Pinterest rocks for Newbie Bloggers. Yes seriously! Currently it has to be the easiest way to drive traffic to your brand new blog or website. When you’re waiting for Google to recognise that you even exist, Pinterest can come to the rescue. You just need to treat it like a search engine and learn your Pinterest SEO.
But surely Pinterest is a social media platform? Well yes and no. If you think social media is all about commenting on posts, liking, following and unfollowing, then no Pinterest is not a social media platform. It works completely differently…
If you’re brand new to Pinterest, you need to read my post:
It will tell you everything you need to know to set up your business account and start using rich pins.
Why Do I Use Pinterest?
In 4 months I’ve gained 2100 followers and 450,000 Monthly Unique Viewers and that’s in a really difficult subject area – blogging.
It’s far easier to post food recipes, fashion tips and craft ideas to get thousands of repins – even if you’re a new blogger. (My last business was in the outdoor sector and customers were crazy about pinning images from my site).
In the same time period I’ve gained only a handful of followers on FaceBook. I haven’t put much effort into my FaceBook account, (I mainly use it for private FaceBook groups). But, I have regularly scheduled posts to my FaceBook page.
FaceBook doesn’t even show my posts to most of my existing followers. It’s just not your friend anymore if you’re a small business looking for FREE traffic. If you want organic viral traffic, Pinterest is your answer. It just keeps getting better. Last weekend my traffic from Pinterest doubled overnight!
Read on to get the lowdown on using Pinterest to explode your traffic…
Pinterest SEO, Everything You Need To Know
- What Is Pinterest SEO?
- Mobile Is The Preferred Pinterest Experience.
- Creating Beautiful Pins.
- Optimise Your Boards For Pinterest SEO.
- Pinterest SEO Magic
What is Pinterest SEO?
It’s more usual to talk about Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) when you’re talking about Google. When I first heard the term Pinterest SEO, I was really sceptical. How can a social media platform be a search engine?
But it’s true. If you think about it all social media platforms have some kind of search function, it’s just that the Pinterest one works better than most. Plus, Pinterest is mainly about searching .
In the words of the company “Pinterest inspires you to discover and do what you love”. The platform is about searching for a winter coat, finding an idea to keep your toddler busy or ways to get your succulent to flower.
It’s not about chatting, commenting or liking. Pinners are searching for solutions and ideas to pin to their boards. Think about Pinterest as a search engine and the platform starts to make a lot more sense.
Mobile Is The Preferred Pinterest Experience
Your average Pinterest user is on a mobile. Only 15% of my Pinterest traffic comes from a desktop or laptop. 10% use tablets and 75% are on mobile devices.
What does this mean?
Your website needs to be fast.
I’m assuming you have a fully responsive theme. just about everyone does. Instead it’s SPEED that let’s websites down. Loading speed on a mobile is really unforgiving. Your visitors will not wait if your website is slow.
Test your mobile site loading speed with Google PageSpeed Insights Tool. Anything less than 50% can seriously affect your traffic.
Another way to check your site performance is using the WP Engine – Speed Tool.
Find out more about about site speed in my post:
Images Must Be Optimised
Large image files are the number one cause of slow websites. If you’re not optimising your images, start doing it now.
I never load an image to my website until I’ve resized it an appropriate size. The right size for you will depend on where you’re using the image and on your theme. For this site my big header images are a maximum of 2200 pixels wide and some of my in content images are a maximum of 600 pixels wide.
Resize your images before you upload them. I use PicMonkey which allows me to export a low, medium or high resolution jpeg file. Any photo editor will do the job.
To make sure my images are fully optimised I use the TinyPNG plugin. It’s free to use for the first 100 images each month. My SiteGround websites come with their own free plugin SG Optimiser.
Create A Terrific Mobile Experience
When you’re working constantly on a desktop or laptop is easy to forget that your visitors are seeing your results on a mobile.
Go and check out your site on your mobile now!
Is it easy to read? Is the text clear, the site uncluttered? Does the navigation work? If visitors click through from Pinterest, make sure they can find what they’re looking for straightaway. Otherwise no-one will repin you beautiful pins.
Creating Beautiful Pins
Canva is the best tool for creating beautiful pins and the free version works just fine! I’ve found that creating pins that get traffic is all about practice and trial and error.
Over the last 4 months my creating skills have improved through making more and more pins (I’m also much quicker). I’ve also gained some insight into what potential visitors are looking for.
There’s a lot of advice about what the perfect pin should look like. Ignore it!
Design Pins For Your Audience
Instead go and look at successful pinners in your niche. What are they doing? Look at the pin size, is there text or no text? Are the pins colourful?
The only rule you can’t ignore is that any text on pins needs to be clear and easy to read on a mobile.
Otherwise it may just be a case of trial and error. Take note of which pin designs are working you and your competitors. Can you improve on them?
You want to have the best pins possible and blow your competition out of the water!
Optimise Your Boards For Pinterest SEO.
Now you have a fast loading website and beautiful pins, it’s time to start optimising your Pinterest Boards.
Find Your Pinterest Keywords
What are your potential followers searching for on Pinterest? This is really easy to find out.
Go to your Pinterest account and pop your keyword in your search bar.
This is my result when I enter the term blogging.
Create Boards That Match The Keywords
If I now search for “Blogging for Beginners” and select boards, I can see it’s a very popular term. There are several hundred boards and the top board has 24,000 followers.
Of course this means the search term is super competitive (I already know that), but not everyone will follow the next steps.
Give Your Board The Same Name As Your Keyword
D’oh! Sounds obvious but I’m spelling it out for you! If someone’s looking for blogging for beginners, name your board “blogging for beginners”.
This is not the time to get creative. Stick to the keyword!
Add A Board Description
Start your board description with your keyword.
You can add in a few extra related keywords. Just make the description easy to read. don’t add too many keywords.
Create A Board Cover
Your board cover needs to be an actual pin. Pinterest has stopped allowing separate board covers.
I get around this by creating a “board cover pin”. I add the board name on my pin. Link the new pin to a relevant post and select the pin as my board cover. I use 600 x 600 pixel pins as my board covers.
This is my board cover for blogging for beginners.
Pinterest SEO Magic
So far what do you think? Obvious?
This next step was like a lightbulb going off in my head.
Create a trail for the keyword “blogging for beginners”.
What do I mean?
People are searching for the term blogging for beginners. So give them this keyword at every step.
It’s on your board name and your board description. Create pins with the title blogging for beginners and add the phrase to the pin description with some related text.
Link your pins to posts or pages on your website with the title blogging for beginners and make sure the text of the post is great content about blogging for beginners.
Wow! Powerful stuff! And guess what? Hardly anyone does it. It’s a lot of work but it will get results.
Here’s some proof. I’ve used the same approach on my new lifestyle blog:
Since writing this post, I now have a second viral pin for my lifestyle blog! Amazing when this blog is still less than two months old!
Thinking about Pinterest as a search engine will give you a far better understanding of the platform. Unlike other types of social media, Pinterest is all about searching. Commenting on pins is a waste of valuable time.
People are actively searching on Pinterest so give them what they want. Optimise for Pinterest SEO. This stuff works!
Apply logic and create a trail from keyword search to your board and board cover, pin title and description and lastly to your blog post. Use the same keywords at each step of the trail.
Enjoyed this post? Please share my pins and give my Pinterest profile a quick follow!