Unless you have been living under a rock, you should know by now that one of the best ways to increase blog traffic or capture leads is by using Pinterest the right way. Pinterest is an extremely powerful tool that can totally change your blogging game. However, it does require a little know-how for maximum benefit. In this post, I will walk you through setting up Pinterest the right way. Then I’ll finish with tips for continuing usage for maximum traffic to your website!
First, What is Pinterest and What do We Need to Know?
Pinterest is a visual search engine
Visual —> You need to make sure the graphics you create are top notch! Statistic shows that vertically aligned graphics tend to do well on Pinterest; as in, they get more re-pins and clicks.
Search Engine —> Most people understand the “visual” part, but the “search engine” portion seems to get lost on them. When you hear “search engine”, what do you think of? SEO? Yes! Exactly. And what are two most crucial parts of SEO? 1. Keywords, and 2. Strategic placement of keywords. Pinterest SEO is no different. You need to optimize your Pinterest account, boards, and each individual pin with strategically placed keywords.
In today’s post, I will walk you through the “search engine” optimization part. If you wish to learn more about creating visually striking pin graphics, please read this post.
A Brief Refresher on Keywords
Keywords are where it’s at! Whether you are optimizing your blog post for Google or your pin for Pinterest, you need to spend some time researching the optimum keywords. Finding keywords for Pinterest is not that difficult. Start by typing a word in the Pinterest search bar, and you will see the most searched phrases pop up. If your particular topic related words are not showing after typing the first word, type the second word.
For example, may be you have a vegan quinoa salad recipe. On Pinterest search bar if you type “vegan”, you see the following:
Now, it’s pretty good. But try typing “quinoa” next to “vegan”, and this is what Pinterest suggests.
Right, there, we have what we need. See the first result is “vegan quinoa recipes”, and the fourth one is “vegan quinoa salad”. If possible, use both of these somewhere in your pin description… but more on that later.
Setting up Pinterest Account the Right Way
The way Pinterest presents your pins is significantly different based on how you set up your account. Same goes for the tools you have access to.
First, make sure when you set up your account you have chosen Business Account. It’s totally free and absolutely worth it. A business account will have analytics data for you to track your growth. You can also see which pins are doing well, and based on that you can make critical business decisions.
If however, you forgot to choose the business option when creating your account, no worries! You can convert your regular account to business account anytime. Just head over to this link and follow prompts.
The next thing to do is to enable rich pins for anything that’s pinned from your website. A rich pin shows up way nicer than a non-rich pin. To enable rich pins, go to this link, and type your website URL. Click on “validate”, and that should work. If for some reason you get an error, the screen should list why you are getting the said error. Fix the issues, and try validating again.
Below is a comparison of a rich pin and a non-rich pin. See how the rick pin has a defines title, and just looks much better. A rich pin is simply a better quality pin.
Write a Compelling Profile Name and About Section
The profile name on your Pinterest account should tell everyone who you are and what’s your Pinterest account is about, not just your or your business name. For example, my favorite influencer and business coach, Melyssa Griffin’s Pinterest profile name is: Melyssa Griffin | Entrepreneur + Blogging Tips. This tells the visitor right away who she is and what she does.
The about section is also very important, and sort of like an extension to your profile name. My own bio reads: “I’m a web designer, developer, copywriter. Get my free guide to setting up your first WordPress site here: https://uhwit.com/subscribe-resource-library/“.
See, I told people what I do, as well as added a link to my email list opt-in because I want to capture as many leads as possible.
Also, when you add your website URL while setting up your bio, it’s best to verify your website with Pinterest. Do not skip this step.
Now, add a photo of yourself or a business logo. A clear photo of yourself is a good idea as it helps people relate to you better when they can see your face. I’m always iffy about sharing (or even taking) my photos… so I have my logo on my Pinterest account. That’s an option, but pros will tell you to use your own photo. Your choice!
Create at least 8-10 Boards Relevant to Your Niche
Guys, really, be professional! If you have a food blog, have food related boards. Do not have an interior design board out of nowhere. Unless of course your blog/business is about both food AND interior design. If you do have these irrelevant boards, make them secret boards so that only you are able to view the contents.
Make sure each board has a unique description. Here’s where you should add a few keywords. For example, if you have a board that’s specifically for vegan salad recipes, make sure to mention that.
Placement is also important. Make the very first board your content specific board only. For example, if you have a blog, make sure the first board only has your blog posts. The rest of the boards can have a combination of your content and others’ content as long as they are relevant.
Here’s what my Pinterest profile looks like when viewed as boards:
As you can see, the very first board is for my own content only, followed by the things I mostly talk about: WordPress, SEO, Pinterest, Blogging, Online Business and so on.
When you are setting up your boards for the first time, try to fill them up as soon as possible. Make sure each board has at least 30-40 pins when you are starting off. If you do not have your own content, that’s fine. But make sure the rest of the boards are filled up.
Now Let’s get Pinning!
Whenever you are pinning, make sure each individual pin has a keyword rich description. Click on a pin and then click on the edit button on top left. Fill out the description box. Also, when creating the pin graphics, try to make them consistent, so as it follows a consistent branding.
Pro-tip: When you add pinnable graphics to your blog post, make sure to add a keyword rich alt tag. Pinterest automatically pulls alt tag description and fills the pin description box with it. Saves time, and it’s also good for regular search engine optimization (Google, for example).
The key to growing your Pinterest is to pin a lot. Like, A LOT! Try to pin at least 100 items every single day! The general rule of thumb is to add 20% your own content and 80% relevant content by other folks. Initially, especially if you’re a new blogger, you may not have enough content and that’s OK. But as your content grows, try to get to the 2:8 ratio.
If you find it difficult to set aside time to manually pin, then you should definitely check out Tailwind or BoardBooster. Both of these auto pin schedulers are great for the busy blogger/entrepreneur as they run on autopilot. Save some time every week to schedule pins, and let the program take care of the rest for the entire week.
Whether you are manually pinning or using a scheduling app, make sure you are pinning a lot and consistently. That’s one of the key factors to growing audience and traffic.
Try and Join a Few Group Boards in Your Niche
One of the best ways to get traffic is by pinning on group boards. Try to find a few in your niche. Then ask to be joined. Do not spam these group boards, and adhere to the rules. Re-pin other group members’ pins to your boards when relevant. Pin your content to group boards regularly.
Well, that’s all for now. This should get you started in the right direction. Just make sure to set aside some dedicated time. Block out 30 minutes on the calendar every day (or a couple of hours once a week if you are using a scheduling app) when you will sit down and pin!
Happy Pinning! Feel free to ask if you have any questions. Leave your questions in the comment section so that the other readers can benefit from your questions.