Shop Etsy

Keeping it Relevant: Default Search is Now “Sort by Relevancy”

Aug 9, 2011

by natalieschwartz handmade and vintage goods

If you’ve used the Search function on Etsy today, you may have noticed something different about your results. Today we switched the default for search results to “sort by relevancy,” instead of results “sorted by recency” (as they were previously displayed). As we wrote about on the Blog, mentioned in the Forums and discussed in an Online Lab (and as Chad mentioned in his letter to the community), we’ve been focused on improving search sorted by relevancy for the past several months, and we’ve made some significant improvements.

We recognize this is a big change to both the buyer and seller site experience, and we do not take it lightly. Defaulting to sort by relevancy is something that you have been asking for in the Forums for quite some time, and it has been on our minds as well. In this post, we’ll break down our thinking and the process that led us to make this change, both at your suggestion and with your help.

For the past few months we’ve been running experiments to evaluate whether search sorted by relevancy is really the best overall move for the marketplace. We also recognize that Search has to be optimized for the best experience for two different types of members: buyers and sellers. Though Search is primarily a tool for buyers, with a good search experience the whole marketplace wins — a buyer finds what they were looking for and a seller makes a sale. With that in mind, we performed tests to look at how many items shoppers are purchasing and the diversity of shops that are presented to them.

Here’s how we decided to make the change. We’ve run dozens of A/B experiments and side-by-side studies (as mentioned in this forum post) which compare member behaviors when given two different search results: sorted by relevancy and sorted by recency. We evaluated how many items a buyer clicks on from a search and compared the number of items clicked and hearted when the results were sorted by recency (the previous default) vs. sorted by most relevant. The results spoke for themselves: when shoppers were given results sorted by relevancy, they were 4.4% more likely to click on a listing from a search results page. We also saw shoppers viewed 5.5% more listings per search visit when they were given results sorted by relevancy, vs. sorted by recency. We also found a similar increase in the number of items a shopper favorited: listing views and favorites were sigificantly higher when results were sorted by relevancy. And as you can guess, sales go up with increases in listing views and favorites. In a blind side-by-side comparison of the search results sorted by relevancy and sorted by recency, shoppers preferred the sort by relevancy results 15 to 1.

Search sorted by relevancy.

What’s the meaning behind these results? With search sorted by relevancy, the results of the search are, well…more relevant! See for yourself: try performing a search for “desk” and check out the results. Then click on the option to sort by “recency” in the bar at the top of your results — this will show the default results page you saw yesterday. With recency sort, chances are you may see a lot of items that are not, in fact, desks: desk lamps, desk chairs or other items that go in or around desks. If you’re searching for a desk, you really don’t want to weed through results including stationery, pencils or other small, desk-related items, do you?

Search sorted by recency.

One of the other benefits of search by relevancy is that you’ll encounter a wider range of shops selling the item you’re looking for. For example, in search sorted by relevancy, we optimize to show many relevant items from multiple shops, so that a single shop doesn’t dominate the results. In a search sorted by recency, we cannot control the diversity of the results since we are simply showing you the most recent items to be listed or renewed on Etsy. As a result, your search results page sorted by most recent could be dominated by one shop, even when several other shops were offering equally relevant items, which makes it difficult for smaller shops to get visibility. It also leads to massive shopper frustration — most shoppers leave when they can’t find what they want, and sellers can’t make any sales without shoppers.

Now we break up items from the same shop when there are others items that are equally relevant so that all relevant items get a better chance at making it into the first pages of search results. Of course, if you perform a very specific search, you may still see multiple items from the same shop on your homepage, as we will aim to give you the most relevant results to your search as possible.

We recognize that there may be some confusion for sellers concerning how to make your items show up in search results sorted by relevancy, and that’s why we’ve provided tips and tricks in the Forums and on the Blog. Previously, sellers were able to list new items and renew current ones in order to boost an item’s visibility in search results sorted by recency; our relevancy algorithm isn’t quite as straightforward.

Toggle through the most recently listed items at the top of any search results page.

However, recently listed items will still receive placement across the site. Namely, we have added a section a the top of search results pages sorted by recency. This section is reserved for the four most recent items, with the ability to see more without leaving the page (which can be found by clicking the arrows). Recently listed items will also continue to appear at the bottom of the Etsy homepage, and category pages will continue to be sorted by most recent. And of course, if you ever want to view your search results with the most recent first (like you viewed them yesterday) you can click on “most recent” in the sort by bar.

We will continue to post articles on search optimization in the coming weeks. As always, we aim to be as helpful as possible in helping you get your listings on top. For seller tips on revising your listings, check out this forum thread and this blog post. We will also be streaming a Q&A with the Etsy search team in the Online Labs on Thursday, August 11, 2011 at 3 p.m. ET. Please put your questions in this thread and we’ll answer the most pressing ones!

We appreciate your trust and patience with us in making this change. Together we are building the most diverse and exciting handmade marketplace!

*In light of the recent change to “search results sorted by relevancy,” we have updated some of our policy on labeling items. Read more here.


  • TheIDconnection

    TheIDconnection said 9 years ago

    Very nice article - Monica

  • daniellevmt

    daniellevmt said 9 years ago

    A lot to think about! But I like it! Thank you!

  • StudioZen

    StudioZen said 9 years ago

    Thanks for the information, Natalie. I look forward to learning more about relevancy and I hope it can make searching for an item on etsy easier, and well, more relevant!

  • BarbaraWoltmannPhoto

    BarbaraWoltmannPhoto said 9 years ago

    Loving all the new changes around here!

  • LoveTheBaby

    LoveTheBaby said 9 years ago

    Always learning! Thank you.

  • karencaseysmith

    karencaseysmith said 9 years ago

    I love this change! Thanks so much for making this happen, for the tips, and for keeping us informed.

  • Iammie

    Iammie said 9 years ago

    Thank you for the info.

  • whimsyneedles

    whimsyneedles said 9 years ago

    I think this is smart change. Easier and makes more sense for buyers.

  • aeliosdesign

    aeliosdesign said 9 years ago

    Great decision! It makes more sense to me to sort by relevancy. Hopefully everyone will see an increase in sales. Does this mean that renewing an item no longer matters?

  • maysay

    maysay said 9 years ago

    Thank-you for the post. This will make searching a lot easier and less frustrating for potential buyers!

  • theblackfeather

    theblackfeather said 9 years ago

    Great article! I think it's a benefit for everyone. I understand that sellers would relist items periodically before they expired because of recency, but they still have that opportunity because it's on the first page. This will definitely enhance searching and help us efficiently search for items. It's really a win win for everyone! Take care!

  • NaturalandVintage

    NaturalandVintage said 9 years ago

    I think this is going to be a really great change! I know sometimes the results I got as a shopper weren't always for exactly what I was looking for when sorted by recency........ sounds like lots of research has been done to ensure this is the best option! Thanks!

  • 2TrickPony

    2TrickPony said 9 years ago

    Love to see the search here more relevant! thank you!

  • ablemabel

    ablemabel said 9 years ago

    I agree that this change makes sense. It'll be much easier for buyers to find what they're looking for.

  • SouthwestSkyJewelry

    SouthwestSkyJewelry said 9 years ago

    I also like this change- thank you for the informative article!

  • MagicMarkingsArt

    MagicMarkingsArt said 9 years ago

    thank you!...still working on relevant titles!

  • Spicewoodfarm

    Spicewoodfarm said 9 years ago

    Every day I check the most recent listings under vintage. Easy peasy. Click on vintage, click on search. Up they come. TaDa. Now I have to click on vintage, click on search, click on recent. I know this may sound petty, but I am older than most of you and resist change. I do not believe in change for its own sake and in spite of reading this whole blog, I really do not see a great need for this change. One can get results of 15 to 1 for anything just by careful screening. Oh, and by the way I do love etsy.

  • HouseOfMoss

    HouseOfMoss said 9 years ago

    This looks to be good! Thank you so much for your thoughtful changes, Etsy!

  • perebags

    perebags said 9 years ago

    This sounds great!

  • amarcord95

    amarcord95 said 9 years ago

    Great stuff indeed. Thanks for the article and for the changes!!! Well done!!!!

  • Mugsleys

    Mugsleys said 9 years ago

    Thank you so much!

  • pamwares

    pamwares said 9 years ago

    I worked on my shop and relevancy this weekend so hopefully something good will come of it. I noticed when you do a search the default falls to "relevent" instead of recently listed, highest price or lowest price. AND then right above the items listed in the "relevent" search is a sub category area with the most recently listed items for your search. I guess if you are listing and relisting - you will always be at the top of the default "revelent" search page. That is interesting. The relisting craze should be in full mega swing soon.

  • melzhippy

    melzhippy said 9 years ago

    I agree that it's a good change :-)

  • ksickles

    ksickles said 9 years ago

    A benefit to both the buyer and the seller! As a usability consultant by day, I appreciate the thought and testing that went into this change!

  • LiliumVitiate

    LiliumVitiate said 9 years ago

    I hope that this decreases the need to constantly relist- it's hardly affordable or fair for an independent seller to have to pay to list their items daily!

  • antoniyakoleva

    antoniyakoleva said 9 years ago

    Change for good! I agree these adjustments will improve both seller and buyer experience!

  • likeANDlove

    likeANDlove said 9 years ago

    This makes so much sense! Thank you... I will definitely try to take part on the 11th at 3:00 as I'm sure it will be really informative. I have been reading up a lot lately on ways to make my items more easily found in searches and can't wait to get my shop up and running. Thanks!!

  • AlphabetCityStudio

    AlphabetCityStudio said 9 years ago

    Love the new change!!! Thank you!

  • MantuaMakerPatterns

    MantuaMakerPatterns said 9 years ago

    Yay! I've been automatically clicking on Relevancy, so I'm happy with this change. Thanks!

  • Mclovebuddy

    Mclovebuddy said 9 years ago

    nice, i'll have to check it out.

  • VintageEyeFashion

    VintageEyeFashion said 9 years ago

    Checking it out! :)

  • Parachute425

    Parachute425 said 9 years ago

    Makes more sense.

  • art4ear

    art4ear said 9 years ago

    I'd love to know more on ways to make items more easily found. Thanks for the tips.

  • MandyBesek

    MandyBesek said 9 years ago

    Thank you, I appreciate this feature.

  • DFGjewelry

    DFGjewelry said 9 years ago

    Who knew there was so much going on behind the scenes? Thanks for sharing all the great research in rolling out this latest change. Can't wait to watch my stats to see how it plays out.

  • KarinLittlemade

    KarinLittlemade said 9 years ago

    I like this.

  • sparrowgrey

    sparrowgrey said 9 years ago

    You guys certainly know how to do your research. It's definitely an awesome new feature.

  • thedancingwren

    thedancingwren said 9 years ago

    Fabulous! this is going to make everything so much more user friendly for buyers and for those that are creating treasuries. Thanks so much for all the hard work you guys put into Etsy. We appreciate it!

  • thedaydreamer

    thedaydreamer said 9 years ago

    This is wonderful news! I had noticed that sellers were rushing to list and renew their items to gain visibility and with hundreds of thousands of sellers doing the same, it was a MAD RUSH. Anyway, I'm glad things seem more "relevant" now. Thanks. :)

  • bettysworld4u

    bettysworld4u said 9 years ago

    Superb Feature, almost mandatory, so buyers will quickly find what they are looking for,and we will eventually not have to renew so many items each day. It also get us to be much more specific in our titles, in the same respect that relates to how people think and search in Google when seeking an item especially in the first 3 words in the Title. It's simple Logic that weellers will definetly increase sales, draw more attention to the Etsy Site, and most important prevent buyers from searching some where else. They will see a specific and well defined Ad. Thank you. ): ):

  • littlebugjewelry

    littlebugjewelry said 9 years ago

    Thank you! I'll be at the Q & A for sure! My concern, being in a VERY saturated field, is how to be 'relevant' where there are a TON of listings, ie. turquoise earrings . . .

  • AmoreTreasure

    AmoreTreasure said 9 years ago

    I purchase many things on Etsy as well as being a seller. I'm NOT a fan of this change as I search frequently during the day using particular search terms and now I have to "re-search" by recently listed because it defaults each time to a relevancy search. Why not have an option, by Etsy account, that can be set to automatically search by relevancy or recently listed? That way each person could decide which method they prefer....

  • WaveSong

    WaveSong said 9 years ago

    hope this will decrease the need to relist.

  • crystalsbythepiece

    crystalsbythepiece said 9 years ago

    I hope this change helps. One problem I see is when I search for "Swarovski crystal beads" is that the Counterfiet/knock off beads are getting page 1 slots in addition to us that sell genuine Swarovski merchandise. I dont think that is fair to us sellers at all. I noticed several listings under mine that were for knock off Swarovski, but the title isnt worded to indicate that it isnt genuine. I would like to see Etsy put a change to the way knock off merchandise be sold on here.

  • meowadays

    meowadays said 9 years ago

    What about permanent links? Some of my items have been featured and linked on websites and if I change the title of my items to better fit relevancy (which I definitely have to do) the links will change. Other than the link issue I really love the new relevancy default! Are you guys working on the link issue at all?

  • lilbabybumble

    lilbabybumble said 9 years ago

    This is really long, just a fair warning ahead of time. Etsy Admin has said this: ************************************************************************* POINT #1 Additionally, we look at words at the beginning of your title first (just like your buyers do!) and pay less attention to words toward the end of the title. In practice, you should make sure the first words of your title explain what your item is. ************************************************************************* and this: ************************************************************************* POINT #2 We have also added an additional search feature that gives exact word pairs more weight. When your search includes two or more words, we prioritize results that have those exact words next to each other. ************************************************************************* and this: ************************************************************************* POINT #3 Now we break up items from the same shop when there are others items that are equally relevant so that all relevant items get a better chance at making it into the first pages of search results. Of course, if you perform a very specific search, you may still see multiple items from the same shop on your homepage, as we will aim to give you the most relevant results to your search as possible. ************************************************************************* Okay, I get this and agree, however, the search results are not showing this. Here is an example: Search "Monthly Onesie Stickers" The first 8 listings titles are: 1) UNCUT NECK TIE monthly onesie stickers 2) Monthly Onesie Stickers... ORIGINAL LIittle OWl Boy...WATERPROOF...Original Seller 3) Monthly Onesie Stickers Baby Girl Circles Jungle Zebra Bright Colors Pink Green Blue Yellow Scallop 1-12 Months Plus BONUS Just Born Gift 4) Monkey FacePersonalized Monthly Onesie Stickers - Extras Include Newborn, Large 12 Month Sticker, and Bonus Sticker - Also Available as Heat Transfers 5) Monthly Onesie Stickers...Kingston Green Patterns...Waterproof Stickers EXTRA Durable-.. Original Seller Looks Great on ANY Color Onesie 6) Monthly Onesie Stickers...Pink Jungle...Very Cute...Extremely Durable and Waterproof 7) Monthly Onesie Stickers...Trimester 2 Belly Stickers...Extremely Durable, Vibrant and Waterproof 8) Monthly Onesie Stickers - Jade - Posh and Preppy Patterns in Pink, Yellow, and Blue - Baby Month Stickers' ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Each of those listings above are from different sellers which refers to POINT #3. The first 20 listings from the above search lists 20 different sellers. However, #1 and #4 search results are completing ignoring POINT #1 which is the title. There are some shops listed on the first page who are not following POINT #1, and they are listed multiple times on the first page. Since POINT #2 says it doesn't matter how the tags are sorted and each one of those listings have "onesie stickers" as their tags, with the exception of search result #4, how is that those that do not meet the POINT #1 of relevancy become more relevant than other sellers? Also, how does the search result #4 more relevant than any of the other listings as it doesn't even have the tag that I'm looking for, but just in the title? I'm not even addressing "recency" above as I'm not sure it affects search results that are less than 100,000 as noted in the blog. But the search results are very stagnant and it should include more recent sales, even if you need to break up the sellers. I would rather have my best seller listed on the front page or even 2nd page than a listing I have in my shop that has not been sold in over a couple of months. I'm just trying to follow the rules you have put up for us to become more relevant, but the rules aren't working. Any insight on this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  • lilbabybumble

    lilbabybumble said 9 years ago

    See my post here on the forums, they didn't break up this comment at all:

  • citydetails

    citydetails said 9 years ago

    Hi, Wondering if the size of my photos has anything to do with the revelancy search. When I upload photos a pop up says reconsider your size...570 pixels are recommended. My camera takes 640x480 size pics so I square them to 480x480. Help!!

  • QuiltCitySue

    QuiltCitySue said 9 years ago

    The concept is good, the execution is not. I searched "vest pattern" and things came up on the first page that didn't have those words in the title, and my vest pattern was nowhere to be seen, even going back through listings that were posted way before mine. I have all my patterns listed brand name, pattern number, then description. Should I change all my listings to description, then brand name and pattern number? Would that help? Looking at the listings the answer looks like no because the listings aren't in logical order like you would expect from the admin posts on this. It's a lot of work to change all the titles and I don't want to do it if it won't matter. Another question, when a craft pattern contains 5 different patterns in the same pattern, would it hurt my listing to title it "5 Rag Doll Patterns", or would it be better to use "Rag Doll Patterns, 5 Dolls"? What is the effect of having a number first?

  • ticklemebeads

    ticklemebeads said 9 years ago

    Makes sense, time will tell if it makes a difference.

  • bellsandwhistlesshop

    bellsandwhistlesshop said 9 years ago

    I agree with QuiltCitySue--good idea--poor execution. The article states that one of the reasons for this will be to keep one shop from dominating any category. This is not the case. After performing a search for Art tote (my particular niche) almost entire pages with just 1 or 2 shops represented, regardless of recency. Also, If everyone uses the same tags, how is relevancy determined? I had to scroll through 7 pages before i found one of my items. Not many buyers will hang in there for that. Etsy, I appreciate all of your hard work in trying to improve the experience for buyers, and, theoretically, sellers. But I haven't made a single sale since you implemented this new policy (down from several per week). It seems like every time you make a changes, my sales go down. i don't want to be a whiner, but I am feeling pretty disenfranchised by all of this corporate-ness going on behind the scenes.

  • TomsEarringHolders

    TomsEarringHolders said 9 years ago

    This sounds like a great change for the marketplace and a step in the right direction. Thanks for putting all of this effort in to help us out and keep working to improve execution of these ideas!

  • LeathercraftbySam

    LeathercraftbySam said 9 years ago

    Hi, I am brand new here on the Etsy (and to marketing my products)...this search default makes more sense to me, and I do not have any prior site selling experience. Keep the help coming and appreciate your work. Sam

  • LeathercraftbySam

    LeathercraftbySam said 9 years ago

    Does this function of relevancy mean that I am better off with "handmade leather belt" than I am with "leather belt"?

  • BeachFleaMarket

    BeachFleaMarket said 9 years ago

    The only difference is one click: most recent or relevancy. Not a big change but my views and sales have flat lined. You took away the motivation to list an item once or twice a day. No motivation to relist items. I feel that my tags are relevant. I don't feel that the catgories fit my items most of the time. I'm primarily selling vintage collage supplies. I like the addition of the "style". How do I get my sales back on track? A scattered mixed bag of opinions I know. Just trying to figure it all out. When searching as a buyer I have been frustrated by having to scroll through page after page of one shop's relisted items. So I don't mind that going away.

  • alankarshilpa

    alankarshilpa said 9 years ago

    Learning every day!

  • niftybynature

    niftybynature said 9 years ago

    I do not like the new change--I was wondering why my sales was down in the past few days.. boo hiss

  • niftybynature

    niftybynature said 9 years ago

    This is not a good change--I was wondering why my sales were down these past few hiss

  • SugarChicBaby

    SugarChicBaby said 9 years ago

    Wow!! Huge difference & drop in my sales since the change. If it's not broken....don't feel the need to fix it!! This has not helped me AT ALL as a seller. Just sayin...

  • footloosefancyfree

    footloosefancyfree said 9 years ago

    I am totally frustrated to say the least. I was being paranoid because my sales went down 75% this week until I finally noticed the announcement about change in search. I am our new bread winner and we are in big trouble now because Etsy decided to fix something that was not broken. Of course I was renewing many times a day to catch a fish with my fresh worm. Etsy made $.20 and I made good money. Now I have no mentionable sales and Etsy does not have my $.20 . I want to know if I change my listings to a good first word or phrase for revelance what comes next on the search engine? Also, I don't like the thing about breaking up my shop just to show other shops when I do get a hit with a good search word. I work hard at Etsy and most of us don't have time for forums, blogs etc. We should have been notified by email of changes in advance. Sorry I am so ill but it is hard to change and you don't even know what to change to help yourself.

  • AncientShades

    AncientShades said 9 years ago

    Good principles but bad implementation !

  • sayanythingjewelry

    sayanythingjewelry said 9 years ago

    I also am very frustrated with this. I have searched the exact tags in my items and have come up with none of my items. I have raved to other craft/handmade artists over the last few years how much I love selling on ETSY. I am now looking to find a new marketplace to sell in. My sales have gone way down, as well as my views. The only design of mine that I can find is not my favorite and is one of the least viewed and unpopular designs I have. My most popular items are nowhere to be found! I understand that you have done research and statistics on this, however, my statistics show that my sales are down. I know ETSY is now a huge company and has gone more corporate and that is wonderful for them. I guess they don't have to worry about the "little people" anymore. Thanks etsy for allowing me to "quit my day job." I guess I will focus some time on re-tagging and hope for the best.

  • AspenTreeYarns

    AspenTreeYarns said 9 years ago

    THANK YOU! I have been wishing for this for a long time. Search by 'recency' automatically favors sellers whose items can be made and listed quickly, or sellers who can afford to renew everything in their shops twice a week. For those of us (I'm a spinner and handweaver) whose items are slower to make and can't be knocked out five or six in a day, then our items automatically end up buried on the 17th page of a recency list, except for the few seconds after we've just listed something. Most buyers don't wade back that far in their search results, so many great items never get seen unless someone does a very very specific search. Making the search by relevancy gives ALL of us an equal chance to be seen, instead of just the people who can make their items in an hour or two.

  • coollight

    coollight said 9 years ago

    sounds like a necessary change. I just hope that it does, indeed, give other less visible shops more equal coverage. I hope it will help this shop out. only time will tell...

  • stepbackink

    stepbackink said 9 years ago

    Wow all of those comments are making me nervous, but I Have to say this , a buyer that purchase 4 items At once did so because of the relevancy search, two of the items purchased have been listed for two months, and the other two were listed less then three days ago.n So if this change of precise search could help older items to move then I am all for it. My sales did drop, but maybe it is August ! I will return in few weeks to report progress.

  • knitella2011

    knitella2011 said 9 years ago

    Thank you! :)

  • Solerika

    Solerika said 9 years ago

    I just noticed the change today and already I hate it. Such a pain! Can't we have an option to default back to Most recent in our preferences? I feel bad for sellers whose sales have dropped.

  • ErihMann

    ErihMann said 9 years ago

    Heck.... This ain't going end well... I mean, just as it was mentioned above, the idea isn't bad at all, but it's the execution of the idea that hits small sellers like me the hardest. One of the worst things, is that you can't actually control what item from your stock will be shown on the first page. Thats' kinda cruel. This new policies will ruin many small shops here. Perhaps I will go down as well. I'd better spend 4-6 dollars a'day to renew my small stock one per each 12 hours, instead of getting such an ugly drop in "visibility". And a sales dropdown that will be cause by it. Oh well... hope that this will be resolved somehow.

  • TheVintaquarian

    TheVintaquarian said 9 years ago

    In theory the change is kind of cool. Sellers would now have two specific ways to get found; 1) the relevancy search for people searching for a specific item, or 2) by relisting you can show up at the top of the pile when someone is window shopping a general category, plus you could be seen as one of the four recently listed items at the top of the new relevancy search page. To quote the Etsy's new title/tag info: Exact word pairs are given more weight. When your search includes 2 or more words, we prioritize results that have those exact words next to each other. For example, if I search for “pink unicorn” results that contain “pink unicorn” in the title will appear higher than “pink ponies playing with a unicorn.” Unfortunately, that's not how it's working when I test search. On one of my items I have "magnifying glass" as the first two words of the title and also have "magnifying" and "glass" as tags. I'm showing up several pages behind listings that have only "glass" in the title and tags and are not using "magnifying" at all. How is that relevant when someone is searching for a magnifying glass? Very frustrating to go through and change titles to making sure the first 3 words are the most relevant and then not have it make a difference. Also, sales and favorites have been dramatically lower these last 2 weeks. One of the new items I listed had no views at all in 24 hours, which has never happened before. I tried relisting it and got exactly 1 view in the next 24 hours, again, very unusual. So again, cool concept. I like the idea of relevancy searches and I like the idea of constant relisting not being the only way to be seen.....but so far it's not really working quite like you say it is.

  • candlekitty

    candlekitty said 9 years ago

    thank-you! I like it. I buy stuff and sell here, and I'm often looking for really unique, specific things. Searches are truly a lot better now. The only thing I can say is: I can't wait until all sellers get their titles cleaned up. I can't stand a run-on sentence in a title; it is of no help to me, and I ignore the item. Google-type search terms will work wonderfully, kudos to Etsy admin!

  • DARKLUXvintage

    DARKLUXvintage said 9 years ago

    so excited and nervous about this change!

  • littlelouisequilts

    littlelouisequilts said 9 years ago

    How about putting in the stats - how many views in the relevancy listings vs. recently listed listings. So far this has not been a good thing for me! My sales have dropped to ZERO!

  • happygolicky

    happygolicky said 9 years ago

    I would have loved to have known this a month ago so I would have time to change my listings to be more relevant. Giving us time to adjust to such a major change instead of springing it on us would have been better. This is my ONLY income, my sales have plummeted and I am left scrambling to do relevancy SEO research before I have to go get another day job. I agree with the changes but some warning would have been welcomed here.

  • RetroRevivalBoutique

    RetroRevivalBoutique said 9 years ago

    I agree with happygolicky's statement above! I am in a similar situation, and I've found the changes to be devastaing so far. :/

  • misshettie

    misshettie said 9 years ago

    And I agree with happygolicky and RetrRevivalBoutique; I am in the same situation. I had worked so hard to get my sales up and when you change, my sales have totally gone away. My total sales for this month will be down by 75% and when my sales go down, Etsy Revenue goes down. A warning to the sellers would have been the correct thing to do rather than just change things and then hope for the best. Statisticians will tell you that "numbers" don't lie--but they aren't factoring the people in this equation. (and my speciality is statistics!)

  • Salzanos

    Salzanos said 9 years ago

    I am Super excited about this change! I have seen increased traffic and a custom order already! It makes way more sense to me, and for finding things. I support this change 100 percent!!! My stats have jumped in numbers , finally the tags make more sense to me. (leaping for joy)

  • beachglassshop

    beachglassshop said 9 years ago

    My views are half of what they were - there are some days when I have less than 10!!! My sales are down - I am now hoping that I break even the end of August, but seriously does not look good - yes I have looked at analytics - yes I have looked at all of my numbers but this change is not working for my shop. I have a lot of time and money invested and am not happy - I am hoping for a reconsideration - I have over 250 items listed - to have me go through each and every one is once again more time, more energy and loss of revenue. I think a heads up for 4-6 weeks prior to the institution of this change would have been the fair thing to do to your sellers. I don't make money - you don't make money. You don't make money, you don't get paid - it is the circle of business.

  • RockArtiste

    RockArtiste said 9 years ago

    I hear ya beachglassshop! And I am not the only one it sounds like. My sales died last November when Etsy made all the techy changes to the site and lost all of my customer base. It felt like I had been laid off a job. ( I am still using Internet Explorer, as are millions of people in the world, but Etsy support tells me again and again that I cannot work the site effectively with it.. Neither can my customers. We have to change now to another type of browser???!? Why? Because Etsy tech doesn't like it?) I thought it was the economy killing sales, then I started reading the comments to this article, researching other sites and search engines and discovered that I don't exist on the search engines with Etsy anymore. I haven't done anything different in my listing procedures but, I like you, now have to individually tweak with my listings once again. After reading and reading and reading all the updates they continually send me. Too labor intensive for an artist who must paint all the time. The good ol' days of Etsy are long gone I am afraid. There are many new artisan sites popping up all over the place and they charge monthly or not at all. No % of sales, no listing fees. People are making money on those sites too. Guess that may be where my customer base has gone. (I am not talking about ebay who holds your money now until you ship first and receive a feedback before they release funds to PayPal.) All the work and time and expense I put into developing that customer base with Etsy too is long gone. Too bad Etsy tech didn't listen to us when this all fell apart. But then, they never tell us what to expect. We just have to "go with it" sink or swim. Time to reinvent....and move on it before the Holidays. Best of luck to you all.

  • orsinimedici1951

    orsinimedici1951 said 9 years ago

    Mine crashed and burned for 3 months this spring/summer when the Google SEO got tweeked!! My shop got tossed down into the abyss of "supplimental pages result" pool!!! My traffic flatlined for possibly more than 3 months, and sales were--practically nil!!! Can't wait to see how my shop performs now!!! Maybe it will be a GREEN holiday shopping season after all!!

  • hblackberry

    hblackberry said 9 years ago

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE.....Leave etsy alone!!! all the changes have made it so hard on the selelrs...i know you want to accomidate the buyers but etsy would not be what it is with out us sellers. i have the same tags as everyone and i renew over and over again and my items do not come up any longer...this is so unfair...i spend over 1000 dollars in etsy fees every its all for nothing my sales have dropped 75 percent since this changesoccured........PLESAE PUT IT BACK THE WAY IT WAS !!! 36 minutes ago . SooShabbyChic says: I SO AGREE WITH THIS STATEMENT My sales went down 75% with change. I do not agree with diversity. I think Etsy should consider long time sellers in some way and not just throw everyone in the same pot because they picked out the same search phrase or word. I am old and this is just too much with no notice except blogs and forums and a single notice at top of your account. We should have been sent an email. You can send us a bill why not a notice of change? Grumpy old me and my opinion. Some of us actually work at Etsy as our sole income and don't have time to read everything and then change all our listings just to get noticed again. I was renewing regularly and giving Etsy $.20 each time. I made money and so did they. What now? No sales plus no reason to renew adds up to zero income for us both.

  • RockArtiste

    RockArtiste said 9 years ago

    Save your money fellow etsians. Etsy geeks who do all this tweaking do not care about us. They don't have to pay our fees. They make wages. They don't care that we have no time to create, let alone list anything and then never to be found again. Hopefully more of us will move elsewhere and this will make the new sites prosperous. Etsy is only prosperous for the etsy favs. Listing and relisting is only going to cost you more money. In this economy, we need all the help making sales that we can get. Etsy does not help us, they only take our money. The changes will not stop. The new listing process is so tedious now it takes 3 times the amount of time to list one item. And now we will not be found. The complicated searches for the buyers has turned shoppers away. Etsy doesn't care about us, no matter how long we have supported this website. They don't tell us in advance of these changes because they would lose our business if they did. Time to reinvent and move on before it's too late for this holiday season. I lost way too much money on Etsy last holiday season.

  • ErihMann

    ErihMann said 9 years ago

    RockArtiste - you're so right! People who run Etsy don't have to worry bout paying for they bills, since no matter what, they gonna have their money. But as far as I can tell, soon enough many and many artisans will be forced to put back their tools of the trade just to get an everyday job. Either this, or get over to some other places. Still, ths new "wonderful change" will cost us all. Hell, it is already started. :( *Sigh*

  • livadesigns

    livadesigns said 9 years ago

    Well I'm new to etsy, but I think that most important is for buyer to find the right things. It is absolutely unfair if system is more favorital or easy for the ones who have been here the longest time and now have to just sit back and everything happens on its own for them, but the new ones have to work their sweat just to appear in search results. Do we have lots of time for creating, listing and other things to do? sorry if I haven't understood this right, but it is what I thought after reading last comments... Of course i agree that for any changes there must be warning before - maybe even several times :)

  • UniqueCreations1111

    UniqueCreations1111 said 9 years ago

    Personally I don't like the new automatic relevancy search. I much preferred the recency search and it was much better for sales. It doesn't seem fair to us little guys who just add a few items here and there. I've listed a few things and then done simple test searches and I've never seen my items listed on the first page, except if I click the search type back over to most recent. Very dissapointing :(

  • MonogramsForYou

    MonogramsForYou said 9 years ago

    Bad idea! I dont think anyone has mentioned this -- BUT BUYERS ALREADY CAN SEARCH BY RELENCY - Always could - the real truth is Etsy is now controlling what the buyers see - we as sellers have no control over our listings appearing - at least if we renewed items we knew we had a chance of them being seen - and those who say this helps them because it is too expensive to relist -- come on it was 20 cents a listing! ETSY, PLEASE listen to us - There are MANY of US who COUNT on this INCOME and this is hurting us deeply!!

  • RetroRevivalBoutique

    RetroRevivalBoutique said 9 years ago

    I have to admit, I like the IDEA of the changes, and I would love to not have to renew every 10 mins just to get a couple views. I just don't appreciate having these changes thrown at me, and then having to scramble to get views & sales that I was already having to work very hard for! :/

  • backyardprims

    backyardprims said 9 years ago

    Not sure I like this new way of searching. I always say...If its not broke don't fix it! I also noticed a drop in sales and just happened to stumble on this new change! Etsy without us, you wouldn't be here....please if you have to make changes notify us always notify us when our bill is due! Grrr!

  • NativeWorks

    NativeWorks said 9 years ago

    I was getting lots of views and had pretty good luck with some sales.....after the changes, not sure what happened except on one was looking at my shop and no sales in weeks! any ideas?

  • treasureagain

    treasureagain said 9 years ago

    I usually try to be open and supportive when Etsy makes changes. But, this change is not good. I can see that it helps the copiers (shops that bring Etsy money without having to be creative, by just copying other shops designs.) When you do a search for Mason Jar Solar lights, the shop that copies my designs and photos, shows up right next to mine. Lately the only way I could counteract that was to relist, if I saw my photos next to theirs in the searches. (Just to try to keep customers from being confused,since their photos and listings are so similar to mine.) Now there is no way to do that. Their copied photos and listings can show up right next to mine now. It's not fair. I am trying to be open, but this is a BIG change and one that affects many. Please switch it back.

  • AlliBalliBands

    AlliBalliBands said 9 years ago

    Oh I don't like this at all! Over the past 3 months I have noticed a significant increase in my business due to the relisting of items every 2 hours (which makes for a huge etsy bill, but brings me more business). Now for the past 2 days I have noticed hardly any action in my shop:( I tag properly, but now I guess it doesn't matter if I list hourly or weekly by the looks of it. I have been working on an outside website which I will focus more on....this is not cool!

  • AlliBalliBands

    AlliBalliBands said 9 years ago

    So after reading previous comments I hope you guys take into consideration changing this back! It seems very unfair to just "throw" this on us with no time to prepare. I will give this a month, if my sales continue to be what they have been the past few days I will not continue to have an etsy site. The problem I have is that some people don't know exactly what they are searching for! I may just want to search "tutus" and for someone like myself who renews every 1-2 hours...this IS NOT FAIR to be barely noticed. They should have the option or searching by "relevancy" but frequently listed items should ALWAYS come up first! Makes you more money and brings people to my site. I am really upset over this!!

  • thefunkyshack

    thefunkyshack said 9 years ago

    When I search chalkboards, which is a big seller for us, we are many, many, pages back. My items are tagged correctly. I have searched several times today and I see the same listings on the first few pages. I have been a seller since 2008 and I am not understanding how this is going to help my sales if it takes a buyer going through 5 or more pages to find my items. I am a full time Etsy seller and depend on it for my lively hood. I hope that the items that are relevant are being rotated through the first pages. I also shop a lot on the internet and I am usually bored 5 or 6 pages into a search and will not go any further. I am just concerned about by shop and others as well who may be seeing the same issue!!

  • thefunkyshack

    thefunkyshack said 9 years ago

    So I just checked again. Same products on the first couple of pages. We have one 11 pages back. If I were a frequent Etsy shopper that liked to log on every once in a while to check out new products how would this help me? Everytime I logged on today it was the same old redundant first couple of pages for each item I searched. No good for the seller and very boring for the buyer. Today I have had one question and the only sale I had was a special listing set up days ago.

  • SelvedgeShop

    SelvedgeShop said 9 years ago

    I just found this article. This explains why my sales have come to a screeching halt.

  • peoplescouture

    peoplescouture said 9 years ago

    this explains everything! my sales also became zero and i'm thinking of leaving etsy if this stays the same. i sympathize and agree with treasureagain. too many copiers and this new search situation is killing etsy for me.

  • margosoriginals

    margosoriginals said 9 years ago

    I just heard about this yesterday. The last 3 months (wedding season) have been my busiest yet. I "quit my day job" in April to do etsy full time. This news is devastating to me, now I know why my business has dropped. It really isn't fair to sellers at all. Those of us who have poured so much money into etsy trying to be seen, and now that all just goes away? I plan to totally re invent my shop tags, titles, and descriptions to try and keep up with the changes, but if even half of the sellers on etsy do this, we all can't be on that front page of search results! That is how we were seen before, and all the etsy advice told us to renew listings often, that is the best way to be seen... now what are they going to tell us who have perfect tags, descriptions, and titles who never get seen? How do I know that my items will be found even if I spend hours re-inventing myself? Etsy has always told us to use relevant search terms, but now our life depends on it. Well what if you make something that a lot of other people make too, like my hand stamped jewelry? I am going to be looking in to other online resources to sell my jewelry, and I really hope etsy takes these comments to heart. I read the article linked at the top of this post, and they said that only 4.4% more clicks were made when the search was changed to relevancy, and buyers stayed on the search pages 5.5% longer. I had to blink my eyes when I saw this because I thought I was misreading the numbers. They didn't say how many more sales were made this way. Well that seems like a very low percentage to me, to completely change the structure of a system that allowed everyone a fair chance at being seen. What happens to that percentage over time, when the same items show up every time on the first 5 pages? Will people really want to come back to etsy to see the same things every time? My business is my life, and now I'm really afraid that its all going to end. I hardly ever visit ebay anymore because you always see the same things when you search. If I'm not to lazy I will change the default search, but the average internet user has a very low attention span, and will probably not stick around to change the default back to most recently listed. Well I will stop rambling on now, but I just really hope that etsy takes these things into consideration. I know there are always complainers when change happens, but I don't think we are all complainers, I think we are very concerned for our's and etsy's future.

  • GoodeDesigns

    GoodeDesigns said 9 years ago

    I agree with MargosOriginals! I quit my day job and renewed 36 items per day! I got noticed and I got sales. Now no one can find me! I can't find me! Even if you copy the tags from the top items found with relevancy, your items aren't found! Etsy you are messing with peoples' incomes!!! Just tell us how it REALLY works!!!!!! The bigger shops are full time sellers and have better selections and we pay you more for renewals!! THAT'S RELEVANT! Now we find we are being penalized for that?? Etsy, your people are on salary. This is an experiment to you, we aren't on salary this is our livelihood!!! Get back to the real world and how commerce really works!!!!!! I see that the blogs are down all day, could it be that the uproar was too loud? PLEASE return the search to the way it was and let us make a living!!!!

  • treasureagain

    treasureagain said 9 years ago

    GoodeDesigns, you will find even more written here on this matter: You make some GOOD points, along with others. We are NOT complainers or whining. We just want to be heard and want some help in figuring this out. I have found I can work and rework the tags, and it really comes down to it being a luck of the draw. Before anyone can comment, please realize that I have always worked my tags and read what Etsy suggests and done accordingly. The only tags I haven't reworked are the couple of listings I actually have show up in the first couple of pages of the search. I don't want to mess with those, to have them disappear too. We are not sitting back and crabbing, we are working at these changes, but with it, WE need to see GOOD changes. I hope someone is listening.

  • UniqueCreations1111

    UniqueCreations1111 said 9 years ago

    My sales and traffic are way down since the change. It seems we're really not getting anything done on these blogs except venting our DISSAPOINTMENT in the new "RELEVANY SEARCH", myself included. I don't see any posts from any Etsy reps here. So why don't we all send them emails voicing our concerns, maybe then we'll get somewhere....I've already sent mine. Here is the Etsy support email address

  • hblackberry

    hblackberry said 9 years ago

    somethins gotta give ??

  • kolaqube

    kolaqube said 9 years ago

    I'm only a buyer at the moment, but I've been here since 2008 and have NEVER used a relevancy search. So while I understand the reasons for the swap, it is yet another annoying Etsy change for me, let alone the poor sellers who have been set back by it. I second the suggestion above about having a default setting option for each account, that would be great. Also, why is the advanced search so hidden these days.....?

  • margosoriginals

    margosoriginals said 9 years ago

    kolaqube thanks for giving a buyer's point of view! I loved that you saw something new every time you search on etsy. Not the case anymore, and when that happens to me on other sites, I don't go back.

  • KittyKatDance

    KittyKatDance said 9 years ago

    Seems fairly clear.. This new change, that we were NOT notified about being implemented is causing lots of trouble for everyone.. If it should help.. It should help for everyone.. Or please listen to us all here.. Give us the option of choosing or please leave it be... As I see it.. Etsy is just too big to actually treat us as the individuals we are.. I have a tiny shop and yes, I have noticed hardly any views or sales as of late....How can any artist who actually creates by hand can possibly keep up with all you nice desk sitters who basically have all the time in the world to think of something new to keep you at those nice desks... Please just listen to us here... Help make it work for everyone or leave good enough alone.. Yes, I still love etsy.. But I love creating and making a sale too...

  • uniqueboutiquebygami

    uniqueboutiquebygami said 9 years ago

    I am a seller on etsy and had daily sales, approximately 5-10 items per day. Since the day of the change. I hardly have 1!! sale per day. I have made changes to my tags and titles. Still no success. When i did a search the new way, i notice that the items that get first page are digital! My stuff is handmade. I even went ahead and titled my item the EXCTLY the same as another listing, mine still does not show up. My items are showing up on the 4th page and on after that. I need help. I have emailed etsy and have not gotten a response.

  • uniqueboutiquebygami

    uniqueboutiquebygami said 9 years ago

    I am SO glad I am not the only one complaining about sales. My sales have DROPPED DRASTICALLY! I thought it was just a bad week. I started searching and reading and found out why! I have done a search for my items (Minnie Mouse invites) for the past three days. THE SAME ITEMS SHOW UP EVERY.SINGLE.TIME. I hope its changed back to the old way. I will give this one week. I quit my FULL TIME job since my sales on etsy were great! Now I am afraid that it was a HUGE mistake. After a week, if things are not back to normal or have more sales. I will no longer be able to afford sellling on etsy and go to a new craft site.

  • treasureagain

    treasureagain said 9 years ago

    A super spot to check out is the "Helpful Relevancy Team". It's where I have found the most helpful info. There are other shop owners there that are willing to offer suggestions and GOOD advice. Once I decided that it's not going to change back to the old way, I went looking for more help/information with tags and titles. I look forward to the day I can say, "Etsy, you were right again!" with the changes. Maybe that will come with the next surprise they will be announcing soon. Best of luck everyone!

  • zzbob

    zzbob said 9 years ago

    I love the change! Your article was very informative, and should clear up any misgivings. I like knowing that I don't have to renew items that are not due for renewal, just so they will show up in a search. I have also found it easier to find the things I am shopping for. I know whenever you make a change, you are going to get some grief. I say,"Thank you,Etsy, for being brave enough to make this change."

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