How to Optimize Your Pins for Pinterest

In my years of blogging, I’ve made a lot of mistakes. One of those was not utilizing Pinterest correctly in order to bring my blog traffic. Luckily, I have seen the light and found tremendous growth in Pinterest. There are a lot of “schools of thought” on Pinterest and how to make the most of it. I am not going to sit here and tell you that there is a right and wrong way to grow your presence and pageviews through Pinterest, but I am going to share with you what works for me.

The biggest thing? SEO FOR PINTEREST. Crazy talk, right? We’re told to SEO Optimize our posts. Put keywords and descriptions and yadda yadda yadda… and for Pinterest, you’re supposed to make a really cool mind-blowing vertical graphic, pin it, and the visual will make it go viral. Right? Not quite.

Pinterest is a search engine. And everything there is based on keywords. Think about it. How many times have you used Pinterest instead of Google? I don’t know about you, but I use the search function in Pinterest almost daily.

The key here is to make your pins, boards, and profile show up in Pinterest searches.

I would definitely do your research in optimizing your own profile, verifying your website, enabling rich pins, and using descriptive keywords in your boards, in your profile, and in your pins. This is a great article on SEO for Pinterest that breaks those points down for you, if you have some Pinterest remedial work to do. I’ll wait here while you get your crap together.

Anyway, do I have any business talking about Pinterest? Who knows. Perhaps not. I’m no expert. But I do know that I have continual viral pins that bring me substantial traffic. It’s doubled my pageviews in one year. Let me break it down a little further.

My most popular post, The Best Cheap Makeup, has been pinned over 400,000 times. I wrote that post just under a year ago. In one month, my Drugstore Makeup Dupes has been pinned over 3,000 times. My Ultimate Makeup Capsule has been pinned 20,000 times since June. My posts and pins get continual traffic.

Most importantly, my pins come up at the top when you search for specific things. Let’s do a few Pinterest searches, shall we?

Best Drugstore Makeup on Pinterest - Pinterest SEO Example

“best drugstore makeup” — Oh, hey. First pin. Not pinned by me.

Drugstore Mascara on Pinterest - SEO Example

“drugstore mascara” — First pin. Didn’t even have to type in “best drugstore mascara.” (Although if you do, I’m still the first pin.) Again, not pinned by me.

Makeup on Pinterest - SEO Example

“makeup” — Apparently you don’t even have to be specific for my pins to show up on Pinterest. You can type in “makeup” and I’m the 10th pin.

Makeup Dupe on Pinterest - SEO Example

“makeup dupe” — Ah, look here. We’ve got two of my pins that show up as the 7th and 9th results. Dupes are pretty saturated on Pinterest, but somehow I managed to be at the top of those results.

So, how did I do it? Well, a couple of things.

1. Create a great graphic that takes up a lot of space in Pinterest, addresses a specific need, and encourages click throughs.

[apsp-pin-image image_url=’https://www.pinterest.com/pin/69805862951348864/’]
 

I pinned this two weeks ago, so that is why it only has 4 repins. I didn’t realize how big this image would blow up, but now that I look at it, it has a lot of things going for it. It:

  • Addresses a specific need. When I wrote the post, I thought of friends and family who are at the drugstore and had no idea where to even start, but didn’t want to spend a lot of money.
  • It encourages a click through to the post because I don’t tell the specific names and brands of the products. Those budget dollar amounts make us go “Huh… what’s that for $2.99? I need it!”
  • It is an extra long vertical image. The actual dimensions of this are 736 x 1750 pixels. I have heard that going up to 1800 is ideal, but I didn’t know that at the time I made this graphic. It’s that long because I needed to fit all my favorite stuff on it!! Haha!

2. SEO Optimize the crap out of your pins.

This is the big thing here. BIG THING. If you skim through the rest of this post, fine, BUT DON’T HERE. Haha. After you have done some keyword research and know what you want to target, optimize that shiz.

Nobody is going to see that amazing graphic and post if there are no keywords in the pin description. You absolutely cannot rely on your graphic to make you blow up. When I originally pinned my Best Cheap Makeup pin, I captioned the pin, “The Best Cheap Makeup – give yourself a total beauty wardrobe with products under $10!” I pinned it again with the caption,  “Best drugstore makeup, best makeup under $10.” I pinned it another time with both descriptions. Those are keyword-rich descriptions.

Try is using different pin descriptions when you pin them. This is a little more time consuming, but I know that it works since it worked so well with my Best Cheap Makeup pin. We want these pins to show up in search results. The best part about this is your pins don’t need to be repinned to bring you traffic! If they’re at the top of the search, people will click on them (and hopefully love you and be a subscriber and long time fan)!

3. Pin them over and over again.

If you pin your post only once and never come back, you are doing yourself a great disservice. Pin them again to different boards. Pin them to group boards. Participate in pinning groups with your blogger friends, to ensure your content is being pinned by other people. Remember how those search results showed nothing that I actually pinned? Those are repins or pins directly off that blog post.  Your content won’t be seen if you don’t continually push it out there.

Well, I know this post was extremely long winded, but thank you for humoring me and reading it. I hope these tips help bring you growth on Pinterest and on your website! Are you liking my blog tips posts? If so, let me know and I will keep them coming!

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SEO for Pinterest - Learn how to optimize your pins for Pinterest so they can be shown in searches! Utilize Pinterest's search engine function and be seen!

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15 Comments

  • Reply
    alycia
    October 28, 2015 at 8:05 am

    I need to utilize Pinterest way more. I never use it to promote myself, only as a search and find.

  • Reply
    Nikki
    October 28, 2015 at 12:42 pm

    This post just made it obvious that I totally ignore Pinteresting for my blog. I definitely use it to search images way more than Google now a days because of the click-ability (is this a word?). Thanks for these tips girl!!

  • Reply
    tawnyafaust
    October 30, 2015 at 1:45 pm

    This is a great post, Meg and some great info! When I get into blogging again I need to up my Pinterest game big time! 🙂 XO

  • Reply
    allthingsbigandsmallblog
    November 1, 2015 at 3:47 pm

    OK this post totally rocks! I have been really trying to “up” my pinterest game lately and it has been huge for my traffic. It is now my number one referrer! Thanks for sharing all these tips!

  • Reply
    Rachael
    November 3, 2015 at 1:18 am

    Thanks for sharing this! And yes girl, keep the blogging tips coming! I pinned this for future reference 😉

  • Reply
    Ashley
    November 3, 2015 at 7:40 am

    BEST post!! I do absolutely nothing with pinterest and definitely need to!

  • Reply
    manirudhphani
    January 3, 2016 at 11:12 pm

    Hi meg it’s a very great to hear from you learned many aspects of pinterest in a sec!

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    levinazubarev
    January 25, 2016 at 12:27 pm

    What a FANTASTIC Blog Post Meg! WOWZA! So much golden nuggets in one place! Congrats on creating such amazing content!

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  • Reply
    Linda
    March 30, 2016 at 1:07 am

    Meg thanks for the great info. I do not even have a website and trying to post my own info, but if I don’t have a website how can I pin my own info. I am learning and learning and certainly am paying attention to increase my
    Pinterest. I got the idea we could only pin 8 a day, is that true? Where can I find the rules of how many pins. When I have time and can enjoy Pinterest, now it has limits? I did not realize that. I thought it was my blank pin boards to save what I enjoy and pin it for others to enjoy as well. Sorry for book of questions. I am pinning this and watching your info. It would be so wonderful to answer each and every pin and thank them……maybe someday even the “Little Pinners” will be awarded with uplifting encouragement.

  • Reply
    Richa
    July 8, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    Hi Meg, i was browsing through pinterest and stumbled upon your pin. Clicked on the link and reached your website and i am so glad i did. I have just started blogging and i am thinking of increasing my traffic through pinterest. I am so lucky i read your blog, great information. You have a lovely family and you are very good looking .

    Thanks
    Richa
    AllThatsmom

  • Reply
    Boh xx
    August 8, 2016 at 2:39 am

    Great post 🙂 Pinterest can be so confusing! This is something I’m going to work in for my next set of goals for my blog.

    http://www.blackandwhiteinsider.com

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      August 8, 2016 at 8:44 am

      Glad to help!!

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