Wow! SEO has been an especially hot topic in the world of handmade venues this week. Etsy and Artfire have very different positions about how your item titles are submitted to Google.
And why should you care? Well, because potential shoppers that know nothing about Artfire or Etsy look for handmade items to purchase, where? Google. Sellers NEED their items to be easily found and easily recognizable by the average shopper.
Here is an example from my shops to illustrate the differences between the two sites.
Pools of Fire – Handmade Orange Lampwork Bangle
I used these search terms on Google:
Handmade Orange Lampwork Bangle
This is how Etsy structures the handmade item titles:
Handmade <Category Name> on Etsy – Item Title, Shop Name
So, my etsy item appears in the google search as:
Handmade Jewelry on Etsy – Pools of Fire – Handmade bright orange …
This is how Artfire structures the handmade item title:
Item Title, <Artfire Artisan>, My Studio Name
So, my Artfire item appears in the google search as:
Pools of Fire – Handmade Orange ArtFire Artisan ShinyAdornments …
Hmm, neither are perfect, but the Etsy title is worse for the seller I think. Google and other search engines return results titles that range from 60-75 spaces. The Etsy model adds in around 30 characters with the Handmade (category) on etsy bit, the Artfire model adds 15. This means my actual item title and my shop name continually are over Google’s character limit with Etsy’s model. Developing a brand means that I need my shop name continually associated with my items in search. As I have a longer name, Etsy’s new model effectively nullifies this.
If you’d like to read a LOT more info from some pretty angry etsy sellers, here are a list of Etsy forum posts for you to peruse.
Artfire is addressing it head on (of COURSE they are. ) with a “Meet Artfire’s SEO/SMO Team” event in their forum. Also, Tony, an Artfire admin has posted this info regarding their tagging methodology:
“Hey there! Working on a Sunday. We wanted to get a jumpstart on our SEO guides. I just made some additional changes based on the feedback we see from our sellers and wanted to update you. We’ll be doing full official info next week. But, for those of you following along. . .
Check out the page source on your items now.
The title is still generated based like it was before with the title first, then username, then ArtFire then Main category.
But now the author is (drum roll) username on artfire for studios and items
the meta keywords are now (bigger drum roll) the first 10 of your tags plus (coming soon) artfire and the main category.
A couple of things
A) This means you can choose what’s important
1) only want your title for SEO? = use all 70 characters
2) only want your title and username? = use 70 minus your username characters for title
3) want all of that and ARTFIRE!!!? =( good idea in my opinion) use 70 – username – 6 (for Artfire)
4) Want the main cat in there too? Use 70- username – 6 for Artfire – main cat for title.
B) don’t dupe your tags – our search engine won’t give it anymore weight and it WILL kill your search engine placement cause it makes the google people angry (no kidding steam out their ears and everything).
C) The first word or phrase of your title is your best keyword for people searching for you item. e.g . “turquoise bracelet”
D) MAKE SURE you use that keyword in the first sentence of your description – That will generate the summary on the search return with your first few sentences of description. If you DON”T do that – the spider will look for other text that has the keyword.
E) This method allows for total customization of your SEO or we do what we think is best for those who don’t want to bother. YOU GET TO CHOOSE. Freedom to choose your own path, we think that is the key.
Formal updates and guides will follow this week. . . stay tuned.”
So what does this mean for you? Make your displeasure heard at the Etsy forums. Comment in the Artfire forums about what is working and what isn’t for you. Tweak your item titles based on what you know. For instance, in the examples above, I’m going to slightly tweak my Artfire titles to make better use of the characters I’m given. Use online tools to review your titles for length and edit as necessary with the information above. A good one to try is http://www.scrubtheweb.com/cgi-bin/webtools/meta-check.cgi
UPDATE: Here is Part Two
Don’t miss a single post.
Follow this blog: Click here
Follow via email: Click here
Want to be notified of subscriber only sales and other special events from ShinyAdornments? Sign up for my newsletter