Designing a Marketplace for the People Who Use It
We created this poll to learn your priorities for the Artisans Cooperative handmade marketplace. We want to create a better handmade online shopping experience for Artisans, Supporters, and Partners alike – and that starts with you!
The poll was released on November 28, 2022 and closed on January 8, 2023.
UPDATE 2/4/23: Results posted here!
In this post, we’ll talk about why we developed a marketplace priorities poll, and give the background on how the poll was developed.
In our quest to develop a fair and inclusive marketplace, we are following the principles of platform cooperativism. One of the most important amongst them, is that the marketplace needs to be designed for and by the people who will use it.
This is where the poll comes in. The answers to the poll will guide our Tech Team in developing the marketplace. These results tell the organizers what website features take priority and what problems artisans need solved.
How the Poll Was Developed
The organizers at Artisans Cooperative met during the #EtsyStrike, when Etsy sellers began to publicly articulate their grievances and major complaints with the platform. Spontaneous conversations sprung up on the Etsy Strike Discord and Reddit with honest and raw comments and ideas. The strike was the trigger that finally began to connect artisans with each other.
Our organizers tracked those raw comments and ideas, and other important information from artisans and customers shared in these conversations for months during and after the strike, from April to November of 2022. We then assembled these ideas into a list of marketplace features.
Those features were then grouped into like categories, and then simplified to make poll questions concise and targeted, with a series of ranked-choice of features for (1) artisans and (2) shoppers, on a scale of 1-5.
Draft poll questions were reviewed by the organizers, the Tech Team, and finally, by Danny Spitzberg, a user experience researcher specializing in cooperatives and one of the essay writers for the book on platform cooperativism stewardship, Ours to Hack and to Own, edited by Professor Nathan Schneider (read our interview with Prof. Schneider, coming soon!).
Danny was the perfect person to review our poll, and we’re grateful he lent us his expertise in making sure we had a valid survey. As Danny wrote about the importance of community engagement in his essay, “People give endless feedback on ideas, but only commit if they see value. A sure way to make this shift is through opportunities for people to test a prototype and express their emotions.”
That is precisely what this poll is for: help us imagine what a genuinely handmade marketplace could be, and then tell you what excites you about it. Which features are just distractions – or worse, bad ideas? Which features are absolutely critical for your support? How can this marketplace solve your problems as artisans selling and shoppers buying handmade online?
About Artisans Cooperative
We are growing an online handmade marketplace for an inclusive network of creatives: a co-op alternative to Etsy.
Shop the marketplace!