Do you feel invisible on Etsy? Are you having a hard time getting your products in front of the right buyers? If so, it’s time to beef up your Etsy search engine optimization strategy and boost the presence of your listings.
With this Etsy SEO guide your listing will reach more buyers in no time.. We’ll explore the inner workings of Etsy search; you’ll learn how the site’s algorithm works, the factors that come into play when it ranks listings, and the steps you should take to improve your position in search results.
Let’s get cracking!
The Basics of Etsy SEO
First things first. In order to know how to use Etsy SEO to your advantage, you must first ask the following question:
- What is Etsy SEO?
- How does Etsy SEO work?
Etsy SEO is a process that helps sellers improve the visibility and listings of their store on the Etsy marketplace as well as on different search engines.
More buyers equals more chances to sell, which can lead to higher revenues. But in order to sell, you need to be visible. This is where Etsy search engine optimization comes in.
Understanding how Etsy search engine optimization works is fundamental for your future ranking on that platform. According to Etsy, their product ranking algorithm uses two factors when determining how to list products when a buyer is searching for an item on their platform.
These two factors are:
- Query matching
And this is how the algorithm “thinks”.
The first thing that the Etsy algorithm does is that it matches the word that the user has typed in the search bar and runs it through the existing listings. The algorithm looks for:
If the product from your store is somehow relevant to the search term that the buyers used (also known as the query), the algorithm will recognize it and use it for the selection of products that it offers to the buyer.
After matching the available products with the term that the buyer uses in the search bar, the Etsy algorithm then ranks these products according to certain factors, like:
- Relevance - the more the buyer’s query matches your listing description and the words used, the higher it will rank your product.
- Quality - Etsy will give priority to listings with a high conversion rate.
- The age of your listing - New products get a temporary priority in rankings. Etsy does that to give a chance to new sellers to make a sale. This temporary priority can last for a couple of days or hours, depending on the number of searches that are made for this product.
- Customer and market experience - Etsy algorithm will give higher rank to listings with better seller scores, but also to those who have more complete content in their shops like the About page and store policies.
- Shipping - Sellers that offer free shipping or have lower shipping costs will always rank higher than those with high shipping costs.
- Location - Local Etsy shops have a slight advantage in the ranking. This means that for the sellers based in Australia, Canada, and the EU, Etsy algorithm will take into account their location. For searches in other countries, this parameter isn’t taken into account.
- Translation - If your product is available to international buyers, it can help your ranking if you add custom translation to your listings.
- CSR - CSR or Content Specific Ranking is a technology used by Etsy to determine buyers’ behavior. This is also included in your future rankings even though it depends solely on the buyer. Etsy will always offer the most relevant listings to the buyers who used the platform before.
How to Master Etsy SEO
Mastering Etsy SEO is a long process. Don’t expect results to appear immediately. You should always take into consideration that these processes take time.
Now, let’s dig deeper into factors that can help you Master your Etsy SEO skills and improve your listings rank:
The two main factors that Etsy takes into consideration for the ranking of your listing are titles and tags. This means that Etsy will rank higher those listings that contain relevant keywords for the search query in question. The attributes you add to your listing and the categories you choose are also a relevant factor that impacts your ranking.
Here are some tips that you should take into consideration if you want to make your listing more relevant to the search query:
- Use long-tail keywords. Exact matches will rank much higher than individual words.
- Use the beginning of the title for the strongest keywords. Etsy gives the highest value to the first 40 characters of your title, so use them well.
- Don’t stuff keywords into your title.
- Use all 13 tags.
- Carefully choose attributes that can be used to describe your listing.
- Be as specific as possible when choosing the categories for your product.
2. Listing Quality Score
It’s important to point out the fact that Etsy “keeps track” of how well your listing is performing. Ultimately, Etsy wants buyers to actually make a purchase. And this means higher ranks for those products that have better performance.
Your Etsy conversion rate plays an important role in all of this. The conversion rate depends on the number of people who see your listing and end up buying it. The higher your conversion rate is the higher your rank will be.
Things that you can do to improve your conversion rate, and ultimately your ranking:
- Add a set of high-quality photographs.
- Make sure to place the best photograph first.
- Add a detailed product description.
In order to be fair to new sellers and new products, Etsy gives them a temporary boost. This boost can last from a few hours to a few days.
However, you shouldn’t rely on this factor entirely. It’s much more important to work on your tags and titles, than constantly renewing the items in your store.
4. Customer and Market Experience Score
Good customer and market experience score will have an impact on your rankings. This score depends on:
- Positive reviews (positive).
- Having an about section and store policies (positive).
- Cases opened against you by a former buyer (negative).
- Intellectual property issues (negative).
Some of the above-mentioned factors have a positive and some negative impact on your customer and market experience score.
So, what exactly can you do to improve this score? Here are some tips:
- Provide good customer service.
- Encourage customers to leave reviews.
People looking at your listing are more likely to buy your product if the shipping price is low or free. Therefore, Etsy will always rank higher than those sellers who offer free shipping.
If you can, lower the prices of your shipping fees, or make your shipping free of charge. Sometimes, this isn’t possible. But if this is a possibility for you, you should take it into consideration, since it can have a huge impact on your current ranking.
6. Translation and Languages
People like to read about the product that they are buying in their own language. This is why translations are important.
The best practice would be to add manual translations, instead of automatically generated ones. Also, make sure that your tags and titles are properly translated.
7. Content-Specific Results
Because of the Etsy algorithm’s new feature, called CSR (Content-Specific Results), two different buyers will see different rankings for the same search query. This is because the algorithm now recognizes certain user behaviors and is able to make an estimation of what the user is most likely to buy.
There isn’t much that you can do to influence this factor, except combine everything mentioned above and follow the stats for every change that you make in your store. Whatever proves to be working in your favor, stick with it.
4 Etsy SEO Tips to Get Your Listing Rank on the First Page
Now that we have covered the basics, we can move on to the actual tips. So here are some practical tips for those who want their Etsy listing to rank higher:
1. Start with Keyword Research
The first thing that you need to do when optimizing your Etsy store is to find the best keywords for your Etsy store listings.
There are several ways to do that:
- Think like the buyer of the products that you’re selling.
- Use an Etsy SEO tool.
- Use the Etsy search bar.
1.1 Think Like a Buyer
Different products attract different buyers. The same goes for the language used by those same buyers. Your average buyer will most likely use the same expression when looking for your product. All you need to do is think like your average buyer and make a list of all the possible words and phrases that they would use to find your product.
1.2 Use an Etsy SEO Tool
Luckily for you, nowadays there are a lot of SEO tools available that can do the hard work for you.
There are those that can help you with every aspect of your listing and higher ranking like:
- Google Keyword Planner
Alura keyword research tool is pretty easy to use and it will give you all the necessary information about the keyword or phrase that you wish to include in your listing titles, tags, and description.
Firstly you will visit the Alura Keyword Finder page. In the search field enter a word or a phrase that best describes your listing.
Alura Keyword Finder will check with Etsy and it will show you a list of the most related tags for your search query. Moreover, it will provide you with different information about those related keywords and phrases like the level of competition and demand for each keyword. The ideal keywords and phrases will have a high demand and low competition.
You can now make a selection of the best keywords for your listing’s tags and title with the information you have obtained from this keyword tool.
1.3 Use Etsy Suggests
And lastly, you can add more words and phrases to your keyword selection by visiting the Etsy platform. There you’ll find the Etsy search engine bar. Clicking on it and start typing the main keyword that best describes your product. You can see all the variations of that word that are most popular on Etsy.
You can try adding words like “for”, “that”, and “with” at the end of your search query, and you will see even more variations.
And there’s more. If your product is best described with the word “wallet”, and you click on a search just for that word, Etsy will offer you more related phrases that will be highlighted above the search result section. What is more, if you scroll to the end of that search result page, Etsy will offer even more keywords.
If you visit Etsy Customer Stats, you can even find out what other search queries your customers made on this platform. This information can be beneficial since it can give you insight into your client’s interests. And eventually, you can use this information when you decide to expand your inventory.
2. Make Your Listing SEO-Friendly
According to the Etsy Seller Handbook, there are many factors that play an important role in the search engine optimization of your listings, and here are the crucial ones:
For your listing to become visible to the Etsy algorithm, your titles and tags must match the buyer’s query. And that is why defining keywords is so important. Because those same keywords will be the foundation when making your titles and tags.
For your title, Etsy will let you use up to 140 characters. Use them well!
Make sure that the first few words of your title contain the focus or the main keyword.
Don’t repeat words in the title and avoid keyword stuffing. Your title has to make sense and still contain all the crucial keywords.
Moreover, only three words can be used in all caps. So think carefully about which three words are best suited to describe your product.
As far as Etsy tags are concerned, they have two roles. The first one is to help Etsy buyers find similar products to the one they are looking for. The second role is to help Etsy’s algorithm with the matching process.
Etsy allows up to 13 tags of 20 characters for each listing, so make them count.
Tags should only match the most important keyword or phrase from your title. All the other tags should cover terms that are relevant for your listing but aren’t a part of your title. So don’t waste precious tag space.
Also, Etsy recommends using long-tail keywords. For example, if you’re selling silver handmade rings, you shouldn’t use tags “handmade”, “silver”, and “rings” separately. You’ll have a better chance of Etsy algorithm finding your listing if your tag is a long-tail keyword like “handmade rings” or “silver rings”.
2.3 Attributes and Categories
Etsy algorithm also takes into consideration the attributes you used to describe your product. Therefore, attributes have a similar role as titles and tags. So, choose as many relevant attributes as you can to improve your chance of matching your buyer’s search query. The more attributes you place, the higher the chance of a match and higher ranking.
Etsy allows buyers to filter their search page by attributes. By adding various attributes you can give your listing more exposure.
Just like titles, tags, and attributes, categories are also used by the Etsy algorithm to match a listing with a search query. If a category can be used to describe your product, you don’t have to use that same phrase in tags.
For example, Etsy has a category “Bowler Hats”. If you use this category for your listing, you don’t have to repeat that same phrase in your tags.
3. Improve Your Listing Quality Score
As mentioned above, improving your listing quality score greatly depends on your conversion rate. More sales equals a higher conversion rate, which leads to higher rankings.
High-quality images, detailed descriptions, and lots of reviews can be defining factors for the buyer when making a decision of whether or not to buy your product.
3.1 Add High-Quality Photos
The seller can add up to 10 photos for each listing on the Etsy platform. Use this opportunity to present your product in the best possible way.
Take as many photos as you can from different angles, and if possible take a picture of your product being used.
Include images that can give future buyers a better idea of the product’s size, color, or texture.
3.2 Write Informative and Detailed Descriptions
Even though Etsy’s algorithm doesn’t use your product description to determine your position on the search result page, it has a significant role in increasing your listing quality score which ultimately leads to a higher ranking.
There’s no word count limit to your Etsy listing description. This leaves you with plenty of space to give as many details as you can.
Here are some of the best practices when writing your product description on the Etsy platform:
- Write the important details first.
- Use short paragraphs and sentences.
- Add a link to any other product in your store.
Before you start writing your listing description, ask yourself which questions can potential buyers have about your product. All you have to do is to give answers to all of these questions and follow the above-mentioned guidelines, and you’re good to go.
3.3 Encourage Buyers to Leave Reviews
Did you know that as much as 97% of customers read reviews before buying something online? This is why it’s important for your listing to have many ratings and reviews.
After making a purchase, Etsy reminds the buyer to leave a review or rating for your listing. But you can also add a “thank you” note for each shipment and kindly ask them to give you a review. But be careful. Etsy doesn’t allow sellers to offer any additional goods or compensations in order to get a review. So, be careful what you write and how you express yourself.
In case you get a negative review, you can reply and ask the buyer if there’s anything you can do to fix their problem. Even though this method won’t work all the time, it can turn some negative reviews into positive ones.
4. Enhance Your Shop's Customer and Market Experience Score
Customer and market experience score is a metric that gives Etsy an idea of how satisfied customers are with your store. The factors that impact this score are:
4.1 Shop Reviews
Keeping your customers satisfied will result in positive reviews and ratings that can affect your rankings. Etsy favors listings that have a lot of positive reviews and gives them a better placement.
You shouldn’t be bothered with an occasional “less than perfect” review. But there are things that you can do to make sure that you’re ranked even higher by Etsy.:
Be honest in the description of your product. Any exaggeration or false claims can lead to poor reviews that can affect your ranking.
4.2 About Section
Building a lasting relationship with your customers means letting them get to know you better. And this is why it’s important to add the About section.
Use it wisely and let your customers know that they can trust you and that you’re a seller that won’t betray that trust.
Add photos, videos, and tell everything you can about your store and your goals as an Etsy seller. With this new information, the buyers will have more confidence to make a purchase at your store.
4.3 Store Policy
The role of the Store Policy is similar to the one of the About section. It puts the buyer’s mind at ease when making a purchase with you.
What is more, it becomes clear how you operate, and most importantly, how you handle returns.
4.4 Buyer Disputes and Open Cases Against Your Store
Having open cases against you can have a negative impact on your customer and market experience score, thus resulting in a lower ranking.
It’s crucial to avoid such disputes by being honest and realistic with your listing description, photographs, and About page.
The best practice, in this case, is to immediately contact Etsy and the buyer who has made complaints against you, to resolve this issue as soon as possible.
4.5 Intellectual Property Infringement
Posting someone else’s photos with your listing or copying a description from another seller is a huge NO!
As soon as Etsy gets notified of an intellectual property infringement against your store, it will instantly lower your score.
Investing your time in Etsy SEO will pay off in time. Learning as much as you can about how the Etsy algorithm works will do wonders for your selling score. If you’re someone who hasn’t had the opportunity to deal with keywords, titles, and analytics before, you should remember that there are Etsy SEO tools like Listing Helper that can be useful in the long run.
Every work eventually pays off. With this in mind and a lot of patience, you can expect to see amazing results in no time.