The store directory has been closed

On July 3rd, 2015, Big Cartel shut down the store directory. If you were a regular visitor to the directory, or benefited from having your own store listed there, we sincerely apologize for the impact this may have had on you. If you’re wondering why we made this change, the short answer is — the directory just wasn’t working well for most shops or visitors.

If you’d care for the long version, here goes…

Back in the early days, when Big Cartel had only a handful of shops, the directory was a way for people (primarily other sellers) to get an idea of the types of shops on Big Cartel. It helped them see that there were other artists using our platform and having success selling their work using our tools. But as the directory grew to hundreds of thousands of stores, it became a bit noisy and that just didn’t work anymore.

The directory also began to give the wrong impression to some new sellers, and a lot of their customers, that Big Cartel was more of an online marketplace like Etsy or eBay. Of course, Big Cartel is not a marketplace. Instead, we help our artists establish their own unique and independent brand that stands out from the crowd. We want your customers to feel like they’re shopping in your store, not shopping on Big Cartel.

Unfortunately, this confusion lead to some frustration from buyers and sellers who thought the directory was lacking a lot of marketplace features. Sellers would also be disappointed if their shop didn’t make it into our list of “Today’s Top Stores”, thinking they missed out on a big traffic boost, which honestly wasn’t much, especially as overall traffic to the directory slowly faded over time.

So as Big Cartel was plotting our future roadmap, and figuring out how our small team can make the biggest impact for our massive community of artists, it became clear that the store directory wasn’t the way to do that. We’re incredibly excited about the future and we have a lot of ideas for great new features for our artists, where the focus is on you and your brand, and not on Big Cartel or our directory.

Thanks,

The Big Cartel Team