The Simple Process To Help Boost Etsy Sales

By Chris Shaffer •  Updated: 04/16/23 •  10 min read

There can be nothing more frustrating on Etsy, than putting up a great product and listing and not getting the sales we expect it to get.

Sadly, most of the advice you'll get is to just wait for your listing to rank better, but we refer to it as the. “If you build it, they will come” strategy.

Although there's a small grain of truth to this Etsy advice, it can take time for your listening to rank well organically, there's no reason to sit and wait.

The key to getting more sales on Etsy is to have sales, to begin with.

This is what we refer to as the Etsy flywheel effect.

Essentially, the more sales we have the more likely etsy is to reward us with more traffic, which leads to more sales, which leads to more traffic.

Although if you wait long enough in SOME cases, you may see this sales flywheel start to take hold.

However, through a little bit of testing and tweaking and (a good bit of nerding out on how Etsy's search algorithm works), we've come up with a simple, three-step way to give that sales flywheel a nice Kickstart.

Step #1: Find Out How Many Sales Your Competitors Have

As I discussed above, to accelerate the Etsy sales flywheel. We need to get more sales and where better to get them from than from our competitors?

In all seriousness though, before we can understand our true sales potential, we need to understand how many total sales there are in our niche for our product and how much of that share of total sales is being dominated by our competitors.

This is important for two reasons.

First, if we are already outselling our competitors and ranking at the top of our keywords, there may not be much more room for us to grow.

If we aren't ranking at the top for all of the keywords related to the products we sell and our competitors are selling more units than we are, we need to understand why and how.

Secondly, if there is room for us to grow in the market, we need to have an understanding of exactly how many sales our competitors are generating each day.

The reason for this is fairly simple, Etsy's algorithm favors products that are more likely to sell and sell more often. 

This process is fairly straightforward if you have a sales estimation tool like EverBee (yes, even the free version works for this).

First, type in the main keyword related to your product and then use the EverBee product analytics tool to pull the sales and conversion data for all of the top-ranking listings.

Then, you're going to open the top three to five selling listings (based on the number of units they sell).

What we are looking for here is the average number of units they are selling per day.

Let's say, for example, the top-selling listings are selling an average of 60 units per month or two units per day.

This means, to solidly outrank them and show etsy that our product is the most likely to sell, we would need to sell 2 or more units per day, to move up the ranks for all of the keywords related to our products.

Having this sales number in mind as an initial goal is an important first step, but even selling more units than our competitors in the short term is not necessarily the key to unlocking long-term sales success on Etsy, unless we combine it with what we learn in step 2.

Step #2: Evaluate Your Competitor’s Listings

Now that we have an understanding of what kind of sales volume we need to generate, we need to take into consideration the other half of the equation.

Although I don't have a ton of time here to fully explain Etsy's search engine algorithm (You can find a full breakdown of that here), I will say it breaks down into two basic parts.

The first is whether or not the words we use in our listing match something that someone is looking for inside the Etsy search box.

The second half is what happens when someone comes to our listing, do they buy/do something a buyer might do, or do they go back to the Etsy search results and look at another listing?

The sales volume we got in step one is only part of the second part of that ranking equation, now we need to address the rest of it.

Open each of the 3-5 listings you chose as your top-selling competitors from step one.

In each of the listings, take careful note of the keywords and phrases that are being used in the title (especially at the front) and in the first few lines of the product description.

You will also want to take note of the types of images that are being used (especially the first image and if your competitors are using videos) and any of the additional details that they include in the product description that your listing does not currently have.

Essentially what we are doing at this point is a giant game of” spot the difference”.

Take the time to identify any of the differences between the listings that are selling better than yours and your listing.

This process will help us to ensure not only that we are targeting the correct keywords (you'd be surprised how often decent but not great-selling listings Target less-than-ideal keywords), but also that if Etsy shows us in the search results that we have a high likelihood of getting someone to click into our listing.

Remember, getting organic at the traffic is all about three main things.

First, does our listing tell Etsy that our product is relevant to what someone is searching for (this is all about the keywords you and your buyers use)?

From here, it's all about how likely someone is to click on the listing when Etsy shows you in the search results and how likely they are to buy your product versus your competitor's product when they click on the listing.

By making sure that our listings are using similar keywords, images, etc, We can eliminate most of the variables and narrow it down to just who's getting the most sales at the highest conversion rate.

Step #3: Get As Much Qualified Traffic As Possible

Now that we know how many sales we need to generate and we've minimized any of the other variables, it's time to set the Etsy sales flywheel in motion.

At this point, it's all about getting as much traffic as we can.

Since we can't rely just on Etsy's organic search traffic, at least at this point, there are two things that you can do right away to drive more high-quality traffic than your competitors.

Turn on Etsy Ads

The very first thing you should be doing once you've reached the stage he's to turn on Etsy's ads.

Not only does this give us a ton of data to further optimize our listing, but traffic from Etsy ads can convert at an extremely higher rate for a very low cost.

I know some sellers are opposed to Etsy as because they feel like it can eat into their profit margins, but if our goal is to generate as many sales as possible over the long term, it's okay to give up a little bit of margin in the short term for consistent sales at higher margins in the long term. Term.

One of the nicest things about Etsy ads is you can see great results without having to spend a lot of money. Our general suggestion is that if you're turning on the ads for the first time, but you choose a budget between two and $5 per day.

If all this does is help us gain one or two additional sales per day, It can go a long way to helping us overcome the power competitors in the organic search results over the long term.

If you'd like a full breakdown of our experience with Etsy ads and some tips and tricks We picked up along the way, you can find that here.

Consider Running a Promo

Another thing that is often overlooked by Etsy sellers as a way of generating not only short-term sales but long-term results in terms of higher organic placement in etsy search, is running a sale or promotion.

TIP: Just like with running ads, I will occasionally get pushback from sellers saying that they don't want to sell their products at a lower margin.

To that I will say again, If our goal is to get long-term consistent sales, it's okay to give up a few dollars over the next 5 to 7 days to secure our rank and higher daily sales.

A promotion at this point is useful for a few different reasons.

First, if you didn't already know, whenever you set up a promotion inside of Etsy, they notify previous customers, people who have favorited the product, people who have added the product to their cart but not purchased it, and people who follow your shop.

This notification alone has been known to drive a few sales when Etsy sends it out and is a nice way to start boosting your sales.

Additionally, as your sale winds to a close, Etsy will display a countdown timer in the search results.

Remember, Etsy is looking at how likely someone is to click on your listing when they are displayed in the search results and a countdown timer or anything else that makes your listing stand out from the competition means your listing is more likely to be clicked on.

If we can increase the click-through rate from the organic search results, even temporarily, this can help give us a boost.

Additionally, deadlines or countdown timers are huge conversion rate increases, meaning the people clicking on your listing are more likely to buy as the promotion comes to an end, which means we end up with more clicks to our listing and more sales than our competitors helping to secure our organic search rank in the long term.

Wrapping Up

One of the hardest things about being an etsy seller is the frustration of how long it can take before we start to see consistent sales.

If that's something you've been struggling with, try to implement this simple three-step process to boost your sales.

Not only will you see more sales in the short term, but the longer you can keep up your sales, velocity, and conversion rate, the higher you will rank in Etsy’s organic search, and the more traffic and sales you will have over the long term.

Chris Shaffer

Chris lives at the intersection of business strategy and growth tactics. Having consulted with dozens of different businesses (as well as building several of his own), he brings a unique perspective on what's working across the eCommerce world in businesses of all shapes and sizes.