Panic Over Etsy: October Announcements

Posted by on Oct 28, 2016 in Copywriting | 6 comments

Panic Over Etsy:  October Announcements

This has been a really interesting couple of weeks. People are panicking. My clients are commenting like crazy in my Facebook group COPYWRITING FOR CREATIVES and most of them have a similar tone: Fear. I’d say it’s fear with a dash of hopelessness. Here’s the thing you guys: Nothing has changed yet.

Etsy has not changed ANYTHING about their algorithm.

So over the last month or so we have all noticed dips and peaks in our views that just didn’t seem to make sense. Etsy acknowledged they were working on some testing behind the scenes and earlier this week they published a statement stating exactly what that was.

Pricing filters.

They were randomly evaluating how customers responded to a pricing filter set in $25 increments.

They are NOT launching pricing filters at this time.

They stated that while it was positively received by the test groups, they understand the holiday season is our, and by extension their, biggest time so they would be absolutely bonkers to go ahead with any algorithm changes the month before. The pricing filters will likely be implemented after the holidays though no definitive date was set.

If you would like to read the full statement you may do so here:


I personally think pricing filters are a great concept. Amazon has been doing it for years and customers really respond well to being able to price out their gifts and needs. Consider how great it will be for you to strategically price your items more competitively?

To that end, I want to challenge you to switch over to the 0.99 cent pricing module when it is easy for you. If you have an item marked at $25, for example, drop it down to $24.99.

Again, you don’t need to do this now as nothing has changed but it is a good practice and one I’ve advocated for years.

Now here’s where the real panic came into play. On October 27th they hosted a Q&A with the Etsy Admins answering the most common questions about SEO. You can read about that here:


I’m going to break down the three biggest areas of frustration and confusion you so that you don’t need to panic.

How should I structure my title?

You should still be using as close to the 140-character limit separated by your punctuation of choice.

I recommend the DASH METHOD.

It is NOT keyword stuffing if you use all the space in your title.

They stated that they would consider changing over to the Google Best Practices standard which are shorter, spoken word titles but that is NOT happening now and no date has been set for a change.

Does Etsy read descriptions?


Etsy does not read descriptions. This has not changed.

Google does.

Continue writing your descriptions as we have previously discussed. Do not write the title or tags in a big chunk within the description text because that is keyword stuffing.

Can I repeat words in my title?


You an absolutely repeat words in a title; Etsy is NOT penalizing you for that. What the Admins said that confused people was that you shouldn’t repeat the same words in the same section.

Bad Title: Dangle Earring – Purple Earring – Purple Earring – Dangle Earring

Good Title: Dangle Earring – Purple Earring – Purple Dangle Earring

See the difference?

There were a lot of questions in that thread. People were not very happy with how cryptic it all was and I completely understand. The bottom line is that nothing has changed yet.

If you are a seller on Etsy, you are at their mercy. This is not new. This is precisely why I advocate for having your own website. Now I know I barely touched the tip of the iceberg on this post so I am happy to take questions in the comments below.

Remember: You are going to be OK.


  1. 10-29-2016

    THANK YOU for this. Much appreciated!!!

  2. 10-29-2016

    Great write up. Very specific, thanks!

  3. 10-29-2016

    Thank you!!!

  4. 10-29-2016

    Very useful, thanks!

  5. 10-28-2016

    Thank you for bottom lining this for us! Very helpful…

  6. 10-28-2016

    Great info. Thank you from Boo-Bear Wares asked in Scotland.

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