There’s a new social media darling in town. And – like Facebook and Twitter – it’s bringing in tons of buzz and millions of new users. (Around 11.7 million users so far, in fact.) Pinterest is what it’s called, and, as the name implies, it’s a pinboard-style social photo sharing website, which, since its launch in March 2010, has taken the Web by storm.
We wouldn’t be surprised if you decided to integrate Pinterest as part of your search engine optimization and social media marketing efforts. After all, where the people go to is where the business is. We do hope you do it right, though! That’s why we came up with a list of best practices and fantastic tips for using Pinterest to improve your SEO performance. Enjoy!
Using Pinterest for SEO
Post fresh, repin-worthy stuff. It doesn’t matter if it’s on Pinterest, Facebook, or Twitter: people will only share your stuff if they think it’s cool and fresh and interesting – and if they think it’s something their followers will like, too.
And sure: you may already be aware that when Pinterest users repin your content to their boards, the links generated will be no-follow links. But don’t let that stop you. Getting people to notice you on Pinterest can drive significant traffic to your website or blog, which is, in many respects, what SEO sets out to achieve anyway.
Pin regularly. For people to feel your brand’s presence on the site, you’ll have to pin regularly – just like you have to blog or tweet regularly. Doing so keeps your board fresh, and gives others the reason to keep following you, and to keep having an eye out for what you have to offer.
Create infographics. Pinterest has become a big hit with people who are into fashion, arts and crafts, DIY projects, and recipes. But even if your business or brand has nothing to do with those things, you can still catch Pinterest users’ attention by presenting your kind of information in a beautiful, visually appealing way. Quick, clear, and well-designed infographics, in particular, have a unique potential in helping you get noticed on Pinterest.
Show a sense of humor. People love to smile and laugh. If they see something on Pinterest that makes them do that, then it has a good chance of being re-pinned to other, more boards. Humorous pins and images – like cartoons or pictures with funny captions – not only will help you complement your social media marketing efforts; they’re also pretty good at showing the human – the personal – side of your brand, regardless of which subjects are most relevant to you.
Complete your profile. Once you’ve begun to attract attention on Pinterest, it’s time to find ways to connect with users outside of the site. By filling up your profile with complete information – your bio, your picture, your website URL, blog, and Facebook, Google+, Twitter profiles – you’re letting others know that they can find you in other places and networks on the Web. (And let’s not deny that this info will aid your link-building efforts, too.)
Engage with other users. No one likes an anti-social user in a social site. Just like on Facebook and Twitter, it’s important to spend time building relationships and engaging with other Pinterest users (especially those with the same interests). Follow them, re-pin their stuff to your own board, and like their photos. And never, ever, ever spam them.
Search for users who’ll champion your brand. Pinterest has its own search tool, and you can use that to find who exactly you can engage with. Look for users who are interested in pins and things that are relevant to your niche.
Optimize your images. Chances are that you’ll be pinning some stuff from your own website or blog. If that’s the case, you might as well optimize these images as best as you can. Upload high-quality pictures. Come up with descriptive file names. Write out their alt text attributes. (Check out more of our tips for making your images SEO-friendly.) The more optimized your images are, the more likely they are to show up in search engine image results pages.
Add hashtags to your description. Meanwhile, to make your images more “searchable” on Pinterest, be sure to make use of #hashtags. It’s even more effective if you don’t just insert them; find a way to make them part of a compelling pin description, which you can write to attract both human readers and search engines.
Ask to be followed. If Pinterest has the potential to drive traffic to your site or blog, it can work, too, in the other direction. So don’t hesitate to promote your Pinterest profile and board by adding “follow me on Pinterest” buttons to your sites – just as you would invite other people to like your page on Facebook or follow you on Twitter.