How To Research and Place Keywords To Dominate Small Niches (part 1)

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Original Post

Getting your Etsy Shop and Etsy items found on Google can be a difficult task. But with the proper research and placement of specific keywords you can begin to dominate small niches and move up in the Google search. There are a few things you need to keep in mind when you are looking for keywords to use.

When looking for keywords and phrases shopper intent, search volume, and keyword competition are the 3 most important factors that determine a good key word.

*Shopper Intent First — The most important factor to look at when figuring out the value of a keyword or phrase is intent. When picking a good keyword to analyze, pick words or phrases that people interested in your items would search for. You know you product best. Once you determine what these word and phrases are, use the Google Keyword tool to find more suggested words and analyze them to see if they are worthy of using. I will explain more about this later in this article

*Volume Second — When determining the value of a keyword or phrase you need to look at the search volume. Are there enough people searching per month for a term on Google to even consider optimizing for it? (The Google Keyword tool provides this info for you). If you answered yes, then you have to ask yourself if it is possible to rank for that keyword? So it will be extremely difficult to rank on Google for a high volume term such as ‘garland,’ but ranking on Google for lower competition, small niche, 2-3 word phrases such as “paper garland”.

*Keyword Competition Third – A key word can have a high search volume on Google, but that does not mean it is a good key word or phrase. You have to know how many competing pages there are according to Google and the competition on Etsy. These to factors can help you determine if you want to use a key phrase or not. I will also cover more about this later in the article.

*Small Niches Always- Why would you want to focus on a small niche? Smaller niches are searched less on Google every month, but they also have less competition. The smaller amount of competing pages the better the chance your shop will rank on Google for a particular keyword.


I am going to use of Handmadeology’s readers as an example to drill down into the above topics.

Kari owner of The Paper Button recently started making and selling handmade fabric and paper garland. She asked me about her newest product and what she could improve on.

Let’s start by doing some keyword research.

The best tool for currently for doing keyword research is the Google Keyword Tool.It is a powerful tool that provides in-depth and insightful information about keywords and phrases. The key phrase in question in Kari’s situation is “paper garland”. Let’s jump right in and use the Google Keyword tool.


Check out the full article for screen shots:

There are a few important things to notice here Competition and Global Monthly Searches.

In this case the competition is referring to ad space on the side of the Google search. This really only tells you that other people are placing ads on Google for this key phrase. This is a good thing because this means this phrase is being searched. If there are very low search then there will most likely be no ad space competition.

Global Monthly Searches:
This number is real and hard evidence that you will want to remember about your key phrase. This will tell you how many people are searching this exact key phrase every month.

How to find the “real” competition for your keyword or phrase:

Now that we know that the key phrase ” paper garland” gets 9,900 searches per month, we have to find out what the competition is. If there is to much competition this key phrase may not be worth trying to rank on Google for.

Currently the easiest way to find out what the competition for a specific keyword or phrase is on Google is to search the it on Google with parentheses. In the example below you will see that there are 18,200 competing pages for the key phrase “paper garland”. You will also notice the text ads on the side of the Google search.


Digging further in the search results:

Now that we have the Google search up, let’s take a look at the competition and see if it will be possible to rank for the key phrase paper garland.

Shopping results: The Google shopping results yields only one Etsy shops for the key phrase in the first 10. Ranking in the Google shopping results should be an easy task if the keywords are placed properly throughout one’s Etsy shop.

Web results: You will notice in the web results there are some big name sites in the top 10 results,like Design Sponge, ehow, the find, and even Marta Stewart, but these can be over come again with the proper techniques.


Before we determine if the key phrase “paper garland” is strong enough to focus on or not, let’s look at Etsy for competition.

Simple enough to figure out, just head over to Etsy and search your keyword. Make sure you add the quotation marks. This will make your search more specific.

The search results yielded 263 items on Etsy for the term “paper garland”.

Key Phrase Evaluation:

“paper garland”

* 9,900 searches per month
* good Google text ad competition
* 18,200 competing pages on Google
* 1 Etsy shop found in the top 10 on Google shopping
* 1 Etsy shop found in the Google web results
* top sites like Design Sponge, ehow, the find, and even Marta Stewart in the top 10 Google Web results
* 263 results on Etsy

After close evaluation the key phrase “paper garland” is a strong key phrase and should be focused on.


Imagine ranking in the top ten for this key phrase. That means that a good majority of the 9,900 searches are going to come your way. Knowing that there are under 20,000 competing pages on Google is great. Just looking at the top ten competing pages it is clear that with Etsy’s SEO and the proper placing of this key phrase it will be possible to rank high in the Google Search for paper garland. Also the fact that there is only 263 items found on Etsy for this specific key phrase makes this strong as well.

In the next article I will be covering how to poperly place this key phrase in your Etsy shop.

If you have any questions feel free to ask away! I hopefully can answer... or others in the community!

Posted at 11:28pm Aug 21, 2010 EDT


Excellent article! :)

Posted at 11:31pm Aug 21, 2010 EDT

Wow Tim, you continue to amaze me with your knowledge and generosity in sharing it. I can't wait to read your next article!

Posted at 2:58am Aug 22, 2010 EDT

Cassandra avatar
twistedbeading says

setting up firm marker. off to bed. this will be my morning reading. :) thanks OP!

Posted at 3:02am Aug 22, 2010 EDT

Wow! I think I'll have to read that a few times to absorb everything!

But, it is early! :D

Posted at 3:09am Aug 22, 2010 EDT

WOW! thank-you. I think I am getting closer to understanding this important topic.

Posted at 3:13am Aug 22, 2010 EDT

WoolyBumblebee avatar
WoolyBumblebee says


Posted at 3:20am Aug 22, 2010 EDT

SolDelSur says

My eyes are closing but this seems interesting. I'll read it tomorrow!

Posted at 3:23am Aug 22, 2010 EDT

Fatastic article!! Thanks so much :)

Posted at 3:44am Aug 22, 2010 EDT