Etsy Tips: Increase Views with Keyword Tags

By Rebecca George

Making your listings more visible on Etsy search is the goal of every Etsy shop owner.  One important way to increase views is by using the proper keyword tags for each item.  These Etsy tips will help you successfully tag items in order to jump-start views and sales!

Etsy Holiday Keyword Tags

Apply Keyword Phrases

As we covered in the first post of this series on Etsy tips, selecting the proper keywords for your listing is essential to being found on Etsy.  Tags are only used by shoppers searching on Etsy, and they are critical for every listing.  Since Etsy’s change to a “relevancy” search default instead of “recency,” two- and three-word phrases now have more weight than ever before when used as keyword tags.  It’s still a good idea to use single-word keyword tags in listings, but you also want to utilize longer phrases that draw shoppers in. 

For SEO purposes, repeat the first three words of your item title in your tags (if all three words fit).  Then use variations on those three words, along with other tags you have generated for the item.

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For example:  My pin that’s titled “Raven Jewelry Pin, Black Brooch Crow Bird Acrylic for Halloween” would be tagged “raven jewelry pin,” “raven pin,” “raven jewelry,” “bird pin,” and so forth.

Use Every Tag Space

Think of every tag as a pathway into your shop, and leave none of the spaces blank. This includes the “Categories” section when you create a listing (the “What is it?” and “What type?” drop-down boxes at the top).  These categories will become your first three tags, so choose them wisely.  If the second or third categories do not have terms that apply to your item, those tag spaces will not be used. 

In total, each item gets 16 spaces for keyword tags: three categories and 13 more you add below in the “Tags” section of the listing page.  It’s also a good idea to periodically review your listings to check for blank spaces and unsuccessful tags that can be replaced.  The “Materials” section (next to tags) is not used for search or SEO — it simply informs the buyer of the item’s components.

Include Trends and Holidays

When selecting keyword tags, always consider the time of year and current trends.  Holiday tags are the perfect way to increase views and boost your chances of winding up on the Etsy blog, front page, or emails.  The site even promotes upcoming holidays as a “Browse” category on the front page!  Etsy also periodically releases a helpful blog post with the upcoming trends, holiday themes, and popular colors called the “Merchandising Desk.”

Two important seasonal events to use in tags are the winter “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” sales.  Utilize the phrases that Etsy chooses (and announces in the forums each year) to draw in thrifty shoppers looking for a deal.  Big shopping days in the U.S. are a perfect time to put those keyword tags to use!  But when the holiday or event is over, make sure to go back and replace those tags.

For example:  A product that is perfect to market seasonally is my Orange Raven Necklace (pictured above).  The Halloween holiday title is “Halloween Jewelry Bird Necklace, Orange Raven Costume,” so I would use the keyword tags “Halloween jewelry,” “Halloween necklace,” “Halloween costume,” “gothic jewelry,” etc. 

Consider Other Countries

Etsy is a global marketplace, so it pays to devote some of your tags to other spellings, languages, and regional terms.  Include alternate spellings of words such as “jewelry” (US) and “jewellery” (UK), along with holidays in other parts of the world (Boxing Day, Canadian Thanksgiving, etc.).  If your products fit a certain international theme, consider using words in other languages as tags (creators of skeleton art could use the Spanish phrase “Día de los Muertos,” etc.).  These international Etsy tips are most effective when an item really fits the subject or holiday, so use them carefully.

Picking the right keyword tags using these Etsy tips is a quick and efficient way to drive traffic to your Etsy shop.  The results will speak for themselves!   

Rebecca George is a certified Etsy educator and owner of women's fashion and accessory company Purple and Lime.

Posted in Selling Online

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Comments

Comment: 
These are great tips! I've been looking for the answer to the 'single word tag vs phrase' question for a while- thanks so much! Just a clarification: do you think it's best to have a 50-50 split, or is it better to have mostly phrases (given the new browse sections being organized by relevancy) and add just a couple of single words?

Comment: 
So glad you found the post helpful! In my opinion, there is no set percentage for single tags vs. phrases. It's more of a trial-and-error process, though I find it's good to have keyword phrases and then use the same words as single-word tags (if they apply to the listing).

Comment: 
This has been so incredibly helpful to me. Thanks for the post! I JUST opened my shop on etsy so I'm hungry for excellent info like this. Problem is, I realize that I tagged all (28) of my items wrong, and I want to change them. I find the etsy interface for doing this pretty tedious. Are you familiar with any apps that would make this easier for me? Also, on a similar note: I purchased the "Search Ads" initially. But I really don't like the way etsy has determined my keywords. I'm thinking I've also named my items less than strategically. Any thoughts about the search ads feature and optimizing listings/names/descriptions to be found more easily there?
Rebecca George

Comment: 
Hi Becky, Thanks for your comment! I don't know of any particular app for this purpose, but here's a link to Etsy's page of third-party ones so you can check: http://www.etsy.com/apps?ref=com_apps As for search ad keywords, once you improve tags and titles those will get more relevant and useful (that's how Etsy generates the suggested words). Decide which items you want to promote in search ads first and work on those listings : ) -Rebecca

Comment: 
Hi! Thanks for your article. It was helpful. I am promoting my shop right now and wanted to know if it is best to use more keywords or less when promoting. Also is it better to promote your entire shop or certain items. My last question is how to add key words that etsy didn't pick. For example I have Fall wreath as a tag word and it's the first word in my title for several of my wreaths but it did not show up as a keyword when promoting. How do I make it one. Thanks!
Rebecca George

Comment: 
Hi Brittaney, If you're using Search Ads on Etsy, it does generate those keywords through your tags and titles. Use the more targeted words, and check out what kind of similar items come up when you try those keywords in an Etsy search. As for including specific words I don't think that is directly possible (or it wasn't the last time I used Search Ads), but perhaps if you add more listings with that word or phrase it will show up when creating Ads. I would say it's better to start with certain items vs your whole shop- that way you can do some trial-and-error on which get the most views when promoting. But there's no set formula. Thanks for reading the blog! Rebecca

Comment: 
Single word tags have NOT been recommended by Etsy since they changed the default search to relevancy. Multiple word tags are the way to go now, and they NEED to be repeated in your title for maximum SEO. Also, Etsy's search will find the same number of listings for jewelry as for jewellery ... and a few other spellings of the word too. Try it! This works with some other words that have different spellings in the U.S. vs. Europe. So (many times) there's no need to waste a precious tag space on alternate spellings!

Comment: 
Thank you so much! This is the best explained and best information I have read. Im really happy now! Finally I have a better idea of how to fill in my tags.. I am going to try it straight away to see if it helps! :D

Comment: 
This article is so well-written and full of clear, specific advice! Thank you. Researching SEO is making my mind spin, so this was a breath of fresh air!

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