Etsy Up Conference 2016

The Etsy Up conference was a two day event in New York City at Parsons New School of Design on August 11 and 12, 2016. Etsy billed it as their first conference and the event featured an array of workshops and talks, some of which were keynote and others that were the registrant’s choice. There were more than 400 people in attendance and parts of the event were broadcast live to an online audience around the world (they will soon be on Etsy’s YouTube channel as well).

Thursday morning I arrived at the venue and was given a name tag before indulging in breakfast and coffee with other attendees.

After breakfast, we were in the auditorium to begin the day with Etsy CEO Chad Dickerson as keynote speaker! Each seat was topped with a tote bag filled with goodies. Gifts inside the tote included a water bottle, three full length books, a notebook and more.

The emcee who introduced Chad also encouraged sellers watching online to interact by using the hashtag #asketsyup on social media. Questions were pulled from this hashtag for each Q+A so even though this was an in person event, many more sellers were able to participate.

Chad spoke about his career and early entrepreneurial efforts in the lawn mowing business with his brother and the loan they got from the Bank of Dad. Personal stories aside, Chad spoke about seller success being Etsy’s success and topped off his presentation with an announcement about a new Etsy collaboration with Intuit. He said the effort was brought about after hearing from so many sellers that taxes and book keeping are overwhelming and take them away from the work they love. As we know, Etsy has recently made a go of providing extra services to sellers, and this is yet another.

The next speaker was Fay Wolf – a decluttering expert. Her new book was one of the three full length books in our goodie bags. She spoke about decluttering as a way to tap into your creativity more – making your tools and inspirations accessible for use and keeping things realistically organized were the main takeaways.

Etsy Up Conference 2016

The first workshop I attended was “Inside Etsy Search” presented by admin, Jaime Delanghe. This presentation covered how Etsy search works and what goes into developing improvements. Though insightful, it did not present me with any particularly new information. It seemed many in attendance did learn quite a bit they were unaware of before.

My after lunch I was at the Partner Pavilion for about an hour. The pavilion was a place to meet and interact with Etsy admin and sponsors such as Canon, Paypal and Moo. I visited some kiosks before sitting down with an admin who looked over my shop and answered some questions I had.

I attended a second session on Thursday, hosted by Natasha Lende called “Crash Course: Optimize Your Shop.” This session covered things like shop updates, SEO, branding and customer service.

Etsy Up Conference 2016

We ended the day with a talk from Maxwell Ryan from Apartment Therapy. Maxwell spoke mainly about the rise of small brands in the global marketplace and the death of major conglomerates. I felt this was the one of the more inspirational talks of the day.

Once everything at The New School wrapped, sellers were invited to a PayPal sponsored cocktail party! This was a great way to end the day as it provided a casual atmosphere for attendees to meet or reconnect!

Overall the event was really fun and inspiring. I think Fay and Maxwell provided the most inspiration even though they were the least “Etsy-specific” parts of the event. I have attended many great Etsy events in the past and this was certainly on par with those! I would absolutely attend again in the future.


Danielle Spurge is a 26-year-old currently living the dream in Norfolk VA with her naval officer husband and a fur child. She’s a native New Yorker and an honorary Bostonian. Three days before her college graduation her post-college-life-plan fell through completely and she moved on to plan B which was actually no plan at all. That’s when she started her mini micro business, The Merriweather Council. Four point five years later, she’s married, living in a new city and has more ideas, plans and goals. She lives, writes, creates and shares in pursuit and support of creative lifestyles. Current projects include co-founding She Percolates, and making and blogging at The Merriweather Council.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This