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Placement of listings

When I list an item and see that there are already 5,000 of that item listed on etsy, how is it determined which page my items end up on? Are there really 5,000 different items? Who ends up on the last pages of the search and how can a seller avoid ending up way to the end of the list?

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Inactive Etsy Member 12:47pm Apr 9, 2012 EDT
As far as search goes, it's all to do with relevancy. Etsy has never revealed exactly what all the factors are that go into determining relevancy, but if you search the forums for the topic you'll find a lot of insight.

As far as categories, they are still sorted by recency as the default so the newest items will be shown first.
This thread from CindyLou, which explains how the Relevancy search works, may be helpful...
That's anyone's guess. Sometimes I feel it is just the luck of the draw!
Thanks, everyone.
For some things, there really are tons of duplicates. It can be hard to get seen at the top of a vague category so focus on specific tags so that a customer who's looking for your specific item can find it.
Alas, there is no easy way to know which page of search results your listing is currently appearing on. This can vary based on a number of factors taken into account by our algorithm as well as based on the search query that is being made.

That said, instead of focusing specifically on what page you appear on in search results, it can be more effective to focus on the information you can find in your Shop Stats about which terms have been effective at bringing shoppers to your listings.

As you find keywords and terms that are particularly effective at helping people find your listings make those the focus when tagging and titling your listing. As you find your have tags and titles that never work to bring in traffic remove them and experiment with other terms that may be more effective.

For more information about tagging and titling for search results see here:
Thank you, everyone, for your help.

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