What Is Pinterest and Why Does It Matter To You?
Pinterest. Some of you may use it already, in a personal context, but I thought it would be helpful find out more about about what Pinterest is, and why it matters to you, the small business owner. So, I asked my friend and Pinterest wizard, Eve Tokens, to put together this guest blog as a guide to Pinterest for a small business owner…
What Is Pinterest?
Pinterest is a lot like Google. Only, it’s a visual search engine, rather than text based. That’s not to say that text has no place – it does, and it is just as important if you want to be found on Pinterest – but images really do matter more!
All those images on Pinterest? Most of them lead back to a website, and for any small business owner wanting to get more traffic to their website, Pinterest is a great strategy to implement. ‘Cos we all know that more website traffic equals more mailing list subscribers, and more sales right?
First though, let’s understand the key Pinterest terms so it isn’t as mind boggling!
Key Pinterest Terms
There are only six key pinterest terms that you need to know about when starting out with Pinterest:
- Pinterest – Visual search engine
- Pinterest Profile – a Pinterest user’s account
- Boards – a place to add relevant pins, usually based on category
- Pins – every image that you see on Pinterest is called a ‘pin’
- Repin – the act of ‘adding’ a pin you see on Pinterest to one of your boards
- Pinner – the Pinterest User (person) who adds a new pin or actively ‘repins’ an existing pin
That’s it. And the aim for the small business owner using Pinterest is to get lots of repins. So that your content can spread across Pinterest like a virus, and send more people back to your website.
How Does Pinterest Work?
When you set up a Pinterest profile, you are able to add pins to Pinterest. This can be done by uploading an image directly on Pinterest using the browser on your computer, the Pinterest app on your phone, or by pinning an image from your own or other websites that are relevant to your ideal audience.
When you upload one of your own images directly in Pinterest, you’ll want to add in a URL so that it redirects users to your website. This happens automatically when you pin an image from a website, whether your own or someone else’s.
Pinterest then gets to work categorising those pins that pinners add, so that their users can get the answers they are looking for, and fast.
To categorise the pins (images) Pinterest relies on three things:
- The pin description (eg. Vanilla soy wax candles are great for …)
- The board names that the pin has been pinned to (eg. Soy Wax Candles)
- The board descriptions (eg. Soy wax candles features a range of soy wax candles that are great for mindfulness. Use these scented soy wax candles for meditation… )
These three things help Pinterest show the pins you’ve added to its users. I’m going to add that it can take a few months for Pinterest to categorise and start showing your pins consistently in search results. This is why it is so important to get started sooner rather than later!
Getting Found On Pinterest
Much like how you type a search term into Google to look something up, the same is true for Pinterest. Let’s take a quick look.
- The first five results are the most popular searched terms on Pinterest.
- The next three results are Pinterest profiles (businesses) on Pinterest that are a great fit for the search term health.
- The final three results are the top three boards for the search term ‘health’.
That’s three ways that you can get found on Pinterest through search! And that is not including the pins that get shown on an account’s ‘home feed’ when your ideal customer logs in to use Pinterest!
What Does This Mean for The Small Business Owner?
If you set up a Pinterest account, create suitable boards (categories) that your ideal customer would be searching for, fill it with pins (images) that will help your ideal customer, you will slowly but surely start to see your website traffic grow by adding Pinterest into your strategy.
I’m going to repeat something I mentioned earlier: Pinterest isn’t an immediate results platform! It takes time for Pinterest to understand who you are, and the value you can provide to its users, much like how SEO takes time to send search engine traffic to your website.
You can help this process, by changing a personal Pinterest profile to a business profile, and this will give you access to analytics to help you grow further. I have a free guide that will help you set up your own Pinterest Business account.
Typically, you’ll start to see some solid results after three months, and this does not require you to do a lot of work. There is a way to ‘automate’ some of the work involved, and you can also hire out your Pinterest strategy to someone who understands how Pinterest works and will implement it in the best way for you and your small business.
Want To Get Started With Pinterest?
So you’ve seen the benefits of Pinterest – website traffic, potential email list growth and increased sales – and you’re excited to get started.
I know that your time is precious (I’m a small business owner too) so I put together a Pinterest Beginners Set Up Guide which you can use to get your own Pinterest account set up. Some of the steps will take 30 seconds, some will take 10 minutes a day, and I’ve provided a time guide to help you schedule your Pinterest set up into your day.
The aim though, is to get maximum results for minimal time investment, and this set up guide will certainly get you started with that!
If you’d like to grab free your copy, you can do so by clicking here.