How to write a listing that gets seen in search results on Folksy
In this post we’re looking at how to create a product listing that will get found on Folksy. We will guide you through the listing process, help you write a stellar title and description, explain the role tags play, and share tips that will get your products closer to the top of more search results. The advice in this post is geared towards being found on searches within Folksy, but following these suggestions can also help you get seen on Google and other search engines too.
So if you’ve ever wondered why your products aren’t appearing in search results, this post should give you all the answers as well as some practical steps you can take to change that.
If you have any questions, you can leave a comment at the bottom of the post.
1. Choose the right category and sub-category
When you’re ready to list an item, log into Folksy, go to ‘Your Shop’ in the top menu and click on ‘Add new listing’ in the drop-down menu at the top of the page. This will take you to the listing page, where you can add your item for sale. The first thing you need to do is choose which category and sub-category your item should appear in. It will look like this:
Always choose the most relevant categories for your item – this is important, not only because shoppers often browse by category, but also because the category and sub-category an item is in influence where it ranks in a search on Folksy. For example, if someone searches for “floral tote bag”, an item that is listed in the ‘tote bags’ subcategory (which is in the ‘sleeves and bags’ category, in the ‘Clothing & Accessories’ department) will feature higher in the search results than the same item listed in an different sub-category.
You can only choose one category or sub-category for each item.
Tip: If you have similar products that fit in more than one category, try listing them in different sub-categories (as long as they are appropriate!) and see which ones get the most views and sales.
2. Write a clear, descriptive title
One of the factors our search engine uses to determine which results to show a shopper in their search is an item’s title. The title has more weight than the other factors – in other words, the title is the most important factor for search results. If the words in an item’s title match the words in a customer’s search, that item will be displayed as a result in the search. Where it ranks depends on other factors too, which we will cover in this post.
Make your title really clear, descriptive and easy to read. Ask friends or family to describe your product to you and what would they type into a search engine to find it. Use this feedback to write your title.
Think carefully about which searches you want to rank for, and include words related to that search in your title but makes sure it reads well. Avoid using your own reference numbers etc in titles as no one will be searching for those and it can confuse the customer.
Steer clear of one word titles like ‘cushion’ as these really limit the searches you will appear in. For example, if you make glass suncatchers, a title like “Stained glass barn owl suncatcher – handmade hanging decoration” will show up in lots more searches than simply “Owl suncatcher” or even “Stained glass owl”. By having more relevant words in your title, not only are you increasing the likelihood of your product being found but also your chance of making a sale. That’s because someone searching for more defined terms knows what they want and is far less likely to just be browsing.
- Have you said clearly what the item is?
- Is your title easy to read?
- Have you asked a friend or family member (or another seller on the Folksy forum) how they would describe your item and what words they would type into the search box to find your item?
- Have you included different ways of describing your product (eg suncatcher, stained glass, hanging decoration)
- If there is more than one way to spell your item or an alternative spelling, does your title include the most popular one for your audience (eg ladybird not ladybug)?
- Have you spell-checked your title?
- Have you included any occasions, events or celebrations it’s particularly relevant for (eg Valentine’s Day gift, fifth wedding anniversary present or stocking filler)
- Is the wording in your title unique and not duplicated in another listing or on another site?
3. Write a detailed description
In addition to title, subcategory and tags, our system looks at an item’s description when deciding which items to display in search results. So as well as being your chance to tell a customer everything they need to know about your product, your description is a great opportunity to include lots of lovely ‘keywords’ that a shopper might use to find your product and ensure your listing appears in more searches. (‘Keywords’ is just the fancy name for the words and phrases people would use to find your product – read more about them here.)
Once you’ve identified the keywords for your product (find out how to do that here), incorporate them in your description. Make sure you write a description for a real-life human being though – don’t just stuff it with lists of words or repetitions!
- Have you described the item as accurately and fully as possible?
- Have you included the different words and phrases someone would use to find your product in easy-to-read sentences?
- Have you included synonyms?
- Are there other words that might be relevant that you haven’t mentioned? (eg for hare, that might be rabbit, bunny, bunnies, animal, woodland animal, British countryside)
- Have included common alternative spellings, variations or US spellings? (eg lampshade, lamp shade)
- Have you spell-checked your description?
- Is the wording in your description unique and different from others listings here or on other sites?
- Have you mentioned any occasions, events or celebrations your item may be relevant for? (eg Mother’s Day, Silver Wedding Anniversary, housewarming gift)
4. Use all your tags
You can add 15 tags to each of your listings. Tags are another factor our system uses to decide where to rank your product in the search results. It doesn’t matter what order your tags are in; the last one has just as much weight as the first.
You can use one-word tags or multiple-word tags – we would suggest using a mixture of both. Use commas to separate your tags. Try to include a mix of niche and broad tags (in the example above, ‘Longshaw’ is a niche tag, whereas ‘landscape paintings’ is more broad.)
- Have you used all your 15 tags?
- Have you used one-word and multiple-word tags?
- Have you included a range of tags that describe the type of product it is? (eg ink sketch, landscape painting, original painting / silver earrings, hoop earrings, / hanging planter, ceramic planter, vase, macramé planter)
- Have you included common alternative spellings, variations or US spellings? (eg notepad, note pad)
- Have you included both niche and broad tags?
- Have you included a mix of singular and plural tags?
- Have you included gift suggestions?
5. Be active on Folksy
The search results on Folksy work on a kind of points system, which currently considers title, tags, category, subcategory, description, section and shop name. When a customer searches for a particular word or phrase on Folksy, the algorithm will give each listing a score depending on the whether that word or phrase appears in those places and the weighting given to each. An item’s score determines where it is shown in the list of results. The aim is always to give a customer the best results possible.
If an item gets the same score as another item, the item that has been listed more recently will be shown first. So if you want your items to rank nearer the top on Folksy, be as active as possible and list regularly.
6. Have a relevant shop name
This might not be an obvious one but, as our system considers a shop name when deciding which results to show, a well-chosen shop name can have an impact on search results. A shop name doesn’t carry nearly as much weight as the title, tags, category, sub-category or description, but it does still count towards a listing’s ‘score’.
For example, if you sell letterpress cards and a customer types ‘letterpress Valentine’s card’ into the Folksy search bar, a result from a shop that has the word ‘letterpress’ in its name will come higher up than one which doesn’t, if all the other factors are the same. Likewise if you sell ceramics and have the word ‘ceramics’ in your shop name, your items will come higher in a search for ‘ceramic pot’ than other results, all things being equal. The same for jewellery and so on.
If you want to give it a try, you can change your shop name in the Shop Appearance section of your dashboard. Changing your Shop Name doesn’t change your shop URL (as this is based on your user name) so you shouldn’t lose any links into your shop. If you are setting up a brand new shop, it’s worth knowing that your user name also has an small impact on search results, so choose this wisely.
We are constantly testing and tweaking the algorithm that Search uses on Folksy to give buyers the best results we can. The fundamental elements laid out in this post are likely to stay the same, but other factors might also be taken into consideration. We will update this blog post with any major changes.
As well as ranking well in search results, one of the best ways to get seen is to be featured by Folksy. Discover how you can get your products featured on Folksy in this blog post >
Read these related blog posts about listings:
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