How To Manage Etsy Listings, Tips From a Pro Seller

When you start an Etsy shop part of listing things is learning how to manage the listings themselves.

There are a lot of things that you can do that aren’t obvious when you open a shop, so here are some tips about how to manage Etsy listings.

how to manage etsy listings tips from a top seller

Table of Contents

Some of the links in this article are affiliate links that will pay me a small commission if they’re used to purchase something. To see the entire affiliate policy click here.

How to add listings on Etsy.

There are a few ways that you can add listings on Etsy, including creating one directly in the listings manager, creating a copy from an individual listing, and creating a copy from a listing page when you’re logged in to your account. When you create a copy of a listing on Etsy it’s considered to be a new listing and the copy will start out with zero-level stats.

The instructions I’m going to be giving are all for desktop, because the Etsy system is a lot easier to navigate on desktop, as opposed to on the app! If you have to use a phone, I recommend going to the browser and logging into the Etsy system there instead of trying to do this on the app.

Creating a listing on Etsy

By using the listings manager from your shop dashboard, you can choose to create a new listing by clicking the button on the top right of the page.

You can also use the individual listings and click on the gear icon to create a copy. This will duplicate the information about the old listing and you can edit it to reflect differences.

This is handy if you have a lot of similar items that have similar keywords or descriptions.

You can also go to the individual listing page when you’re logged into your account, and click on “copy” above the listing. This does the same thing as copying it from the listing manager does.

A copy of an Etsy listing is treated as a new listing, there’s no benefit to creating a new one from scratch. If you have a lot of similar items making copies can save you a lot of time!

You can also create a new listing then save it as a draft if you don’t want to publish it right away.

Save as draft button.
Save as draft button.

Create the listing, then at the bottom right, click “save as draft.” That will put the listing in the drafts section of the listing manager, and you can find it and publish it at a later date.

How to Delete a Listing On Etsy.

To completely delete an Etsy listing, you can use the listings manager and choose the individual listings, then choose “delete” at the top. You can also open the listing when you’re logged into your account and click “delete” at the top of the page.

Deleting an Etsy listing

Be aware that deleting an Etsy listing is final! It will get rid of the listing completely, and you’ll also be getting rid of all of the stats and sales history that go with it.

There are reasons why you would want to delete an Etsy listing, most of them relating to having a website that you want to get traffic to.

Other than that, you can just leave inactive listings in your shop and you’ll be able to find them in the “sold out,” “expired,” and “inactive” sections on the right side of the listings manager.

For another article about deleting listings, click here.

How to deactivate an Etsy listing.

If you just want to temporarily deactivate an Etsy listing so that it doesn’t show up in your shop, choose the listing and then click on “deactivate.” You can find this option in the listings manager by choosing the listing, or by clicking “deactivate” on the listing page itself when you’re logged into your account.

Deactivate button on an Etsy listing
Deactivate button on an Etsy listing

That won’t delete it, but it will remove it from your shop and you can restore it later if you want to.

When you deactivate a listing, the 4-month activity period doesn’t stop, so you’ll still be running out the clock on that time.

To find your inactive listings, go to the listing manager and look on the right side of the page. Choose the “inactive” box and the listings that are currently deactivated will show up.

The reasons for deactivating an Etsy listing include things like managing supplies, reducing inventory on things that you want to take a break from making, and going on vacation and leaving only digital listings in the active category.

Whether you delete or deactivate listings, they won’t show up in your shop or in search results, but deactivating isn’t permanent. The deactivated listings will keep their sales and favorites history with them, so they’ll still have those stats attached when you reactivate them.

For another article about deactivated listings, click here.

When Do Etsy Listings Expire?

Etsy listings are active for 4 months, and every item that sells renews for a new 4-month period. Listings that are deactivated will continue to use up that 4-month period, so deactivating a listing won’t pause the time. The listing will still expire 4 months from when it’s listed, even if it’s not active in the shop during that time.

This is something that a lot of people aren’t aware of, and they think that the 4 months is only counted when the listing is active.

That isn’t the case, the listing period is 4 months regardless of whether it’s active or inactive.

In addition, you won’t be refunded for the listing fee if you delete a listing. Make sure that you want to list it before you hit “publish,” because changes after that won’t end up giving you any refunds!

How to arrange your listings in the listings manager.

There are multiple ways that you can choose to view your listings in Etsy listings manager. These include the grid view and the list view, and both also have the option to toggle stats on and off. The controls to change the views are located on the right side of the listings manager page.

Grid vs. list view and stats turned on and off.

By toggling the view on the right side, you can choose which arrangement you prefer, and you can also choose to see the basic listing stats.

To see more detailed keyword stats for each listing, click on the gear icon in the listing itself, then choose the stats button.

This will open up a more detailed page for that listing’s stats, including keyword information.

You can also change the date range on these to see more or less information across different time periods.

How to organize Etsy listings.

To organize Etsy listings so that they show up in a specific order in your shop:

  • Go to the shop homepage.
  • Click on “edit” at the top of the page.
  • Scroll to the top of the listings and click on “rearrange items.”
  • Move the individual listings and drag it to the position you want it to be in.
  • Alternatively, choose a page from the dropdown to move the listing to.
  • When you’re done click on “view shop” at the bottom to exit edit mode.
Rearranging listings on Etsy

You can rearrange the listings to keep them in a specific order or arrangement, but remember that customers can sort things into a different order by using their own sort feature.

It does make sense to move some things to pages that are farther back, though.

For example, items that are seasonal can be moved off of the first page when that holiday is over.

Etsy featured listings are shown at the top of the listing grid on your shop’s home page. You can choose multiple listings by clicking the yellow star under the listing in the listings manager, and Etsy will show four at the top of the grid. If one featured listing sells out, Etsy will replace it with an alternate featured listing as long as you’ve chosen more than 4 in your listings manager.

Arranging featured listings on Etsy

Every Etsy account has Featured listings, and if you have Etsy Plus you also have the option of rearranging listings in a larger display at the top of the home page.

Using featured listings is a good way to show off new items, or to draw attention to bestsellers. You can also put seasonal listings in the featured items slots, just be sure to come back and choose different ones so that they don’t look out of date!

How Many Listings Can You Have on Etsy?

As long as the listings follow Etsy’s policies, there’s no limit to how many you can post. Realistically, most people have in the hundreds as a manageable large number, but there are some shops that have in the tens of thousands. As long as you can manage the listings and they comply with Etsy’s Terms of Service, you can list as many as you want to.

Be aware that if you list a huge number of listings every day, Etsy might deactivate some of them, or deactivate your entire shop.

This has become more common as more sellers started using Etsy during the pandemic, and there were a lot of scammers who decided to list things then not send the merchandise.

Etsy has systems in place that will close shops or deactivate listings if specific situations are noticed, but as long as you’re not violating any rules you should be able to contact Etsy support and have your shop reopened.

There is also no “magic number” of listings that will guarantee that you get sales. A lot of people say that if you have 100 listings you’ll automatically start making more sales, but that isn’t true.

Free Etsy Listings Code.

To get 40 free listings when you set up a new account, you can use an existing Etsy shop’s referral code. This code is given to sellers to give to their friends so that they can open a shop, and the Etsy seller will also receive 40 free listings.

To use my Etsy free listings code to start a new shop, click here: in a new tab. (I’ll also get 40 free listings.)

To find your own code to give to friends, click here while you’re logged into your Etsy account: How to Refer a Friend to Sell on Etsy – Etsy HelpOpens in a new tab.

Before you start handing out codes left and right, though, check Etsy’s referral policies. You can’t do things like use your own code to start a second shop, so make sure to go through and read the terms before getting creative with it.

Kara Buntin

Kara Buntin has run a profitable home-based business since 1999, and has a background in art, theater design, and cake decorating. She's a top Etsy seller with over 51,000 sales on Etsy and her own website, and helps other home-based business owners with their business goals and SEO. She founded the Artisan Shopping Directory website to promote the artisans who are members of her EShop Success marketing program.

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