You send me a buyer who wants one badge, in spite of shipping costs being nearly twice the cost of the badge itself, OK, fine, whatever.
And now they want expedited shipping?
Where do you find me these people? Do you grow them on a farm in Idaho? Only some backwoods hell with Neo-Nazi…
We’re used to having to buy things from overseas…it’s all part of the tyranny of distance. From the very earliest days when Macassars were trading with Indigenous Aussies, we bought goods from outside, often from very long distances. So Australians don’t tend to be daunted by the idea of buying internationally and paying accordingly. The internet has just expedited that.
I don’t tend to do it myself - I mostly buy vintage globally and everything else that I can get local I buy here. If I’m buying something like jewellery I’ll look and see if there’s anything else from the same seller I want and check they’ll combine shipping. But because we’re so used to sourcing so much from overseas, the concept of buying globally - even in small and inefficient amounts - doesn’t seem odd to us.
While that certainly makes sense, to some extent, wouldn’t it make at least as much sense, especially considering the semi-independent nature of Etsy (and similar sites, like Folksy in the UK) for people to peruse the same shop for more things, if only to pay lip-service to the economic basics? Like, Someone from Oz stumbles upon my Etsy shop cos of, say, this Adicts pin; they think “ooh! I like that! I think I shall buy one!” Which is fair enough, but given that Etsy designs each shop to a) have a row of most-recent listings and renewed listing at the top of each item page and b) throw out a few keyword- and sales-determined suggestions of other items from the same shop, what’s the compulsion to just stop at one badge?
I find it hard to imagine that itself is purely cultural (and obviously there are going to be people in Oz who simply can’t afford to go buying even that one item from my shop, regardless of how inconsequental international postage may seem to many others), or rather, I find it hard to believe that the cultural reason is purely due to the circumstances of being in a location on the globe that is dependent on imports for many reasons. I mean, location (and language) certainly explains why Oz is in my Top Five International countries at all (Top Three, really, Japan is #2 and the UK is #1; you’re ahead of even Canada, and I live in Michigan and Canada is right across the street from here), but most of the Australians I personally know, for whatever reason, say they wouldn’t buy just one or even two badges for US$1.75, especially with First Class International shipping at $6.75 —they’d do a thourough browsing of my items to see if there were at least a couple more, to make it seem like a better buy for the money.
Maybe it’s got more to do with socio-economic class, and I’ve just managed to attract a lot of bourgeoisie Ozzies, while my friends are all around mid-prole or lower, and simply don’t feel it’s worth spending that much on *one* badge at a time.
It’s hard to say, as I don’t know that particular market and the scarcity of the badge/accessibility to Australians here. If it is a particular niche that they can’t readily fulfill another way, most Australian’s wouldn’t hesitate - as I said, there’s already a cultural receptiveness to the idea of having to import goods long distances and pay a lot in shipping.
You may start to see a downturn in sales now that the Aussie dollar is dropping against the US (until fairly recently the AUD was even if not more than the USD), but Australia in general has come through the GFC very well - no major recession - and we are a wealthy nation…By some measures, the wealthiest. We do have income gaps (there is a big concentration in the upper percentiles and under 25s fare the worst, which I assume would be your target market), but figures from October 2013 indicate we are the richest nation in the world in terms of median wealth, and second only to the Swiss in terms of average wealth. So general (comparative) affluence, coupled with a psychological readiness to buy from overseas (we have embraced the internet buying culture) mean that paying more in shipping than the actual cost of the goods doesn’t seem that out of the ordinary to us. I’ve bought beautiful vintage pieces for $20 and wound up paying nearly twice that in shipping.