The names of dealers are no longer shown next to the items for sale and buyers can only see who is selling the item once they have initiated discussions to buy.
The change is part of a number of ‘upgrades’ on the site designed to ‘streamline the buyer experience’.
Cristina Miller of 1stdibs told ATG: “We have evolved from a listings business to an e-commerce platform. We dropped advertising fees and instead now charge when a sale is made. Our focus is on helping dealers make money.”
Some dealers raised concerns the changes would be detrimental to their businesses.
However although the change means buyers cannot immediately see which dealer is selling each item, buyers can search for dealers on the site and it is launching a dealer directory by the end of the year.
Miller said the site has 5 million views each month and hosts items from 3500 dealers across 22 countries. It charges up to 15% commission on items sold through the site plus currently a 3% credit card charge.
Rebecca Davies, chief executive of dealer association LAPADA, said: “LAPADA has always encouraged our members to embrace the opportunities offered by online selling platforms. It is disappointing that 1st Dibs has made the commercial decision to remove the dealers’ details from the item pages, which we see as an erosion of the trust between reputable dealers and their buyers.
"The art and antiques trade is unique in many ways with clients gravitating towards dealers who share their taste and vision. By removing the identities of the dealers, this connection risks being lost and we are concerned about the long-term consequences for both dealers and their clients.”