I wanted to streamline my listing process. So I researched and compiled all the info I found that I felt would help me make writing new listings go faster.
At the bottom of the page I linked the resources of the info (I may be missing a few as I forgot to bookmark all of them- I apologize).
This is format can be applied to any listing and is a basic layout. Feel free to copy, share, and print this to help you. As each of your listings have different needs and as Etsy changes the listing process with new attributes you should update and rearrange this format to suit your needs.
Here is the Listing Format I compiled:
Section 1. Who made it: I did
Section 2. Use: finished product
supply or tool
Section 3. When was it made:
Section 4. Categories:
Accessories: Apron Belt Case Charm Cozy Cuff Cuff Links Eyewear Gloves Hair Hat Keychain Lanyard Leg Warmers Men Mirror Mittens Money Clip Necktie Patch Pin Pinback Button Scarf Shawl Wallet Watch Women
Bags and Purses: Backpack Clutch Diaper Bag Hip Bag Laptop Messenger Novelty Pouch Purse Tote Wallet Wristlet
Bath and Beauty
Books and Zines
Ceramics and Pottery
Clothing: Children Corset Costume Dress Hoodie Jacket Lingerie Maternity Men Pants Plus Size Shawl Shirt Shoes Shorts Skirt Sleepwear Socks Sweater Sweatshirt Swimsuit Tank Tshirt Underwear Vest Women
Dolls and Miniatures
Holidays: Birthday Christmas Day of the Dead Easter Halloween Hanukkah New Years
Patriotic St Patricks Thanksgiving Valentine
Jewelry: Anklet Bracelet Brooch Earrings Necklace Pendant Piercing Ring
Music: Case Cd Equipment Instrument Mp3 Poster Strap Tape Video Vinyl
Plants and Edibles
Vintage: Accessories Antique Bags and Purses Book Clothing Collectibles Electronics Furniture Home Decor Housewares Jewelry Paper Ephemera Serving Supplies Toy
Woodworking: Accessories Bowl Box Burning Carving Clock Fretwork Furniture
Home Decor Housewares Inlay Jewelry Kitchen Miniature Office Outdoor sculpture Seasonal Sign Sport Supplies Toy
sub sub category:
Section 5. Photos
Section 6. Title
*three to seven words, first 3 most important
*describe what it is- item, color, size, material
*KISS: Keep It Simple Sweetie
*Remember there is a 140 character limit in the titles
Section 7. Description
“First of all, the best advice I can ever give to a seller: Describe your item like there are NO pictures at all, and take pictures like there is NO description at all. Then, when you put them together, you’ve got magic.” <– this is great advice!
Break Up Your Text. Use: bullets, stars, hearts, — === //// >>>>
“Just like a good therapist suggests, use “I” statements. Speaking in the first person will help you connect with your visitor on a personal level — and isn’t that what they are looking for when they come to shop on Etsy? Show a bit of your personality! Think of your item descriptions as you would when meeting a new friend: you want to be polite, but you also want to be your natural self.”
“Customize The Copy For Your Audience
Are you speaking to your target customer? Here’s the thing, if you sell jewelry and you believe your ideal target audience is women between the ages of 18-80, who live all over the world, are single or married, who have children or have none and who love or don’t love pets, you’ve got a major problem. You need to hone in on a smaller audience and use your words to speak JUST TO THEM. Sure, the 80 year old may not buy your stuff if you choose to tighten the age belt, but you’re much more likely to sell to all those 25 year olds who after reading your descriptions know just how perfect your products are for them.”
1. First couple of lines that Google shows with your item.
Should include 1-2 keywords (I’ll discuss keywords and SEO later).
Describe what the item is in more detail than the title did.
2. Features of the product
Benefits of the product – a short paragraph or a few sentences about how your product will make your customers look, feel, how it will help make their lives easier, why they should buy it right now, what makes your product special and unique, etc.
1. What is it?
Eg. necklace, jewelry, bowl, print
2. What is it specifically? What type?
Eg. Hoop (for earrings), v-neck (for sweaters), long sleeve (shirt)
3. Who is it for?
Eg. women, men, baby, children, boy, girl, adult, pets, dog, teachers
Who should buy it? or Who should NOT buy it? (Is it appropriate for pregnant women? Children? Pets?)
4. What is the main material?
Add the major material to your tags, if it is something you think a buyer might search for to find your item. Add minor materials or component materials to the “materials” box. Eg. leather, cotton, canvas, felt, metal, 14K gold, sterling silver, glass
5. What is the main color?
Buyers are not likely to look for minor colors in your piece, so stick to the main color(s) or important color combos! Eg. white, black, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple
Lively descriptions of the colors and materials can help make your creation pop off the screen and into a buyer’s brain. Whether your item sparkles and glows, or is subdued and sophisticated, helping the buyer imagine how it might appear in real life means they are one step closer to adding it to their cart. It can help foster excitement about what they are about to purchase.
6. What method or technique did you use to make it?
Eg. hammered (for metal jewelry), burned (for woodworking), appliqued, embroidered
7. Where will the item be used?
Eg. kitchen, hair, office, beach, garden, car, nursery
8. What size is it?
Eg. small, extra large, 7mm, 18in, 8 x 10
Will it fit me? (When I shop in a brick and mortar shop I might try on 12 things and find only 1 that fits well. I am taking a BIG chance on buying clothes online. Please make it easier for me by offering extensive measurement and sizing information. Don’t assume that your customer will know what you mean by “small” or “Large”)
example of size: “The size is SMALL, a 2 1/2 inch opening (6.15cm) diameter, and 7 1/2 inch circumference (19.05 cm)”
9. What style is it?
Eg. goth, victorian, hippie, punk, impressionist, post-modern, feminine, sophisticated, southwestern
10. What Imagery or motifs that are on the item?
Eg. owl, landscape, nature, plaid, geometric
11. Are there synonyms?
Use these if the word means exactly the same thing as the tag you already used, it is accurate for your item, and you think it will be an important search term that buyers will look for. Eg. Infant for young babies, handbag for purses and clutches, toddler for children 18 months – 3 years, kids for children, drink for coffee, trousers for pants.
12. What is the scent or flavor?
Eg. sweet, spicy, salty (for bath and beauty and food items).
13. Care instructions. Let your buyers know how they can keep your item clean, if necessary. If this is a clothing item or a purse, they will want to know. Can it be tossed in the washer or is it a dry-clean only item?
14. Weight. This can be helpful, and sometimes necessary. Are you selling gorgeous vintage
earrings that weigh a ton and can only be worn by people with strong ears? Are you selling a heavy
wool sweater? Let your buyer know.
15. Usage. How will the buyer use this item? If it’s a bracelet, how does it stay closed and how can you put it on? The same goes for anything, really. Describe the buttons, the clasps, the zippers, ear wires, etc. (Is it decorative? Does it have a function? Both?)
How does it work? (Does it slip over my head? Is there a clasp? Do I tie it around my waist?)
16. Feel. This is kind of subjective but I like to include this information when I can. Is something faceted or smooth? Is it soft, rough, textured, or silky? Lightweight, thick, comfortable? (Is that scarf soft to the touch? What’s the texture like? Is that necklace very heavy?)
17. Allergens. Make sure you include this information somewhere, whether it’s in your profile, your bio, your policies, or the listing itself. Does someone in your house smoke? If yes, this needs to be disclosed. Do you have pets? Lots of potential buyers are allergic and would need to know this. You never know when a stray hair can end up in a package. Do you include dryer sheets when shipping? You probably shouldn’t, but lots of sellers do, and this should be disclosed.
18. Do I get everything in the picture? (I see 12 items in your picture, do I get them all? Only one? Does that lovely bauble in the background come with it or is it just for display?)
Do your pictures include props that aren’t included in your sale, tell the buyer. An informed buyer is a happy buyer!
19. Is it ready to use? (Is that painting ready to hang? Do I need to frame it first?)
20. How does it arrive? (Is it gift wrapped? Is it ready to ship or is it made to order?)
21. Will I get the EXACT item in the photo? (Is it a stock photo or do I get the exact item?)
As a fewelry artist I think ppl expect me to have multiples of what I make. I actually only make 1-3 pairs of each earring design, so if you’re buying my earrings you get the exact pair in the picture! I should start mentioning that in my descriptions. Thanks!
22. Is it gonna stink? (Does that vintage item have a funky, musty odor? Does the seller smoke while he creates that item?)
23. How do I know it’s “vintage”? (What kind of research did you do to determine how old that item is? Is it marked? Is there a date on it? Are you experienced with vintage and antique items?)
24. What do those fancy terms mean? (Don’t take for granted that your customer knows what a cabochon is or what giclee or gocco means.) Include a link or a brief description of terminology that I think some buyers may not be familiar with such as Gold fill, cubic zirconia, etc
3. Tell a story
Another part of the joys of buying handmade is knowing a little bit about how you created your item. Did you use any special materials? Old buttons from your mom? Scraps from your dad’s necktie? A painting technique learned from a friend? Did you use basic materials in an unusual way? Expressing this is part of helping a buyer understand why your piece is so special.
· what inspired your creation of the item. Was it the colors of a beautiful sunset? Your own desire to find a functional but fashionable diaper bag? The lyrics from a song that brings you to tears?
· something funny/sad/touching that happened during your creation of the item. Did your child see your item and come up with a clever name for it? Did you create the item in memory of a loved one?
· what makes your creation process unique. Do you create your items on the rocky riverbed outside your back door while the children are at school? Use your great grandmother’s sewing machine passed down through the generations? Shy away from using tools that run on electricity or batteries?
· how you found the materials for the item. Do you find your materials while out on nature walks in the woods? Did you rescue them from the landfill? Repurpose them from a vintage treasure you found at a flea market?
· the historical reference or inspiration behind an item. Is your item influenced by the fashions of a famous starlet from the 40s? Are the words of a politician’s famous speech painted on your canvas?
It helps to give a small story about your product. Buyers like to hear why you made something, or how you came up with an idea. Try to think of two or three lines that cover this information.
Ask Them To Buy
Many savvy sellers online use a bold call to action with every sales page to get more customers converted. You can use that same mentality by simply ending your product descriptions with a phrase like “Click ADD TO CART and buy now” or “Buy this item today” to help on-the-fence buyers get that sense of urgency and want to get the product now.
4. Shipping, Policies, contact
Pretend they’ve never been to the site before and describe what to do when buying.
when will the product ship, what shipping method will you use, how much does it cost to ship and how long will it take, on average, to get to the customer
How do you ship items? (meaning, do you use USPS, UPS, FedEx, etc.) What does shipping cost? (Be sure you think about combined shipping for buyers who purchase more than one item.) For more info on shipping, please read: Streamlined Shipping Strategies and International Selling: Going Global Gracefully
What forms of payment will you take, and when is payment expected?
*Return policy – your return policy should be clearly spelled out for the customer (and you should definitely offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee)
What if it doesn’t fit? (Am I stuck with it? Will you exchange it? Who pays to ship it back?)
Where and when can buyers reach you?
* Most selling sites will include this information with each listing automatically. Once you get used to a particular site, you may not have to worry about this with each listing.
5. Back linking
If your shop or the item you’re writing about has been featured anywhere, like an Etsy front page, a treasury, in a magazine or on a blog, mention it. Press is one of those things that make people immediately think, ‘wow, this must be awesome’ so using it will only help your chances of making a sale.
Similar products – to increase your average order size (and to help you customers find other complementary products on your site), suggest other products that go well with the product on that page. When you carry products that compliment each other, like a matching set of jewelry pieces or similar layette items, be sure to include a link to that similar product in your description. If the potential buyer likes the first item, but not enough to buy it, they could click the other item and decide they like this item enough to buy it. You could also be lucky enough to score two sales if the buyer chooses both items during their shopping trip and since Etsy’s internal links pop out, you don’t have to worry about the user being redirected away from the original item for long.
Section 8. Shop Section
Section 9. —–Recipient
(only specify if it only for specific. if for everyone don’t choose)
Men, Women, Unisex Adults, Teen Boys, Teen Girls
Teens, Boys, Girls, Children, Baby Boys, Baby Girls
Babies, Birds, Cats, Dogs, Pets
Section 10. —–Occasion
(only specify if it only for specific. if for any don’t choose)
Anniversary, Baptism, Bar or Bat Mitzvah, Birthday
Canada Day, Chinese New Year, Cinco de Mayo, Confirmation, Christmas, Day of the Dead, Easter
Eid, Engagement, Father’s Day, Graduation, Halloween
Hanukkah, Housewarming, Kwanzaa, Prom, July 4th
Mother’s Day, New Baby, New Year’s, Quinceanera
Retirement, St. Patrick’s Day, Sweet 16, Thanksgiving, Valentine’s, Wedding
Section 11. —–Technique
(I have not seen this one yet)
If the item is handmade, technique is how you made the item. If the item is a commercial supply or vintage, technique is how the item was made. You can choose three techniques from the following list.
Amigurumi, Applique, Assembly, Beading, Collage
Crochet, Cross-stitch, Digital Illustration, Drawing
Dyeing, Embroidery, Etching, Felting, Gocco
Illustration, Knitting, Letterpress, Linocut, Lithograph, Metalworking
Monoprinting, Monotyping, Needlepoint, Mosaic, Painting, Papermaking, Press Molded, Quilting
Raku, Scrapbooking, Screen Printing, Sewing,
Slipcast, Spinning, Weaving, Wheel-thrown, Wire Wrapping, Woodworking, Woodblock Printing
Section 12. —–Style
You can choose two styles from the list below or enter your own styles. The styles are broad and designed to fit most items. Choosing styles from the list of options will help shoppers find your items when we incorporate the attributes into search (details below).
African, Art Deco, Art Nouveau, Asian, Athletic
Avant Garde, Boho, Country Western, Fantasy, Folk
Goth, High Fashion, Hip Hop, Hippie, Hipster,
Historical, Hollywood Regency, Industrial, Kawaii
Kitsch, Mediterranean, Mid-Century, Military, Minimalist, Mod, Modern
Nautical, Neo-classical, Preppy, Primitive, Resort
Retro, Rocker, Rustic, Sci-Fi, Shabby Chic, Southwestern, Spooky
Steampunk, Techie, Traditional, Tribal, Victorian
Waldorf, Woodland, Zen, add a style
Section 13. Tags
*If the material is an important selling point of the item you must have it in the tags.
*Attributes (recipient, occasion, etc) So until these attributes are included in the search if they are an important selling point for your item they must be included in tags. who its for- men, women, teens, etc/ events or holidays / style
*Team tags or your shop name don’t need to be added to every single item in your shop. Just use them on a couple of items.
*1-2 for current promotion: christmas in july, xmasXX, whatever
(each month check treasury page, and Etsy merchandising articles to change around tags)
Section 14. Materials
Section 15. Price
Section 16. Quantity
Section 17. Shipping (choose a profile)
Keyword + Tag Brainstorm:
Back link options (make em different for every listing)
I suggest making a file with possible back links- like your shop, facebook, etc.
Also link to other product that coordinate or of the same theme.
Final Listing I used
Statistics of this Listing
Date originally listed
# of renews
# of views
Changes made to this Listing
(Date changed, changes made, # of views of this date)
That’s the end! I debated on sharing this as a file, but thought there may be people who wouldn’t have the bandwidth to download it but still want the help.
I suggest saving this post. Keep a blank master copy- and make a new copy for each item and fill it in.
Thanks for sticking with me this long on the post!
And good luck!
I plan to redo my listings one at a time to improve them. With 72 or so listings total when counting inactive that’s going to take some time!
Resources for this post
Etsy Relevancy and How to Get Noticed
10 Things Buyers Are Looking For On Your Product Pages
Preparing an Effective Etsy Listing
ReVAMPing Your Etsy Shop – 2011 Blog Series Product Descriptions
Making the Most of Your Descriptions
20 questions YOUR BUYERS are asking