Many sellers still try to draw buyers with general phrases. Phrases with a lot of competition like "[holiday] gift" "vintage gift" and "silver necklace" have thousands of search results on Etsy. There is no need to be concerned with placing highly in broad searches.
Use specific keywords that say what the item is. Select terms that tell people what the item actually is in different ways. Use terminology that your target customer would use.
Advice is out there to have at least 100 relevant keywords available. Have terms at your fingertips for any product genre or type you might sell. If have 2 or more types or genres of products on Etsy, consider having 100 keywords to use for each one.
That might seem like a lot, but it is not.
How to brainstorm for more keywords
Other sellers can help out with this. Check out listings on Etsy or other venues. What keywords are they using? Check out their sold items. Titles are at the top of course. Tags can be found at the bottom of any listing page. (Recently those disappeared for some sellers, so changes could be afoot there.)
Follow a blog, like Apartment Therapy. Note terms that they use to describe items, trends and styles. Their readers will also be searching using those keywords.
Here is another method of market research.
Read magazines for keyword ideas
|Try magazines for keyword research
Try magazines for keywords. Magazines that are of interest to your target audience. You will not necessarily be reading the magazine, but rather the advertisements.
Magazines devote teams of staff dedicated to using proper keywords in their ads... key words that cause viewers to want to buy the product! Those marketing people have done their keyword research. Why not apply it in your own shop?
Note the terms used for products in magazine ads. These writers must be on-trend with their use of key words.
If you could, which vintage magazine sums up your customer base? Use it to harvest new terms to attract buyers.
There is no need to subscribe... look at them at your library, or supermarket check-out. (You might even stay there until they kick you out.)
Make a keyword list
Once you have keywords, make a list. (Here is a sample for vintage shops.) Keep that list handy to use when you compose listings.
While writing your listing text, keep an eye on your keyword list. Your goal is to use important keywords in a natural, conversational way.
Be sure to write your first paragraph for your target buyer, not for a machine. The more you understand about your buyers, the better you will be able to write for them.
Happy vintage selling!