The competition among Etsy shops is fierce. So if you want to become successful on the platform, you'll need to learn search engine optimization.
Etsy search engine optimization (SEO) refers to strategies that help sellers rank higher on search results. You're making your Etsy shop and listings more relevant to search terms people use to look for a particular product.
When you improve your Etsy SEO, expect to get more store traffic and sales. You'll be in the same league as the biggest players in your product category.
In this post, you'll learn the basics of optimizing your shop to rank on Etsy's search results.
What is SEO on Etsy?
So what is Etsy SEO exactly?
When an online marketer tries to make a website rank higher on search engines, they implement different tactics.
They look for keywords that people might use to search for an article or product then add those to their website. Updating the images and videos on their website becomes a priority to not only present their products better but also to improve user engagement.
Marketers would also display ratings and reviews to get people to trust them more.
Etsy SEO works just about the same way but to a lesser extent. When you own a site, you have the freedom to make changes to it.
But Etsy sellers can't make site-wide changes. You can only change what's on your Etsy shop and listings.
That's the main difference between regular SEO and Etsy SEO.
Still, there are many things that you can do to make your Etsy listings dominate the Etsy search results.
As mentioned, you can perform keyword research to find the right words and phrases to include in various sections of your Etsy listings and store.
The Etsy algorithm also likes it when pages get updated regularly because it implies that a shop is active. So it would be great if you make small changes to your Etsy shop now and then.
You can also improve your Etsy listing quality score by making changes that would make users click on your listings more frequently. This includes updating the product thumbnails you use.
Let's talk more about these things in the next section.
How to Improve SEO on Etsy
So you want to know how to improve Etsy SEO for your online business. What strategies do you need to learn?
The good news is that you can optimize your Etsy store yourself. Though you can have someone help you, just know that you don't have to. It's quite easy once you get the hang of it.
Here are some of the things you need to do.
Tactic #1: Perform Keyword Research
Keyword research is the heart of Etsy SEO. You won't go far in your Etsy journey without it.
This strategy involves finding words and phrases people use to find what they want. There are two types of keywords you should focus on.
First, you have your head terms. These are broad terms that people might use to find a product — usually one or two words in length. Think of phrases like "wall art" or "canvas print". While vague, these are terms that people enter in the Etsy search bar to serve as a starting point.
Because head terms are so common, they have a high search volume. That means people use them all the time. So you'll want to include these keywords in your listings.
The only downside is that they're highly competitive. Any Etsy seller in your category will also include them in his or her own Etsy shop.
That's where long-tail keywords come in. Unlike head terms, there are more specific. They're three or more words in length. They don't have a high search volume, which means sellers aren't using them as much. These are terms like "abstract wall art" or "custom canvas print".
Simply put, you have a better chance of ranking higher on Etsy's search engine using long-tail keywords.
Add these keywords to your Etsy store name as well as your listings' titles, description, and tags.
Tactic #2: Update Your Listings
Spend some time updating your listings' content. That keeps all of your product pages fresh in Etsy's eyes.
And there are plenty of ways to achieve this.
As mentioned, you can update your product photos and videos. You want them to look professional and consistent. They also need to look great as thumbnails because there are times when Etsy won't show the full image until a user clicks on a listing.
It's also a good idea to shoot products from multiple angles. You also want colors to be accurate. You don't want customers complaining that the products they received do not match what's in the image.
You should update your listings whenever you make changes to your product's features. If you're using a new material, for example, then you might want to mention that in your listing.
Tactic #3: Get Customer Reviews
Etsy's search algorithm likes it when a listing page gets a ton of positive customer reviews. Social proof showing a store's trustworthiness lets Etsy know that a store is worth pushing to the top of search results.
The platform likes showcasing stores with great products to offer. Reviews are one way of letting it know that existing Etsy listings like yours are worth promoting to its users.
So encourage your customers to leave reviews if they're happy with their purchase. You can remind them in the description section or through follow-up emails.
Reviews are useful to you as well. You get feedback regarding your products and your shipping process. Sellers get a better idea of what to improve when they get direct feedback from customers.
Best SEO Tools for Etsy
What are the best Etsy SEO tools to use for your Etsy SEO strategy?
There are different tools out there that you can use to get to the top of the Etsy search engine results. Below are just three of the most used ones.
Tool #1: Google Keyword Planner
The Google Keyword Planner tool is great for Etsy sellers that are just starting. It's free to use and it should be good enough to get you started.
It asks users to enter a seed term — a reference term it will use to generate keyword suggestions. It will tell you each keyword's search volume which should help you determine how competitive it is.
The only downside to using this tool is that it's not made for Etsy but for Google search results. But it should give you an idea of how many people search for a product using specific words and phrases.
Tool #2: Marmalead
Marmalead is an optimization tool that uses machine learning to help its users get discovered on Etsy.
It gives you keywords based on what Etsy shoppers use to search for products. It can even provide keyword suggestions based on seasonality. Marmalead can even show you how many visits a keyword can generate over the next 30 days.
This tool costs $19 per month but you can get it down to $15.83 if you pay annually.
While this isn't something everyone can afford, it is a worthy investment since it can lead to more sales for you down the road.
Tool #3: eRank
eRank works just like Marmalead. It helps users explore keywords that they can use to rank in Etsy's search engine.
But it does have other features that you might find useful. It can detect if listings have missing images. You also get to see all the categories and subcategories that you selected when listing your products.
There's even a bulk rank checker to show your top 20 keywords. It even lets you know if you have listings that rank in the first two pages of the search results.
You can use eRank for free. But as you grow your shop to include more listings, you'll eventually have to subscribe to a plan.
There are three plans: Basic ($5.99 per month), Pro ($9.99 per month), and Expert ($29.99 per month)).
How Long Does It Take for SEO to Work on Etsy?
You must be wondering: How long does it take for Etsy SEO to work?
Sadly, there is no definitive answer. But any Etsy expert will tell you that it's not going to happen overnight. It could take several weeks before you see any progress.
Some even say that it could take three months or more.
There are several factors that affect this including how fierce the competition is in your category.
How often you change your Etsy SEO strategy is another factor. You need to be patient. You mustn't make drastic changes to your listings while you're waiting for your SEO efforts to take effect.
You need to optimize your Etsy listings if you want to rank higher on Etsy search results. By following the Etsy SEO tips above, you have a good chance of getting there.
You need to do three things. You need to research keywords, update your listings regularly, and get as many positive reviews. If you manage to do all of these, you should have an easier time getting discovered by potential customers.