With a Twist

Does Your Listing Price Affect Etsy’s Algorithm?

Your listing price can make or break a potential sale – but does price affect Etsy’s algorithm? If you price your products too high, how will the algorithm react? Or if your products are priced too low, will the algorithm show your listings to more shoppers? Let’s take a look!

Lisa and Jade are back with another episode of With A Twist! And today on the show, we’re answering a question submitted by one of our viewers: Will changing the price of your listing affect Etsy’s algorithm?

will changing my listing price affect etsy's algorithm?

That’s a great question! With shipping prices increasing, supply costs going up, and Etsy’s recent transaction fee increase, you might decide it’s time to raise your listing prices. But what about all your hard work optimizing your listings? If you increase your prices, won’t Etsy’s algorithm penalize your listings? Well, not quite.

But let’s grab a cocktail and find out how!

Etsy’s algorithm with a side of tequila

Today on the show, Lisa and Jade are enjoying their favorite spirit with a Texas twist. Watch the episode linked at the top of the article to find out what they’re drinking. Or keep reading to get to the bottom of this week’s question.

close up of tropical paloma drink

Will changing your listing price affect Etsy’s algorithm?

This week’s question was submitted by Heather Stenlake. Heather asks:

“Will changing the price affect the listing? Especially if it’s your best performer?”

First, we want to say thank you to Heather for submitting this question. We wouldn’t have a show without your questions, so keep them coming! And if you want us to answer any of your questions, post them down in the comments below 😁

Now, back to the question at hand.

So, we’re going to assume that you’re asking if changing the price of your listing is going to affect the way Etsy’s algorithm places that listing in search.

And the simple answer to that question is, no. Not technically.

That’s because there’s no evidence that Etsy’s algorithm will boost or throttle your listing based on its price. So if you’re considering a price increase but you’re hesitant that your listings will stop performing well in search… then it’s time to leave those fears at the door and raise your prices.

However, it’s not exactly that simple. So let’s elaborate on this question a bit.

Update your Etsy prices without harming your conversion rate

Before you go ahead and bump your prices up by 5%, or 10%, or whatever — make sure you’re raising your prices the right way. If you don’t, you’ll run the risk of hurting your conversion rate. And this will lead to a negative effect on Etsy’s algorithm toward your listings. And nobody wants that.

How your listing price indirectly affects Etsy’s algorithm

does price affect etsy's algorithm - woman typing on computer in pink room

Here’s why raising your prices won’t technically harm your listings according to the algorithm.

So your listing price is, for all intents and purposes, the baseline for your product’s public perception. And what we mean by that is that shoppers are going to be comparing your listings to a bunch of other listings that appear in front of them in their search results.

So with each product that they browse through, they’re probably going to come across different materials, colors, sizes, etc. But the major constant variable for each product is going to be its price.

For a large percentage of shoppers, your listing price will be where their eyes go first. That’s because the price of your product is what sets a shopper’s expectation from the very start. Once they know your price, they’re going to make their own assumptions as to the quality (or lack thereof) of your listing. And they’ll browse through your listing, expecting to confirm those assumptions. If their expectations aren’t met (or they aren’t “wowed” by anything else), then they’ll bounce.

What Etsy shoppers are willing to spend

does price affect etsy's algorithm - person counting money at desk over laptop and spreadsheets

It’s important to remember that all shoppers typically have a range in mind for what they want to spend. And (usually) they have no intentions of deviating from that range. So if they’re looking for a midrange product only, then it’s doubtful that they’ll dip their toes into the premium market range.

In other words, while your listing price does not directly affect the algorithm, it does indirectly affect it. It does this through the way shoppers interact with your product. Which again, can have a big impact on Etsy’s algorithm.

How your conversion rate affects Etsy’s algorithm

For instance, if you sell a premium product that’s at the top of the price range for your market, then you will have fewer conversions than some of your lower-priced competitors. That’s because, if you draw shoppers into your listing page, they like what they see and poke around for a bit. But then when they go and check out your price and it’s too high for what you’re offering, they’re likely going to leave without making a purchase.

does price affect etsy's algorithm - coffee cups with percent symbol stamped on the side

This small hit to your conversion rate will have a slight effect on your listing performance. Once or twice is nothing major. But if it becomes a pattern, then you’ll need to make some serious changes on your end.

So either you can do that by lowering your price to better fit in with your market or by dressing up the other parts of your listing. So your photos, descriptions, etc. This way, you’ll prove to shoppers that your premium product is actually worth the premium price tag that you’re charging.

How your shipping price affects Etsy’s algorithm

Now that we’ve established that your listing price doesn’t necessarily affect the way Etsy’s algorithm places it in search, let’s talk about your shipping prices.

So your shipping price actually does affect Etsy’s algorithm. And this is something that Etsy has clearly stated will affect your listing in search results. The way this works is by offering free shipping or by offering Etsy’s free shipping guarantee for all of your listings.

So, if you have either of these set up for your shop, then Etsy will give you the free shipping badge for your listings in search. And again, Etsy has said that those listings are going to get a bump in search. Now we’ve heard and seen through our own research that this bump isn’t massive. But it’s a slight advantage nonetheless.

So if you have items where free shipping makes sense, this may be something worth looking into. Are most sellers in your niche offering free shipping and you’re not? If so, you may want to consider adjusting your prices to offer free shipping for your listings.

Free shipping doesn’t make sense for everyone

fragile shipping box on warehouse shelf

But remember, if free shipping doesn’t make sense for you and your shop, you could lose money by offering it. Our viewpoint is that not offering free shipping probably isn’t going to kill your shop (especially if it just isn’t feasible for your pricing structure).

Here’s one last thing to keep in mind in regard to shipping. The shipping options in your Etsy shop dashboard are toggle on and toggle off. Not listing by listing. So if you toggle on that option of free shipping on your dashboard, it means that you’re offering it across all of your listings. So that’s just something to be aware of.

Over to you

There you have it. Etsy’s algorithm will not harm your listings based on their price, so long as your listing price does not negatively affect your conversion rate.

For more help with your Etsy shop, or if you want to see your questions featured on a future episode of With A Twist, drop your Etsy questions down in the comments below! And don’t forget to let us know what drink should we try next time.

Happy selling!

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4 replies on “Does Your Listing Price Affect Etsy’s Algorithm?”

After nearly 14 years of selling on Etsy and making ALL KINDS of changes over the years including changing prices, titles, key words, descriptions, number of pictures, shipping costs, free shipping, etc……i have come to the conclusion that NOTHING a seller does short of something VERY DRASTIC has hardly ANY effect on Etsys’ algorithm and where ones’ listings are placed. I just have NOT seen where any of it makes all that much difference of any significance.

Hi David, thanks for reaching out! It’s true that Etsy is continually evolving. But it’s important to know this is going to be true with almost every eCommerce platform because they all rely on algorithms that will grow and change over time.

Another important thing to keep in mind is that the seller cannot change the algorithm. Instead, the seller should work to create tags and titles that are easily recognizable by both the customer and the algorithm. From there, pictures, pricing, descriptions, etc… are carefully crafted by the seller to draw the customer in once the shopper has found you in their search results.

And finally, it’s no longer possible to check your progress by looking at your rank and page number. As Etsy has leaned harder into their AI-based algorithm, they’ve started using what’s called CSR or contextualized search results. Because of this, it’s no longer possible to give you an accurate ranking or page number because CSR means that Etsy is looking at each shopper’s customer profile and presenting listings to them based on that profile including data points like location, time of day, and personal search and purchase history. So while you might be ranking for a word with one customer, you might not be with another. Etsy is working to bring shoppers who are primed for your product to your doorstep, and currently, they’re using CSR to make that happen.

Now, the way to know if a keyword is working is to check for it showing up in your shop stats. If it is, then you’re successfully showing up for it. The good news is that CSR doesn’t change much about how you use Marmalead. The goal remains that you’re looking for keywords that are a great fit and bring in the sales. It just means that you’ll be checking the performance of those words through your shop states instead of by rank.

Hope this info helps put the algorithm into perspective a bit!

Hi, Ann! The only people who know exactly how Etsy’s algorithm works is Etsy. And the exact details of how it works is kept close to their chest. They do however give sellers a ton of useful information in the Etsy Seller Handbook, which allows all sellers a glimpse into the ins and outs of their algorithm. Our advice comes from our experience and from the experiments and successes from the Etsy community.

In terms of the keyword analytics and listing insights we offer in Marmalead, we’ve worked hand in hand with Etsy to makes sure our tools are in direct alignment with their advice.

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