December 2, 2011

Staying Relevant

In the last few months I've had a little more down time (aka slower sales) to focus on the website side of things.  There's always work to be done even if it doesn't involve building and shipping rings.  With this time I was able to launch my new site, yay!

With that under control I moved on to cleaning up some of the social networks I have photos and links on, and then with a little extra time (aka even slower sales) I worked on rearranging/cleaning the shop and office, new pricing structures, and some more web updating.

After that was taken care of, I decided that since the year is coming to an end, I should go through some figures and accounting for the year, since I still have some down time (Hello? Sales?)... Wait, this is a little too much down time... even for this time of year.  Something must be off that I'm missing...

Ok, so it's not cat related, but sometimes you just need a cat macro.  Digging through the new Etsy stats function I started to notice that views and searches were way down, and most of the traffic was coming from off Etsy, through a link to my Wing Ring on Pintrest. (I should note here that 95% of my sales still come directly through my Jesse Danger Etsy page. I'll cover that aspect in another post.)  This seemed to really kick in mid August, about the same time sales slowed down and custom order inquiries, as well as treasury emails, were few and far between. 


I hopped on a different computer (one without all my saved web data) and did a search on Etsy for wedding bands under a few common search terms, knowing I had just relisted a dozen or so the day before, to see which of my listing showed up, each search was more and more specific to my rings: Wedding bands, gold wedding bands, mens' gold wedding bands, silver and gold wedding rings, modern silver wedding rings, women's rose gold wedding ring, etc. 

Search 1: 15-20 pages in, no listings
Search 2: 15-20 pages in, no listings
Search 3: 15-20 pages in, no listings
Search 4: 15-20 pages in, no listings
Search 5: 15-20 pages in, no listings
Search 6: 15-20 pages in, no listings

At this point I had been digging around for at least 15 minutes, just scrolling searches.  A little panicked I hunted through the Etsy forums and blogs to see if was missing something, if maybe others we're seeing this too. And nope, I wasn't alone.

Etsy Blog, Aug 9th:

Default Search is Now “Sort by Relevancy”

Hmm, guess I missed that... I'm sure they sent an email, and I probably glanced over the blog at some point between answering a flurry of emails and building like crazy from two of my busiest months ever (80 rings shipped between mid June - mid August).  I didn't fully understand the ramifications of what RELEVANCY meant until my shop started drifting into the sea of irrelevancy, and I had time to sit down and read about it.