How to optimize Pinterest Boards to rank higher!

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In my previous post, I explained how to create a Pinterest Business Account and why every online business needs one. Don’t have a Business account yet? Then I’d recommend you to start with setting up a Pinterest Business Account by  following the steps in my last post.

Already have a Business Account?

Great! Then it’s time to create and optimize Pinterest boards. In this post, I’ll show you how to do that step by step.

Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliate links. I may earn a small commission to fund my coffee drinking habit if you use these links to make a purchase. You will not be charged extra. So it’s a win for everyone! Please note that I won’t link any products I don’t believe in or don’t resonate with my blog site. Thank you!

Pinterest board optimization?! Why does it matter?

Optimizing your boards on Pinterest will help you to drive more traffic to your blog from Pinterest. It’s not a difficult task to do at all, but it does require a little know-how and the time to do it. Just read this post and follow the step-by-step instructions, and your boards will be fully optimized in a few hours!
Pinterest appears to be quite straightforward: you create some boards, save some useful pins, follow a few people, and that is that.
Which is exactly what Pinterest is when you use your account for personal purposes only. However, if you want to use Pinterest business-wise to increase your blog traffic, you need to optimize your profile so that Pinterest users will be able to find you and click through to your blog from your Pinterest as well.

Google + Visual Search = Pinterest

For most bloggers, the term SEO is a well-known blogging term. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. This means that if you want to rank high in the search engines, you must optimize your content for the search engines. You can write great content, but if the search engines can’t find it, no one will read it, except for a few of your loyal friends and family maybe. 😉
This is also how Pinterest works. While I know Pinterest is considered a form of social media by many people, Pinterest is rather more of a visual search engine. Think about it. Yes, you do follow other users, and you can get repins, likes, and commons. But Pinterest is mainly built to give an answer to people’s questions. And they don’t need to follow your account to see a Pin created by you in their search results. So, it’s basically a visual search engine.
It’s just that instead of getting an answer to your search query in the form of a list of links, you get your search result in the form of images (Pins).

Pinterest SEO

So, now you know that you also need to work on your SEO on Pinterest if you want your pins to be noticed there. Although Pinterest certainly has a social aspect to it, this aspect is not as important for content creators compared to SEO. Of course, it does help if you have tons of followers. I mean, more followers equals more impressions equals more re-pins. Bút, the great thing about Pinterest is that you can rank high with your Pins, without a huge following, just by putting the right keywords into the right places. Unlike ‘real’ social media, you don’t need to have a lot of followers to be successful! Back in my previous blog post, I already explained the how’s and why’s to optimize your account profile. And below, I will explain to you the steps you need to take to optimize your boards too. The steps are:

Create new boards

By the way, first things first. Let me begin with a brief explanation of how to create a board. Maybe you already have some boards and now how to do it. But in case you’re just starting out on Pinterest, and don’t have any boards, yet, you might want to know how to create them: 

  • Click on your profile picture
  • Go to ‘Boards
  • Click ‘Create Board’
  • Choose a board name
  • Click ‘Create

Congratulations, you just created your first Pinterest Board! Pretty simple, huh? 🙂 

Choose board names

Pinterest gives you lots of options for making it clear to them and to their users what you stand for and what type of pins can be found on your profile. You can do this by using the right keywords in your profile, on your pins, pin descriptions, and by choosing proper board names. Make sure you use these opportunities to their full potential. 

I already mentioned in my blog post about setting up a Pinterest Business account, that your profile is searchable on Pinterest. Meaning that by using the right keywords in your profile, users can find you when searching for those same keywords.

Pinterest Boards are searchable, as well. Just like with profiles, or pins, users can also specifically search for boards to follow. So, you want to make sure your boards rank high in the search results when someone enters a search query.

Boards are searchable on Pinterest

Before you start creating new boards, I’d advise you to first make a list of the topics that belong within your niche that you blog about. For instance, if you blog about traveling, you probably write about outdoor holidays, beach holidays, adventure trips, city trips, and low budget trips. Keep in mind that when you start to create Pins, you’ll want to be able to save them onto several boards. So for each topic you blog about, you need approximately 5 Pinterest different boards. 

You now know what your Pinterest boards should be about, but you haven’t decided on the names yet. Let me first explain a little bit about Pinterest Boards to you, and how do they work. Board names help Pinterest and users understand what can be on your profile, and of course, on the particular board itself. I see a lot of boards with fun, creative names, such as; nāįłš3, <3 <3 <3, Foodzzziie, and KiDdsZz. But board names like that might make them look more appealing to other users, but in reality, they’re not. Because they’re much harder to find. How many people search for precisely these terms? Yep… literally no one! Because there is no logic in searching for nāįłš3, when you’re looking for Nail inspiration.

If you want to find yummy Italian dishes, you don’t Google for “Mnomm mnomm,” but for “Delicious Italian dishes,” right? This works exactly the same way on Pinterest, and you should, therefore, match the board names with existing and popular search queries. It might seem dull, but I promise you this will bring the best results. Because even though you’ve created a collection of the most exquisite Italian dishes on your “Mnom mnom” board, it won’t show up in the search results if the board name doesn’t match the keyword.

Now you’re probably asking yourself: how do you know which terms people are searching for on Pinterest?

Simple! Pinterest gives this information away. For free!! Take a look at the print screen below. When you type a keyword in the search bar, suggestions automatically appear below your search. And the suggestions you see are the keywords that users are actually looking for! This is the place to start if you’re looking for new board names. Enter a few topics within your niche and use the keywords suggested to you by Pinterest.

Try to look for longtail keywords, but no more than 20 characters max. If your board names are longer, they will be cut off. See the example below. The name of my Digipreneurs Unite board is too long. 🙁

You can also click on the blocks that appear below the search bar, which appear when you press Enter after typing your keyword. These blocks are displayed in order of their popularity.

A brief summary of the things you should pay attention to when creating board names:

  • Choose board names that correspond to the keywords you find in Pinterest’s search bar.
  • Choose clear board names of 1 – 3 words, but aren’t too long to be fully displayed in the search results.
  • Avoid fun, creative names. They will not contribute to your SEO or to gaining new followers. They will only PREVENT your boards from being noticed by other users.
  • The names of the boards should match the Pins that you will pin to them in the future.
  • Make sure you have enough boards to pin each Pin that you create to multiple boards.
  • Tip: Look at the board names of other successful bloggers within your niche. There is nothing wrong with using the same board names as your competitors on Pinterest. You’re not stealing their creativity, because they also based their board names on the most popular keywords. Feel free to use the same as mine if you want 🙂 

Give SEO-worthy descriptions to your boards

You can edit your board by clicking on the 3 dots at the top left of the screen above the first Pin. This is where you can, for example, pick a board cover (I’ll show you how to do this later on), and where you can write a board description. This is another SEO-opportunity Pinterest gives you. You can show them, once again, by the use of keywords, which type of users you would like to attract to your Pins and boards. Describe in a natural, easy-to-read text what users can expect to find on this particular board.

Pinterest doesn’t like keyword stuffers, so try to make it a fun and readable text instead. With some longtail keywords, of course. When I write board descriptions, I always first go to the search bar to find some keywords I would like to use in my board descriptions. I copy them to the board description field and then write a text around them. When you’re done with the board description, don’t forget to categorize your board as well!

Organize & declutter

By “organizing your boards”, I mean the order in which your Pinterest boards are placed and shown to visitors. There are different ways to organize your Pinterest boards. For instance, you can choose to sort them automatically from A to Z or to display the newest boards first. 

However, the best way to organize your boards is by using the drag-and-drop feature. With this feature, you can choose where each board should be positioned by dragging and dropping them to the right place. I recommend the following order: the first board is your best of board, where you only place your own content. Like my She Can Blog board (see the picture below). Position this board at the top, because the goal is for users to see and engage with your content.

After your Best of board, you should place your most popular boards that bring the most traffic to your blog. And last the group boards you are a member of. You can check your Pinterest Analytics to find out which of your boards are the popular ones! 

How to organize Pinterest boards:
– Go to your profile
– Click on “Boards”
– Choose “Drag and drop” from the dropdown menu.
– Now drag and drop the signs as you want. Tip: zoom out in order to have an overview of all your boards. This drags a lot easier.

Other tips to keep your boards organized and tidy:

  • Organize your boards regularly.
  • If you see old Pins that might fit better on another board, move them.
  • Create board covers with Canva. You can really brand your business on Pinterest when you match the color and design of the board covers to your brand/blog. And board covers give a professional and organized look to your account. Upload your board cover as a Pin to the board you want it to be the cover of. You can change a board when you go to your profile -> “Boards” -> Click on the pencil that appears when you hover over the board -> Find the Pin you want to use as a board cover -> Tadaa! Done. 🙂
  • Board sections don’t have any SEO-value. So, there’s no need to create sections. It’s better to create a new board and move Pins there if you want to make Pins more visible. Because your new board is searchable, whereas a section inside a board is not. That means that users will only find your section if they accidentally stumble upon it, not because it appeared in the search results. However, if you use personal, secret boards, you’re free to use them. For personal reasons, it can actually come in handy to not have too many boards, but board sections instead.
  • Archive old or irrelevant boards: check from time to time if all of your boards are still relevant and fit within your niche. If they are no longer relevant, archive them. DON’T DELETE THEM. When you delete a board, you’ll also lose the followers who follow that board, which you don’t want. Also, archived boards can be retrieved at any time, while deleted boards are permanently lost.
  • Only pin relevant Pins to your boards. With every Pin, you give Pinterest a signal about the content that can be found on that board. If you save Pins to boards that have nothing to do with that Pin this confuses the Pinterest algorithm, and you might drop your ranking because of that.
  • Make sure you only save Pins with working links. Even when you re-pin other people’s Pins, and make sure the Pins don’t link to spammy websites. I know it takes time to check the content behind every Pin, but when you pin spam of other pinners, Pinterest can flag you as a spammer as well. Besides, you Pin for your followers and not for yourself. If you Pin too often to spammy content, you will lose your followers as well. Pin what your followers would like to see and make sure you pin valuable content at all times.
  • Pin gorgeous, vertical Pins with clear, readable text overlays.
  • Join Group Boards on Pinterest. You can share your own content there, and in exchange, you can re-pin Pins of other group members on your own boards. Group boards can be found by niche on Pin Groupie. In the description of each board, you will find the instructions on how to become a Group member. Do you blog about blogging & affiliate marketing? Then come and Pin along on my She Can Blog Group Board for bloggers and businesses. 🙂

Good luck organizing and optimizing your Pinterest boards. Don’t forget to pin this post to one of your boards for other bloggers to learn from as well! 🙂

 Did I forget to mention something for optimizing Pinterest Boards? Please, let me know in the comment section below! LoveAngie

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