I know I've recommended Etsy Hacks before but now I want to give a rundown of what I think are the best scripts. To run Etsy Hacks you need to use Firefox with the Greasemonkey add-on installed.

fast tagger: Add all your listings' tags at once. Makes tagging much faster, especially for users with slower internet connections.

bulk image uploader: Upload up to five images at once when editing a listing. Maybe not the best option for slower connections but a time saver for broadband users.

renew listing
: Renew a listing from the View Listing page.

copy listing: Quickly create a new listing based on an existing one. The single most useful Etsy Hack if you have a lot of similar items that only need minor editing to make the listing unique. This hack doesn't copy images but covers title, description, tags, price, and shipping.

shop tools: Adds a links to shop configuration pages to your shop and listing pages.

edit this item: Adds "edit item" and "delete item" links to the View Listing page when viewing an item in your shop.

Here's a bunch of great links I've come across lately.

Timothy Adam Designs - Article on increasing your Etsy traffic (many of the tips will also work for other selling venues as well).
Etsy Marketing - You Can Sell More, Here's How. Site all about marketing your Etsy shop. Some really great articles here.
Allover Art: Tuesday Tip - $100 Facebook Ad Credit Try out facebook ads for free, $100 gives you plenty of time to play with the ad service. This is legit, I gave it a try.

If you use PayPal for receiving payments and/or printing postage here's a tip for printing out reports of your transactions. When in your account above your recent activity is a link that says All Account Activity, this gives you lots of great printable reports yo can use for accounting, taxes, etc.

You'll see that you can set date ranges which is pretty straight forward, you could get reports for a specific month or year if you want. What's really great is the drop down menu above the dates, this lets you select only certain transaction to show, payments you sent, payments received, shipping payments, withdrawals, etc.

After reading a number of conversations on the Etsy forums lately I've realized that a lot of sellers don't know what SEO is and why it's important for their shops. I'm writing this as just a quick primer on optimizing an Etsy shop for SEO (it will also work for other venues like eCrater and ArtFire). This is just an overview touching on what I think are the most important things to work on.

Definition of SEO

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, makign your website attractive to search engines so they will rank you highly in search results. Search engines account for a tremendous amount of traffic online so if your shop isn't ranking on search engines you're missing out on a lot of visitors who may become customers. The two sides of SEO to focus on are on site and off site.

This post is just going to focus on on site optimization of your Etsy shop. Off site will have to wait for a later post.

On Site Optimization

On site optimization is creating your site's content in a way that makes it clear to the search engines what your site is about and what keywords are important so you'll show up in search results for those keywords (on Etsy tags are the Etsy search keywords). Since I'm talking about optimizing an Etsy shop the options for optimization are limited. You only have what text you can edit to use in optimization.

It is possible to optimize a site for search engines and lose customers. User friendliness and content has to come first and then SEO but the good thing is a lot of SEO changes can also help user friendliness if done right.


Keywords are the words that people use to find your site when they use a search engine. You want to try and target keywords that you want people to find your shop using. The obvious ones are the type of product you make, subject matter, or materials, less obvious ones can often be things like occasions people would buy your product for, wider categories of products, etc. Google has a great keyword research tool that can give you suggestions based on a sample of keywords you give them.

Make a list of the keywords you would like to target to use while editing your shop. Keep these keywords on hand for Part II on off site optimization.


It's a good idea to use keywords in your title, but not at the expense of making the title informative. So something like "Blue Sparkle Earrings" is informative but few keywords "Blue Sparkle Earrings, Handmade Lampwork Glass Jewelry" is both informative and has several keywords. Keyword stuffing is loading a title with a list of keywords and while it may help your search engine ranking it will be a turn off for customers, an example would be "handmade earrings lampwork glass gift etsy blue bead crafts". You must balance SEO with user friendliness.


Your descriptions first and foremost must inform a potential customer about your products. The good thing about this is the more you tell your customers the more there is for the search engines to pick up on. Make sure you work in your keywords where you can. As an example I make jewelry based on cuttlefish so my descriptions all contain this paragraph after the description of the piece of jewelry:
Cuttlefish are not fish at all but are cephalopods, their closest relatives are squid and octopus. These amazing sea creatures have eight arms and two tentacles with suckers that they use to capture their prey. Some cuttlefish are brightly colored and many can change the color and the texture of their skin as camouflage, mating display, or warning.
It gives from background on cuttlefish which help customers who may not be familiar with these cool animals but it also includes many of my keywords such as: cuttlefish, fish, squid, cephalopods, tentacles, sea, etc.

Make the first few sentences of your description count the most, Etsy pulls the first 240 characters for the meta description tag. How much this tag matters anymore is debatable but some search engines pull this info for their results display. So you want to make sure it's clear in those first few words exactly what your item is.


Since tags are text on the listing page google will see them but you should be focussing them for Etsy search because that's where they will do the most good. List type of product, subject matter, materials, colors, etc. then if you have some tag spaces left over throw in some of your keywords. The tags also show up in the keywords meta tag but most search engines no longer give those much weight so Etsy search first then what might help with Google.

Shop Announcement

Your shop announcement is the only solid piece of text on your gallery page. Use it to introduce you and your products while working in your keywords. Like your item description the first 240 characters of your announcement are pulled for the meta description tag so describe your business first before any other announcements (including sales).

Also don't forget your shop title, you have about 55 characters to work with so instead of just your shop name include a little more info and keywords. As an example instead of just using "Noadi's Art" I use "Noadi's Art on Etsy, Polymer Clay Jewelry & Sculpture". It doesn't just show up in bold at the top of my shop annoucnement but is also used in the title tag, the title tag shows the title in the top of the browser (or on tabs) but search engines also factor it into your rankings.

Shop Sections

Shop sections need to be clear to your customers what they include, but they are also text so search engines see them (also along with your user name they are pulled into the meta keywords). Instead of for example listing "Hats" be more specific and put "Fleece Women's Hats".

Off Site Optimization

Off site optimization boils down to one basic thing: backlinks. Backlinks are links on other sites that lead to your shop. You want to have links from many other sites, but not just any site. Sites with content related to your shop will have more effect than a totally unrelated site and some sites have more weight with search engines than others (google pagerank is often used a measurement of this).


Not every link will help your search engine rankings. The nofollow attribute tells search engines not to count a link, blog often have these on the comments and all paid links (like ads) are also supposed to be nofollow. These links might bring traffic so they aren't useless but won't help you with search engines.

Getting Started

So where to start building backlinks? If you have a blog, twitter account, flickr account, etc. add a link to your shop. Then you can start searching for free directories to add your site to, here's a big list of free directories and you definitely should get added to the Handmade Product Directory. Other things you can do are start a blog just for your shop, create Squidoo lenses for your products, email other blogs about featuring your shop, most Etsy teams have a blog that lists member shops so that's yet another great reason to join a team (among many including meeting cool fellow Etsy users). If you have great products and good promotion other people will do some of the work for you by linking to your shop themselves.

Another way to build backlinks is to use the RSS feed that every Etsy shop has. has a great list of places to submit RSS feeds.

While not directly related to the normal google results you deifnitely want to sign up for an submit your products to Google Base so they will show up in the product search. Let's Ets is a great tool for getting the bulk file to upload.

Linking to Your Shop

You can't control all links to your shop just those you create yourself. This is where your keyword list comes back out. You want to create links to your shop that use not just your shop name (you do want a number of those) but also your keywords.

If you are using images to link to your shop the best option is to also have a text link below it or near it to the same page. However you can also use the alt and title tags for images in the format <img src="http://yourlink.com/image.jpg" alt="Your shop name" title="Your shop name"> and the search engines will read that text for the image.

Hiring Out your SEO

There are many companies online that will do your SEO for you. If you find this all overwhelming you may decide to hire someone else to do it for you, however be very careful. There are some shady SEO companies out there that may want to scam you or who use unethical practices that could end up getting you punished by the search engines by being blacklisted. Always do your research before hiring anyone.

Here are some ideas for little extras to send out with orders to make your products more memorable for your customer and hopefully become repeat customers.

Everyone: Include a thank you note or card.

Candles: Include custom printed matchbooks. There are a number of companies online that print them but most sell by the case (2500 matchbooks) which may be more than you need or out of your price range, if you want a lower cost solution consider buying plain white matchbooks and rubber stamping your logo on. There are several companies online that make custom stamps, RubberStamps.net has pretty good prices.

Jewelry & Clothing: Print up a notecard or pamphlet that includes care instructions.

Kids products: How about including stickers related to the product. As an example, if you sell sock monkeys include some stickers of monkeys. Dollar stores are good sources of large quantities of sticker books. Just cut the sheets into strips of 3-4 small stickers or 1-2 larger ones.

Bath & Body: Include a small sample pack of your products in some scents that compliment the order.

Supplies: Include a few extra beads, buttons, findings, etc. as a bonus. Also a way to use up odds and ends.

As always including business cards and nice packaging regardless of what you sell is a big help.

A number of jewelry supply companies sell these great adhesive earring card adapters. You can design your own hanging earring cards for display at craft shows.

These are the ones I made. I used Zazzle to design and print the cards but you could get more handmade with art paper and pens or rubber stamps. When I designed the cards I added dots so I'd know where to punch the holes and they would all be uniform. To punch the holes I just used a safety pin and one of those cheap foam sponges from the dollar store underneath the card (a towel or pillow works as well).

I bought my earring card adapters from a seller on Etsy who was clearing out extras. A few stores that sell them are:

If you would like to have your cards printed on business cards like mine here's a template you can use that is at 300 dpi which is what most printers prefer, just click to view and save the full size version. You'll want to cover up the gray border and text but keep the hole markers for printing.

FireFox is a great open source web browser. If you aren't already using it you should really give it a try.

One of the big benefits of FireFox is it's customizable nature, there are hundreds of addons for firefox. Here are a collection of extensions that are useful for a handmade business.

Etsy Hacks - Collection of Greasemonkey scripts that extends Etsy functions.
Greasemonkey - this extension lets you run a large variety of 3rd party scripts such as Etsy Hacks.
Etsy Search Add Etsy search functionality to your search bar.
Paypal Plugin Use Paypal on sites that don't support paypal by generating a temporary card number.
Blank Canvas Gmail Signatures Automatically inserts HTML signatures into your gmail messages (e.g. linking to your shop)