Last week, we focused on the proper application of Zibbet’s four top-level categories for organizing item listings. Handmade and Fine Art are for items made or created by you. TheVintage category is for items that are at least twenty years old and unaltered. The Supplies category is for items that are intended to be used to make other items.
Within each of the four top-level categories, there are three subcategory levels, with each subcategory being more specific than the preceding level. Zibbet’s category-subcategory hierarchy is fairly comprehensive and covers a wide range of options for grouping items. However, most shoppers will need to refine their searches even more by using the keyword search capability of Zibbet’s search engine and that’s where the use of tags enters the picture.
Tags are keywords that identify what the item is and that describe the item. The careful selection of tags is just as important to an item being found as where an item is placed in the category-subcategory hierarchy system. In two previous Success on Zibbet articles, The Zibbet Tag Game and Tag! You’re It!, I shared some tips on how to effectively tag your items. Most of that information is still appropriate and I encourage you to review those tips. However, with the launch of Zibbet’s new, more intuitive search engine a few of those suggestions are no longer applicable. It’s important to remember that titles are also searched using the same search algorithms that are used to search tags.
Zibbet’s original search engine only returned exact matches for tags, making it useful to tag items with different forms of the same word. Because the new search engine uses an algorithm called “stemming” it is no longer necessary to tag items in this way, including the use of both singular and plural forms of important tags. Stemming refers to the process by which a search engine equates the search term to its stem or root word. For example, the search term “children” is equated to its root word “child” and both words are treated equally by Zibbet’s search engine.
When using category names in titles and tags, please be reminded that the same category definitions apply. For example, you should only use the term “handmade” to describe an item that you made yourself, regardless of which category you place the item in. To refer to an item as “vintage” the item must be at least twenty years old and unaltered. Supplies that are mass produced should be placed in either the Commercial subcategory or one of the other more specific Supplies subcategories but not Handmade. Supplies should not be tagged or titled “handmade” just because they can be used to create handmade items.
I can’t stress enough the importance of choosing appropriate subcategories and tags for your items. Your purpose in selecting descriptors should be to make it easy for buyers who are looking for your items to find them. It is totally inappropriate to call or describe an item something that it isn’t! For example, if you are selling a handmade crystal necklace, don’t use “earrings” or “gemstone” as tags. If an item is yellow in color, don’t include “orange” as a tag. Buyers expect items to be categorized and tagged in predictable ways–miss-tagging leads to confusion and frustration, not sales!
Careful attention to your choice of tags and title text is extremely important. Invest the extra time that it takes to tag and title your items appropriately. I know you’ll be glad you did each time you receive the much anticipated “A sale was made on your account” e-mail from Zibbet!
Best wishes for much success on Zibbet!