The quick advice is that you need to have many links going to your Etsy shop. Put links on your blog, your Myspace, twitter, and facebook.
Link to your shop as often as possible, and that should help to improve your page rank.
Also, don't always use the name of your shop. Use a word instead. I could write "Art cards" and make that a link.
http://www.MindlessPursuits.etsy.com wrote great information. He has worked in the business and explains this issue well. He gave me permission to use what he had written. (I'll let him know he is now on this blog.)
MP = MindlessPursuits
"Adding inbound links from known directories that exist simply as link hoards will not positively affect your page rank, as Google does not apply positive value to those sites and in fact, according to Matt Cutts who works on SEO issues for Google, may negatively affect your page rank.
You want inbound links to come from organic sources such as other blogs, or informative sites that are not simply lists of links. The higher the page rank on those site, the more positive value it adds to yours."
A word about "organic." In this context it means algorithmic. That's to do with computers doing things step by step. Logically.
You may have heard about SEO and how Etsy messed up things, making our Page ranking go down.
"For those trying to understand the SEO issue with regards to Etsy, the short story is: search engines place importance on certain items within a web page when they are determining how that page / site should be ranked (1st in the list, second, etc) for a given set of search terms. Etsy's way of handling your page has negatively impacted this through a method known as 'keyword stuffing,' which adds words to your web page. In this case, those words are diminishing the value of your own words to the search engine."
SEO is "Search Engine Optimisation" and because search terms got kind of lumped together, April and May were not good months for sellers on Etsy. So, we have to do many things. It's no use sitting around wringing our hands. We need to somewhat ignore Etsy, and promote hard in multiple ways to bring people to our shops.
From Wikipedia: "search engines are not paid for organic search traffic, their algorithms change, and there are no guarantees of continued referrals. Due to this lack of guarantees and certainty, a business that relies heavily on search engine traffic can suffer major losses if the search engines stop sending visitors. It is considered wise business practice for website operators to liberate themselves from dependence on search engine traffic."
So we cant rely on Etsy's search facility.
Here is more advice & some links from MindlessPursuits:
"Take the time to do some SEO research on your own, and don't look for a quick fix. They don't exist. Even page rank algorithms change as Google works to improve service and defeat spammers so staying on top can help.
If Google is your concern, I recommend:
Included in this page is their 'Starter Guide' for understanding SEO
Also, I recommend adding the blog of Matt Cutts:
Acquaint yourself with Google's Webmaster Tools. Not only can you find out your page rank, but the tools will help you improve your SEO in other ways.
"We cannot add our Etsy shop to the Google Webmaster Tools. The Google webmaster tools require verification either through a meta tag or through the upload of a particular file. We don't have that kind of control on Etsy. That said, if you have a blog, it can be used, and the learning experience from it can be applied to your Etsy shop."
"There are directories that it is good to be in for visibility, but have no effect on your page rank. Some directories are considered spam fodder and thus cause a negative score attribute to those who list there. Since it's very hard to know which is which, better you research and pick and choose carefully.
Ultimately, you want organic links, preferably from quality, popular sites.
If you're looking for ways to increase visibility, I recommend having content that refreshes daily (if not multiple times per day) and gets views through organic processes.
For instance, for a blog, you need to generate (write) new content regularly. For a shop, you need to add new items regularly. This way the search engines see new content on a regular basis, which they rank higher."
This is why renewing when the 4 months is up, and listing new items, should be done throughout the day, not in one lump.
"Large companies, like the ones I've worked for, spend money on resources and permanent positions to constantly work on their SEO. It's an ever-changing landscape and your sites need constant tuning.
One of the companies I did this for was a national retailer and they have a dozen people that do this every day.
So if you find it confusing, and a lot of work, don't feel like it's something you are failing at. It's a lot to learn and to keep up with. It just needs to become a part of your daily operations as much as any other marketing or promotion time is."
Some more good resources for SEO knowledge:
This article was written by Linda, of LindaButterfly.etsy.com. Linda is a retired science teacher, using art to express herself, and enjoying creating the art for her two Etsy shops. She is married with one adult son.