In this article, we want to share with you some tips and best practices to create a successful business profile on Pinterest. Discover why this social network is such a great platform for retailers and other companies. Sony, Buzzfeed and Vogue are among the many businesses who are successfully using it as part of their social media strategy, to attract sales and engage with their communities.
If you are new to Pinterest and you are not very sure what it is about, please check this basic video introduction before reading any further: All About Pinterest.
Step 1. Set your Pinterest account as a verified business.
First of all, you want to set up a business Pinterest account. They may not look very different from personal accounts, but you will have access to the analytics panels. Keep in mind that Pinterest could delete your account if you are using a personal one as a business.
After you create your business account, verify your website so everybody knows it’s you. Verified sites have a little tick sign next to their name. It's very easy to do: just go to "Edit settings" > "Website" and tell Pinterest you want to be verified. They will give you a paragraph of HTML code that you will have to copy and paste to your homepage.
Small tip for a good-looking profile: The recommended image size for your profile picture is 160 x 165.
Step 2. Make your boards interesting and appealing.
Boards should be specific and relevant to your business’ audience. Here are some tips to create and organize them:
- When you start a new board, keep it "private". Public boards should contain at least 5 pins, or else one of the tiny thumbnails underneath the cover will be empty. An account with half-empty boards doesn't look active and worth following.
- Titles and cover images should communicate the style and personality of your brand. Choose them carefully.
Which should be the predominant colours of your covers?
Will you create custom cover images, or do you prefer to use regular pins?
Should your titles be serious and functional, or creative and fun? Whatever you do, be original, and change the default title. In the next step we’ll talk about SEO and copy.
- Put the most relevant boards on top, so they get more attention. Sales and seasonal boards should go there.
- Edit each board’s information adding the type of content you share on it. To do this, select “Edit” or “Edit board”, and then pick the most fitting among the options available at “Category”.
Step 3. Improve your SEO.
Tip: Go to “Edit settings” > “Search Privacy” and switch it to “No”. This way, your business profile will be visible to search engines outside of Pinterest, which is a good start.
Pinterest isn’t just a social network, it’s also a tool that people use to find inspiration, products and ideas. It works like a search engine. In order to help people find your pins, you need to include adequate keywords in your copy texts. There are three areas to focus on:
- Your “About” section, which will show up in search results on other search engines.
- Boards’ names and descriptions. You should always change default names.
- Pins’ descriptions.
A frequent question is whether you should including special offers in your descriptions. There are two different opinions:
- According to Pinterest, a description has to be timeless. Users generally don’t modify them when they re-pin content, and your pin can end outdated very quickly if it’s described just as an offer.
- On the other hand, some community managers recommend adding this piece of information, since offers are the type of content that can get lots of shares. Pins that contain the product price seem to be also shared more often than those which don’t.
One final tip: Add hashtags to some of your keywords. When users click on a #hashtag, Pinterest shows them related results including the same term.
Step 4. Create a pinning schedule.
One key element in your sharing strategy will be the timing, but Pinterest Analytics won’t tell you the best hours to share pins. You need to find other ways to figure it out.
Think of your target audience. When are they most likely to be spending time on Pinterest? In general, Saturday seems to be the most active day, but different types of content get more attention on different days. Some community management blogs and podcasts share tips and trends that can help you with this, but you will have to look for information that is relevant to your particular niche and country.
As a general rule, never share all your pins at once; you risk to be perceived as a spammy account and lose followers. Especially if they are browsing from their mobile phones, because they will have to scroll pin after pin to lose you from sight.
In order to create a consistent content calendar for Pinterest, one of the best tools available is Buffer.
Step 5. Make your website and blog Pinterest-friendly.
A Pinterest-friendly website should have the Pinterest button. Follow this link to learn how to install the 'pin it' button. It’s the simplest way to tell your customers it’s fine to share your pictures and content on Pinterest and promote interaction.
Now your audience can share your content on Pinterest, how can you make them want to? Pinterest is a visual platform. Images are as important as copy, even more: people want to share beautiful and inspiring pictures on their boards, they want to be able to remember at a glance why they saved each pin, and they want to save useful information in the shape of infographics. Therefore, you should make the visuals of your page work for Pinterest too:
- Vertical format is better than horizontal. The width of pins is always the same, it doesn’t matter how big the original image is on that side. Height is a completely different story: a pin will always be as high as needed. If your images have a vertical format, they will be more visible and catch more attention. This is why infographics work so well on Pinterest.
- Blog posts and similars should have a cover image with the article’s title on it. In fact, these cover images are the most popular type of content on Pinterest, topping even cupcake pictures and cute cats. If you include the article’s title in the cover image, that makes it perfect to share, since it provides enough context to tell everyone where the pin leads to.
- Improve your stock photography, and add some pictures of your products being used to add context and inspire your customers.
Step 6. Add Rich Pins to your site.
Rich pins add extra information to your pins, and you can customize them depending on the type of pin you need. There are 6 types: for apps, movies, recipes, articles, products and places. Product rich pins, for instance, include information about special offers, price, availability, and a custom title / description.
Plus, they get featured in the “Gifts” category more often than other pins. In other words, your products have a better chance to appear in the search results of a person who is looking for something to purchase for a friend. Sounds convenient, right?
These metadata will always be tied to the pin and your page’s content. They are independent of the description users write, and they can’t be changed by users. Choosing the right keywords in them will have a big positive impact on your SEO.
To add them to your site, you will need the assistance of a developer, to add the necessary metadata to your content. Once your page is ready, Pinterest will validate it. Follow this link for more detailed information on how to create rich pins.
Step 7. Gather information from your most popular pins.
Pinterest is a place to save information for future plans. This information is a wonderful way to get more insight into your target audience’s wishes and preferences. Just think about the amount of boards that have “dream” or “ideal” in their names. Which of your products or blog posts are getting more attention? Why is that? How could you use that information to increase sales?
You can find out which content is being shared from your site on Pinterest with this little trick:
Step 8. Sell directly from Pinterest.
Blue means you can buy.
Note: this feature is still quite new. So far, it seems it’s just available in the US, and you need to apply to get it.
Buyable pins are pins from which users can purchase directly. You can recognize them because the price of the product appears in blue, and they have a blue “Buy it” button. Customers can even compare different colours and materials available without leaving Pinterest. Smooth, easy, and excellent UX.
Some of these pins will also be featured in these new browsing categories: “Shop” and “Shop our picks”, containing hand-picked products out of all the ones available.
Step 9. Send special offers to pinners who already saved your products.
You don’t even have to worry about this one if you are using rich pins. Pinterest knows the price of your product now, and it will inform people who saved it on their boards whenever this price drops. You’re sending them offers on things they love without being spammy.
It would be a good idea to check your most popular pins on Analytics, and set a special offer for products among them.
Step 10. Interact, and promote interaction.
Social networks aren’t about yourself: they’re about your audience, and about interacting with them. If you only share photos of your own products and articles, you’re probably going to feel a little lonely. Share some love and repin other people’s content; add pins to your favourites; follow interesting boards and users, and leave some comments if you feel like it.
It would also be nice if you prompted certain Pinterest activity from your website, or to create a couple of group boards.
Note: Users in a group board can add pins and invite other users. You won’t have control over it. If you don’t want your board to get too messy, invite members of your team and people whose criteria you trust.
That’s all for now! We are looking forward to sharing more detailed information on buyable pins as soon as possible. Stay tuned! Join us on Twitter to be the first to know.