Wednesday, August 8, 2012

A Wednesday Tutorial: SEO and your Etsy Shop.

So, I am constantly struggling with keeping my "SEO", or search engine optimization current.  As trends change, so too must I make sure that my accessories change with the times. 

Am I a snood?  A cowl?  An infinity scarf? Help!  I'm confused!

One example is "snood".  What the heck is a snood????? Well.......that's difficult to explain.  A snood USED to mean a head covering--- think of those giant crochet hairnet-type things.  Now, a cowl is a snood.  A cowl is an infinity scarf.  An infinity scarf is a circle scarf.  Confused yet?  Me too.  But since I carry so many of these types of designs in my shop--- I MUST figure out how to get buyers in there!   And even more importantly--- the "Snood" is being hyped as the "it" accessory for fall.  Do I change with the times?  Heck YA I do!

Enter SEO.  You want to figure out who is searching for what.  You want to know at what rate people are searching.  You want to know exactly how to describe your listings.  SEO <------an acronym for a fancy term that means "get people to see my shop when they search."  Now, I am by NO MEANS an expert.  But I have learned a few handy tricks, and I'd love to share them with you!

First trick:  RESEARCH.  If you're offering a product, you better hope people WANT your product.  The way I keep current is by checking out fashion accessories trends once a week.  Sometimes it's the same for weeks, but more often than not-- new ideas for "what's hot" come out every few minutes.

Second trick: GOOGLE ADWORDS KEYWORD TOOL.  This will help you choose your title for maximum search hits from google.
1.  You'll need a google account for this.  They are free, so if you don't already have one, sign up.
2.  Go to the Google Adwords site.Open the "Keyword Tool" Under the "Tools and Analysis" tab:

You can click on this to expand the photo....

3.  Enter "comparative search terms" in the box.  You can list as many as you like.  I'll try out some terms for this item from Rotifera:

Hair Comb-- WHAT are folks typing in that search bar?
Type in whatever you THINK people might type in to search for your item.  One search term per line.  Click "SEARCH"
4.  Now--- you'll find search terms listed below.  The tool will tell you the relative competativeness between you and other sellers if you choose that term.  It will tell you how many searches are being performed for which terms.  I like to shoot somewhere between 100 and 1500 searches.  Now, this is where the guesswork comes in.  You want to be in a category with alot of searches... but not so many that you'll be outcompeted by 10,000's of other items.  You want to use a term with a lower level of competition, if possible.  The "ideal" is to have a "low" competition, but a 100-1500 searches.  That seems to be the golden  mean for me and receiving hits from google.

Here are my results.......  which would YOU choose?

Well.........  I can't rightly choose "bridal", "flowers", "rhinestone", or "crystal" or "feather".  That leaves me with "plastic" or "decorative".  I see that they ALL have a high level of competition.  But they also have a great number within my golden mean..... so I would choose the one that best fits my item.  I think I'll go with "Decorative Hair Comb". 

5.  You can then click on the term you like, and do a google search using those terms.  You can click on "insight" to see data about the search term.  Play with it. 

6.  Now--- you've entered your product, and found what you believe to be the perfect term.  You change your title.......and wait.  This is the hard part.  You have to check your stats.  You have to determine if you've made the right gamble.  Sometimes you win BIG, and sometimes you lose.  For example, I've found that "hair accessories" is my top search term for anything in the Rotifera shop.  So I usually include that in the title, if not the first three words.  But THOSE FIRST THREE WORDS are the MOST important.

Now--- this is JUST an introduction into the mysterious world of SEO.  Your categories, shop announcement, and descriptions and tags all come into play too.  But I find that one change at a time is the best way to go, and this is the change that I find I get the most "bang for my buck", as far as time is concerned.  Once you've nailed this part, explore more about SEO online.  There are a plentitude of websites to search and learn... Here are just a few!

1.  Etsy Article:
2.  Biz Ladies:
3.  Impossibly Alice:

So!  Best of luck!!!  Now Go!  Go!  Improve your SEO!  *shakes pompoms*


  1. Great job explaining how the tool works and thanks for the links!

  2. Can I just stand on the street corner and yell "Dog Hats, I got dog hats over here!" Ah, the 1800's, miss those days!

  3. LOLOLOL @ Shaggy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Wow! This is a lot of information, but totally helpful. I think I’m finally starting to understand this SEO business.

  5. I'm so glad it's helpful!! :)

  6. great article Rose!

  7. You have give me great have done great job please
    keep it up. Thanks for sharing with me.
    Web Application Development

  8. You are supposed to choose "[Exact Match]" when using Google Keyword Tool

  9. Great post!! I pretty much do what you just described, except I try to target low competition sometimes this is possible and sometimes it's not, but I'll try my best to find those, just because I know it's easier for me to rank high for those.


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