Congratulations! You’ve read part 1 of this post, so you now have a Pinterest business account with defined keywords in all the right places, as well as at least one board with 10 of your pins. To jog your memory, we also discovered that:
- Pinterest is free to use
- Pinterest users are far more likely to use it for shopping than any of the socials
- Keywords and SEO are very important because Pinterest is a search engine
- Pinterest can recognise colours, shapes and objects within images, making them searchable
- Pinterest is a marketing tool that brings customers to your site
This post is going to focus on pins, because there are plenty of tips and tricks and info when it comes to pins and pin performance and I want to share some of it with you. I’d love to share it all, and I do in How to Pin on Pinterest, which has 12 pages packed with information about pins!
What is a Pin?
Pins often look beautiful, but they’re more than just pretty pictures. Each pin is made up of an image or video, information about an item ie. a product, service, blog, app etc. and a link to a website, where the viewer can find more information or make a purchase.
Each pin starts out the same way and follows a similar process:
- A product, service, blog, app etc. (item) is created
- One or more images are chosen to advertise the item on the website
- The image is saved to Pinterest
- The item is described so that potential customers:
- can find it when searching for it
- know how it will help or inspire them
- can decide whether they want to know more, save it for another time, or make a purchase
- The item is categorised by placing it on one or more boards. This is when the item becomes a pin.
Did you know there are different types of pin? Here’s a rundown.
Regular pins can be saved to Pinterest from anywhere on the web or from your own photo library. They display a description of the product or service that the pin is about and have a web link that goes straight to either the source of the image or the location you choose. Notice they only display the description and no bold heading, which the other Pin types do.
Rich Pins are available in 4 types, for products, recipes, articles and apps. Each type contains a customised layout, making it easy for your audience to find the useful information they’re looking for, such as price of a product, ingredients and cooking time for a recipe, the publish date of an article and the install button for an app.
Rich Pins display your business logo and update information dynamically from your site, so if you change the price of an item on your site, Pinterest will automatically update the price on your pin.
Click here to see how each of the Rich Pins display relevant information to your audience.
Rich Pins require a one-time setup on most platforms and come as standard on others, such as Shopify and Etsy. To set up Rich Pins for your shop or website, either use the instructions provided by Pinterest or do a Google search on <platform name eg. BigCommerce, Squarespace> Rich Pins. Most platforms will appear in the search results and provide instructions on how to set up Rich Pins on that platform.
Buyable Pins let people buy your products without leaving the Pinterest website or mobile app. At the time of writing, they are only available in the USA for physical products.
Buyable Pins are really convenient for shoppers, allowing them to filter on only Buyable Pins, offering several payment methods, updating the cart across all the user’s devices and taking only one payment from the shopper, regardless of how many sellers’ products are in the cart when they check out. There is no fee to sellers, who receive the order and dispatch as usual.
Image: Shopify Blog
Promoted Pins is the Pinterest name for advertisements. They appear alongside other pins on Pinterest, so as you scroll through, they don’t get in the way. Promoted Pins provide various campaign options, several audience targeting options, allow for broader keyword targeting and allow you to track your results.
Promoted Pins can help with customer engagement, brand awareness, increasing sales and bringing attention to new products quickly. If you know what type of content resonates with your audience, they’re a great idea. If you’re new to Pinterest and trying to make a quick buck, well, good luck…
Shop the Look Pins allow customers to shop for a specific product that appears in a fashion or home decor image. If there’s a white dot on an item in an image, such as a jacket or rug, customers know it can be purchased. They can tap it to learn more about the item, including the price and then go to your site to purchase it. Shop the Look Pins are available by working with Pinterest Marketing Partners, for fashion and home décor pins in the US, Canada, UK, France, Germany and Japan.
Image: Pinterest Business
In part 1 we created a pin using one of the images from your website. Seems simple right? Well, it is. But for you to make the most of Pinterest; to really engage your audience and to get them wanting to click through to your website, we’re going to look at some of the tips and tricks that really drive engagement with your audience on Pinterest.
Pinners love engaging with beautiful, useful images.
- Vertical Pins display and perform best, particularly on mobile devices, where 85% of Pinners spend their time. A couple of popular pin sizes are 600x900 and 735x1102. Make sure you use a ratio of 2:3 and your image size is smaller than 10Mb.
- Image formats can be JPG, PNG and GIF.
- Include a text overlay to tell your audience what the Pin is about and how it will help or inspire them, as images often can’t reflect the exact thing you’re offering your customers.
- Incorporate your branding on your pin, using your logo or website. This helps people recognise your brand and can be useful if your image is stolen (it happens all over the internet). Tip: place branding really close to your product so it can’t be cropped out.
- Lifestyle images are very powerful on Pinterest. Lifestyle images show a product in use, being worn etc.
- All of the above (except product styling and photography) can be done with Canva or other fee tools.
You can include vertical images at the end of your blog or in your product image photos. They can be hidden on Wordpress, so they’re pinnable from, but not visible on your site.
Or you can experiment with a size that works well on both your site and on Pinterest. Whatever you decide, it would be a good idea to try maybe 10 vertical images and see how they perform against your site’s standard size. To do this, you’d use the same pin descriptions for each image size and pin them to the same boards, then check their engagement levels after 30 days or so. A simple way to compare their engagement is to use the stats button on the pin image. See the next section for how to understand engagement.
For more tips on creating Pinterest-worthy images, read this post 8 Tips For Pinterest Images That Rock!
Pin descriptions can have a dramatic effect on the way people interact with your pins. When describing your pins, think about what your audience might be looking for, or what problems they might be wanting to solve. How can you inspire them to act on your pin? Include the keywords your audience is searching for, peppered into the most important information about your product or service. You can use this free Pinterest Keyword Checklist to work out which keywords to use on Pinterest.
Pinners want to be enticed by both your images and your pin descriptions. Get your audience interested enough that they want to click through to your site, where they can find everything else they need to know about your product or service, before making a purchase. It may take a few tries to get it right, but start with something, test it and build upon it.
Focus on descriptions for your own pins. They can be time consuming, but they’re important to your products or services being found on Pinterest. What you really want is your pins to be shown regularly, clicked a lot and saved by others (repinned).
How Many Pins?
Pinterest’s algorithm loves you if you save new and different content and if your content is repinned. It rewards you by showing your pins more often in feeds. If you click on the stats button (the graph icon at the top of the pin), you can see how many times your pin has been shown on Pinterest since it was first saved.
A good rule of thumb is to save between 10 and 50 pins each day, comprised of your own content and repinning other’s. To do this and to make sure your pins are being saved at the best time for your audience to see them, you can use a scheduling tool, such as Tailwind. Tailwind gives you the freedom to focus on pinning once per week/fortnight/month and schedule everything you find in one sitting. I find this a very productive way to do pinning. If I’m looking for content to repin about Facebook marketing, for example, I’ll probably find loads of great stuff which I can schedule all at once, rather than having to perform a daily search, which takes more time and takes focus away from my other tasks. You can try the Tailwind app for free for 100 pins and after that their plans are very affordable.
If you’re just starting out with Pinterest and this all seems too much, just start out with whatever number you and can make sure you’re consistent with your pinning. The important thing is to get started. Once you’re over the major learning curve (getting up and running on a new platform), everything will come more naturally to you.
If you enjoyed learning more about pins, you’ll find even more information, with screen shots and examples in Guide: How to Pin on Pinterest.
Reviewing Pin Performance
There are several ways to review pin performance. To make this as easy as possible because I know deciphering stats can be a bit painful, we’re going to look at one simple way to determine how well your pins are performing.
Pin Stats give you a quick overview on your individual Pins. They’re available on all your pins - your own pins and everything you repin. They are only shown to you and only relate to your instance of the pin – the exact item you pinned or repined and how it’s been performing since appearing on your account.
You can access Pin Stats by clicking on the graph icon at the top of the pin.
Impressions is the number of times your pin has been displayed on Pinterest for somebody to see, since the date you originally saved it. This is displayed in the top line of the summary ie. "Your Pin has appeared nn times...". If your image, keywords and description are good, this should be a high number (compared to your other pins that have lower impressions). You should only make comparisons with yourself because there are other factors at play in determining your impressions, such as how often you produce quality content that people engage with.
Clicks is the number of visits or click-throughs to your site because of this pin. This is the most important metric for many small businesses as it tells you how many potential customers have been directed to your site. Keep in mind that not all visitors convert into a sale, which is reliant on many factors, including the layout of your site and the shopping experience you offer.
Saves is how many times somebody has saved one of your pins to one of their boards. Saves is another word for repins. This helps you understand what people find interesting, inspiring, helpful or worth purchasing in the future. It can also increase visibility of your pins.
Check your Pin Stats weekly, so you can react quickly. For pins that have high numbers, you know you’re doing something right, so add similar pins to as many relevant boards as you can over the next week. For those that don’t have high numbers, do some tweaking. Maybe get a friend or family member to critique them for you.
- Does your description engage and inspire readers into action?
- Does your image resonate? For example, if there are shadows on the image or it doesn’t relate to the topic you’ve written about, you may need to change it.
- Are your keywords popular in search at the moment? Make sure you describe your item using longtail keywords (3 or more words) so you have a better chance of being found. This Pinterest Keyword Checklist can help.
If you enjoyed learning about pin performance, you’ll find even more information in Guide: How to Use Pinterest Metrics.
Congratulations! You now know everything you need to know to get started with Pinterest marketing for your business.
Was there an A-HA 💡 moment for you when you read this post?
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pps. If you’d like more specific advice for your business or a done-for-you Pinterest management service, check out my services here.