The Ultimate Etsy SEO Guide (2018)

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You’ve created your Etsy account, lined up your products, and launched your site. The first day, you check your account over and over to see if you’ve made a sale. Nothing.

It’s no big deal -  it is the first day after all.

A month or two goes by with no activity – no purchases, no favorites. You start to wonder if people just aren’t interested in what you’re selling.

Maybe this is your situation, or maybe you’re a seasoned Etsy seller with thousands of sales under your belt. Either way, learning about Etsy SEO tools will revolutionize your performance on Etsy.

The Etsy Search Algorithm

Etsy, like any search engine, has a mathematical equation for ranking search results. If you understand the inputs, you can improve product rankings and how often they appear.

Product Titles, Tags, and Attribute Descriptions

Do keyword research

Finding good keywords (and using them!) can make or break your Etsy shop. When someone is looking for a product on Etsy, they normally start by going to the Etsy search bar and typing in a short description of what they are looking for:

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That description is a keyword. Use popular keywords to get your products in front of more customers.

A good keyword will be relevant to your product, searched often, and easy to rank for. To learn more about this process, check out our page on keyword research.

Format your title effectively

You have your keywords – now what?

Place them at the beginning of the item title – even before the product name. The Etsy Search system pays special attention to the first few words, so if the beginning of your title closely matches a customer’s search words, you will rank higher.

Instead of putting the product name in the title, place it in the product description. For example, if you are selling a hand-crafted wooden table called “The Samson” your title might look something like this:

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And you would include the name in the description like this:

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You want to attract new customers who haven’t heard of you or your products. Including highly searched keywords in your title is the best way to accomplish this goal.

Select tags that are relevant to your product

Etsy allows you to select up to 13 tags for your product. This is another place where using keywords is a great idea!

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Use all 13 tags and focus on keywords frequently searched keywords related to your products. The tools below will help you find and select the best tags.

Complete all attribute fields with relevant answers

The attribute fields are determined by the category of item you are selling. In the case of a wooden table, the attribute fields include things like color, occasion, and style:

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Completing these fields accurately gives you another advantage over your competition. It allows you to cover more keywords and rank higher in search results.

Even if you already use these keywords in your title, tags, and description, filling out the attributes section will give the keywords extra emphasis, effectively raising your product’s score for the keyword.

Listing Quality Score

The listing quality relates to the amount of action your product receives in search results. Every time someone clicks, favorites, or buys your product after seeing it in a search engine, your listing quality score goes up.

Record of Customer Service

Complete your store’s About section

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Of all the fields on your profile, the About section is most important for search rankings.  A completed About section looks more professional – your store seems more established. Customers will feel more comfortable purchasing if they know more about your store, and Etsy know this.

Etsy factors the About section for your store into search results.

Ask customers to review your product

Etsy also knows that people feel more comfortable purchasing products if they can read actual buyers’ reviews of a product. Good reviews increase your place in search results. Bad reviews and customer complaints will decrease your place.

 The first three listings for "Decorative Accent Pillows" have really high reviews!

The first three listings for "Decorative Accent Pillows" have really high reviews!

You can increase review volume by practicing attentive customer service. Package the product well, send follow-up emails, and listen to complaints. You can even include a card inside the packing of your product encouraging customers to review the product on Etsy.

Complete your Shop Policies using the shop policies template

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In 2016, Etsy launched a shop policies template that includes four categories: shipping, payment options, returns & exchanges, and privacy policy.

The benefit of completing these sections is tri-fold. Your shop seems more established. Customers can feel secure knowing your policies. You resolve disputes with customers easily and effectively.

For Etsy, a completed store policies section means that the store has greater selling potential and should rank higher in search results.

Etsy’s help center offers instructions for setting up shop policies if you aren’t sure how to get started.

Recency

Add new products

Etsy factors the date of a product’s release into its search results algorithm. If you start your store with ten products and never release any other products, your store will soon fade to obscurity in the results.

Adding more products at regular intervals ensures that your store will appear higher in results. Product volume also influences search rankings, so adding more items helps your ranking twice over.

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Renew old products

 

Sometimes you just won’t have any new products to add. Etsy has a solution for this dilemma – product renewals. Renewing a product once it sells out or expires is mandatory, but you can manually renew any product at any time.

Etsy charges 20 cents per renewal, but the product release date will reset, causing its ranking in the search results to rise.

You should opt for renewing more frequently if the keyword phrase targeted by the product is very competitive.

Location and Language Matching

Make sure your shop location matches your target audience

Through polls and experiments, Etsy has figured out that customers like to purchase items from shops located in their own country (even if they are shopping online). So, if you want to target US customers, make sure your shop says United States.

Etsy also allows you to select a city on your shop profile. Selecting this will help you to rank higher for local results.

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Match your title and tag language to your official store language

Don’t worry about translating tags or listing products in other languages – this will negatively impact your ranking. Etsy translates products into different languages automatically.

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Etsy SEO Tools

Marmalead

Marmalead is the most popular Etsy SEO tool on the market. It offers a limited free service and a paid service with many helpful features.

 

It supports keyword research by analyzing the top listings for particular keywords. You even narrow down your search to focus solely on competitors.

Marmalead also helps you select the best tags for your products by providing a ranking of similar tags and tracking trending tags.

Etsy Rank

Etsy Rank is a free service that offers over a dozen SEO tools specific to Etsy, including a keyword tool, listing comparison, market report, rank checker, and listing audit. It’s easy to use and great for beginners.

The keyword tool is particularly useful. It provides an in-depth analysis of your keyword with competition, demand, and engagement scores, the average price of items ranking for that keyword, average likes, and average views for each listing. The tool also lists related keywords and tags.

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The paid version of Etsy Rank also provides tools like competitor analysis, which compares your store’s keyword performance with that of your top competitors.

If you’re looking for a free service, we recommend Etsy Rank – it offers more services to users than the free versions of comparable Etsy SEO tools like Marmalead.

Etsy Stats

Etsy Stats is a free analytic tool offered by Etsy. You can access it by clicking on Stats under Shop Manager.

There are three useful tabs included in Stats – Traffic, Listings, and Customers.

  • Traffic provides data on sources of traffic, keywords customers used to find your listing, and the pages most often viewed within your site. You can use this data to see which keywords are working and how customers are finding your products.

  • Listings breaks down your product inventory by favorites, orders, visits, and profits. You can use this tab to identify your most successful items and concentrate your efforts on them.

  • Customers analyzes the demographic makeup of your store’s visitors. It provides country and device information about your customers. Most importantly, it creates a list of other searches conducted by your visitors. These results provide valuable insight into your visitors’ interests and allows you to target related keywords.

Etsy Gadget

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Etsy Gadget is another free SEO tool specific to Etsy. While its services are less varied than Etsy Rank and Etsy Stats, it does provide a couple features worth using.

The listing tools are helpful when analyzing your products’ search ranking position. Etsy Gadget breaks down your listing position by trends, categories, and tags. It will even recommend related tags that will lead to better positions!

Google Analytics

Google Analytics breaks down your site visits by source, device, location, and time of day. It also lists the total views for each of your pages:

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You can create a Google Analytics account and link it to your Etsy account to see data about purchases and search terms used to reach your site.

Google Trends

Google Trends is an important tool for figuring out what potential customers are looking for. It allows you to identify keywords that are rising in searches (and keywords that are falling).

If you type “vintage table” into the Google Trends bar, a graph of interest over time and by state will display:

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If you scroll further down, Google Trends provides a list of related topics and keywords, sorted by rising interest:

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You can add another keyword and compare the two. This is a great solution when you are torn between a few different keywords. You are also able to compare each field and prioritize results that are important to you.

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Etsy SEO Highlights

Etsy has a ton of SEO tools available to help increase your products’ rankings.

External Etsy services like Etsy Rank and Marmalead help you plan keywords, evaluate competitors, and select great tags. Google Services like Analytics and Trends help you figure out where your visitors are coming from and what visitors would be interested in your products.

While Etsy SEO tools are useful, understanding the factors that go into Etsy’s search algorithm will help you in the long run. You will be able to optimize your store for keywords and increase rankings. This knowledge will propel you beyond your competitors!

If business is booming and you don’t want to worry about SEO, you can always hire an SEO company to manage all of your marketing needs.