I wouldn’t be lying if I said Pinterest is the stand-alone cause for at least 70% of where my business is today. Pinterest has helped me attract traffic, build a loyal audience, gain customers and increase my income like no other platform. In short, Pinterest has helped put my business on the map. But it wasn't always like that. For a long time, I couldn’t understand the buzz about Pinterest. People said it was a game changer for their businesses and I always wondered how! ‘Cuz despite putting some effort on the platform, I wasn’t seeing any huge returns.
Then one fine day in September 2015 ( as dramatic as that sounds ), I decided I would figure this damn thing out and make Pinterest work for my business. And this is what happened:
* In 1 month my Pinterest account grew from ~1000 to 2000 followers ( Until September, my account had gleaned around 900 followers over an year. So I was thrilled when I saw my Pinterest following double in just one month! ) Currently my account has grown upto 26K followers with an average of 1 million monthly viewers.
* My blog traffic went from an average of 15000 page views to 60000 page views per month in just a matter of 4 months.
* Most importantly, my income from my freelance services and photography products increased as my customers found me through Pinterest.Wow! I felt like I had unlocked some secret internet power or something! And I want you to be able to do that for your handmade business too!
Whether you have an Etsy shop or sell products on Shopify or your own website, Pinterest can help drive traffic, sales and revenue for your business. How?
Pinterest is a search engine: If you thought Google was the only search engine, think again! Pinterest, more than a social media platform serves as s a search engine today with more than 200 million users browsing everyday. People can easily hop on to Pinterest today and search for products. If they find something that they like, they can click over to the store website and make the purchase instantly. This way, Pinterest provides a huge opportunity to you as a product seller to get your products in front of a huge audience.
Pinterest drives traffic to your shop: As a shop owner, one of your primary concerns is to increase traffic to your shop. Right? Pinterest can do that for you! According to this research conducted by Shopify, 2 million people pin product pins per day. That’s 20x more than there are daily shoppers at the Mall of America. Whoa! Leveraging Pinterest can help you get a chunk of that traffic come to your shop!
Pinterest converts views to sales: Research showed that 93% of Pinterest users use the platform to plan purchases. When so many people login to Pinterest with the intent of purchasing, it's easy to convert the views into sales. The average order value of sales coming from Pinterest is $50 per product. So as a product owner, you have a lot to extract from the platform in terms of traffic, customers, sales and most importantly brand recognition.Okay now that you know why and how Pinterest can be a game changer for your business, let’s dive into the exact steps that you can take to make the platform work for you!
Add a beautiful, clear picture of you, write an attractive blurb about your business and what you offer and include a call to action with a link to your shop / website. Oh my! I underestimated this one for a long time. I just couldn’t understand why anyone would care much about my bio. In fact, I assumed people wouldn’t even look at it. It's hard to believe, but the day I spruced up my profile and bio, I got 20 new followers overnight. You would say co-incidence. But before this I would get an average of 3 followers per day. So I know this makes a difference, for sure!
If you are using your personal Pinterest account for your business - STOP 😃 Upgrade to a Pinterest business account right away (Here’s how to do that). Why? 'Cuz having a business profile gives you access to a lot of tools like : Pinterest analytics, Promoted pins, Buyable pins and most importantly rich pins. Using Rich Pins makes pinning your products easier for you and your customers by categorizing your product pins separately. As a result, the product pin pulls in information on images pinned from your website, such as real-time price information, availability, location, and description. It guarantees that anyone who pins your products will automatically have the most up-to-date information on the pin. Wohoo! Additionally, rich pins have a higher ranking in the Pinterest Smart Feed algorithm so it's an easy peasy way to boost your pin score. Do it now 😃
So if you are using Etsy or Shopify for your shop, then rich pins are automatically enabled. You don’t have to worry about it. Yay! But if you sell your products on your own website, here’s a quick guide on how to enable rich pins on your website / store.
There’s no better way to stand out and grab eye-balls on Pinterest than using high-quality, attractive product photos. Pinterest is a complete visual platform and if you aren’t using attractive photos, you are losing out on a huge audience that you could be reaching.
Here's what the research says - When it comes to e-commerce, 67% of the customers prefer a product that has a high-quality photo. Customers trust the quality of the image more than reviews and product descriptions. Whoa!
Unlike shopping in an actual boutique or a physical store, when you browse online, you can’t pick up the product. You can’t touch it, hold it in your hands, or feel the texture with your fingers. All you have is the photos!
The truth is, the better your stuff looks, the more you will sell.
Using high quality products photos will go a long way in not only growing your shop’s visibility on Pinterest, but also in creating a strong image for your brand.Specifically while creating product photos for Pinterest, make sure to size your images in a proportion of 2:3, so that they appear catchy. Pinterest uses a masonry grid format to display pins, so using vertical images will help you to stand out and catch the interest of the user who is browsing through.
Here's an example of a product with a great pin-worthy photo:
One of the biggest traffic drivers on Pinterest is Pinterest search. And just like it's hard to get on the first page of google, it's hard to be on the top page for Pinterest too. But it's not impossible. The key to getting on top of search results is writing keyword-rich, optimized pin descriptions. While adding product photos to your shop, always make sure to add a pin description. And optimize this pin description as much as you can.
Let’s say you sell ceramic mugs, here are two pin descriptions:
#cutemugs #ceramic #giftmugs #affordablegifts #greenmug #coffeemug
"Let our “ don't touch me, peasant " funny ceramic coffee quote mug, put a smile on your face every time you drink your coffee or tea. It's a great gift idea for any best friend who loves cute coffee mugs. Click here to check it out >>"
Which of these key descriptions do you think will perform better? No props for guessing #2. Without a doubt, the second description is the one your audience will read, love and take action on. Although it's important to have keywords in your description, stuffing your description meaninglessly with keywords isn't going to get you results. Instead write compelling, conversational, targeted descriptions that will attract your audience. Make sure to include keywords that are related to your product in a way that blends into your description. Here's an example:
If you are just starting off, you might be wondering how to gain that initial audience who are interested in your products and content. Group boards are the best way to gain exposure, especially at the beginning. Joining a group board is fairly easy. You can find group boards in your niche by searching on Pingroupie.com. For example, if you sell wedding invitations you can search for boards related to weddings i.e wedding ideas, wedding inspiration etc.If the group board has openings for new contributors usually the information regarding how to join will be provided in the board description.
Now you must be thinking – she must be spending hours together on Pinterest? Absolutely not! Okay I’ll let you in on my secret ( ‘cuz we are friends, right?) : I use this amazing tool to plan and implement my Pinterest strategy. It works on a set and forget principle. So once every week, in about 15 min I add new pins to my Tailwind buffer and forget it. Through out the week, Tailwind sends out the pins that I added and keeps my account fresh and active. Since Pinterest loves consistent and frequent pinners, this is a huge time saver and helps to grow your account on auto-pilot. Woohoo! I can’t recommend this amazing tool enough and you can try it out by clicking here – Tailwind!
This is huge. Although I use BoardBooster to send out pins for me throughout the week, I do login and spend time on Pinterest actively. I do pin my blog posts to group boards and regularly like and repin others content. Pinterest needs to know you are there to promote you. So if you get a couple of minutes at the end of the day, login and be active on Pinterest. Check your analytics regularly and be on the lookout for what pins are working for you and what isn’t. Accordingly tweak your pinning strategy and see how things change for you.
Another interesting feature for product sellers is buyable pins. If you sell on Shopify, Bigcommerce or Magento - you qualify to use buyable pins.With buyable pins, pins created from products on your online store will be marked with a bright blue “Buy it” or “Add to bag” button and the price is listed right underneath the image of your item. Here's an example:
Buyable Pins are easy to spot and make it simple for pinners to purchase. Shoppers can add items from multiple businesses to their Pinterest shopping cart and purchase products directly on Pinterest.
I hope this guide was helpful to getting your business up and running on Pinterest. Pinterest, in my experience has had the greatest pay off of all the social media platforms I've been on. So keep at it and you‘ll see results come your way, maybe slowly, but surely. If you have any questions, feel free to ask away in the comments!