Tags are The Key!
How many times have you wandered through the listings on Etsy or any other keyword based selling site and found totally WRONG tags?? I do just about every time I look into the items on Etsy. It's nice to have several bases covered for keyword / tag searches, just don't run amok with tags! I see that soooo often in listings and they put me right off purchasing. You've already used the description to give good, solid info on not only the item but also its uses. You don't need to slip those uses into the tags as well. It's bad form and can get your item flagged quickly.
Take a look at the tags/keywords used by successful sellers on Etsy or whichever site you are selling on. Or get into the forums and look at some of the threads that talk about over-tagging. Take a look at some of the shops for those sellers who applaud the use of proper tagging in your category. What did they use? And what was the order in which they used them? That can be very important to buyers searching for items such as yours.
Another online tool you can use is Google AdWords. No, you do NOT have to sign up with them, you can have limited use of their keyword program to help find what folks are searching for on the net. This can assist you in determining some of your keywords in your ad text as well as possibly the order in which you will be using the proper tags.
Open up one of your inactive listings and head to the tag section. First thing to remember is, the FIRST DROPDOWN MENU IS THE CATEGORY!! It is NOT a tag!! Folks get very confused with that. I wish Etsy would make that crystal clear. We've asked for it in the forums, but it seems to be falling on deaf ears. Sigh. We'll keep on nattering at them.
Now, once you've chosen your primary category, take a look at the structure of subsequent tags and their sub-headings. Which one suits yours the best? When there are more than one ways to do tags for my product, I'm apt to put up one product with one way and another product another way ... keeping a close watch on views can tell me which way is best.
Is this against the rules? Certainly not! Not if I am sticking strictly to Etsy's Tagging Guidelines. If I'm not sure, I've brought up the quandary in the Critiques forum. Lots of good advice in there. Sometimes that advice is not germane to my product, but usually I can get a general feel for what I should be doing.
Along with tags, make good use of your Materials Used section. Why? As a buyer, I like to know what you used to construct your item. If it's paper, put acid free if that fits. If it's yarn, put acrylic/wool/silk, etc. I want to know that too. Sometimes the materials used gets lost in an over-enthusiastic description so having those materials noted down in that section is a big help. Having NOTHING down in the Materials Used section of your listing could tell potential buyers that you don't care enough about your product to let the world know what you used.
I keep hearing from sellers that 1. - they don't have the time, and/or 2. they simply forget. If you want the sales, TAKE the time and make it part of your routine. Surely you have already done up your ad ahead of time so all you have to do is copy/paste, right?? So add a section in your text file for tags and also for materials used.
Properly tagged items mean searches will result in increased page views.
More traffic to your other listings!
Next time ... Pictures!
~ Marge ~