PINTEREST SEO: A GUIDE TO FINDING AND USING KEYWORDS
Let’s just jump straight in. Pinterest SEO is a THING because Pinterest is a search engine.
This post is all about helping you to understand why keywords are the secret sauce to seeing results on the Pinterest platform. So, you’ll learn
- How to find keywords
- Where to use them
- Why learning how to use keywords on Pinterest should be the cornerstone of your Pinterest SEO strategy.
How To Use Keywords on Pinterest
Pinterest SEO is really tightly related to keywords, and this is tied to the relevance of your content.
Through pins headlines, pin descriptions, your account details, board names, board descriptions – all these places you can place keywords pulled together gives Pinterest an overview of your account, and of your niche.
Keywords are also how they marry up your pins and your content to what people are searching for in the Pinterest Search Bar.
Using Keywords: Find Long-tail Keywords
The first thing you need to do is some keyword research. You need a list of long-tail keywords around your topic and niche.
You can do this in a couple of ways.
One recent tool I’ve found is a browser extension that’s been developed by Ike Paz at the Internet Marketing Gym. It’s a simple tool, but SUPER useful and effective. (Thanks Ike!)
You can also do your research inside Pinterest itself.
When you click on the Search bar, you’ll see a dropdown similar to the following:
This is what Pinterest is showing me based on what it knows about my account.
As you can see, it’s breaking it down into categories:
- My recent searches
- Ideas based on my search history
- Trending ideas (across Pinterest as a whole)
You can use those ‘ideas for you’ as a starting point for your search, or you can just start typing into the search bar.
Keyword research example – ‘digital marketing’
I’m going to take the term ‘digital marketing’ as my starting point.
When I type it in, you’ll notice that Pinterest does a few things straight away.
It starts giving me suggestions based on that search term I’ve put in.
So, I can see that some popular long-tail keywords are:
- Digital marketing strategy
- Digital marketing CV
- Digital marketing infographics
- Digital marketing campaign
Below that, it gives a list of 3 people who are relevant for this ‘digital marketing’ keyword.
You know why they’re appearing? Because the keyword ‘digital marketing’ is part of their profile name.
Below THAT, is a list of 3 boards that also use Digital Marketing as a keyword in the board title.
Can you see how this is pulling together?
Alright, so now I hit enter on my Digital Marketing keyword search.
This is a more comprehensive overview of everything around digital marketing as a keyword on Pinterest.
See those coloured little boxes below the search bar? Each of those represents a long-tail keyword.
So, we’ve got:
- Digital marketing tips
- Digital marketing strategy
- Digital marketing ideas
- And so on…
Note them down. Create a spreadsheet, copy them into a Word document. Whatever works for you, just set up some sort of system to capture those long-tail keywords.
And as you click on each button (eg, Digital marketing tips, the process will continue).
My keywords are now:
- Digital marketing tips social media
- Digital marketing tips startups
- Digital markting tips small business
- And so on…..
There are so many ideas you get from just this simple search, and while we’re going to go into more detail about how you use these keywords on Pinterest, this is also a great tool for letting you know
- What people are searching for on Pinterest
- How likely your Ideal Client is on the platform looking for content related to your niche
- Ideas for blog posts, downloads, and even product development.
OK, back to the search board.
Once you’re on a particular keyword (so, right now I’m on digital marketing tips), there are 4 tabs there below the search bar.
- All pins
- Your pins
By clicking through these tabs, you can find specific pins, boards that relate to your topic (this can help when searching for group boards), people who specialise in this particular niche.
Your biggest takeaway? When you know what your keywords are, you want to place them into your Pinterest profile so that YOU come up in the searches for that term:
- Via your pins
- Via your boards
- Via your profile
Where to put long-tail keywords in your Pinterest account – your profile
Pick your top couple of keywords, and these can go into your profile:
- Business Name
- About You
Where to put long-tail keywords in your Pinterest account – your boards
When naming your boards, use your keywords here. While it might be tempting to come up with creative plays on words, or some other clever naming system – Pinterest probably doesn’t share your sense of humour.
Give your boards a name that is descriptive of the topic you’ll be pinning there, and weave in a long-tail keyword.
Here are some examples of mine. They’re bog-standard, but they tell visitors and Pinterest exactly what the topic is about.
For example, I’ve got:
- Blogging tips for entrepreneurs
- WordPress tutorials
- List Building Tips
- How to Use Pinterest
Inside the boards, you have a space to write a description about what the board is about.
As of 2017 – as far as I’m aware – you don’t get penalised for just listing a bunch of keywords, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that changes at some point. Gaming the system is not in Pinterest’s interest, and based on the evolution of Google SEO, I wouldn’t be surprised if they crack down on this at some point.
I would move towards incorporating a few of your long-tail keywords into an actual sentence or paragraph. You can also put a link back to your website, or a section of your website – like a collection if you’re running an ECommerce store.
Where to put long-tail keywords in your Pinterest account – your pins
The final important place for your keywords, is on the pins themselves.
Use them in the following places
- Your blog headlines
- Your blog topics
- In the alt tag of your images
- The description of your pin
- The headline on your pin images
- The name of the pin – eg yourkeyword.jpg
Sprinkle them throughout all those key places, and they get pulled across with your pin, and that pin then has those keywords attached to it.
All read together by Pinterest, you’re giving an clear overview of what your blog post is about, and when you have lots of posts, what your website is about.
So the whole thing as an entity tells Pinterest this is what this pin related to this blog post is about. So it’s all about laying down those signals so that Pinterest is aware that when it reads the pin it knows what the topic is. Then combined with all your other pins it will start seeing that you are consistently sharing content around a particular niche topic, whatever it is.
The biggest takeaway for Pinterest SEO?
Treat it like it is – which is a search engine. Plan your content around what your ideal client wants to read (rather than what you want to write about).
Be useful, relevant and consistent.
Don’t try to game the algorithm – it’s smarter than you are! If you make all your decisions based on what is valuable and helpful to your ideal client, then you’ll see the results over time.