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Do you feel invisible on Etsy? Not sure how to optimize your Etsy shop for SEO? As a full-time Etsy seller, I will share with you the SEO tactics I have used to grow my shop into the top 1% of Etsy stores.
This article will cover the top Etsy SEO tips to get your listings found in Etsy search results and skyrocket your shop views and sales!
To ensure that you have all of the information you could possibly need, I have done a ton of research on Etsy’s articles containing search optimization tips, shop improvement guides, and also included the top things that have worked in my own Etsy shop.
Here’s what I found…
- Etsy SEO
- So How Does Etsy Search Work?
- Titles & Tags
- Optimize Key Aspects of Your Shop
- Be Unique
What is SEO you ask? SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the process of improving the visibility of your shop and its products in search engines like Google, as well as within Etsy’s own search function. To understand Etsy SEO, we need to understand how the search works.
So How Does Etsy Search Work?
Etsy search starts with a process called query matching in which it runs through listings and shows the ones that match the customer’s search query. Specifically, the search looks at listing titles, tags, categories, and attributes for matches to the customer’s search input.
After query matching, Etsy ranks all the matched listings based on each buyer’s likelihood to purchase the items.
Etsy takes the following ranking factors into consideration:
When tags, titles, categories, and attributes match a shopper’s search terms, listings have the potential to appear in search results. Those keywords that are an exact match appear higher in the results.
Listing quality score
Basically, this is how well a listing converts (how many people view and then buy). To do this, Etsy looks for indications of what interests buyers. Each search provides an opportunity to gather information on how buyers are interacting with your listing and the more interest, the higher the listing score.
When a new listing is created, Etsy temporarily boosts it in the search results to help determine the listing’s quality score.
Customer and market experience score
Each shop has a score — based on customer reviews, complete shop policies and About section, or recent cases — which affects where that store’s listing show in search results.
Because shipping price factors heavily into a user’s decision to purchase, listings that ship for free (or offer a US free shipping guarantee) or digital products are given priority placement in search results.
Translations and language
The titles and tags you add to your listings should be in the language you choose during setup. Keywords are translated automatically by Etsy.
Search results are tailored for individual shoppers. What you see for a given search is not what another shopper would see. Etsy learns what buyers are interested in and shows the most relevant items they’re most likely to purchase.
Pro Tip#1 Don’t try to fix it if it’s not broken.
If you have a listing that drives a lot of traffic to your shop, that’s an indicator your chosen Etsy SEO is working. If you want to test out different keywords, it is better to duplicate the listing, change out the keywords in your title and tags, and then do A/B testing. Always check your Etsy stats and see which listings are not gaining traction and fix ONLY those listings. You don’t want to make the mistake of changing all of your tags and end up with no traffic and dried up sales.
Titles & Tags
Your titles and tags are the cornerstones of good Etsy SEO. Here are some tips to get the most bang for your buck when it comes to generating awesome titles and tags for your listings.
Use Relevant Keywords
When finding keywords, think like a buyer! Brainstorm what alternate names a buyer may search for and target those. There are two types of customers: product-aware and problem aware. The buyer who knows that they are looking for something specific (product aware) will use different search terms than someone who has a problem they are trying to solve (problem aware). When you understand your target customers and truly understand the reasons behind why they’re searching for your products, you’ll be able to easily determine the right words and phrases to use in your tags and titles.
This will also help when you’re dealing with the technical side of keyword research. Etsy SEO tools can generate long lists of keywords and tons of choices, which can take time to sift through and organize. Knowing your buyers and their search intentions makes the keyword research process easier because you already have an idea of what buyers are looking for.
Items that are an exact match will appear highest in search results. For example, if a shopper searches for “coffee mug,” the search algorithm will find all items that match both “coffee” and “mug” in either listing tags or titles. Then, the algorithm will use keywords to place those items in the most relevant order.
Pro Tip #2: Look for gaps in competitor keywords and focus on where they are lacking. Also, consider synonyms and regional phrases or spellings. For example, “sneakers” may be used in the US, but in other parts of the world they are called “trainers” or “tennis shoes”. Make sure to cover these types of variations in your tags.
Use Your Important Keywords First
The first 40 characters of your title are the MOST important because Etsy considers them to be the most relevant. A potential buyer can only see the first 40 characters from the search results page, so they will make or break whether someone clicks on your product.
An exact phrase match is stronger than matching the search terms individually. For example, “tea cup” will be placed higher than a match for “tea” or “cup.”
Pro Tip #3: Using focus keywords – (keywords that are matched exactly in your title and tags) is a sign to the algorithm that you’re extremely relevant for that particular keyword. If a word or phrase in a search appears in both the title and tags of a listing, Etsy considers that listing more relevant than a listing that features the search term in the tags or title alone.
When it comes to the tags though, the order you enter the tag doesn’t really matter. You want to make sure you are matching an exact phrase a buyer would be searching for though. More on this later.
Use All 13 Tags Available
A critical step in improving your shop’s SEO is to find the best possible words to describe your items. Each tag that you add provides an opportunity for you to match a buyer’s search. Find 5 – 10 strong, long-tail keywords (aka multi-word phrases) and use them in your title and tags.
Another tip: use long-tail keywords instead of single words. For example, “thank you card template” is stronger than “card template”. Instead of “custom”, “gold” and “necklace”, use “custom gold necklace” in one tag. You should also break up phrases that are too long (over 20 characters) and mix & match words to create new tags.
Don’t include plurals or misspellings in your tags. Etsy looks at root words when a buyer types a search, and it also corrects common spelling mistakes.
Also, don’t use a tag that’s already included in attributes. Attributes act like a tag and will match in a search the same way your keywords (tags) do.
Tools To Find Great Keywords and Improve Etsy SEO
Here is a list of awesome tools and resources that do the work for you – literally.
The Marmalead software offers brainstorming and reporting tools to surface top Etsy searches, keyword search volume, engagement, and competition. It also looks at keyword performance over the last 12 months to predict how they’re going to perform in the future.
Pricing: $19 USD a month / $15.83 per month if paid annually.
Formerly known as Etsy rank, eRank has a suite of tools to cover your Etsy keyword research needs and more. From showing trends and basic keyword suggestion tools, to tracking your competition, eRank is a great option.
Pricing: The standard plan is free, but you can upgrade to the Pro tier for $9.99 a month.
Google Keyword Planner
Although meant to be a keyword tool when using Google ads, this free keyword powerhouse shows you how often certain words are searched and how those searches have changed over time. You can also gauge how competitive the keyword is by reviewing the suggested bid (low competition = low cost for the ad; high competition = higher ad cost).
Pricing: FREE! You do need a Google Ad Account to get started.
Optimize Key Aspects of Your Shop
Market and Customer Experience Score
Your overall presence as a seller is taken greatly into account. If you take the time to have a complete, high quality shop that excels at customer service, Etsy will reward you. More traffic is provided to stores that have completed their:
- Shop Profile
- Return policy
- About section
Etsy wants its customers to continue to shop on the site and spend more $$. So it only makes sense that if your products are rated 5 stars and your shop is in good standing, you will be ranked higher.
Think about your shop navigation and why a customer is there. Consider using section titles that double down on keywords, again improving shop organization and the likelihood of appearing early in searches. Create simple, yet descriptive titles for your sections. You want to make things easy to navigate as well as boost your SEO by using keywords buyers may search for.
Your shop sections also form part of the web address of your landing pages. That page title is what someone sees when using a search engine like Google. Again, another opportunity for SEO outside of just titles and tags!
Your Listing Descriptions (And Photos)
The first 160 characters of your item description are used to create the meta description for your listing page. The meta description is the text shown under your page title on a search engine results page. Add a few keywords right at the beginning of your description, but make them fit in naturally. Buyers will stop reading if they just see a list of words!
Pro Tip #5: Dropping a few of your best keywords into your description will help you optimize for Google. While this won’t make a difference for Etsy’s SEO, it does help with Google search results!
Listing photos aren’t exactly SEO, but they might as well be! You can have the most researched, best SEO of any listing, but if your photos suck, no one is going to give you a chance. Great listing photos are KEY to standing out and making potential buyers want to see more.
Now you know the ins and outs of good Etsy SEO – but all of that doesn’t help if your product offerings are not well thought out. According to Etsy, offering something unique, interesting, and desirable is the first step in drawing potential buyers. Before adjusting your SEO, take a look at the items in your shop and consider what makes your item or shop unique and different from everyone else’s.
As you optimize your shop and your listings, your search visibility should grow, attracting new consumers and extending your reach across the platform. Check out our other article on the biggest mistakes that are hurting your Etsy sales here.