The second you started selling online, this weird thing you’d never heard of before suddenly became the center of your life. It’s called SEO and you’re not even 100% sure what it stands for.
All you know is that you have to SEO the hell out of everything. You have no idea how to actually do that. So you’ve just copied other sellers, or aimlessly read articles that didn’t actually explain anything…they just told you to do something so you did it. #mindlessdrone
Related: SEO Mistakes that TANK Etsy Shops
Guess what? I spent the last seven (boring corporate) years as an SEO consultant for a fortune 500 company.
Guess what ELSE? I quit that job to sit here and talk to you instead. So let’s get your shit straight.
SEO = who cares what it stands for (search engine optimization…yawn!). Here’s what it DOES:
SEO is how Etsy finds your product and decides which customers to show it to.
Seriously, that’s what all the fuss is about.
In recent years, SEO has become more of a “strategy” and less of a simple algorithm. This strategy involves YOU saying “screw you, Etsy”, and using tactics to get YOURSELF found. So rather than relying on Etsy search alone, a good strategy would include:
- Etsy Tags, titles, and descriptions
- Social Media that SUPPLEMENTS your Etsy traffic, like this Pinterest hack.
- Making Sure Customers WANT Your Items in the First Place (um, SUPER important!!)
- An Email list (boring — but USEFUL! See how I used Email to make 146 Sales in one week)
- Adding items and having a CLEAR GROWTH plan (you just do a little each month and it adds up!)
- Blogging can be a GAME CHANGER if you’re blogging about what you sell on Etsy.
This strategy is called a “marketing funnel”, but I don’t expect you to just go off and create one instantaneously. (A funnel takes time. It took me YEARS to get mine right, and I’m tweaking all the time).
Instead, we’re going to focus on the most important item, the one I put at the top of the list for a reason:
Etsy Tags, Titles, and Descriptions
Why do they matter? Well, Etsy will send you buttloads of traffic if these bits are in order.
You want Etsy traffic because these are people who are ready to buy. They’re already on Etsy, and they already have their credit cards out.
A customer that comes from somewhere other than Etsy is less likely to make a purchase. They just met you. They need a minute to decide if you’re for them. (That’s where the rest of your marketing funnel comes in).
So let’s focus on the low-hanging fruit: people already on Etsy
Use SEO to Get Etsy Buyers to find You
SEO works by using something called keywords. (Keywords = fancy way of saying ‘use a word or two to describe your item’. That’s it. What matters most is how you pick your words).
On Etsy, keywords are called “tags”. But you also get a chance to use keywords in your product title and the first 155 characters of your product description.
Etsy asks you for 13 tags, but what it doesn’t tell you is that you need a FOCUS keyword.
This is the one word (or words) you’re using to describe your item to the world. You’ll use that word in your tags, description, and product title.
Here’s an example of a focus keyword in a product title –
And in the description –
And in the tags –
It’s really as simple as that. All you have to do is repeat your word a few times, and your SEO is hardcore ON POINT.
If you were filthy rich and hired a top SEO expert to optimize your shop, they would do exactly what I showed you above. Verbatim. (You’re welcome!)
But WAIT, there’s one more step before the SEO gods inaugurate you into their den of traffic and sales:
Learning to Choose the RIGHT keywords
SO…what sort of insane guessing game do you use to pick your Etsy tags? I’ve seen some crazy shit out there among my fellow sellers. Bottom line: if you aren’t using a TOOL to pick your keywords, you’re doing it wrong.
#1 most important thing you MUST know about keywords:
Every single solitary tag you choose for your Etsy product needs to describe your product 400% PERFECTLY.
So many sellers do this wrong. Instead of describing what they’re selling (“art print”, in my case above). They’ll describe what’s in the product “nerd”, or what materials they used to make it “heavyweight paper”, “pigment ink”, etc.
All those things go in your “materials” section. Use tags for things people actually search for.
Which brings me to:
#2 most important thing you MUST know about keywords:
Unresearched keywords = imminent shop failure.
Stop pulling your Etsy tags out of a hat.
How do you research Etsy tags? Well, you could spend all day comparing yourself to other sellers. OR you could just use a tool that does it for you.
Marmalead* (⇠ affiliate link for a 14 day free trial) is the only Etsy SEO tool out there, and it’s pretty freakin’ excellent. I use it every single day, and it’s given me some insane results:
- When I first started my home décor shop, I didn’t make a sale for my first 30 days.
- When I opened the wedding shop, I used Marmalead for all my listings. And I made my first sale in 4 days.
- Recently, I opened an Etsy shop for my brother, and I used Marmalead + my focus keyword strategy above…and he made a sale in less than 48 hours.
Pretty sure I’ve got hard evidence that Marmalead* is awesome.
(Link has a * next to it? That’s an affiliate or referral link, you can claim a free trial of this item if you click the link. Full disclosure: I get a small commission, but only if you decide to spend money on this item. It does not cost you anything extra to use my link. Wanna know more? Click here to open my Affiliate Policy in a new tab).
Watch Awesome Etsy SEO in Action Here!
Watch the video below to see a complete breakdown of how I use Marmalead + my focus keyword strategy:
Your Video Goodie Bag
The Etsy SEO tool I’m using is called Marmalead* (affiliate link) and it’s pretty much my favorite thing ever. Here’s what it can do:
- Help you choose all 13 tags for your listings based on what SELLS and what customers SEARCH for
- Show you major Etsy TRENDS so you know exactly what products to make next
- Help you price your products right in the sweet spot so customers will buy over and over
Give it a shot, then go forth and be way more awesome than you were 5 seconds ago.
Looking for the WHOLE scoop on Etsy SEO, and what you should and shouldn’t be doing? Check out my full review of what you need to know about Etsy SEO in 2019.
Wanna see MORE traffic tools you can use to figure out how to get great big gobs of traffic? There’s a video where I review three more right here!
Looking for an easy way to keep track of all your Etsy tags? Download the FREE tag-tracking worksheet here!
(Link has a * next to it? That’s an affiliate or referral link, you can claim a free trial of this item if you click the link. Full disclosure: I get a small commission, but only if you decide to spend money on this item. Wanna know more? Click here to open my Affiliate Policy in a new tab).
Get the Traffic Your Shop Deserves
Hey Guess What? Before I quit my job to sell on Etsy, I was an SEO Consultant for a Fortune 500 Company. I used Etsy tags to get my first 500 sales in less than 6 months. Wanna steal my tricks? Try SEO Bootcamp:
Thanks for Reading!
Hi there, my name is Jenni. You’re reading about the Etsy shop that freed me from the worst job I’ve ever had (and a lifetime of working for somebody else).
Find out what went down here.
Hey guess what? The exact tricks that got me 6-figures sales are waiting for you in the Ultimate Guide to Etsy. This is a 40-page, step-by-step MEGA tutorial that will help you strategize your way to more sales.