For ecommerce retailers, Pinterest has become one of the greatest assets for shoppers to discover their products and share them. It’s especially powerful because it’s the products themselves that users care about. It’s not like Facebook or Twitter where you have to make your products secondary in the stories you post. On Pinterest the product either is a direct building block in the story, for example, it’s a piece in a bathroom design, or the story itself, like a beautifully designed kitchen appliance.
In this article I’ll explain several ways to create highly-optimized pins and boards to boost discovery and sharing, and drive new customers to your ecommerce store.
1. Optimize Pinterest Boards & Pins for Pinterest SEO
Similar to Google, people search on Pinterest using keywords to find what they’re looking for. Pinterest is a little bit different though. In this section I’ll discuss how to properly optimize your boards and pins for certain keywords to make sure you get found when on Search Engine Results Pages on Pinterest.
Pinterest gives you 500 characters to describe each of your uploaded pins. I’d suggest you keep with the visual appeal of Pinterest and try to get your word descriptions to about half of the maximum space allowed. Some studies have suggested that pins with character counts of 200-300 get the most repins.
While you want to be concise and deliberate with keywords when writing blurbs, you want to strike a balance, and always have your consumer in mind. You are marketing your products and brand, after all, so use language that’s relateable and relevant to your content.
Don’t neglect the chance to include your keywords and don’t overuse them. Companies that pump their descriptions with “keyword, keyword, keyword” are seen as spam by search engines like Google. Focus on writing to connect with both your consumer, and search results.
Check out how Home Depot uses this pin description to balance between creating an interesting product story and still optimizing to be found in searches. They use the product description of a “portable charcoal grill”. They provide important details of the product, such as “on wheels” and they include relevant search terms like “park” and “camping”.
This is similar to pins, but should be used in a different way. As opposed to optimizing for specific product names, optimize for the types of searches people would make when looking for various lists. Here are a few examples:
- Best resort wear hats of 2014
- The best ways to decorate a boy’s bedroom
- The top ten office desk setups (that’s something I would search for)
2. Utilizing Product Rich Pins
In 2013, Pinterest enhanced the capabilities of what can be included in a pin with its introduction of Rich Pins. Rich Pins enable you to include a lot more details about your pins, and this information is automatically updated. For example, Rich Pins feature updates, prices, product availability, ingredients in a recipe and even movie reviews. It also makes the pins more mobile-friendly.
The most important type of Rich Pin for ecommerce retailers is the Product Pin. It includes price, availability and retailer information on the pin. And clicking it links Pinners directly to the product page in your ecommerce store.
Here is a Rich Product Pin from Target:
To get Rich Product Pins for yourself, you need to apply to Pinterest, and you need to add a set of meta tags to each product page in your ecommerce store so that Pinterest can import the product information into Pinterest.
This may sound like a lot of work at first, but you only need to do it once. After adding the meta tags, Pinterest will update your Product Pins automatically if you make any changes to your products. Notifications are even sent to Pinners when Product Pins they’ve added drop in price!
3. Lifestyle Boards
The purpose of a lifestyle board is to create a place where people can see how to use your products in the activities, tasks, decor, etc. that fill their life. It can also be used to introduce people to new activities and things that fit into their lifestyle that they haven’t discovered yet.
For example, if you sell outdoors equipment, create boards dedicated to certain activities that your products can be used for. Show pins of hikers climbing mountains or kayakers on rapids using your products. This makes it easy for people to think about how they can use your products, and creates desire within them to buy.
4. Problem-Solving Boards
A problem-solving board is similar to a lifestyle board. But instead of creating a desire to use a product in their life, it creates a need in people to get your product to solve a problem they’re having.
For example, if you sell baby products, think of the issues that occur when raising a child, such as trying to get your baby to fall asleep, how to remedy certain medical issues, etc. Think about the problems that your products specifically solve, and create boards that show parents how to use your products to solve those problems.
5. Call-To-Action Pins for Opt-In Landing Pages
This is my favorite way to drive new customers. A call-to-action (CTA) Pin entices Pinners with an exclusive offer, coupon or piece of content that they need to leave Pinterest to access.
This is the ultimate goal of Pinterest of course (to get Pinners to leave and go to your website). But it’s a much easier step to get a person to take than directly purchasing a product, as they are doing it in return for something free.
While this obviously doesn’t result in a direct sale, it generates an email sales lead for you, let’s say you have a nail polish board with a CTA pin to download an exclusive video on how to do your nails in a certain style. You can then follow-up with a series of emails to that person on different style they may be interested in, and the products you sell that can be used to create it.