This is a guest post by Allison Boyer, Community Outreach Coordinator and regular blogger for BlogWorld.
Is your Pinterest profile optimized so you’re found and followed by other users, repinned as much as possible, and sending tons of traffic back to your site? For most users, the answer is no, unfortunately. Don’t worry: Pinterest is still a very new social media site and we’re all still learning! If you have five minutes, though, you can totally improve your Pinterest profile with just five easy steps:
Step One: Categorize all of your boards.
When you create a board on the fly (i.e., you’re pinning something and decide to create a new board rather than pinning to an existing board), no category is associated with that board. Most users never think to go back into their profile and categorize. However, if you don’t, you won’t show up when users browse the site by category, which is a heavily used function. That means you’re missing out on a ton of potential eyeballs from people who aren’t already following you!
To categorize, simple go to your profile and click “edit” on any board you haven’t categorized already. Sometimes boards fit into more than one category, but since Pinterest only allows you to choose one, make sure you choose the category where you most want your pins to show up.
Categorizing does not guarantee you’ll show up when someone is browsing by category. If you aren’t categorized, though, you definitely won’t have your pins displayed.
Step Two: Add a description to all of your boards.
This is another thing most users neglect: adding a description. Again, when you create a board on the fly, it doesn’t ask you to create a description and most pinners forget to go back into their profile and add them. A good description can help you get more followers, since it is clear what kind of content you’ll be pinning to each board. Don’t be afraid to inject a little personality that helps people connect with your brand. For example, on my own Pinterest account, I try to make my descriptions funny.
If you add some keywords, it will also help you show up when users search for those keywords. Right now, Pinterest is still growing, so people are exploiting the ability to show in search results using keywords. I suggest avoiding this, since Pinterest will very likely tweak their search algorithm to prevent keyword-stuffing in the future. Make sure your keyword is present, but be natural about it.
You can add a description the same way you added categories. In fact, if you’re editing your Pinterest profile, I suggest doing these two steps together.
Step Three: Edit the cover for each board.
A relatively new Pinterest feature is the ability to edit the “cover” (large picture) that represents each board. By default, this picture is the most recent thing you’ve posted, but this can be a problem because sometimes the last thing you pinned is cool, but not the most visually attractive or not the best representation of what the board is about. You can make your profile more visually attractive, and thus get more followers, if you choose a pin instead.
Like the current default? Keep in mind that unless you click “edit” and manually re-choose that pin, it will change as soon as you pin something new to that board. If you want the best profile possible, you need to choose each cover, even if it means your choice is the last thing you pinned.
Step Four: Optimize the text part of your profile.
People may search for you on Pinterest, so make sure your site or company is listed in the text. I also recommend using this text to tell people what you’ll be pinning. Don’t leave this part blank! Again, it’s important to avoid keyword stuffing. Even though there might be benefits right now, I predict that will change soon as Pinterest continues to evolve.
Along with the text, don’t forget to link your profile with your other social media accounts, as well as to your blog or website. This allows other users to easily find you elsewhere and also creates that link for search engines. Some people avoid linking to Twitter and Facebook simply because they do not want to update these accounts with pins, but you don’t have to send pins to either. It is just an option. You can pick and choose when you want to post a pin on other social media sites too.
Step Five: Move your best boards to the top row.
Depending on the screen, the top row or two of boards will be all users can see on your profile without scrolling. People make snap decisions, so in order to get more followers, move your best boards to this top row. The “best” boards are your boards that represent what you pin most often, what you want your brand to be known for, and what will be most popular with your audience. Choose boards for these slots well. And of course, think about this when editing the cover images. Your entire goal is to gain followers who will see all of the content you’re pinning (including your own content, affiliate links, etc.), so if you immediately look really interesting, people will be more likely to click that follow button. At the very least, make sure that you don’t have empty boards at the top of your profile.
Want more Pinterest tips? If you’re willing to put in a bit more time, you’re in luck – BlogWorld & New Media Expo just launched a completely free eBook called The Ultimate Guide to Marketing Your Blog, Podcast, or Videos with Pinterest written by yours truly that shares more secrets to improving your Pinterest profile, especially if you’re an online content creator.
Ps. Discounted registration prices for BlogWorld Expo & New Media Expo in New York this June ends today at midnight PST. Be sure to register now (aff link) and use the discount code KRISTI10 for an additional 10% off. Virtual tickets also available if you can’t make it to NY!