How many of us were browsing Pinterest well before we started our Instagram accounts and blogs? In fact, for me, it was Pinterest that got me into Instagram in the first place.
I am forever searching Pinterest for interior inspiration and social media advice. It has been a huge source of ideas whilst we are renovating and the images often lead me towards Instagram and DIY blogs.
Pinterest was the main reason I found myself stumbling across a whole community of interior addicts talking about cushions over on Instagram and eventually creating my own social media accounts and award winning blog.
This blog post is all about how to get more traffic to your social media accounts through Pinterest and if you have no idea where to start and find it all a bit overwhelming, I can help you!
Pinterest for Beginners and why it’s important.
I realised when I started my blog that although Instagram would help build my traffic, the real key to getting people to read your blog (other than not producing crap content) was to really get to grips with Pinterest.
I spent a good few weeks teaching myself how to use it properly, researching on the internet and reading lots of blog posts and advice. It took a lot of time and effort but it was 100% worth it.
I managed to build my monthly unique views to just under 4 million in 4 months after my teaching myself and researching and this had a huge impact on the traffic directed to my blog.
I’ve been using Pinterest avidly for 4 years now. In that time my monthly unique views have grown to over 17 million with over 95% of my blog traffic coming from Pinterest.
I’m consistently being asked how to use it properly and although I find it easy to use, it struck me that a lot of people didn’t even know where to begin so I’ve compiled a quick list to get you started.
But, first of all, how does it work?
Pinterest is like a virtual mood or cork board. It allows its users to collate images and videos of their own and other people’s into multiple mood boards (the Boards of Pinterest) of their own.
Pinterest isn’t social media, it is not a social space like Instagram or Facebook. It is predominantly a search engine for images, infographics and information.
You can either upload your own Pins (images) from your blog page or Instagram, you can create pins from images you have seen on other websites or you can search within Pinterest itself and Repin images to your own boards. It’s as simple as that.
What Pinterest has over Instagram is the ability for every image to be able to point you back to a website page and that is invaluable.
Make sure you have a Pinterest Business account
You can either have a personal account or a business account, but a business account gives you so much more and it’s free!
With a business account you can –
- See what people are pinning from your Pinterest account
- A detailed break down of your audience
- The ability to verify your website
- Display your company/blog name in your profile
- Have access to rich pins (which displays all your information under your image and will not change when other people repin it).
Claim your website
Make sure you claim your website within Pinterest as this shows you are a valid business. It also gives you a clickable website address in your profile.
Set up your boards
I had a few boards already on Pinterest that were home and interior based before I began to take it more seriously.
I started by adding a board for my website and all my blog images, a board for my Instagram images and then created many boards covering my (home decor) niche.
I threw in a few other boards of interest like travel, hair and fashion. Make sure that all your boards are named logically and that you give them lots of keywords in the description, a category and a board cover.
Your Pinterest profile is good to go, how do you Pin?
There are so many different ways to Pin, from your phone, tablet or PC and from numerous applications. The best way to do it is to Pin in Pinterest directly so that you can add all the information exactly how you want people to see it.
Just try to keep your Pins in portrait mode as they do much better on Pinterest.
To Pin an image from Instagram/Blog/Website on your phone –
- Make sure you have the image you want to Pin in your Photo Album and open up Pinterest
- Select the plus sign at the bottom
- Select Pin
- Select an image from your photos
- Give your pin a Title that quickly describes the photo
- A description that adds lots of keywords (think about what someone would type into the Pinterest search bar for your Pin to appear, the more informative the better)
- Add your destination website. If it’s from Instagram –
- Open up the image you want to copy and select the 3 dots in the top right-hand corner. Select share and copy link. This should save it to your clipboard on your phone. Go back to Pinterest and paste the link into the boxt
- To add your destination website for your blog/website –
- Open up your website in a browser and depending on your phone/website host, copy the website address. Go back to Pinterest and it should automatically ask you to paste the address.
- Choose your schedule date or publish now.
- Once you have done this, select Next and then choose a board (or create a new one if there are no boards to save the Pin to) to add it to Pinterest.
If you have the Pinterest “save” button enabled on your web site, you won’t need to follow these steps. You can just hit the save button and it will automatically open Pinterest and ask you to choose a board. You might, however, need to go back to the post and edit the title and description. You need to refer to your web site host to find out how to install the Save or Pin It button.
Remember that Pinterest is basically a search engine so be as descriptive as possible about your Pin so that people can find you when they type in the search bar. Just like Google.
To Pin an image from your Instagram/Blog/Website on your Computer
As you will probably need to upload multiple Pins, I find it far easier to do it on a laptop. I used to set aside 10-20 minutes a day to upload my Pins (before I starting using the scheduler Tailwind).
- To do it on a laptop you have two options. You can either enable the save button for Pinterest within your website (find instructions on how to do this with your website host, e.g. WordPress or Squarespace), which will automatically open the image in Pinterest and ask you to choose a board.
- The other option, and the one I prefer, is to have the image on your computer and upload it within the Pinterest app.
- Open up Pinterest.
- Select the plus sign in the top right-hand corner on your Pinterest home page and choose Pin
- Choose the image you want to include and then, like above, give it a meaningful title, description and copy the website page into the destination link.
If you are doing this for an Instagram post, it is important to get the link right! Open up Instagram on your computer, find the same image and then click on it so it appears in its own window. That is the link you need to copy.
- Select a board in the top right hand corner and then Publish
You’ve created your own Pins on Pinterest, what now?
It is important to keep Pinning other people’s Pins on your boards within Pinterest. You might think why?
To be a successful pinner and Pin regularly, you have to build a cohesive board with lots of varied images and not just your own content.
You can Pin other images by either repinning from within Pinterest or using great images from other brands and blogs, but always make sure that you give them full credit and direct traffic to the relevant website.
How often should you Pin?
The advice is, you should be pinning around 10 – 20 Pins a day.
80% of those Pins should be created by you in the form of images from your website and social media accounts and 20% should point back to other people.
I Pin around 25 images a day which a lot of people are quite surprised at when I tell them, but this isn’t necessarily 25 new images each time.
Each Pin I upload will be dropped into several boards that they are relevant to and this helps build up the numbers (but make sure you keep the amount of boards per image to under 10).
The magic of a scheduling app for Pinterest
As I mentioned previously, I now use the scheduling app Tailwind to schedule all my Pins for me.
This is such an invaluable tool as it recognises when the majority of my Pinterest “audience” is online and will Pin my images then.
As Pinterest is heavily used by the US, a lot of my Pins are scheduled for the early hours of the morning and Tailwind will repeat your content to different boards at an interval of your choice.
I spend about an hour a week uploading all my images into the scheduling app and leave Tailwind to it. I can’t recommend it enough (there is a small monthly fee) and will write a blog post about it in the next few weeks. You can try out your first 100 Pins for free on Tailwind, this helps you to see the scheduling app and if it will work for you.
Now you know how to do it, start uploading all your blog, Instagram and business images to Pinterest!
Success won’t happen overnight, it takes time to build up impressions and an audience.
But the great thing about Pinterest, which Instagram and other social media apps can’t give you, is that your Pins are evergreen. They will continue to bring you traffic long after you first uploaded them.
I hope this Pinterest for Beginners was of help and if you have any questions, leave them in the comments!
More on Pinterest…