To be taken seriously as a blogger, you need page views. Lots of page views. But visitors don’t magically show up; they need to be lured over to our wonderful creations on the web.
While there are many avenues our ideal readers can take before finding themselves hanging out on our blogs, I found that Pinterest has consistently been my top performer. At least 80% of my visitors arrive via a Pin either I or someone else has shared.
Using Google Analytics, you can find out if Pinterest is a huge traffic source for your blog, too. Go to Google Analytics -> Acquisition -> All Traffic -> Channels -> then click on Social.
Since Pinterest continues to be my top referral source, I wanted to optimize it.
How I Optimized Pinterest
Pinterest is a fantastic search engine and is very visual. Learning what types of pins work best and how to optimize your profile will drastically improve the interaction on your pins.
Optimizing your Pinnable Images
- Vertical pins do best on Pinterest. Other shapes/sizes do better on other social media. Sure, you can pin a square image, or even *shudder* a horizontal rectangle, but it won’t do as well. Vertical images show up best on a mobile phone, and that’s why they work so well on Pinterest. Design sites like Canva even have the perfect size image for Pinterest that you can start with when creating your designs.
- Bright images work best. With text. You want your pins to catch the eye, and bright photos tend to do that. Pins with text on them – text that explains what the link is about – work best. It can be a simple as putting your blog post’s headline on a beautiful background.
- Consistency with your brand. You can certainly experiment with styles for pins, but once you establish your blog brand and design – stick to those colors and styles in your pin. You want your pins to be recognizable and cohesive.
Optimizing your Pinterest Profile
- Always use a profile photo. No one wants to see a pin-head. Connect with your readers and show cohesion by using the same photo as you do on your blog.
- Write a complete bio with a quick description of who you are, and what you blog about.
- Include your blog URL and validate it.
- Apply for Rich Pins. WordPress plugins like Yoast SEO make that easy by putting in the correct open graph data for you. Then just apply and done.
Optimizing your Pinterest Boards
- Organize your boards (you can drag them around) so that your most important boards are first. My board for my blog’s posts is first, then other boards relating to the topics I blog about the most and that my readers interact with the most, are next.
- Keyword descriptions! Be specific and include various keywords that people may be using to search for your topics.
- Categories matter, too. Edit each board to pick an appropriate category and write descriptions for each board.
Optimizing your Pinterest Strategy
- Pin often and regularly. The more you pin, the more chances your pins will be seen. Re-pin your pins to your boards and relevant group boards over time.
- Pin multiple times per day when your target audience is on their phones or their computers. But realize that sometimes it takes a pin some time to gain traction, so a pin you added months ago might suddenly start showing up as a top referrer.
- Automate when possible, because we don’t have all the time in the world to sit around and pin all day.
My Pinterest strategy includes using Board Booster to share my pins to group boards and loop my board pins.
Board Booster Campaigns
I have my “best of” blog boards, where I pin my posts on specific subjects (family, blogging, toddlers, infants, etc.). Then I use those as my “source board” and pin to a specific list of group boards where these topics fit. How often you pin to these group boards will depend on the board rules and how active the board is. Also, how many pins you want to do per month. You can tweak your settings per board to pin multiple times a day for one and only once a week for another. Lots of options here.
Board Booster Looping
I also loop my personal boards. I have collected a lot of wonderful pins linking to brilliant posts from around the web. Re-pinning those on the same board (looping) gives them more traction, but also makes those boards more active. By sharing valuable content, I show Pinterest that I’m an authority, and my other pins should be shown more often in their algorithm (that dreaded a-word). When my boards are active, I attract more followers, which ultimately drives more eyes to my own content as well.
The social proof
I know, you want to see numbers. Let me share some lovely stats with you to show you my growth in the past couple of months. I started using Board Booster in May, and that is when I also tweaked my Pinterest account to improve optimization.
These are my Pinterest stats for the month of May. You can see where I started using Board Booster and tweaked my profile that the impressions start to skyrocket. You can see your stats by going to analytics.pinterest.com.
These are my Google Analytics from May to the end of July. You can see where my sessions begin to increase with the help of Pinterest. Of course, holidays (a huge dip on July 4th) and weekends in the summer are rough on page views, but the results are evident.
Have I done anything else differently? Well, I’ve actually started writing fewer posts. These past few months have been busy for me on the home front, with solo-parenting, work, etc. But I am focusing on quality in the posts I do write and adding vertical, branded images to my posts. Then I Pin them. Then I let them automagically be shared for me and enjoy watching my stats go up.
Board Booster is free for 100 pins, so I recommend trying it to see your results.
What’s your Pinterest strategy?