An awesome reader sent in the following question:
What are the top ten things I can do to to get more Google hits to my Etsy shop?
Here’s the thing with SEO: Search engines are looking for the best result available for the search in question. So the two steps to ranking well in search are first to try and actually BE the best result available and second to try to understand how search engines make that determination.
They guage this using a long and complex set of indicators. How long your shop has been online, how many people have shared or liked your shop or your items, how well your item titles match the keywords in the search, and how many other places link to you are all part of the equation.
You can only do so much. Focusing too heavily on search is a bad idea. It’s much better to focus on the customer and keep asking yourself how you can do a better job of showing, sharing, and telling about your products.
But as for good solid SEO, here are the top ten items (there really is no order):
- Create a blog and write posts about your products – See Using Your Blog to Promote Your Etsy Shop
- Engage in social media and build a following
- Provide tools for social sharing of your blog posts and images – see Like Building is the New Link Building
- Connect your Etsy shop to Twitter and Facebook
- Try to build links to your items within Etsy
- Use relevant and search optimized keywords in titles – See Etsy Shop SEO Video
- Write good item descriptions
- Syndicate your shop and participate in Google product search
- Pin images of your items (and try to get more pins)
- Increase the number of items in your shop
As I read through the list above and consider these steps I’m again confronted with the question:
What size do you want your business to be? What is your goal?
If your goal is to create a long-term business then you’re not going to dislike the idea of putting many hours into doing these things right. You’ll also be more comfortable with the reality that this is only a small part of success selling online.
Search is more likely to be a source of additional sales for a shop already on-fire than it is to be a source of a sustained level of sales for a shop that doesn’t get customers from many other sources.
In other words, don’t count on Google for success!
If you put too much weight in the items in the list above you might tend to make some mistakes.
- You’ll write blog posts about your products that aren’t anything more than a picture and a link. That’s not helpful and too much of that can hurt you.
- You might try too hard to build links within Etsy and end up essentially spamming teams and forums with links to your items. This is bad.
- You might go too far with keyword usage and have titles that are flat and boring.
- You might increase the number of items in your shop just for the sake of larger numbers, when an “improved selection” in the eyes of customers is what you need.
So to sum this idea up, the ten item list above can be a gold mine if you make it a part of your daily selling routine.
I’ll repeat that last part: Your daily selling routine.
Building your business on Etsy can help you to shape a perfect-fit selling routine for you, your life, and your products. It might seem unnatural at first, but it really doesn’t have to be. Selling is fun and it can easily fit into everything you do in some small way.
Remember that your products help people and are worth the money. Just keep your conversations natural. Tell people you have a business. Share your excitement for what you’re doing. Tell your story so we know why you do what you do. Tell stories about individual products and what they mean to you.
These are easy selling methods that are interesting and get attention. They work great over time because online, everything stays. Real conversations are indexed by search engines and people browse old posts of interest.
How do you feel about selling?
Let me finish with a question or two of my own. Is part of the allure of “SEO” because it’s automatic and you don’t have to “sell”? Are you comfortable with the idea that you are a “salesperson” for your little business? Does the idea of “selling” make you want to quit?
I’d love to hear your answers on these questions because it might give me some insight into how I can help you reach the levels of success you really want to reach with this. Thanks for taking the time to share in the comments.