Etsy Weekly Tip #7 The Secret Search Engine

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The acronym SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.

Which search engines are we interested in?

Etsy's search engine is the most important, with Google's search engine coming in third.

Who's #2? See below.

In the perfect world, being the 1st result in Google search would be a dream, but it's not very likely for your Etsy listing, so let's concentrate on appearing page 1 for Etsy searches.

Etsy SEO

Etsy's search algorithm has become a little more advanced these days.

Before 2018, stuffing the listing's title with keywords and having lots of sales, guaranteed you the top spots in the search. We won't dwell on the past, but I just want to give you my opinion on why they changed the algorithm. 

They wanted to give the newer shops a chance. Etsy's goal is to grow Etsy, so they need to encourage new sellers to the platform and give them a fighting chance against the established shops.

2018 Etsy SEO

Etsy SEO in 2018 is tough, really tough. More and more vendors are joining every day, and unfortunately, they all seem to have the same 'I'll sell my stuff cheaper than the competition disease.' (don't do this)

Embrace change.

Be a first adopter and listen to what Etsy executives are telling you.

Switch to Free Shipping now.

As shoppers get used to the new Etsy search features and start using the filters more, they will search for items more and more that offer free shipping.

Also, pay close attention to 'On sale' search filter

To qualify for this 'On sale' filter, you can schedule a sale for 10% off on orders over $100.

Try to 'qualify' for as many of the filterable searches as possible.

The last two Etsy search requirements are Titles and Tags.

The Title Catch 22

Stuffing titles with keywords still works, it looks ugly, but it does still work. The problem is, it won't work for Google. If you stuff a title with keywords for Etsy search, that listing won't rank well in Google search.

In my opinion, I wouldn't worry too much about Google. Unless your listing is very, very niche, most likely it's not going to rank well on Google no matter what you do.

Your time is better spent on the #2 search engine.

Pinterest SEO

When our Etsy shop first got rolling in sales, we never realized the impact of our Pinterest marketing efforts had on that success. (until many years later)

Pinterest is a very unique website. Disguised as social media, its actually quite a powerful tool, especially for Etsy shop owners.

What most people don't realize, at the heart of Pinterest lies a search engine. A search engine used by affluent shoppers.

The Secret Shopping Search Engine

Don't rely only on Etsy to drive you traffic. If you do, your results will probably be very underwhelming.

Etsy is a fantastic marketplace, but responsible business owners need to supplement the Etsy search traffic with additional traffic from websites like Pinterest.

Once your pictures and listings are perfect on Etsy, all your spare time should be spent on Pinterest.

Pinterest Descriptions

In my opinion, Pinterest is the #2 search engine you should be optimizing for.  Here is the checklist of the 5 areas we need to focus on with complete search engine optimized descriptions.

  • Board Descriptions
  • Pin Descriptions
  • Your Pinterest Profile
  • check
    Pin Image Text
  • check
    Etsy Listing

Pinterest has implemented 500 character length limitations on board and pin descriptions. They have also recently given the 'official' thumbs up to using hashtags.

Make ensure ever Pin and Board you create utilizes all 500 characters.

Long descriptions win the SEO game on Pinterest.

Don't go crazy on the hashtags, aim for 4 hashtags maximum per pin.

Sample pIn

Make custom pins with keyword text.

Pinterest bots read your landing page (your Etsy listing) and the pin image itself. So again, make sure the keywords you want to rank for are included on the pin and in your listing.

Third Party Etsy Search Apps

Don't buy these. These apps bring very little value.

If you want to figure out which keywords work in your niche, just look at the listings that are always at the top of the search for those keywords.

Then reverse engineer what they are doing, i.e., what tags they use (listed at the bottom of ever listing)


  • Embrace Change
  • Switch to Free Shipping
  • Qualify for Search Filters
  • check
    All spare time is spent on Pinterest.

Pin Me Pls 🙂

Etsy Tips of the Week

Each Monday, we release our Etsy tip of the week. This series aims to teach Etsy sellers on how to improve their shops and sell more items.

Etsy Search Engine Optimization in 2018 is really tough. We detail exactly the changes you need to make now to stay competitive today and into the future. #etsy #etsySEO #etsySuccess
Kelly Fitzsimmons

In 2010, Kelly left the corporate world behind, sold all his stuff and hit the road. He settled in Chiang Mai, met his super-intelligent wife, Bibi and together, they created their thriving Etsy business. To keep the creative juices following, Bibi and Kelly have started side blogging projects aimed at helping others mimic their Etsy and blogging success.