SEO for Etsy: three tips to improve your store’s search visibility

We live in the age of personalization and customization.

Businesses are trying to find ways to personalize their services to better connect with overarching trends. With the Internet at your disposal, you can have a custom shirt with your dog’s face on it and also get a shirt for your dog with your face on it.

This is just one example of the growing customization culture and interest for the weird that has cropped up, causing an uptick in the amount of Etsy stores out there.

As of 2014, Etsy had 54 million users —up from just 5 million users in 2004. 1.4 million of these Etsy users are active sellers. As more Etsy stores pop up, the space becomes more competitive.

etsy trends

Optimizing your Etsy store and products will help you stay visible whether customers search on Etsy or Google. Here are the fundamental tips and tricks to help enhance your Etsy store and product listings to increase traffic from Google to drive sales.

Etsy keyword research

Having an understanding of your customer’s keyword for your own business is beyond powerful and can help potential clients and fans find you.

Marmalead is a great tool to find keywords for Etsy shops. With it you can type in a tag (or keyword) and see total results or competing products and shops, total views, average views per week, average favorites per week, and much more. F

or a more in-depth explanation of this tool and how to use it for keywords, check out the Ultimate Etsy SEO Guide on Marketing Artfully.

dog beds etsy

Another free option to find keywords for your business – whether you’re a painter or sell custom koozies – is the Google Keyword Planner Tool.

In the Keyword Planner, you can enter one or multiple keywords and Google will tell you a rough estimate of how many searches there are a month, the competition, suggested bid (if you were running an Adwords campaign), and related keywords.

This provides insight as to how people are searching for products related to what you offer.

Let’s say you sell celebrity prayer candles, which I hope you do. Instead of using the keyword “celebrity prayer candles”, you can also try “celebrity candles” or even “funny prayer candles.”

adwords keyword planner

Although “celebrity prayer candles” may be your exact item there is an opportunity to take a top spot for “funny prayer candles” since no shops are currently optimized around it (see screenshot below).

Choosing keywords that have lower search volume, less competition, and are specifically related to your products may be better choices to pull in relevant traffic.

Slight variations in keywords can make all the difference, and having keywords at your disposal is great ammunition, whether you have an Etsy shop or a blog on a WordPress site. You need to know what people are looking for and how to reach them.

Make sure to keep a list of applicable keywords ready whenever you are creating a new product listing.

Optimize your Etsy shop for Etsy and Google… but also your customers

You’ve got those awesome keywords at your disposal. Now it’s time to use them!

The coolest thing keywords can do is show you how people are actually searching for your items. Instead of guessing in the dark, you can use terms that potential customers are using to find your products.

Optimizing both your shop and products are essential to being found on Google and to have people click through. Let’s return to our favorite prayer candle example.

celebrity prayer candles search

Above are the top two results for ‘celebrity prayer candles’. The first result has a meta description that is the proper length and tells you about the business, but the business name is cut off from the page title.

On the other hand, the second result has the business name in the page title (but before the keyword) and the meta description is loaded with too much information and is not succinct.

A page title should be max 65 characters and the meta description should be a maximum of 140 characters. Your page title/store title should quickly summarize what your business does and its name.

A better page title for the first Etsy store might be “Celebrity Prayer Candles | Granny’s Hope Chest”. This title is short, but lets you know what the store offers and what it’s called.

A great tool to preview what your shop title and announcement will look like is the Google SERP Snippet Optimization Tool.

Optimize your Etsy product listings

If you’re trying to move specific product on Etsy then you need to optimize: 1. title description, 2. tags, 3. the first sentence of the product description, 4. categories and materials.

Google pulls this information to create what shows up in search engine result pages, so optimizing properly can help boost traffic on specific products.

The Etsy product title is what Google uses for your listing’s title tag, H1 tag, and image alt tag for each page so make it informative and keyword optimized.

etsy optimise product listings

Scott Taft does a great job of further explaining how your Etsy store translates on Google.

Let’s say you not only create celebrity prayer candles, but you really kick it up a notch and specifically create Steve Buscemi prayer candles.

Yes, there are an average of 30 searches a month for “Steve Buscemi Prayer Candle,” according to Google Keyword Planner. Since Buscemi prayer candles are a little more popular than you would imagine, optimizing your product listing for both Etsy and Google can make a big difference in separating your Steve candles from the rest of the celebrity candle pack.

steve buscemi prayer candle

Again, make sure your product title uses a keyword before your business name and is 65 characters or less.

In this case, if someone is looking for a Steve Buscemi prayer candle then chances are they have a pretty good sense of humor, so your product description should be written to draw a potential customer in with witty copy.

The meta description pulls the first sentence from your product description (as Scott Taft points out in the image below). Remember to make the sentence close to 120 characters and include the same keyword from your page title, if possible.

etsy meta description

Using the keyword ‘Steve Buscemi prayer candle’, I created a keyword-focused page title and meta description that is clear, concise, and may appeal to Buscemi fans. The page title/title description is 55 characters and the product/meta description is 116 characters.

Creating Etsy product titles/page titles and meta/product descriptions that are keyword focused, informative, and fun can help an artist stay visible on Google.

etsy meta descriprion on google

Implementing a keyword strategy may seem confusing and monotonous at first, but it will eventually become routine and is sure to yield results.

Understanding how people search for and see your shop and products is essential to performing well as the customized market grows. When it comes to SEO, try to think like a human first and a search engine second.

No matter what you’re selling, take a few minutes to think about how you would be searching for your product on a search engine and then use the tools and tips to create a strategy. A competitive space isn’t a bad thing when you understand your audience and how to reach them.

Maddie Silverstein is an SEO Analyst at DigitasLBi and a contributor to SEW. You can connect with Maddie on Twitter: @maddigler.

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