Pinterest is one of the powerful search engines out there. It is a great way to market your business as well as grow your blog traffic. As a search engine it can reach more readers, customers and get more client sign-ups.
Having grown my own travel websites to 60K+ pageviews a month from Pinterest, I am here to share 9 of the Pinterest mistakes to avoid to increase your reach and grow your account and your blog traffic.
9 Pinterest Mistakes to Avoid (Updated for 2021)
1. Your Pinterest Profile is not search friendly
When you set up your Pinterest account, it is important to set it up right. This means your name, photo, bio and links should be optimized for search.
- Pinterest Account Name
- Pinterest Profile Description (Bio)
- Link to your site (or a CTA if you are a business, or have a freebie to sign up)
When setting up your account, remember to claim your business and enable rich pins.
(Head to your Pinterest Profile > Settings > Claim)
Create Pinterest Boards that reflect your business. And don’t forget to optimize the boards (cover, description and board names)
- Pin Board Names
- Pin Board Descriptions
- Pin Board Cover Names
Pro tip: You can keep the board secret, while you are setting up the account. I personally add up to 50 pins (as recommended on my Pinterest feed), before publishing the board. This is so that my followers won’t see an empty board or fewer pins. Plus the board gets its relevance from other’s content that I just pinned to my board.
2. Not using Pinterest SEO
Yes, Pinterest has SEO functionalities, just like Google or Bing searches. It is a visual search engine which means that there are images, videos and stories along with text to optimize for the searches being conducted on Pinterest.
Essentially, here are the areas where you MUST optimize for Pinterest utilizing keywords:
- Pin image file name
- Pin descriptions
- Blog post meta data to include keywords
Other than a great design or a gorgeous image, always remember to name the Pin image.
If you are downloading it from Canva, ensure you save the image as the keyword for the pin/post itself. Do not post it as ‘copy of copy London bucket list’, when the image is of Nashville Weekend Guide. This step is often overlooked – don’t miss an opportunity to increase your chance of being found via search on Pinterest.
Pin descriptions should include keywords and terms that you want to rank for. Searching for pin keywords is easy and free.
- From your search bar, type in the name of the term you are targeting
- See the image below, you will find a few terms that go with your main keyword. Use them in your description in a natural way
- Add as many keywords as you can (as long as it reflects the contents of the blog post without misleading)
For metadata, if you have rich pins enabled then Pinterest will pull in the metadata from the post. This is another opportunity to use even more keywords that relate to your post.
3. Using unclear fonts, blurry images
I like cursive pretty fonts. But not all fonts are created equal. So avoid using fonts that are too curly, and hard to read.
- Use no more than 2 fonts when creating your pin image
- Use bright clear images that describe your pin or your blog post
- Use a Call to Action (Click to read more, Get the entire list here, Claim your free gift)
- Consider how the pin image will appear on mobile, that’s where your audience and followers will be interacting with Pinterest content
4. Not all pins are created equal
With the arrival of video pins and carousels, it is important to know that not all pins serve the same purpose. This is true for types of posts as well.
- A pin with a packing list, bucket list can result in high saves, and impressions. But may not lead to high click throughs
- An image pin (with no text overlay), can also result in high saves and impressions
- A pin image with a clear title, brings in saves and click throughs (as long as you have it optimized with pin description, title, etc).
- For general blog posts, titles like “Top things to do in Nashville”, “USA Road Trips”, ‘Coffee Quotes for Instagram”, in clear font and nice image will work wonders to bring in traffic to your site.
- For product pins, like selling a pair of shoes, use the product image as a focus, and go easy on the text.
- For growing your email list, use more text and CTA to send a clear message to sign up. Use a clean background so that the text stands out, making it easy.
- Video pins and carousels increase your reach on Pinterest, but they are not really great for conversions or click-throughs to your website.
5. Not Pinning fresh pins consistently
With the recent Pinterest updates, there is a huge focus on pinning fresh (new) content. A mistake to avoid here is not re-pin older pins. If you are planning to promote an old post, create a new pin, and pin that to Pinterest.
Fresh pin, essentially, is a pin that was never published to Pinterest before. You can still use the same image and same brand colors, fonts, just create a new pin design, text overlay, etc.
I have seen accounts that pin 5 new pins a day, and some that publish one new pin a day; it really depends on your niche and the goals you are after.
Fashion, travel and food bloggers can also promote using brand new images as a fresh pin to further their reach and traffic.
6. Not pinning relevant Pinterest friendly content
Not all content will do well on Pinterest. Pinterest is used by US audiences, particularly female. So when you pin your content, ensure they are pinterest friendly and that they resonate with this audience demographic.
Pinning about a town or unknown activity, may not yield the same results as pinning about a highly popular destination or an event known to US audience.
If you need to brainstorm travel-related Pinterest content ideas, we can help.
7. Not following Pinterest Calendar
Pinterest releases an annual calendar, as well as a ‘monthly trending topics’ guide. You can sign up on Pinterest to get notified about it. This calendar is super handy to plan your Pinterest content. Pinners are on Pinterest 2 – 3 months ahead of seasons, and by using the Pinterest calendar you will be organized.
- Use Pinterest calendar, to plan content for the year
- Publish seasonal pins 2- 3 months before time (like for Christmas and festive content, start pinning in September – October)
- Follow Pinterest calendar, and use that to write content for SEO to create an overall content strategy
8. Not creating enough boards
Another common Pinterest mistake to avoid is not creating enough boards.
You must have enough pin boards to reflect the type of content and business/services you offer. Most of your boards should be specific rather than general.
If you are a travel blogger, start a few destination specific boards (like Europe, Spain, USA). If you are pinning a ton of Oregon USA content, it is wise to open a new Oregon USA Travel Board to optimize your pin by pinning to this board first.
Similarly, if you are a food blogger, create boards for recipes, snacks, drinks, meal type, products/tools board, etc.
At a minimum, you should have 15-20 boards. But if you’re not seeing any traction, I would recommend creating even more.
When I started my niche destination site, I started with 10 boards that reflected the content on my website, plus my best of blog, and 3-5 general travel topics. Once I had more posts on my website, I started creating more boards to pin new (and specific) content.
It is important to ensure that your boards are related to the topic of your blog or your business. Any unrelated boards (that you use personally), should be secret boards.
9. Not Using Pinterest Analytics
In blogging or any business, it is super important to track and check how your account and pins are doing. This means you are going beyond the ‘followers’, ‘monthly reach’ on Pinterest.
Pinterest Analytics have come a long way, and they are so useful in understanding what is working, and what’s not. In the past, I had used (paid) Tailwind, but Pinterest analytics is free to use. You can use that to check impressions, saves, link clicks and more. This will help you to strategize, monitor changes, and keep improving your pins and boards using the analytics.
Note: Sometimes it can take 1-2 days for Pin Analytics to be updated.
As a travel blogger and content creator, I have been using Pinterest since 2018 and have grown my blogs to earn me a full time income. I am sharing my secret tips here to pinning successfully
Step 1: Find blog content that will work on Pinterest (avoid mistake #6)
Step 2: Create a pretty pin design (Pinterest mistakes to avoid #3)
Step 3: Use SEO before posting the pin to Pinterest (Pinterest mistakes to avoid #2)
I always pin to the most relevant board first, and then to my best of blog board. To ensure you have consistent reach on Pinterest – you must pin consistently, evaluate your profile, board and board descriptions.
If you need any assistance in setting Pinterest account or want me to do an audit to help you out, you can get in touch with me here