Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Etsy Shop SEO! Get Found by The Search Engines

So I am breaking this down into as small of bites as I can, and not using all kinds of terminology.  I am not going to explain what a meta tag is, because for most of us we don't care.

What you need to know is where in your Etsy shop can you make changes that will help with Search Engine traffic and indexing of your Etsy shop?  How to find your most optimized keywords for your shop?  If you should repeat keywords in your shop or not?  If so how much?  (keyword density)
If you can learn a few of these keys and then adjust your shop you should see a change in your traffic.

First, before we dig in.... you should all have Google Analytics set up for your Etsy shop!  Make a note of your current traffic and trends before you do any tweaks to your shop.  Find out where is your traffic coming from?  What are the top 15 referrers to your shop right now?  How much traffic are you getting from each of those referrers?  Get a notebook out and make a note of it, so that in a few months you can recheck and see the changes! 
**** NOTE **** You can change your shop to make it more SEO friendly but the changes will NOT happen overnight.  It takes time for Google and other search engines to crawl your shop and re-index items, and even then you may have missed the mark on which keywords will work best for you.  This is an ongoing process, that should be tweaked regularly and will bring gradual results to you!

So there are certain locations of our shop that we can actual use to feed information to the search engines.  Here are the areas you need to focus on when tweaking your shop:
1.  Shop Announcement
2.  Shop Sections/Categories
3.  Listing Titles
4.  Listing Descriptions
5.  Listing Tags for Etsy's search engine
6.  Item Materials for Etsy's search engine

Which Keywords Should I Use?
I use Google's Keyword Tool Tracker.

Just plug in the general topic of your Etsy shop, and you will have to enter a word verification once during that session.
For example, I can plug in Button Jewelry into the search.  Since this is one of the main things I sell.  Notice you can change the location of your search by country and language too!  If you have something you are targeting for a specific culture play around with different countries to get more specific keywords.

So after I plugged in Button Jewelry the 1st result given is button jewelry.  It shows me a little box with a bar that tells me how much competition there is for this term.  It shows the bar mostly filled in (more than half), meaning there is a lot of competition. (see the picture below, the column below the Red Arrow)  The next column tells me that over 8000 searches are done a month for button jewelry. (see the picture below, the column with the blue arrow)  As you can see button jewelry can be confused with belly button jewelry searches! 

So here is what you have to do when looking at the results.  You should search for the terms that have less than half in the bar for competition.  The less competition there is for your keyword the more times the searches will return YOU in their searches.  Once you pick out say 10 options with low competition, now you want to look at how many searches are done monthly.  If there are only 200 searches a month, then you won't get much traffic from it.  Although you will show in the results for most of those 200 searches, you want bigger traffic then that right?  So look for those terms with the least amount of competition but the highest searches done.  THOSE words that fit that criteria would be keywords you may want to focus more on.  For example, my Button Jewelry search shows that Antique buttons has a low competition rate but over 6,000 searches per month.  Since many of my rings are made with antique buttons I will want to emphasize those keywords to gain the best traffic possible.

Play around with it to find the best words.  I have a notebook that I keep a list of keywords I want to use.
Once I have the top 5-10 keywords under the Button jewelry search, then I could search another category from my shop like Crystal jewelry.  The more specific keywords you use,  the more targeted traffic you will gain.  Why do you want targeted traffic?  Because this will increase your odds of converting your traffic to sales.  This isn't just about gaining traffic but gaining SALES!
What good is it if someone puts in Crystal jewelry and gets your shop, but they wanted belly button rings?  They aren't going to buy then, so you want to get them in your shop for what you sell to achieve maximum sales.

How to Use Your Keywords in Your Etsy Shop
So now you should have a list of 30-50 keywords at least!  What do you do with them?
You want to start putting those keywords into the key areas of your Etsy shop. 

You want to place them naturally into your listings, do not do keyword stuffing... meaning don't just say "button crystal pearl antique vintage jewelry rings".  

Keywords should be placed as close to the beginning of titles and descriptions as possible. 
Also, your shop announcement is CRITICAL in your shop SEO!  If you just put welcome to Trinkets N Whatnots.  The search engines will never pick that up.  The first 30 characters are the most critical so try to get some keywords into that space! 

Next your shop sections!  Instead of just putting Necklaces, put Button Necklaces... use your keywords and be specific in which you use for your shop sections.  Also, search engines like longevity... the longer something is around the more reliable of a source it must be. So try to think of the best way to divide your shop up and name those sections, and try not to change them often.

Now for the internal Etsy searches you also have to consider your materials and listing tags.  Use tags that will represent what your item is, and what a person would search for when looking for your product.  They say you should have around 3% keyword density per page.  Meaning I shouldn't have button jewelry as every other word in my listing, because the search engines will consider this spam and you will descrease your visibility with this.   I generally try to put a keyword in my title and description, and my tags.  This will help you with the "relevancy" searches on etsy and with search engines.

****FINAL NOTE****   Search Engines frown upon duplicate content.  So even though I want to use button rings as keywords if I have 40 listings that all say the same thing Google will only index ONE.  This is to prevent someone from doing a search and the entire 1st page being all the same item.  They strive to provide variety in their search results.  So even though you want keywords in certain places and near the beginning it is ok to switch it up some to get maximum results.

I hope this helps you guys a lot!  Please leave your thoughts and comments, and come back to let me know how your Google Analytics has changed after you make your changes!!

A special thank you to: Kelly Designs  who helps me get that graphic up there for you guys!
Check out her shop for help with your banners, avis, any graphic design solutions you might need!!!
Thank you!!



  1. I love the way you explain things ... you always make it easy to understand!

  2. Great info! Thank you, now I will have to reread it in the morning when I'm not so tired. lol

  3. Wonderful helpful information as always! Thanks so much!

  4. What a lot of great info. I am bookmarking this to read up later. Bedtime for me! Thank you!

  5. All helpful info as usual! Will come back later too and make sure I understood everything!

  6. clear and easy to follow -- thank you --

  7. Thank you so much for sharing! :)

  8. THANK YOU, GALLA!! Great stuff here. :D

  9. Great information, thanks for putting it in plain speak. I'm trying to makeover my shop once again. It's a never ending process.

  10. That article was awesome Janet of Galla15. Thank You so much for helping me understand more about search engines. It gives me a headache and I always feel so helpless. This helps a lot.

  11. Very helpful....I just looked up my keywords and found some that I definitely should be using! THANKS!

  12. Very helpful! Thanks for sharing. I added "wax melts" to my tart collection after reading this post.

  13. What a great lesson! Very thorough and comprehensive. Thank you so much for sharing!

  14. Great Info, I havent checked my analytics lately, I should go check.

  15. Wow. Great info. I will definitely trying the key word tool tracker! I peek at the google analytics but have not used any of the tools.

  16. I have started this process and always get side tracked! I will try again.....a little each day! Currently, I am tweeking tags (in etsy).
    Thanks for the info....I check my analytics daily!
    Carol from carolsjewelryorchard

  17. I am so glad to hear some of you guys already found new keywords to use!!! How exciting :)
    Please keep me posted on your updates! I would love to hear how it goes.

  18. great info!!! you always make it so clear haha

  19. Ok I'm going to get a notebook right now and get started on this! Thank you SO much for all this valuable information... you explained this perfectly!

  20. So far this is the best explanation I have come across! Simple to understand and very helpful! It may take me awhile, but I'm going to try it out! Thanks.

  21. Thank you so much for taking the time to explain all this! Very important information for us to improve our shops with!

  22. Oh my! I'm printing this out and reading it several times. Thanks so much Janet! I'll be making some changes I'm sure.

  23. Thank you so much for all the great information!
    Thank you for the hard work!

  24. Thanks for the valuable info.

  25. Very helpful. Bookmarking it so I can use it later.

  26. Every bit of this is vital information. I'm going to be whining at you for some specific help pretty soon.

  27. Calliope: I LOVE to help :) Shoot me a convo anytime and if I can help I will.

  28. Galla - You took something DIFFICULT to understand and broke it down into SEO for Dummies - LOVE IT! Thank you so much. I understand so much better now.

  29. Thank you, your explanation is wonderfully clear. I' m going to put this information to good use. Thanks for sharing :)

  30. That was a ROCKIN' blog post. Thank you!

  31. Great information! Very eye opening. I will be bookmarking this!

  32. this is GREAT!---i'm coming back to make sure i try to do as much of these ideas as i can-
    thanks so much!
    marilyn g

  33. Great, I would try to put it in my practice. Thanks a lot.

  34. Wow! I have been researching seo for a few days now and your explanation is by far the easiest to understand. I read the whole article without zoning out. I think I actually get it now. Thank you so much from all of us technically challenged newbies trying to get sales on etsy!

  35. AMAZING INFO! OMG! now i have a real way to maximize my ever-elusive SEO! thank you SO MUCH!

  36. this is amazing information, definitely i will use it in my listing. very helpful, and useful indeed.
    thanks for taking the time and explain it to us and put it in prospective.