How to write a title on Etsy
Tips to help you get found and ways to ensure you have correctly used SEO within your listings.
When you add a listing on Etsy, you must also write a listing title for each item. Knowing the best way to write a title on Etsy is essential if you want to be found in search and sell your items frequently. Your Etsy title must do most of the heavy lifting when it comes to getting to page 1 in search.
Etsy uses the title to tell the algorithm what your item is and more about the item. So you must not waste this valuable space.
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Let’s look at the best way to write your Etsy titles.
So what is an Etsy item title and when can I find it?
The title of the item can be found on any listing – you can’t put an item for sale without one.
Why is the title of your time so important? – how does Etsy use your item titles?
Etsy uses a combination of your title, tags and item categories to determine what your item is. The words and phrases you use in your title are crucial to getting the Etsy algorithm to put your item ahead of a similar item.
As titles are read by buyers when they search for an item to buy, make them as simple and easy to understand as possible.
When I log in to Etsy, I usually start at the etsy.com page which gives me a nice long list of picks for you, recently viewed, favourited. So does that mean titles are becoming less relevant?
I don’t think so.
If you do a little exercise yourself, simply type in the search bar the item you are looking for, and you will see from the results the title is shown. But only the first few words.
More on that later –
What should I include in my item title?
If you are stuck on what word to use in your title – think a few basic thoughts and explain in ordinary everyday language what your item is. What it can be used for – and how you can use it.
Try not to overcomplicate this. Don’t use strange words, only everyday words. Remember this is about getting found on Etsy – it is not about giving your item a fancy name your Auntie suggested.
Keep it as simple and straight forward as possible.
You can, of course, use Etsy search to find suggestions on what to use in your title. Be aware that suggestions from Etsy are only what has been searched for recently – and not necessarily what is searched for the most.
Remember to use – Plain everyday words—nothing you made up yourself.
If you are selling a school planner – then list it as a school planner, Homeschool planner, Teacher planner for 5yr olds.
So use natural language and don’t overcomplicate it.
If your item has a title – for example you created a Dolly called Sarah Dolly. Don’t use this in your titles. No one is searching for Sarah Dolly.
How long should my Etsy title be?
Etsy titles have the space for 140 characters. Some people use all of this space and some only use half. I would say – go with longer if it’s appropriate. So more than 100 characters if you can.
Doesn’t mean you should pack your titles with words, just leave in the most relevant and appropriate.
Don’t worry if you haven’t been doing any of this – Etsy is easy to get wrong when you first start out.
How should I break up my title?
Ok – some people use commas (that’s me) – some people use | – (straight line), others use a mix of – or even nothing at all.
I like commas as I can write the title of my item and then copy it to the tags section and press return and auto-populate the tags. You then need to remove all the non-appropriate words such as – like, and, with etc.
The main thing is that the title needs to be readable by a human.
I’ve used a mix of ideas in my shop.
Use both upper and lower case, helping the buyer quickly determine the main words and can highlight you want them to read easily.
household planner printable home management binder home binder planner inserts organiser
Does not read the same as:
Household Planner Printable, Home Management Binder, Home Binder, Planner inserts, Home Organiser
If you don’t read this whole post – then just read this bit and remember it well.
The front of your title is the best place to have your Keywords for your item. There is little point putting main keywords at the end, or even in the middle of your title.
Etsy places a lot of emphasis on the first three or four words in your title. If these say precisely what it is – you will get found with those. Find out more about SEO on Etsy
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I looked at a shop the other day for someone, and she had over 100 items and only six sales. When I looked at the titles she was using, I could find her using only those first three words.
Remember if you are a new shop – but conscious in using major high volume keywords at the beginning of your title. If you search that keyword and over 200,000 have that keyword at the beginning of their title. You might end up on page 17.
However – do take a chance.
New shop owners can find out more about getting started on Etsy
With excellent images and a few sales – there is no reason why you can’t compete.
What should I not include in my titles?
As I said before – don’t include any names personal to you. So if you have called your painting – Willow in the woods, don’t include this in your title. No one is searching for your painting name.
Have a glance through your item titles and see if you have used the names of your items in your title. Swap these out for more high-frequency words you would use.
A great way to get you started is to imagine you are searching on Google. What would you type in search if you wanted to find your item?
As Etsy has gone to great lengths to improve their categories – you also do not need to use any keyword which is also in your categories. Learn how to create a listing on Etsy
I also have quite a bit of work to do in this area – as the algorithm has changed since I created my listings. I still have in my listing title the keywords Digital Prints. But this is duplicated in the categories. So I should remove these words from all of my titles and tags and use the space for something more specific to the item I’m listing.
Should I use all keywords in my titles?
The short answer is no. You should take one listing and give that listing a long tail keyword which hopefully you are not using in other listings in your shop. Keep your titles specific but straightforward. Don’t be tempted to stuff your title with lots of keywords so the buyer can’t understand what it is.
A long-tail keyword consists of 3-4 words which describe your item. A short tail keyword is two words which are more general for your item.
Botanical Iris Flower print – is a long-tail keyword.
Art print – is a short tail keyword.
For example: Botanical printable flower painting printable digital watercolour print
For the buyer, this is going to be hard to read and understand what the item is.
Try this: Botanical Iris Flower print, Watercolor Flower Print, Print in Watercolor, (then follow with some general short tail keywords)Art Print, Blue Print
I would then go on to mention these long-tail keywords in the first few sentences in my listing description. Keep them natural with the reader in mind.
If you are not sure – what is essential in your keywords. Think of your item as a target. So the first words are target keywords.
Botanical Iris Flower print – (this is precisely what the item is)
Watercolor Flower print – (it’s still this, but not as specific)
Print in Watercolor – (even less specific)
You are starting very specific and working your way outwards – still describing the item but in a less targeted way.
(Very specific, Very specific, Very specific, Specific, specific, no so specific, general, general)
Should my Etsy tags match my titles?
Yes – I’d encourage you to write your tags based on your title. Etsy places more emphasis on tags which also appear in the title. In my guide to tags on Etsy, I go into more details about using tags for SEO.
So in this tags example :
Botanica Iris, Flower print, Iris watercolor, Botanical flower, watercolor flower, flower print, Botanical print, Iris print, watercolor print, etc. etc.
Notice I used the tags in the same order as I’ve written them in the title. I didn’t jump around. I kept them in that logical order.
Watercolor or Watercolour?
Using different spelling for words is fine on Etsy. The algorithm knows you mean watercolor, whether you spell it the English way or the US way.
Final thoughts on how to write a listing title on Etsy
How you should write an Etsy title – Do’s
- Start your titles with the best, most specific keywords at the beginning
- Keep your titles a good length and use all of the characters if suitable
- Make your title readable to the buyer
- Use plain simple everyday words and think like a buyer
- Break up your title using both upper and lower case characters
- Separate your title with commas as a natural reader may
Don’ts for your Etsy titles
- Don’t use the same titles over and over; each one should be unique
- Don’t repeat Categories in your title
- Don’t use a big list of tags, as the buyer won’t be able to read it
- Don’t use all of your best keywords in one title, keep these for other items, spread them across your shop
Once you have your items listed on Etsy, the next step will be to start an email list for your Etsy shop.
You can also read our complete guide to Etsy SEO.
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Thank you for this easy to understand article. I have had my Etsy shop for a number of years ( with a LONG vacation hold due to life disruption) and am back trying to make my shop the best it can be. This long tail, short tail thing is SO CONFUSING! I have read so many articles and come away scratching my head. Yours was very straightforward, and I wanted to thank you!
Thank you Sally
I am so happy you found it helpful.
Do let me know if you need more help
Thanks for all the messages
Thank you for the helpful information, every time i read your articles i found something new i should do
That’s great, I’m glad you found more information as well.
Some of the best information pertaining to Etsy Beginners. Wish I had found sooner, but it’s never too late. Thank you
Thank you. Let me know if you need more help, glad you enjoyed the article.
Hi. I think reusing the same words more than once in the title is a waste of space and time. I don’t have lots of sales but it just seems irrelevant to use the same words multiple times inside of the title.
Hello Denise, Thanks for reaching out.
Right now – Etsy will return results that match the buyer’s search terms. So if you place Woollen Hat in the title, it will return results for everything with either Woollen or Hat in the title or tags. However, those titles or tags which match the exact search term – eg Woollen Hat in that order together in either the title or tags would be placed higher in search than say for example Felt Hat or Woollen Beenie. Now, I would say this depends very much on the item and how your title is written and indeed how those words make a sentence structure. But the main thing is not to sound ‘spamy’ but ensure you’ve maximised exact keywords where possible. Once again, each case is different and a lot may depend on the strength of the competition on Etsy.
I hope that helps for now.
Thank you. I’ve been selling on Etsy for several years but still struggling with titles, SEO, etc. This has been one of the most helpful articles I’ve ever found. I know I speak for so many when I say, “We appreciate you.”
Thank you so much for saying that. I often wonder if I’ve made it easy for people and your comment is great. Thank you. Good luck with your shop, let me know if I can help.
Hi! What if you have a large number of the same types of listings. So, if I sell 20+ types of floral sherpa throw blankets, what’s the best way to avoid repeating those descriptions in the titles?
I think if you are selling 20 types of similar items, it’s ok to have say 80% of the description repeated. So you can just change the first 50-100 words.
The titles and tags shouldn’t be repeated. Whilst they are still a blanket for example – start the titles with new terms each time. Eg don’t show Baby blanket 20 times, use different terms. Newborn, child, nephew, grandchild, etc etc. mix them up.
For the tags, try to not use the same tags at all. No point in having 20 listings with the first 10 tags the same. Try to use the tags once in your shop. I know this is a challenge, but do some research and get a long list to work from.
Hope that helps
How do I edit a listing title?
Just log into your listings in your shop and press edit. Then overtype the title.