How to test if your Etsy SEO is working & your items are getting seen
Hang on, what is SEO anyway?
SEO – or Search Engine Optimisation – is the abbreviation & phrase we give to all those tweaks and adjustments it’s possible for you to make, in order that your Etsy products are found more in customer searches.
(You can also optimise listings on other marketplace platforms and on your own site so Google can show you more, too. Same applies to your posts, aka Pins, on Pinterest.
In fact, any platform that relies on people searching for your stuff.)
SEO for your Etsy shop is something YOU are in control of.
Some knowledge around SEO is a gamechanger, because of that. Even basic knowledge can have a massive impact.
And yes, I believe that if you have the chance to learn these tricks and then choose not to take advantage of them… that is also a choice.
You are free to make alllll the choices in how you run your business.
But, when you know there are ways out there that can help you make more sales, why wouldn’t you?! 😊
Going back to that ‘O’ part… Optimising your shop & listings… It means purposefully stepping them up, so that your items can be displayed more by Etsy when a Dream Customer is searching for the exact thing you have.
Want to know more about SEO on Etsy, since it’s an increasingly competitive place, after all? Sign up here ⬇️
Let’s start with a fact:
There are approx. eleventy squillion factors (give or take 😆 ) that will be taken into account by Etsy when it is deciding where to show your product listing in the search results.
Page 1 near the top? Page 1 further down? Page 16? (Sorry, if that one’s you.)
Of those eleventy squillion, some are more important factors than others, and will have greater influence.
I believe this is a big fat reason to be JOYFUL.
With this many opportunities to increase our chances of being found, I think it’s an amazing opportunity! And not one to feel overwhelmed by, or to get bogged down by overthinking into a paralysis state.
Sure it’s possible to be bamboozled by the sheer number of possibilities to improve your search rank. But a positive attitude is what matters soooo much in the business world. So I invite you to focus on what IS possible for you.
Believe you can do it and your brain will find a way.
Human brains are pretty clever like that.
What’s to be done then, to start the process of stepping up SEO stuff?
I used that word ‘rank’ up there.
It’s how we describe the way your item is placed in the pecking order of other similar items. Even when compared with other items in your own shop. (Each of your listings will even be ranking against yourself, as you make similar items in a niche area.)
So, follow these steps in order to see if your optimisation tweaks are working. And if you’re getting better rank:
1. Learn the things that are most likely to make a difference to your SEO.
It’s a secret as to exactly how much of a difference each factor will make, and we definitely don’t know all of the factors that can deliver an optimised outcome.
But we know a few, and I’m happy to start somewhere.
Some of those include, strong keyword strategy, using powerful titles and tags, developing a killer photo-suite, and setting up your shop for success. More besides.
If you’re not sure where to start or exactly *how* to step those up, my trainings are very much geared up to help you understand SEO ranking factors, so send me a message to find out more!
2. Start with just one SEO ranking factor.
Ideally, one which will hopefully have a significant impact.
In order to truly know if that one thing is going to have a result, you’ll need to note down a couple of things:
a) what are the views for that listing like in the first place?
(Number of views is the quantity in your Etsy stats for how many times a particular listing is being displayed, over a given time period.)
…and b) how long will you give it to test that change?
Record both a) and b) in your diary/ planner, on your computer, or even in the Notes app of your phone.
Coz no one can keep up with what thing they looked at in their Etsy 3 weeks 2 days ago, in between also adding new listings, sending orders, living life etc… can they?
Just write them down. Easy.
3. Make that SEO change. Optimise.
Just do it and test it for your desired time period. (I recommend a few weeks at least, so Etsy has chance to re-learn what’s going on in your shop.)
And without changing ANYTHING else.
If you decide to change lots of things, then you won’t truly be able to say which change had an effect. Maybe you make 3 changes, and only one of those works. The other two perhaps had no impact at all. Or even, a negative impact!
By only applying one change at a time, you can be sure that any optimisation benefits are only the result of that one adjustment you made.
But hang on, let’s also say this… if we’re being properly scientific about it, you’ll need to be able to compare it with something.
Making a change to your listing and re-publishing it is not a fair comparison, since you won’t know if anyone would have searched for and found your item even without that optimisation-change.
We really need to have a fair comparison, in order to know whether our SEO is working or maybe if just there would’ve been more/ fewer searches, even without tweaking things.
Here’s how I do it:
I make a copy of the listing so I can keep the original one live, apply SEO changes to the copy and then see how they perform when alongside each other.
With the two running in tandem, it’s possible to tell which one of those ‘same-same-but-different’ listings is getting in front of more customer eyeballs.
The searches are still happening for both, but now Etsy’s deciding which listing is a better match and deserves to be placed higher up in the search results.
And therefore is more likely to get better views.
(Disclaimer: I definitely don’t make a copy when testing small changes, but I definitely DO do it when making bigger ones.
Say, when I changed how many photos I add to a listing, that’s a pretty big change, so I made a listing copy to contrast the before-and-after. A smaller change, such as changing something in my shop setup, is less likely to have an influence on how a specific listing is displayed so I don’t make listing copies in that case.)
4. Measure the outcome. Simple.
Did that one change improve your views, after the time ‘”b)” you decided on?
In this step, compare the views for your listing in its before state vs the copied one, after you made the SEO change.
If that optimisation change didn’t change your visibility and your views were the same, then try something else. Back to step 1.
If it did change your views for the better, then YAY! After you finish celebrating, you can ditch the original listing, which is under-performing. And apply the change you made to your other listings and watch how they benefit, too.
If your change had a negative impact, then keep the original listing live and get ready to try something else. Back to step 1.
5. Now decide on the next one thing to improve your Etsy SEO.
Do that. Measure it.
It’s a repeat of the process.
Etsy success is mostly about incremental and cumulative improvements.
With such a large number of factors that play into SEO and being seen more in Etsy searches, it might feel like a long-game to learn them all, but there are absolutely definitely ways to accelerate that process. Without endless trial-and-error.
My training programme for 1:1 premium support or my super-accessible group programme ‘Excellence In Etsy’ are how you can learn the shortcuts. Quick ones that are no-brainers for anyone to implement, as well as others that depend on your specific brand and your audience.
All of the things I teach aim to help you compete on Etsy. And make more sales.
Email me now to fix up a chat about how I might help you.
(And I’ll tell you if I can’t.)
What SEO tricks have you found most helpful lately? Maybe you’re struggling to get found?
Leave a comment, I’d love to hear your experiences!
You’ll want to revisit these steps… like I said, Etsy success is cumulative, so save this blog by Pinning now & revisit the process for your different Etsy tweaks ⬇️