Etsy Jam

Comparing Similar Etsy Tags | Episode 2

Would you rather be a millionaire stranded on a deserted island? Or make a modest living surrounded by friends and family? Well, today on the Jam we’re comparing similar Etsy tags to help you understand our mindset when it comes to Etsy SEO. Are you ready for another episode of everyone’s second-favorite SEO game, “Would You Rather?” Then stick around! 

A game show for Etsy tags

Today we’re playing another fun Etsy SEO game of “Would You Rather?” In this game, we compare and contrast similar Etsy tags. We’ll talk about the qualities of each to see which one we would pick if we only had one tag spot left for our Etsy listings. So without further ado, let’s jump into it! 

Etsy Tags: Voodoo Doll vs. Creepy Doll

Etsy tags comparison: voodoo doll vs. creepy doll screenshot in Marmalead

Gordon: Our first two Etsy tags that we’re comparing are ‘Voodoo Doll’ and ‘Creepy Doll.’ Neither of these are long tail keywords. Voodoo Doll has about 856 searches, while Creepy Doll has 709. Engagement for Voodoo Doll is about 1,300 and for Creepy Doll, it is 3,500. Now, in competition, there’s an even bigger difference, which is the biggest difference between these two Etsy keywords. We’ve got about 8,500 for Voodoo Doll and we’re looking at 17,000 for Creepy Doll. As you look at these numbers Richie, what are your thoughts on these two? 

Richie’s thoughts on Voodoo Doll vs. Creepy Doll

Richie: Well, the engagement of Creepy Doll definitely gets me more excited because people are at a much higher rate. I mean the searches are lower for Creepy Doll by a little bit, but the engagement is 3x higher. So even with the lower searches, it’s still getting a lot more engagement. People are definitely engaged in shopping around Creepy Doll, so that gets me pretty excited right there.

Gordon’s thoughts on Voodoo Doll vs. Creepy Doll

Gordon: Yeah, that’s a great point! And I think in some cases (and this is probably one of them) it’s OK to use an Etsy tag that has fewer searches when the engagement is that much higher. We talk about the ratio between searches and engagement, where the more engagement it has versus the number of searches, the more interest shoppers have, the more of a sign that people are really poking around. It means that they’re clicking a lot of listings after they do a search for that keyword. 

That’s a good thing. That’s a shopper who is close to making a purchase.

As opposed to someone who searches for something very generic and then immediately searches for another search term after that. Why? Because they realize they need to be more specific in order to find what they’re truly looking for.

What about the competition for these Etsy tags?

Richie: Gordon, how do you feel about the competition though? That’s one thing, neither competition is really high, right? So Voodoo Doll has 8,600. Creepy Doll has 17,017.

17,000 is not bad competition. I mean, it’s still in that green zone, so I’m not sure that that really sways me one way or the other.

Gordon’s thoughts

Gordon: Yeah, I would agree with that. When you start to get up around 30,000 or so, things start to turn yellow and orange for competition. Maybe if you’re a newer shop that’s getting started and you don’t have a lot of keyword clout built up or you really don’t want to run ads to try to help boost yourself for those more competitive keywords, that might be the area where I start to get a little more worried about that. But like you said, Richie, competition is still green here.  

It’s a bummer that it’s a little bit higher than it is for Voodoo Doll. Ideally, it would be lower around 8,000 or 5,000, right? You want something there. 17,000 is a little high, but, at this point, I completely agree it wouldn’t be high enough to scare me away from using this as one of my last Etsy tags.

Using the right Etsy tags for your products

Gordon: One thing you must consider when you’re picking Etsy keywords for your listing tags is this: does your product fit in? Even if the numbers work out for you, if you do a search on Marmalead for a keyword and we return those sample images of the listings that come back from Etsy for that keyword and you look at those and your listing doesn’t really fit in at all, that’s not good. 

Let’s say I do a Creepy Doll search in Marmalead and all of the images that come back are those dolls from horror movies. Looking at the results, I might think Creepy Doll isn’t actually a good fit for me, because what I actually have are Voodoo Dolls.

Make sure your Etsy tags are a good fit

Gordon: You always have to do that check and make sure that your listing is showing up around other Etsy products that someone doing a search is expecting to see. It could be if someone is doing a Creepy Doll search, they’re not expecting to see Voodoo Dolls. They’re expecting to see those creepy dolls in horror movies that blink their eyes and have scratches and dents and are missing hair. Even if similar Etsy tags look “better” if it’s not the right fit for your product, it will not do better on your Etsy listing. You want to make sure that you’re using the best keywords that are the best fit for your actual Etsy listing.

Etsy tags with great grades, but bad performance

This also shows how it would be possible to have an A-grade on a listing in Marmalead, yet that listing is not performing for you. You may have picked keywords by the numbers that are fantastic. You have an A on the listing because you’ve picked good Etsy keywords, but in reality, they’re not good keywords for your listing because they don’t fit it very well.

Etsy Tags: Lawn Ornament vs. Lawn Figurine

Etsy tags comparison: lawn ornament vs. lawn figurine screenshot in Marmalead

Gordon: Alright, so next up we have ‘Lawn Ornament’ and ‘Lawn Figurine.’ Now, Lawn Ornament is not a long tail keyword while Lawn Figurine is. Lawn Ornament has about 111 searches and we’re looking at less than 25 for Lawn Figurine. Engagement on Lawn Figurine is also less than 25, but engagement for Lawn Ornament is less than 25 as well. So they’re in the same ballpark there for engagement. Competition-wise we’re looking at about 1,500 for Lawn Figurine and we’re looking at about 8,000 for Lawn Ornaments. So what are your thoughts looking at these, Richie?

Richie’s thoughts on Lawn Ornament vs. Lawn Figurine

Richie: Well, I’m not picking up a lot of pulse on Lawn Figurine. So I’m a little bit worried about that one, even though it’s a long tail with less than 25 searches, less than 25 engagement, and competition of 1,500, it doesn’t seem real active. But am I going to stay away from it completely? Probably not. I might, toss my hat in the ring there and see what happens.

But between these two (which is the real question) I am thinking Lawn Ornament because there is more competition in this case. The reason I like more competition is it’s showing me that other people are like-minded and there’s something there. This market has somewhat of a pulse. Also because there are searches (there are 111 searches). So now that we’ve broken out of that “less than 25,” to me it wins over and above Lawn Figurine. 

Gordon’s thoughts on Lawn Ornament vs. Lawn Figurine

Gordon: Yeah, I think one of the things to remember on this one (exactly like you started with) was the lack of engagement. That’s a big concern, and especially when you consider based on the past performance of this keyword, we’re projecting that it’s going to get less than 25 clicks in the next 30 days. 

When you stop and think about that, how many listings come back when you do a search on Etsy? Including ads, you’re looking at 40 to 50 listings that are coming back. What are the chances that you’re one of those 50 is going to be clicked? And if there are only 25 clicks spread across mostly that 50, you know sometimes people go to the second page and you might want to consider the next 100 or so listings. But most people click something on the first page of results that comes back. 

Keep searching for better Etsy tags

Gordon: Now, the chances aren’t great that you’re actually going to get a visit for either one of these Etsy keywords. In my mind (if it were me) I would keep looking for Etsy tags and see what my other choices are at this point. Because I’m just looking at that engagement of being less than 25 and thinking if I was the only result coming back and I got 25 clicks a month, yeah, you know that’s OK. It’s still probably not enough to convert because the average conversion rate’s 1%. So you’re looking at one sale for every hundred clicks on average, right? And that’s going to take me 4 months at best to get there. I would probably keep looking for keywords if I was trying to pick between these two. 

Etsy Tags: Wedding Bouquet vs. Bridal Bouquet

Etsy tags comparison: wedding bouquet vs. bridal bouquet screenshot in Marmalead

Gordon: All right, so next up we have ‘Wedding Bouquet’ and ‘Bridal Bouquet.’ Neither one of these is a long tail keyword. Wedding Bouquet has about 1,700 searches and bridal bouquet is about 1,200. Wedding Bouquet has just over 4,000 engagement and Bridal Bouquet has about 3,500 and they both have over 50,000 competition. 

So we’re looking at two pretty big marketspaces here. Given the fact that there is a significant amount of competition for both of these keywords and neither one of them is long tail. What are your thoughts, Richie?

Richie’s thoughts on Wedding Bouquet vs. Bridal Bouquet

Richie: Just by the numbers (since neither one is long tail) for searches and engagement, Wedding Bouquet beats out Bridal Bouquet. The rest of it is going to be comparable, right? Neither are long tail, both have competition over 50,000. So I would go with the one with more searches and more engagement. I’d go with Wedding Bouquet. 

Gordon: Again here I’m going to try to bend the rules a little bit. But yeah, if we’re going by the rules that we’ve always talked about, and you have to pick one of these two, I would go with Wedding Bouquet. After all, in this scenario, I only have one slot left for my Etsy tags. 

Gordon’s thoughts on Wedding Bouquet vs. Bridal Bouquet

Gordon: But there’s something to keep in mind with a keyword like this where, yes, there’s like a 400 point difference between searches and there’s a 500 point difference between engagements for these two Etsy keywords. I mean they’re big numbers. You’re looking in the thousands and you know 4,000 versus 3,500, it’s really not that different between those two. You’re also looking at 1,700 and 1,300 for searches.  

You know, these two keywords are very similar to one another, which kind of makes this harder to pick between them in my mind. Neither one is long tail, they both have massive competition, and the searches and engagement are roughly the same. But also the ratio between the two is roughly the same too. So in a situation like this, we just want to highlight that you don’t want to get caught up in the weeds.

Don’t get too caught up in the numbers with Etsy tags

Gordon: If you’re looking between two potential Etsy tags and one has 10 more searches than the other one, is that number enough to make a difference? A big enough difference to really make you think that one keyword is a whole lot better than the other one? It shouldn’t.

As the numbers get larger the percentages get narrower as things increase and so don’t get too caught up in the numbers game when you’re trying to make sense out of very similar Etsy keywords. Keep in mind that 3,500 and 3,000 are effectively the same number when you get to this level of engagement on keywords.

What you SHOULD do for your Etsy tags

Richie: The third option is that you’re going to throw these into search in Marmalead, look for long tail alternatives and then pick the best between the long tails. Right? 

Gordon: I would! I mean I would really hesitate to use an Etsy tag like these unless I really feel like I can’t niche down(which is almost always possible). Or if I was running ads, and I was like “look, this has a really good ratio of engagement to searches and I like that. And it also has nice high numbers for engagement in searches. I’m going to ignore the fact that it’s not long tail because I have other long tail keywords on my listings and I’m comfortable with those.”

Competition is massive, but if I’m running ads, maybe that’ll give me a leg up and I can get in front of some of that competition that’s otherwise going to probably spoil these keywords for me. I would probably keep looking in this situation to try to find something different. 

I think this is another good opportunity to highlight the importance of looking for long tail alternatives. To me, when I look at these, even though there’s a little difference there, the numbers are effectively the same. These are the same level of interest for me, based on how the numbers are turning out. 

Etsy Tags: Vintage Camera vs. Film Camera

Etsy tags comparison: vintage camera vs. film camera screenshot in Marmalead

Gordon: This is the last one we have, ‘Vintage Camera’ and ‘Film Camera.’ Now again, neither one of these keywords is long tail. Someone searching for either one of these is probably looking for the same thing. Whereas, when we were talking about Voodoo Doll and Creepy Doll, someone searching for one of those might have different intentions behind them.  
But clearly, we have a hipster here who has shrugged off the digital age of cameras and forget mirrorless, right? We’re looking for vintage or film stuff because that’s how we roll! And we probably want black and white. 

So neither one of these keywords is long tail. Searches for Vintage Camera is slightly lower than Film Camera, we’re looking at 762 versus 807. For engagement here, massive difference between these two. Vintage Camera only has 350 engagement, while Film Camera has 1,669 engagement which is huge. The competition for Vintage Camera is over 50,000, while the competition for Film Camera is 28,127. 

So some key differences there. While searches are roughly the same there’s a little difference there, (but kind of the same number) and a big difference in engagement and competition. What are you thinking here, Richie? 

Richie’s thoughts on Vintage Camera vs. Film Camera

Richie: I am thinking Film Camera because the engagement is so much larger and the competition is half. And it seems more specific, as you pointed out. Even though it’s not long tail, vintage can be other things. Whereas with Film Camera, you are getting a little bit more narrowed in your choice. So it’s on the road to a long tail is what I’m thinking. 

Gordon’s thoughts on Vintage Camera vs. Film Camera

Gordon: Yeah 100%, I’m in agreement with you there. When I look at these it’s almost a no-brainer. Film Camera, obviously. Especially when you consider the relationship between searches and engagement too. With Vintage Camera, you’ve got about half the engagement in number of searches.

If they were exactly the same, then every time someone did a search for Vintage Camera, they would only click one listing on average (some people, maybe more, some people less). But in this case, you’re looking at 50% of the time people aren’t even clicking anything. They’re just doing another search for something else because they aren’t happy with what they’re seeing.

A red flag for Etsy tags

Gordon: To me, it’s a red flag that those searching Vintage Camera aren’t people who are in a purchase state of mind. These are people who are at the very beginning of their search on Etsy trying to find something. And yes, you can land those sales sometimes. But more often than not, you’re going to be finding people when they’re toward the end of their search. Even if they see something that they like at the beginning, they’re going to assume that if they are more specific with their searches, that same thing should keep showing up for them.  

I want to compare this thing over here against all of the other things like it, so I’m going to alter my search so that I’m more specific for this thing there. Now I’m looking at a bigger pool of things to pick from versus that one thing out of the first fifty that came back that seemed to match what I had in my mind.

Not the same day

Richie: Keep in mind, all this might not have been going on on the same day or on the same search session on Etsy. You could start with Vintage Camera, you can start with Film Camera, and then look around. You might like something but not actually buy something. If you’re like me and you have fifty browser tabs open, eventually they get closed just out of necessity. 

You’ve lost that thing you like, and then you go back and you pick up your search, but you’re now a little bit more specific from what you learned. But you may never find that specific listing in that specific shop again. 

That’s why you want to make sure as an Etsy seller that you’re geared towards those long tails, so that when someone is in the purchasing stage, they’re finding you.

Final thoughts

Well, there you guys go! There’s a handful of Etsy tags we compared on “Would You Rather?” We hope you guys enjoyed this episode of our second-favorite Etsy SEO game! Let us know in the comments if you agree about our decisions, or what similar Etsy keywords you would pick for your listings.
Happy selling, everyone!

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