Writing a compelling title for your Etsy product listing is critical. Why? Because the more your products are shown to potential buyers the more likely you are to sell your product. You want your product listing to be shown on Etsy as well as search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.
So, what is a compelling title? A compelling title should answer your buyers questions and provide enough information that they will click on the listing to get further information. I will show you how we write our titles, which is one of the reasons we have had over 13,000 sales on Etsy.
To write a compelling title you will need to think like a buyer, research keywords/keyword phrases, and know how Etsy and search engines find your listing. If you'd like our Ultimate Guide to Writing a Compelling Title checklist, click here.
Think Like a Buyer – What to Include in your Title
If you think like a buyer, you will start the process of what to include in your title. This will help with your title and your keyword research.
Some questions a buyer will have are – When was it made? Who made it? How big is it? What color is it? What can I use it for? Will this go with my home's decor? The questions will depend on the item, but this will give you an idea of what to think about.
How will you answer these questions? You will answer them in your photos, your title, your description, and your tags.
As an example, I have a Wm Rogers Revelation Tapestry silverplate flatware set for sale (the full title is Antique 1938 Wm Rogers Mfg Co Revelation Tapestry Silverplate Flatware Set Monogram M – Service for 12 with 4 Piece Place Settings in Box). If I search on Google for Wm Rogers Revelation, here's what shows up. Yes, our listing is #1 in the search.
When a potential buyer clicks on the listing in the Google search, it will direct them to the product listing on Etsy where they can purchase it.
Let's talk about how this listing answers a potential buyer's questions.
First, when was it made? Ours usually start with vintage or a date for the item so that Etsy and potential buyers know that this is not a new item. For this listing, we use the world antique (meaning it's over 75 years old) and the year that this set was first produced – 1938. Basically, we've done more than answer this question.
Who made it? Wm Rogers Mfg Co (this stands for William Rogers Manufacturing Company).
What is it? First, we use the pattern name – Revelation / Tapestry and we also state that it's a flatware set in box. The pattern name is important because buyers are usually looking for a particular pattern to add to a set they already own or replace a flatware set they previously owned or a relative may have owned. We have heard the story a few times on how someone wanted a particular pattern because their mom or grandma had this set. This also lets the buyer know they get the entire set plus the storage box.
What color is it? First, the photos indicate the inside of the flatware box is blue and white. The word silverplate in the title lets the buyer know that this set is silver (silver plated).
How big is it? This is a service for 12 (also known as 12 place settings) which is important because buyers tend to search for how many place settings they want, The title also states that each place setting has 4 pieces (knife, dinner fork, soup spoon and teaspoon).
Side note: This set does not have salad forks, which is why we're only asking $229 for the set. If it had salad forks, we would be asking $300-$350 since it is a service for 12. Normally, we would purchase matching salad forks so that it is a complete service for 12 with 5 piece place settings, but because this set is monogrammed that is not possible.
As you can see, the buyer will have very few questions after they read the title. All other information on our product is disclosed in the listing description, such as the condition of this set and the measurements of each piece and the flatware box. If you want to learn more about listing descriptions, check out Our Top 5 Tips on Writing a Description that Sells.
Here are some examples of other titles we have used for products that have sold.
If you'd like a checklist for the Ultimate Guide to Writing a Compelling Title, click on the graphic below.
Research Keywords and Keyword Phrases
What are keywords? Keywords are a set of words that describe your product. Etsy uses the word tags, but you can think of keywords as tags and tags as keywords.
A keyword can be one or two words, but it is better to use long tail keywords. Long tail keywords are 3 or more words that describe an item. For example, if you are selling vintage clothing, a keyword might be shorts or vintage shorts. However, a better keyword is a long tail keyword such as 1980s Daisy Duke style cut off shorts. As you can see, there is a big different between these two types of keywords and which is more descriptive.
How do you find keywords? The first place to look is in the search bar. You can use the Etsy search bar and the Google search bar for keyword clues. You can also check out other sites such as Pinterest for keywords. Check out the video below on finding keywords in Etsy, Google, and Pinterest.
There are companies that offer keyword research, which I will talk about below. However, we have had over 13,000 sales by doing our own keyword research. We have tried out the two companies that Etsy recommends, but have found that our own research works just as well and is free. However, if you're new to keywords and keyword research and feeling overwhelmed, you may want to check them out.
Etsy has an integration for eRank and Marmalead. Having an integration means you can link your Etsy shop to these sites and they can check your listings to see if you are using good keywords, etc.
I would recommend eRank's free version first just to see how keywords work (check out their free plan here). If you find you need more information, you can upgrade to their paid plan or Marmalead's paid plan (there's no free version of Marmalead). You can check out eRank free plan here. Marmalead charges a monthly fee to use their services. However, if you're interested in Marmalead at $19 per month, check out this article from Marmalead on how an Etsy seller used Marmalead to become a six-figure seller. Click HERE to read the article. By the way, I don't get a commission for either of these companies, I just want you to have all the information to make an informed decision.
How Etsy and Search Engines find your Listing
Etsy and search engines' criteria for finding your shop and your product listings are different, which I've outlined below.
Etsy uses the title and your keywords to match your product listing to a buyer's search. In that regard, the title is very important to ensure that you rank higher in the Etsy search. More specifically, Etsy uses the first few words in your title so make those words clear and specific to your product. If your product is vintage, you can use the word vintage later in the title and add more specific words first. Think about how your product will show in the search (only about 40-45 characters of your title will show as you can see below).
Etsy's criteria for showing your listings in their search also includes categories so make sure you use the correct category for your product. If it's a formal top hat, use the category formal top hat. If it's a costume type top hat, use that category. This will help Etsy match a buyer to your product.
Here is a link to all of Etsy's categories so click here if you'd like to see them all (there are hundreds). If you click on a category it will show you all the subcategories so happy category searching.
I will use Google as the search engine example because it is the most widely used search engine. Google looks at the first 160 characters in your description (not your title) as well as your keywords to match your product to a potential buyer. So make those 160 characters count (a character is a letter, number, space, special character, etc.)! If you'd like more information, check out our Top 5 Tips for Writing a Description that Sells. Even though the title isn't as important to Google, it is important in that your buyer sees the title in the Google search and is compelled to check out your product.
As an example, the keywords (tags) I used on Etsy for the flatware set above are Wm Rogers, Rogers Mfg Co, service for 12, 4 piece, place setting (4 piece place setting are 2 keywords because you only get 20 characters on Etsy for each tag (keyword), Revelation flatware, Tapestry flatware, vintage flatware set, 1930s flatware set, silverplate flatware, flatware set for 12, flatware set, flatware box. I used all 13 tags (keywords). Use all of the keywords and tags. This is where your keyword research comes into play. If you need to, you can add keywords that talk about color, size, what it's used for, etc. Just be sure to use them all!
I know that was quite a bit of information on writing a title, but please don't be overwhelmed. I hope I've touched on all the reasons it is important to write a compelling title so here's a quick recap. For Etsy, make the first few words of your listing the most important and specific words to describe your product (use all the characters in the title if you can without being spammy) and choose 13 keywords that match your product. For search engines, make sure your description and your keywords specifically describe the most important features of your product.