Pinterest has recently emerged as a top social media site, and last month it was officially the third biggest online web property. It seems that Pinterest emerged from nowhere, and it is now the quickest growing independent web property ever.
For those who are new to Pinterest, it is an online pinboard where you can pin content that is interesting to you, organized on different boards.
Why Is Pinterest Great for Marketers?
Pinterest is powerful for marketers for a few reasons. First and most importantly, people are on Pinterest and when they are there they are open to exploring. Fish where the fish are. Marketing is about building awareness and getting in front of your audience, and as your audience flocks to Pinterest, so should you.
Second, and perhaps surprising to some, Pinterest refers more traffic to other websites than LinkedIn, YouTube, and Google+ combined. This is because people in Pinterest are in browsing mode – they are looking for new sites and interesting content. The content on Pinterest is all linked to the originating sources. This means that it can be a huge source of traffic to your website.
“Pinterest is the #1 source of referral traffic to my website…”
A friend of mine told me recently that his company was “killing it on Pinterest.” I asked him what he meant, and he said that Pinterest was the number one source of referral traffic to his site (and this was a few months ago). I asked him what he was doing on Pinterest and he said nothing. His product, however, was extremely unique and interesting, and people had just begun pinning it, which drove traffic and sales to his website.
Pinterest has the opportunity to drive massive amounts of traffic to websites, yet many brands are still figuring out how to take advantage of this.
Here are seven tips to optimize your website for Pinterest to generate more traffic:
- Prioritize engaging pictures on your site. Pinterest is a very visual site, and content that is pinned uses the image as the primary focus point. Be sure that all of your pages and posts have beautiful and relevant images that are appropriate for pinning.
- Pin It button on your blog. Be sure to include the Pin It button on your blog, much as you have the +1 button or the Facebook “like” button. Make it as easy as possible for users to share your content on Pinterest.
- Pin It button on products. Pinterest is driving traffic back to products as people share the brands and products that they love (or are affiliates for). Make sure that your individual products have the Pin It button to encourage pinning.
- Link Pinterest to social networks. Include links to your Pinterest page on social networks like Facebook and periodically post about your Pinterest page on Twitter. As your existing fans and followers see your pins, they may repin your content and share with their networks. Use your other social networks to build your Pinterest following.
- Follow us on Pinterest button on your site. Just as you include links to Facebook and Twitter on your home page or sidebar, include links to your Pinterest account. This will show your website visitors that you are active on Pinterest, and they may connect with you on Pinterest and increase their engagement with your brand, or even repin your content to their followers.
- Optimize content to make it Pinteresting. In addition to the Pin It button, brands can optimize their content to make it more Pinteresting or “pinnable.” By looking at the content that your target audience is already pinning, you can create more pinnable content. For example, one of my clients found that in their category people were pinning new product announcements more than product reviews, so they optimized their blog content strategy to match what their audience was pinning.
- Start pinning! Like every other social network, Pinterest is about the community and participating in the community. Unlike Facebook or LinkedIn, brands can participate in Pinterest the same as any other users; they aren’t restricted to brand accounts. This means that brands can actively build a community and expand their brand reach to new audiences. By repining and commenting, brands can interact and engage.
- Bonus tip: You can see who is pinning your site. You can also see who is pinning content from your site. Type in pinterest.com/source/yourwebsite.com/ to see pinned content. You can see my company’s here as an example. This gives you a sense of what content is pinnable and who is actively pinning your content.
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