy. This lowers your search results placement because it hurts your listing quality score.

In the end, extending your processing times has the same effect on your shop as vacation mode does while not giving you a break from customer service.

If you don’t want to respond to messages while you’re away from your shop, you are better off using vacation mode instead.

Deactivating Listings

Besides the fact that deactivating all of your Etsy listings before a vacation is a lot more work, it also doesn’t help you maintain your search placement while you’re gone.

Any method of deactivating or hiding listings can hurt your Etsy search placements.

So if there is no perfect way to use vacation mode or an alternative, how do you get sales up when you come back to your shop?

How to increase your sales after using Vacation Mode

There are a lot of ways you can get consistent sales after coming back from vacation mode on

  • Open before you come back from vacation: Coming back from vacation mode early with an extended processing time means you’ll come back to your Etsy shop and have some orders already waiting for you, even if it’s not as many as normal.

  • Run a sale: Offering a discount or running a sale on Etsy can give a quick boost to your conversion rate and listing quality score, which can quickly increase search rankings. Try running a sale right when you open your shop back up.

  • Add new listings: Give Etsy a chance to test some new listings by publishing new products when you get home.

  • Decrease your processing time: Remember that buyers always want their products quickly. Decrease your processing times as another quick conversion rate booster.

  • Marketing: Sending social media traffic or email list customers that you know will convert will is another great way to quickly get some sales and increase your listing quality score.


As handmade shop owners, you’re often a one-person team doing everything from making to packaging to marketing. Being that busy is a lot of hard work! Etsy’s vacation mode gives you a chance to take some well-deserved time off from your Etsy business. Don’t be afraid to use it!

Your sales and listing quality score can recover easily after use vacation mode just make sure you plan for getting more sales when you come back.


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About Author:
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Sarah Waggoner is a full time Etsy Seller with over $700,000 in sales. She helps handmade and digital sellers get daily sales on Etsy without all the complications.

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