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6 Things To Never Do With Your Etsy Listing

Your Etsy listing stands at the forefront of your shop, playing a pivotal role in attracting potential customers. However, when creating Etsy listings, it’s surprisingly easy to slip up—whether it’s a minor oversight or a common error. Some mistakes can significantly impact your visibility and sales, while others may lead to your listing being deactivated or removed. To help you navigate these challenges, we’re covering six common mistakes to avoid. By following these Etsy listing best practices, you can ensure your shop remains thriving and compliant.

Common Etsy Listing Mistakes

Whether you’re new to selling on Etsy or a seasoned seller, this list is designed to help you navigate common pitfalls and refine your strategy.

Use it to audit your Etsy listings and ensure you’re adhering to the best practices for selling on the platform. While some of these tips may seem straightforward, avoiding them can put you one step ahead of the competition.

Handmade seller packing Etsy listings while checking shipping information on her laptop.

Quick Tips to Improve Your Etsy Listings

Key Takeaways
  • 📸 High-quality, accurate photos are crucial as they are the first point of customer engagement, setting expectations about the quality and details of your product.
  • 📊 Effective use of SEO, including keyword optimization and appropriate tagging, is essential for increasing the visibility of your listings and attracting more potential buyers.
  • 📈 Setting prices too low can undermine the perceived value of your products and negatively impact your profitability; it’s important to price adequately to reflect the quality and craftsmanship of your items.
  • 🙂 Excellent customer service is key to building trust and retaining customers; prompt responses and efficient issue resolution can significantly enhance buyer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • 📢 Expanding your product reach through strategic use of advertising and offering diverse shipping options can significantly increase your market presence and customer base.
  • 📑 Adhering to Etsy’s policies is crucial for maintaining your store’s standing on the platform; non-compliance can lead to listing deactivation or other penalties, hindering your shop’s success.

Avoid These 6 Etsy Listing Mistakes

Avoiding these six Etsy listing mistakes is essential for running a successful online shop. By optimizing each aspect of your listings, from photography to pricing and SEO, you can enhance your visibility, attract more buyers, and ensure a thriving Etsy business.

Table of Contents

Mistake #1: Using Low-Quality and Inaccurate Listing Photos

Handmade seller taking a picture of her Etsy listing with a smartphone.

Using high-quality and accurate photos in your Etsy listings is essential for making a strong first impression and attracting potential buyers. Low-quality or inaccurate photos can mislead customers, leading to dissatisfaction and returns, which could harm your reputation and sales.

Here’s how to optimize your visuals to enhance buyer trust and increase your product appeal on Etsy.

  • Invest in Professional Photography: Ensure all photos are high-resolution and well-lit to showcase your products in the best possible light.
  • Highlight Product Features: Use each photo to highlight different aspects of your product, such as size, materials, and in-use, to give customers a full understanding of what they’re purchasing.
  • Consistent Visual Style: Maintain a consistent visual style across all images to reinforce your brand identity and make your listings more attractive.

Take High-Quality Photos

High-quality photos are vital for success on Etsy. They are the first thing a potential buyer notices, and they make a significant impact on the initial impression of your items. To avoid the common Etsy listing mistake of using poor-quality photos, ensure each image is clear, well-lit, and professionally presented. Remember, visually appealing images are more likely to engage shoppers and lead to more sales.

→ Here’s how to take high-quality listing photos on a budget

Use At Least 5 Listing Photos

When Etsy first launched, it allowed sellers to use five photos. Now, Etsy allows sellers to upload up to ten. Utilizing all available slots is crucial as it gives buyers a thorough view of your product through multiple angles and details.

Each photo can showcase different features, such as texture, size, and how the item can be used, providing a comprehensive visual experience that can help diminish buyer hesitation and increase conversion rates.

Ensure Your Mockups Are Accurate

For Etsy sellers of print-on-demand products, using accurate mockups is essential. Inaccurate mockups can lead to customer dissatisfaction due to a mismatch between the displayed image and the received product. Always ensure that your mockups accurately represent the final product in terms of color, size, and placement. This practice will help maintain your reputation, reduce returns, and keep your Etsy listing from being deactivated due to buyer complaints.

Mistake #2: Ignoring the Importance of Etsy SEO

Shopper browsing Etsy listings while using laptop.

Optimizing your Etsy listings for search engines is crucial to increasing your shop’s visibility and attracting more potential buyers. Ignoring SEO can significantly limit your reach and hinder sales.

Here’s how to effectively leverage Etsy SEO:

  • Conduct Keyword Research: Regularly research and update your keywords to ensure they align with what potential buyers are searching for.
  • Optimize All Elements: Use SEO strategies in your tags, titles, and descriptions to maximize visibility and attract more traffic.
  • Target Long Tail Keywords: Incorporate specific, less competitive long tail keywords to attract a more targeted audience ready to purchase.

Don’t Overlook SEO

Etsy SEO is foundational to your success on the handmade marketplace. It ensures your products appear in search results when potential buyers look for items like yours. To maintain high visibility, regularly update your SEO strategies based on trends and algorithm updates. Monitor your shop’s analytics to understand which keywords drive traffic and sales.

Optimize Your Tags, Titles, and Descriptions

Your tags, titles, and descriptions should be carefully crafted with relevant keywords to boost your Etsy listing’s SEO. Ensure each tag is unique and specific and that your title and descriptions include keywords naturally and meaningfully. This helps Etsy’s search algorithm recognize and rank your listings effectively.

Target Long Tail Keywords

Long tail keywords are specific phrases which are less competitive but highly targeted. Using long tail keywords in your listings can capture a niche audience ready to purchase. This strategy can lead to higher conversion rates as you’re attracting buyers with specific intents and needs.

Marmalead is an Etsy SEO tool that makes finding effective long tail keywords easy and fun! Search for a keyword in Marmalead and we’ll let you know whether or not it’s long tail.

Use All 13 Tags

Etsy provides up to 13 tags per listing, and using all of them is a best practice. Each tag is an opportunity to capture different search terms that potential buyers might use. More tags mean more chances to appear in searches, so brainstorm varied Etsy keywords related to your product, including synonyms and common search queries.

Don’t Ignore Listing Categories and Attributes

Categories and attributes function as additional tags on Etsy. They help the platform categorize your listing more accurately, improving the chances that your product will be seen by interested buyers. Fill these out thoroughly and accurately to ensure your listings are as discoverable as possible.

Mistake #3: Underpricing Your Products

Handmade seller creating candles to list on the Etsy marketplace.

Correctly pricing your Etsy products is critical to your business’s profitability and perceived value. Underpricing can not only reduce your earnings but can also make customers question the quality of your products.

Here’s how to avoid the pitfalls of underpricing:

  • Conduct Market Research: Regularly research the market to understand competitive pricing and position your products accordingly.
  • Cover All Costs: To maintain profitability, ensure your prices cover materials, labor, overhead, and Etsy fees.
  • Reflect Product Quality: Set prices that reflect your products’ quality, craftsmanship, and uniqueness.

Understand Your Costs

Begin by accurately calculating the total costs involved in creating and selling your products. This includes materials, labor, overhead (like studio space and utilities), shipping supplies, and Etsy’s fees. Knowing your costs ensures that your pricing covers all expenses and contributes to a profit margin.

Analyze Market Pricing

Research market-based pricing of similar products on Etsy to understand what customers are willing to pay. Look at competitors who offer similar quality and product features. This market insight is crucial for setting competitive yet profitable prices.

Marmalead shows Etsy sellers exactly what their competitors charge for their products, helping them make an informed decision about their own Etsy listing prices.

Value Your Work

Consider the uniqueness and craftsmanship of your products. Pricing should reflect each item’s quality, effort, and creativity. Don’t undervalue your work just to compete on price; customers often seek out unique handmade items on Etsy and are willing to pay a premium for craftsmanship.

Implement Psychological Pricing

Psychological pricing strategies, such as setting prices slightly lower than a round number (e.g., $29.99 instead of $30), can make prices seem more attractive to buyers. This method can subtly encourage more sales without significantly impacting profit margins.

Regularly Review and Adjust Prices

The market and your business costs will evolve, so reviewing and adjusting your prices regularly is important. Seasonal changes, new materials, or increased skill levels can all justify price adjustments. By staying responsive to these changes, you can keep your shop competitive and profitable.

Educate Your Customers

Use your Etsy shop and product descriptions to educate customers about the value they receive. Explain the materials, techniques, and time invested in each product. Customers are more likely to appreciate and pay for items when they understand their value.

Test Price Changes

If uncertain about a new pricing strategy, test different prices for similar items to see what resonates best with your audience. Monitor changes in sales and customer feedback to find the optimal price point.

Mistake #4: Offering Poor Customer Service

Handmade Etsy seller sitting on her bed while contemplating a response to an upset customer.

Excellent customer service is a cornerstone of success on platforms like Etsy. It helps build a loyal customer base and enhance your shop’s reputation.

Here’s how to avoid the mistake of offering poor customer service:

  • Respond Promptly: Ensure timely responses to customer inquiries to enhance their shopping experience and demonstrate your commitment to excellent service.
  • Resolve Issues Efficiently: Have clear policies for handling complaints and returns, and approach every customer issue with a solution-oriented mindset to maintain customer satisfaction and trust.
  • Follow Up and Personalize: Follow up after sales to ensure customer satisfaction, and add personalized touches to your communications and packaging to create memorable experiences and encourage repeat business.

Respond Promptly to Customer Inquiries

Timely responses to customer queries are crucial. Buyers appreciate quick and thoughtful communication, which significantly enhances their shopping experience and your credibility. If possible, aim to respond to inquiries within 24 hours. Use Etsy’s automated response features to manage expectations when you are not immediately available.

Resolve Issues Efficiently

When issues arise, such as complaints or requests for returns, address them swiftly and professionally. Have clear policies in place for handling such situations, and be prepared to offer solutions that meet customer needs while protecting your business interests. Transparency and willingness to resolve issues can turn a potentially negative situation into a positive experience, fostering customer loyalty.

Marmalead uses AI to analyze customer reviews from existing Etsy listings, helping you determine what customers value about products like yours.

Follow Up After Sales

After purchase, follow up with your customers to ensure they are satisfied with their products. This can be a simple thank you message, a request for feedback, or support for any questions they might have about the product. Following up shows that you care about their experience beyond the sale, which can encourage repeat business and positive reviews.

Personalize Customer Interactions

Add a personal touch to your interactions. Personalized messages, packing slips, or even small freebies can make customers feel special and appreciated. This attention to detail can significantly differentiate your shop from others and build a strong emotional connection with your customers.

Encourage and Utilize Feedback

Encourage customers to leave reviews and use their feedback to improve your products and services. Positive reviews boost your credibility, while constructive criticism provides valuable insights into areas that may need improvement. Always thank customers for their feedback, regardless of its nature, to show that you value their input.

Mistake #5: Limiting Your Product Reach

Etsy seller trying on handmade coat for a social media video.

Expanding your product reach on Etsy is essential to maximizing your shop’s potential and attracting a broader audience. Limiting your reach can result in missed sales opportunities and decreased visibility among diverse customer groups.

Here’s how to enhance your product reach effectively:

  • Invest in Etsy Ads: Use Etsy’s advertising tools to increase the visibility of your listings. Start with a small budget, analyze performance, and adjust based on which ads drive more traffic and sales.
  • Participate in Etsy Promotions: Engage with Etsy’s seasonal promotions and sales events to gain additional exposure. These opportunities can attract a larger audience and lead to increased sales.
  • Use Social Media to Your Advantage: Promote your Etsy shop and listings on social media platforms. Utilize Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, and other channels to reach a broader audience and drive traffic to your Etsy shop.

Utilize Etsy Ads

Investing in Etsy Ads is a straightforward way to increase the visibility of your listings. These ads can help your products appear in more prominent positions within Etsy searches and on related product pages, reaching customers who are actively looking for items like yours. Set a budget that fits your financial capabilities and monitor ad performance to adjust strategies as needed.

Offer International Shipping

By offering international shipping, you open your products to a global market. Many Etsy buyers browse from around the world, and limiting shipping to your home country restricts your potential customer base. Ensure you understand the logistics, costs, and customs regulations involved in international shipping to provide a smooth experience for global customers.

Optimize for Mobile Users

With a significant portion of Etsy’s traffic coming from mobile devices, ensuring your listings are optimized for mobile users is crucial. This includes clear images, concise descriptions, and easy navigation. Mobile optimization can significantly enhance user experience, leading to increased engagement and potential sales.

Participate in Etsy Promotions and Events

Etsy often hosts promotions and events that can provide additional visibility for your shop. Participating in these can help you reach new customers and benefit from Etsy’s marketing efforts. Keep an eye on Etsy’s seller dashboard and community forums for upcoming opportunities.

Expand Your Product Line

Regularly updating and expanding your product line can attract repeat customers and appeal to new ones. Consider seasonal items, new trends, or complementary products that fit within your brand. This not only keeps your shop fresh and relevant but also increases the chances of cross-selling and upselling.

Mistake #6: Disregarding Etsy’s Policies

Handmade sellers reviewing Etsy's policies before they begin selling products on the Etsy marketplace.

Adhering to Etsy’s policies is mandatory and a key factor in maintaining your shop’s integrity and trustworthiness. Disregarding these rules can lead to serious consequences, including listing deactivation or even shop suspension.

Here’s how to ensure compliance and avoid common pitfalls:

  • Know Etsy’s Selling Policies: Regularly review Etsy’s rules and guidelines to stay updated and ensure your shop remains compliant.
  • Ensure Accurate Listings: Double-check that your product descriptions, materials, and categorizations are accurate and transparent to avoid misleading customers.
  • Practice Honesty and Fairness: Engage in ethical selling practices, avoiding any form of deceptive behavior that could jeopardize your shop’s standing on Etsy.

Understand Etsy’s Selling Policies

First and foremost, familiarize yourself with Etsy’s extensive list of selling policies. This includes rules about what can and cannot be sold, how items should be listed, and the proper conduct for sellers. Regularly reviewing Etsy’s policy updates is crucial as the platform frequently adjusts its guidelines to reflect new standards or legal requirements.

Maintain Accurate Listings

Ensure that each of your listings complies with Etsy’s policies on item descriptions, materials used, and product categorization. Misrepresenting items, whether intentionally or by oversight, can lead to listing removals. Be thorough and transparent in your product descriptions to foster trust and avoid policy violations.

Handmade seller updating his Etsy listing product description to accurately reflect his product.

Respect Intellectual Property

Etsy strongly emphasizes intellectual property rights. Avoid using copyrighted materials, designs, or trademarks without proper authorization or licensing. This includes artwork, text, and even certain product designs that could infringe on another’s intellectual property.

Manage Transactions Properly

Follow Etsy’s guidelines for handling transactions through its platform, including payment processing and dispute resolution. Use Etsy’s built-in tools for payments and communication to ensure that all interactions are secure and documented, safeguarding both you and your customers.

Engage in Fair and Honest Practices

Engage only in fair, honest, and non-deceptive practices when dealing with customers and competitors. This includes adhering to Etsy’s policies on review manipulation, shill bidding, or any other form of dishonest behavior that could compromise the marketplace’s integrity.

Final thoughts

We hope that whether you’re a new or seasoned seller, these tips were helpful for you and your shop! Are there any suggestions in this article that you will be taking action in your own shop? Or are there any tips we didn’t cover that you’d like to hear us tackle in the future? Drop us a comment below and let us know!

Happy selling, everyone!

Grow your online business, develop your SEO, and launch your sales into the stratosphere.

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8 replies on “6 Things To Never Do With Your Etsy Listing”

It was really helpful, thank you!!. I have a question. I am preparing my Etsy shop and by mistake 3 listings are on and my shop is not ready yet. All my shop is in a draft mode as I want to be totally ready to go before I upload it. What do you think Is the best do with these 3 listings?

Good information. However, I have one query, I am selling downloadable art for transfer to any medium the buyer wants. How can I have multiple images for the same piece of art?

Hey Brian — great question! Is your product’s end-use online only, or do customers typically print your art on their own items? Stickers? Cups? Canvas? Think about the many ways your customers end up using your art downloads, then incorporate some of those ideal use cases in your listing photos. For digital art used as a desktop background, you could have a listing photo of a trendy desk setup with your art displayed on the monitor. For art meant to be printed on a canvas, create some listing photos showing your art hung on the wall. If you’ve already identified your target audience, try to incorporate additional elements into your photos that align with your buyer’s greater interests.

We hope this helps! Good luck!

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