Pinterest is well known for being the social network where you can save your favorite ideas including recipes, home decor, and trendy outfits. But with the power of Pinterest SEO, Pinterest can be an asset to your business marketing strategy.
Pinterest is a fast-growing, underutilized platform for many small businesses and content creators.
If you start using the Pinterest platform for your business with an eye towards Pinterest SEO, some of the 320 million monthly active users will love your content.
Talk about reaching a larger audience!
What Is Pinterest SEO?
Pinterest SEO works similarly to the search engine optimization you may already be doing on your website. The first step in any Pinterest SEO strategy is keyword research and applying those keywords to your content.
The main difference between Pinterest SEO and Google SEO is how to determine the best keywords to use and how the Pinterest algorithm decides which pins to display in its Smart Feed.
Pinterest prioritizes fresh content, consistent activity, and engagement metrics on pins. With strategic optimization, Pinterest picks your pins to display in the right place for the right users that are most likely to click on your pins.
There are many places to put the best optimization practices into place, especially since you may produce multiple pins for a single link to keep the pins fresh.
Is Pinterest Good For SEO?
The short answer is yes! There are many ways to use keywords on Pinterest so you can apply a variety of keywords to each of your pins. It’s possible for pins, boards, and Pinterest profiles to show up in Google search results.
Pinterest can help your website rank better on Google because when it’s bringing traffic to your site, then Google is going to see that your blog is providing value to its readers.
Where Can You Apply SEO On Pinterest?
There are numerous places on Pinterest where you can apply keywords. The more thorough you are with completing each section of your Pinterest business account, the more visible your business will become on the platform.
Here are some critical places to apply keywords (which I’m going to cover in detail below!): Pinterest bio, pin titles, pin descriptions, board descriptions, and pin designs.
Account Description/Pinterest Bio
One of the more generic places to put keywords is the account description. This field is the spot for broad keywords that semantically relate to as many of the main topics on your website as possible.
For example, if you run a gem shop, you may want to include keywords like minerals, rare rocks, and jewelry in your account description.
Board Names & Board Descriptions
Your boards are another option for Pinterest SEO. Both the board name and description are fabulous places to work keywords in, and you can make them a little more specific than your account description.
Since you can have as many boards as you like, feel free to create boards or let your Pinterest management service set your boards up.
I highly recommend starting out with 5-10 boards and each board should contain at least 30 pins. That will help Pinterest understand what each board is about.
Keep your target audience in mind when creating relevant boards for your brand. Pinterest boards can show up in search results on Google as well as Pinterest!
Pin Titles & Pin Descriptions
A significant amount of your time spent on Pinterest SEO will be spent crafting these descriptions. The pin description and title are the places for specific keywords. Using the same general keywords in both locations increases the Pinterest SEO value.
However, the description field has significantly more space, so make sure the matching keyword is the most suitable one.
A word on hashtags: It’s no longer recommended that you apply hashtags to Pinterest descriptions. Instead, write full sentences the describe the purpose of the pin. 2-4 sentences will suffice.
If possible, you should also consider including your most important keyword for the pin in the URL slug. That’s the part of a URL that directs people to a specific page within your site, and you can customize it in the menus for each page or post. Typically, it’s after the first slash in a URL. Since it’s text, Pinterest can use it in the SEO considerations.
Pinterest analyzes your URLs and it knows when you’re sharing a new URL vs an old URL. While it’s okay to republish old URLs on Pinterest, these should be shared weeks or even months apart from each other.
And every time you republish, you should be sharing a new pin design instead of one that you’ve already shared on Pinterest.
How to Improve Pin Quality
The Pinterest algorithm examines pins for their quality, meaning that they take into account how “fresh” or new the pin is and how much engagement it receives.
Currently, if you go to your Pinterest analytics dashboard, you will see the following terms: impressions, engagements, pin clicks, outbound clicks, and saves.
Best Practices for Pin Designs
One of the best ways to improve pin quality is by improving the look of your pin designs.
Pinterest uses an image classifier that they call Lens. This is a camera search tool that allows a Pinterest user to activate the camera on their phone, share an image of a product they like in real life, and find similar pins on Pinterest related to that product.
Because of this technology, I try to avoid using generic stock photos that anyone can download from websites like Unsplash or Shutterstock. If you’re using a stock photo on your pins that also being used on hundreds of other pins, it’s probably not going to be considered “fresh” by Pinterest standards.
Remember that Pinterest is a visual search engine, so the images and the fonts that you use will factor into a pin’s performance.
Fonts & Text Overlays
Pinterest is a visual search engine, so unlike many forms of SEO, there was a significant investment in the algorithm being able to analyze images on the platform.
That means the algorithm knows the words on the pictures, which makes your text overlay a great place to include the most important keyword for a pin, just like in your pin title.
Keep in mind that the text overlay on your pin designs should have a legible sans serif font, whenever possible. Make sure it’s easy to read, especially on a mobile device.
Your Pinterest presence also matters. How often are you actively sharing new ideas on the platform? There are no set numbers of pins that you should publish every day.
Don’t try to publish 10 pins per day if you don’t have enough blog posts to justify that. Instead, be consistent and share new pins every week. That will give you the best results.
Is your website optimized for Pinterest? Sometimes your best-performing pins are shared by other users. So, to make your pin images optimized on your website, you need to apply pin titles and pin descriptions. You can hide images within each blog post on your website.
High-quality content and high-quality pins go hand in hand. Publish a new blog post on a regular basis and publish 3-4 pins for every blog post you create.
Best Times to Post on Pinterest
We haven’t exactly gotten any answers from Pinterest on when is the best time to publish on Pinterest. So it’s best to use Google’s trusty tool, Google Analytics, to determine when Pinterest referrals are visiting your website.
In your Analytics dashboard, select Acquisition > Social > Pinterest. Select a timeframe (you could measure 30 days or the last 365 days).
In this screenshot below, you can see my Pinterest referral traffic during the month of May in 2021. The best days for me to publish on Pinterest appear to be Wednesdays.
To better improve your Pinterest engagement, I recommend that you periodically check the Pinterest trends tool to see when certain search terms are most popular. It can also give you ideas for relevant keywords to include in your content.
For example, I typed in the search term “backyard patio designs”. The graph shows that the best times to use this keyword are between the months of March and June. Underneath the graph, there are some related trends listed.
Learn more about how to use the Pinterest trends tool here!
It may be worth it to invest in a Pinterest scheduler because you can set aside one to two hours each week on Pinterest marketing. You can use Tailwind to publish new pins on your behalf each week.
You can also share your published pin in Tailwind Communities, which can increase their engagement if other members decide to publish your pins on their accounts.
Related: Benefits of Using Tailwind
Pinterest SEO can feel very confusing when you’re first learning it. If you publish blog content frequently or sell products, then it’s worth exploring Pinterest marketing for your business. Pinterest users are ready to buy from you!
So to recap, here is what you need to do to improve your Pinterest SEO:
- Fill out your Pinterest profile to tell pinners what your business is about
- Add keywords to your board titles and descriptions as well as pin titles and descriptions
- Make sure every board has at least 30 pins so that the Pinterest smart feed can understand what the board is about
- Don’t hesitate to use hashtags in your pin descriptions
- Consider applying keywords to the text overlay of your Pinterest graphics because the algorithm can analyze the text on your pin graphics
Apply these Pinterest SEO strategies and work on adding new content to your Pinterest profile each week. Even if it’s just 15 to 30 minutes, I know you’ll start seeing improvements because I definitely did!
If you’re interested, I offer a variety of Pinterest management services for content creators and small business owners.
LEARN MORE ABOUT PINTEREST MARKETING:
- Essential Small Business Marketing Tools
- Use Pinterest to Grow Your Photography Business
- What Does a Pinterest Virtual Assistant Do?
- On-Page SEO Checklist for Solopreneurs
- 11 Things You Need to Have on Your Website
This article was originally published in August 2020, and was republished in June 2021 to share updates on the Pinterest algorithm and best practices for Pinterest marketing. This article was updated again in June 2022.