Optimise your name, boards and pins for Pinterest search

  • If your business name doesn’t contain a descriptive keyword that immediately tells people what you do or sell, ensure you add a keyword to the end of your business name to increase the chances of your Pinterest business account being found through the Pinterest search.
  • Label all boards and use keywords in the titles so other users can find them easily through the Boards search option. Place them as close to the beginning of your title as possible.
  • Set a category for each board to increase your chances of being found – there are 32 categories to choose from.
  • Include a location in your keywords, if relevant.
  • As with SEO and Google Adwords, spend some time finding out which words people are using when they search for something on Pinterest. Just type words related to your industry in the search box and popular suggestions automatically pop up.
  • Ensure your keyword descriptions are short and simple.
  • Pins should ideally come from a URL with a keyword in it.
  • As with any SEO, try not to sound too “keywordy.” Optimise and still sound human by using strong keywords within the right context.
  • Include adjectives as well as keywords (don’t use hashtags!) that relate to the image and the website it links to. For example, suggest ideas for what to do with your products, and add examples of special occasions when they might use it e.g. perfect for your best friend, mum, dad, cat lovers etc.

Pinning etiquette

  • Pinning consistently can help people discover your pins and increase your followers.
  • The general rule of thumb is to pin 5-10 items per day.  Don’t just repin the content of others, but ensure you are pinning your own original pins.
  • Don’t pin 20 pins per day for a week straight, and then pin nothing at all for three weeks. Try to pin on a daily basis when you can.
  • Test and use response data to determine the best times to pin to your boards. Then aim to pin at peak times of the day.
  • All pins have the same width, but can be any height, with a limited 500 character length. For a typical pin, the optimal size is 738 x 1102 pixels. Canva’s Pinterest template is this size and makes sizing images a lot easier (and it’s free!).
  • Users are looking for beautiful images that represent the things they like or want to learn about. Catch their eye with great visuals. When creating and sharing content on Pinterest, aim for larger, longer images. They take up more real estate in the Pinterest feed and really stand out.
  • Repin your old pins. Remember, pins never stop working for you! It’s important to repin old pins from previous weeks, and even months, for three reasons: 
  1. Not every one of your followers is going to see all of your pins every time you update one of your boards.
  2. For strongly competitive words, the number of recent repins that a pin gets can help with its ranking in the search results, but once the number of repins has slowed down, it will move much lower in the search results or completely disappear.
  3. Even if a pin has been repinned once, it is still much more likely to show up in search results for keywords
  • The rule for all social media is to mix up your content. So, don’t just post product photos. The diversity of your pins is a really important factor when users decide whether to follow an account. And don’t just pin your own work – the general rule of thumb is 80/20 with 20% being repins of other users' pins.
  • It’s important to check and change the descriptions of repins. If you do this then it increases the chances of someone finding it from your profile and following you.
  • Use hashtags sparingly. Too many hashtags (Pinterest hasn't specified how many) in a pin description may negatively impact a pin's ranking and may result in users leaving your board for good if they click on the hashtag rather than your url. 

Gaining new followers

  • Participate in Pinterest Group Boards. Many have hundreds of contributors and thousands of followers so they’re a great way of getting your pins in front of a larger audience in a much shorter time. Find, join or create a group board.
  • Pinterest Group Boards World lists dozens of group boards on a whole host of topics (some boards might require an invitation from an existing member).
  • Make it as easy as possible to pin content from your website by adding a Pin It button to any image on your site through Pinterest directly. (If you use WordPress, there’s a Pinterest Pin It Hover button plugin). These simple buttons direct your visitors to either check out your Pinterest account or actually pin your site’s content on their boards.
  • Use the ‘Find Friends’ option for Pinterest. Click on the gear icon in the top right hand corner of your home page and the Find Friends option is in the drop down menu.
  • Make it easy for people to find your pins by including them in your newsletter e.g. “These are our most popular pins this week. Check out our Pinterest page for even more!”
  • Use a Call-to-Pin in the same way you use a call-to-action in your ad copy. It will significantly increase the engagement of your pins. In your pin’s description, add something like: “Repin to your own inspiration board.”

Find out what is popular on Pinterest

  • If you know what the most popular Pinterest categories are, then you’ll have a better idea of which boards will work for your business. You can find out here
  • The vast majority of Pinterest users are female, although men are starting to catch the Pinterest bug.
  • Use infographics. These are popular because of their DIY, how-to nature, which is currently the second most popular category on Pinterest!

So what now?

The next step is to use your pins to build relationships with followers and influencers that will grow your reach. Research shows that the three main factors that Pinterest users take into consideration in the ‘to follow or not to follow’ decision-making process are:

  1. How many accounts you are following/are following you
  2. How many pins you have
  3. How many boards you have

To be on top of those factors and build relationships to grow your reach, you need to follow these simple steps:

  1. Just like you respond to tweets, Facebook posts, and Instagram comments, engage with your followers directly by answering their questions and responding to their comments. Also leave comments on your followers’ boards. Their followers will see your brand too.
  2. Follow and engage with popular boards that are relevant to you. If you are commenting on popular pins, your brand name will be seen by the huge number of people who follow those boards.
  3. A very cool feature for marketing on Pinterest is the Open Board, which allows users to contribute their own pins. Just give them pinning access by adding their name or email.
  4. Integrate Rich Pins to boost your engagement and direct traffic to your site. They include real-time price and stock updates, direct links to your site, and interactive map locations. One of the most underused features of Pinterest.
  5. Brands taking advantage of Rich Pins experience a significant jump in their repin/pin ratio. They are full of valuable, traffic-generating information; and are one of the best direct strategies for growing your sales on Pinterest. Rich Pins come in 6 different subjects: app, movie, recipe, article, product and place.
  6. You need to get Rich Pins validated on the Pinterest site itself (you might need some help from your web developer…it involves meta tags.) You can find out more here   
  7. Competitions are very popular on Pinterest. Just do a search for “giveaway” and you’ll see loads of options. Always adhere to Pinterest’s Commercial guidelines if you are planning on running a competition or promotion on Pinterest:
  • Don’t run a competition where each pin, repin, or like represents an entry, or ask pinners to vote with a repin or like.
  • Don’t run contests, sweepstakes or promotions “too often.”
  • Don’t suggest that Pinterest sponsors or endorses your business

8. Create a board just for blog posts and put it at the top of your page so your followers will see it first. This will help draw traffic to your site and make it easier for users to find your content.  On the blog posts themselves, add ‘click here to pin’.

Track your success

One of the latest features on Pinterest for Business is Pinterest Analytics. When you verify your account, you get access to important tracking information. You’ll be able to see which strategies and content work so you can constantly improve your marketing. This feature is only for business accounts and allows you to see:

  • Which pins and boards from your profile people love most
  • What people like to save from your website
  • Who your Pinterest audience is, including their gender, location, and other interests
  • Which devices people use when they’re pinning your stuff
  • How adding the Pin It button to your website leads to referral traffic from Pinterest

Once you have a business account, you can find Pinterest Analytics by going to your profile, clicking the gear menu, then select Analytics.

Remember, the ultimate test of success is the amount of traffic your account drives to your website and the resulting sales. You could have an account with 500 followers that could be driving 15k visitors to your site per month. Equally you could have an account with 150k followers and be driving traffic nowhere. Followers on Pinterest aren’t everything – providing value will lead to quality traffic and ultimately sales.

And finally...

In addition to everything we have recommended already, here are a few more suggestions that we always like to share with our clients:

  • Use a Secret Board to collect pins to save time. Load up your 20 or so pins at once, and keep them on your secret board. When you are ready to pin, return to the board and move the pins to other ‘live’ boards.
  • Over time, you’ll be able to see which boards are more popular and get more engagement. Move these boards to the top of your page so when users come to your page, they will see your best material.  And keep cover photos fresh.
  • Another way to keep your content fresh is to piggy-back off holidays, seasons and events. Create specific boards for Christmas, to catch people’s attention and increase your chances of your boards and pins being found. Remember to make your keywords relevant. Make the most of seasonal trends and key retail dates such as Valentine’s Day.  Check out our Merry Pinterest blog and substitute the words Valentine’s/Mother’s Day etc for any mention of Christmas!

That’s it. You should now be a fully-fledged Pinterest Pro!

Check out the Pinterest Blog to stay updated on all things Pinterest.

If you found this useful, but still need a helping hand getting started, or you would like a review of your business Pinterest account to take it to the next level, get in touch here

Leeza MorleyMarketing & PR Consultant