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Updated 2019. Pinterest has become one of the biggest sources of traffic for a lot of bloggers. Some blogs get well over 50% of their traffic from Pinterest alone meaning tens of thousands of views! However, it’s also very underused by a lot of bloggers. Myself included until 2017.
I knew it was a great way to increase my page views but I looked into it so many times last year and I could not work out how to use it at all! I was so confused and I kept giving up until finally, one day, I just ‘got it’ and started using Pinterest regularly to increase my unique page views.
In my blog post 10 Real and Honest Ways That I Have Tripled my Page Views in Less than One Year! I detailed Pinterest as one of the ways I had grown my page views. I asked if you wanted to see a blog post of how I had done this and the resounding answer was YES as it seems a lot of bloggers are confused when it comes to Pinterest.
I’m no expert but I started using Pinterest properly in August 2017 where I had 47 views from Pinterest that month. This grew to 113, 254, 478 and 673 by December. This traffic is by no means amazing and Pinterest can produce far better traffic for blogger’s but I think it’s clear that the basic way I use Pinterest is working because even a few hundred views is better than 0, and I’m definitely going to keep using Pinterest to grow my page views, that’s for sure!
2019 Update: My Pinterest traffic is now at 3000+ per month even after not pinning for a few months. I’m back to pinning regularly now and I have seen the increase again.
So, here is my Step by Step, Beginners Guide to Using Pinterest as a Blogger to grow your Traffic and Page Views, Plus lots of Tips!!
I’m going to use lots of screen grabs and try to explain things really simply so bookmark this post, work step by step and keep referring back. You will not do this all in one day so don’t try to!
Before we start here are my key notes and reminders about how to use Pinterest as a Blogger and how to use pinterest for blogging:
- Pinterest is not a social media platform, it is a search engine.
- Due to the above, it does not matter how many followers you have. Do not spend time gaining followers. They don’t have an effect on how well you do on Pinterest.
- Because Pinterest is a search engine, treat it like a ‘business’ platform, rather than a way to connect with other bloggers.
- Pinterest is a 2 way thing, you share your pins to gain traffic but for your pins to be shared, you need to share other people’s pins too.
- Pinterest needs time to grow, your pins need time to be found. Pinterest is not a quick fix in terms of page views.
- Implement my steps below and keep doing them everyday / every few days. Do keep checking your stats but don’t put any pressure on yourself for a at least 3 MONTHS!! It’s likely you won’t see much of a growth until then!
- If you don’t have time to pin and schedule pins there are lots of people out there who will do it for you. Hiring a Pinterest VA is very popular so if you’re willing to invest this is a good idea to help grow your traffic.
In this post I have covered:
1 – Creating an Account
2 – Creating Relevant Boards
3 – Create Pins & What Site to use
4 – Uploading a Selection of Pins
5 – Sharing Pins via Group Pinterest Boards and Pinterest Facebook Pages
6 – Scheduling Pins with Tailwind
7 – How to Carry on & Make this Routine
1 – Create a Pinterest Account and Ensure it is on a Business Profile.
Your Pinterest account needs to be the same name as your blog. Create a bio that fits in with your blog and your social media bio’s so you are recognisable. Use the same photo as your social media.
Tip: Don’t use your personal account from back in 2013 unless you change the details!
Ensure you set up a business account or switch to a business account if you had a personal account.
2 – Create a set of Boards to Match your Blog Style.
If you are a travel blogger like myself you’ll want to set up a selection of boards that are travel related. I use Continents but others create one for each Country. I would suggest not going too in-depth with your boards as when you start pinning you’ll have to stop and think, is this Cambodia, Thailand, India? and type in the Country name to find the board whereas typing in ‘Asia’ every time feels a lot easier and I now type this on auto.
If you are a beauty blogger for example think hair, face, body products.
One board you definitely want to create is one for all of your blog posts. Think of it as a file of your work. ‘Best of… ‘ or … Blog Posts’, works well.
Tip: Don’t spend too much time on this though, create a few basic boards that you can think of. Trust me, you will need to start creating lots more boards when you start pinning as you’ll soon start seeing pins that don’t fit in your boards.
For example I didn’t have a ‘Gifts’ one but as Christmas approached I quickly created a ‘Gifts Ideas’ board for all of the travel gift guides that were being shared!
This is a snapshot of what some of my boards looks like:
I have created white pages with the name of my board on which is why it looks the way it does but do not worry how to do this or worry how to make it look pretty just yet.
3 – Create Pinterest Pins for your Blog Posts Using Canva.
Before you start ‘pinning’ you need to create pinable images to pin!
Most bloggers seem to use Canva because it is really easy to use (plus its free for basic designs, I don’t pay for any designs). There is even a Pinterest Graphic you can edit and this size works best on Pinterest so use this.
I’m not going to explain how to use Canva as I don’t even use it that well and my pins are very basic but it is simple to use once you know how. Create at least 2-4 pins per blog post as you want to share your blog post more than once on Pinterest.
To start with I would create 2-4 pins for your Top 10 viewed blog posts and for your 10 most recently published posts, or something along those lines. This will give you a good amount of pins to share for the first few weeks.
Tip: Always batch make your pins on Pinterest. Set up 2-4 Canva tabs, add in the photo and then copy and paste the titles etc to make it easier.
Tip: If you don’t have many vertical photos that you have taken yourself, don’t be afraid to use stock photos. I prefer using my photos as it feels more personal but as I was reminded and as I told you, Pinterest is Business so if a stock photo looks better, use it. I had Pixabay & Pexels recommended to me when I asked Twitter a few months ago, they provide free images and there’s no need to credit them. There are lots more available sites too.
4 – Upload a few Pins onto your ‘Best of’ Pinterest Board.
Now you need to get your pins onto your Pinterest account to grow your Pinterest as a blogger.
Don’t upload all of the pins you have created in the step above onto your profile as going forward I would suggest using Tailwind to schedule pins and you can use some of the pre-created ones to do this (more on that in point 6).
For now upload 5-10 pins onto your ‘Best of’ board.
Simply click on your ‘Best of’ board, click create pin to the left – your device – upload image and copy in the blog post URL (it says its optional but it’s not!) – continue.
Before choosing a board you need to ‘tell us more about this pin’. This is where your description goes (see below too) and if there is one rule of Pinterest it’s to not upload a pin without a description as it will not get found.
Tip: Into the description box I copy in the full blog post name and then the meta description that I have written in Yoast, plus a few more lines as this is a description I have already written. (If Yoast means nothing to you, don’t worry, just write a short paragraph of what is in this blog post to entice people to read it!)
Choose your ‘best of’ board using the column on the right and also add it to one of your pre-created board, e.g my pin above is about Serbia so I would add it to my ‘Europe’ board.
5 – Start Sharing Pinterest Pins and Repining others Pins to grow your Traffic and Page Views.
I have found there are 2 ways to share your pin’s and re-pin other people’s pins:
1 – Via Group Pinterest Boards – In order to do this you need to join some group boards, I would suggest finding these by looking on Pinterest users profiles that are in the same niche as you. A Group board is identifiable by the circle of accounts that shows on the board (see below). Usually you need to request to join a board, the process a long with the rules of the board will be in the board description. Most of the time the process to join involves messaging the group admin.
Once you are joined, the group board/s will appear in your list of boards and you can then share your pin in them. Usually the boards have rules about how many you can share per day, usually 2 or 3 pins max which is fair enough.
Find the image you want to pin via your ‘Best of..’ board (this is why I suggested adding a few pins in here in step 4), and share it in the group board. Once you have pinned your pin into a group board you need to scroll through the other pins and pin them to each of your own boards. For example the ‘The Ultimate Two Weeks Itinerary to Greece’ as seen below would fit in my ‘Europe’ board so I’d save it in here.
But how many pins do you pin? Especially if a lot of people are posting pins into this board.
If you are ‘Pinning’ everyday, I would suggest trying to go back as far as the pin you last shared. This means that you will pin everyone’s.
How do you know if others are pinning yours?
Well that’s the thing, these boards are all about trust!
Tip: I would suggest you join a group board that is slightly smaller so its more manageable to pin all of the pins and ensure others pin yours. Also try to join one where you know the other people in it and you know they are pinning regularly as hopefully you’ll have that mutual trust and respect to pin each others.
2 – Via Facebook Pinterest Pages. – You may well have heard about Pinterest Facebook groups! Again, in order to be part of one, you need to find one, and join one. Type ‘Pinterest for Bloggers’ into your Facebook search bar and the following pages plus a lot more will appear!
When joining the Best Facebook Groups for Pinterest keep 4 things in mind:
1- Make sure you join a page that is relevant to your blog, e.g if you blog about beauty or mainly lifestyle, don’t join a travel related page.
2- Read the description, not all Pinterest for Bloggers Facebook pages will be to share pins. Some will be for information and learning purposes, which are fine to join but don’t spend days waiting to be approved only to realise you applied for a board that wasn’t what you thought it was for!
3- Read the rules! It may sound like all of these rules make Pinterest really strict but as I said, its business, not social media. In order for the pages to work effectively for everyone, there has to be rules. These include the fact that if you share a pin you HAVE to re-pin everyone else’s along with how long you have to pin them after you have pinned your’s. Plus, certain boards have restrictions on which blog posts you can share. E.G most travel related pages don’t let you share ‘blogging tips’ pins!
4- It can take a few days to get approved to a Facebook page so apply a bit in advance. You’ll usually be asked for your blog URL, Pinterest URL and a short description of what you blog about to apply.
Tip: If you are a travel blogger, ‘Mappin Monday’ is a great one to join! So is ‘Ultimate Pinterest Group for Travel Bloggers’ as seen above.
Now, this is where the fun starts.
Let’s use ‘Ultimate Pinterest Group for Travel Bloggers’ as an example of how to use these Facebook Pages!
Each day one of the admins will post advising that todays thread is now live. Each daily thread on this particular group is live for 24 hours.
Copy the URL for the pin you want to share (this is why I suggest uploading some pins in step 4). Scroll down the thread on Facebook, see what the last number was, # the next number, your blog name and your pin URL. Wait a few seconds as initially the preview will appear which as per the rules, you need to remove. Click remove preview and you’re done.
Note – You have to remove your preview and you cannot do this on mobile devices so unfortunately you have to pin on a desktop!
Once you have pinned yours, its time to pin everyone else’s. Go to #1, click on their URL and save it into your most relevant board (do not pin these into group boards, only your boards!), like their comment and carry on doing that until you get as far as you can!
Note – Facebook isn’t actually meant to be used for this purpose so once you have liked a lot of comments, usually about 80 for me, it brings up a recaptcha form and every time I ‘like’ after that it appears again, so if you get to this point just log off and carry on again later. This is why a lot of people write ‘done’ because they have been blocked from liking so you could do that too.
Tip: Once I have left my pin in a comment I turn off the notifications in the post so I don’t get told every time someone else comments on the thread. Although I do get a notification when other people like my comment so I’ve turned off all my Facebook notifications and you’ll probably want to do the same! Otherwise you think you’re really popular and you’re not, its all Pinterest Group notifications!
Due to the boards being live for 24 hours there will be people who post after you so ensure you go back the next day or later on and keep pinning until the thread is closed! Once a thread is closed you want to be able to look back and see a like against every single comment excluding yours, unless you want to like your own!
Tip: The process I use is, click on a hyperlink which loads in my tabs, go back into the Facebook tab, click like on the link I have just loaded, click the next link, click like etc etc, until I have about 10 or so tabs open. Once I have them open and I have liked them all so I know where I have got to, I go through the tabs and pin them all to my boards, close the tabs down and start again. I find working in 10’s easier to keep track of too!
This is basically all you need to do when using Facebook Groups for Pinterest.
Some Facebook pages only allow 50 comments in each thread, e.g the ‘Pinterest for Travel Bloggers’ page, this is good when you’re short on time as you only need to re-pin 49 pins however it means your pin will only get 49 pins too. The Ultimate Pinterest Group for Travel Bloggers is open for 24 hours so there’s no limit on how many people can pin, the numbers range from 60-100 usually, if it gets bigger (and maybe it will if you are reading this and decide to join!) it’s more time consuming to re-pin the pins but your pin will get more re-pins too!
Mappin Monday is a good example of a thread that is very time consuming but worth it! The thread is open Monday-Friday, it get’s over 200 comments but you have all week to pin all of the pins and your pin gets saved to all of these boards too!!
Note – The admins do keep track of who is pinning so if they see you have shared a pin but not finished another thread you will get called out on it in the thread.. for everyone to see!
What do I do out of the 2 options?
I started using the Pinterest Group Boards when I first started being a ‘Pinterester’ but now I purely use the Facebook Pages as they keep me more accountable and I have seen a bigger share on them.
I was finding that in group boards I would share my pin in them, start repining others, say I would do more later but usually forgetting. I started to feel bad that people were probably pinning mine and I wasn’t pinning theirs. It’s easy forget where you have got to in pinning others pins.
Whereas with Facebook I have to like each pin so I know where I am if I stop and start, plus I think the share is a lot bigger!
6 – How to Schedule Pins Using Tailwind.
Now you need to schedule your pins so they appear on your Pinterest account regularly so you always have new pins to share on the Group Boards or Facebook threads.
There are many ways you can do this.
1 – You could load a few pins onto your ‘Best of’ board directly from the Pinterest webpage each week to give you a batch to work from each week.
2 – You could load one on everyday if you have your account open and access to your pre-created pins everyday.
3 – You can schedule your pin’s using Tailwind which is what I do. I like Tailwind because I can batch upload pins for the same blog post, copy and paste the URL across all pins a long with the description. Schedule them for whenever the post is coming out and never think about them again.
Therefore I’m going to run through how I use Tailwind on my desktop to schedule my pins.
Tailwind is free for your first 100 pins which will cover you for at least 3-4 months so its worth signing up and testing it out.
First off, once I joined I set up a schedule by choosing ‘Your Schedule’ in the toolbar on the left as seen below.
I wanted to be sharing a new pin every weekday so I set up a schedule up of 1 post per day to go out in the morning. I set this up months ago and I have never had to go back into it!
Every time I make a new set of pins in Canva, I go into Tailwind, go to ‘Scheduled Pins’ on the left, and then to ‘Create New Pin’ – ‘Upload Images’. I select the pins I have just created.
Once they have uploaded, I add them to my ‘Best of’ board by typing in the board name. I copy the URL from my blog post which goes into a box below the description (it’s cut off in the shot below) and then I copy my meta Yoast description into the description box, add a few more lines to make it more enticing and click schedule!
These newly scheduled pins will appear in the next available time slot in my schedule on the right side of my page (which for me, is once per weekday). It is easy to drag and drop them in replacement of others though. For example, I always post a new blog post on a Sunday so I’ll drag one of the pins for that blog post to the Monday after its gone live so I can share it on a Facebook thread straight away!
Tip: It’s worth noting that Tailwind has a lot to offer and I really don’t use it to its full potential. Tribes are now a really popular thing on Tailwind which you can get for an extra cost. In these you share a mix of your pins and other peoples pins.
Tip: Many people say that to get the best reach on Pinterest using Tailwind you should share other peoples pins too. People give different ratios as what to use so test out a few options yourself to see what works.
7 – Carry this on & Add it to your Routine!
This may seem like a lot but once you’re set up on the Facebook pages and have pins scheduled for a while it really isn’t that time consuming. I’ve gotten into a rhythm when it comes to re-pinning and can do it really fast now so it doesn’t use up much of my time and is part of my routine. (aka my lunch break at work!) As with everything, it just takes some dedication to start with.
Tip: Going forward ensure that you always make a selection of pin’s for each new blog post as soon as you have finished writing your blog post. Create the pins, schedule them and then it’s done. This needs to become part of your blog writing process (along with ALL of the other things, I know, I know!!).
Tip: It’s all good pinning posts but these posts need to be searchable on Pinterest too, and SEO is how you will do this! You need to be adding keywords into your captions, just like you do in your blog post and blog post titles.
Finally, to really help grow your Pinterest as a blogger remember my tips at the start of this post. In particular the fact that it takes pins time to grow and be seen, it’s likely you won’t see progress for a few months. Keep checking your stats though via Pinterest and Tailwind to see which ones are doing well and you’ll soon start realising what works for you and what doesn’t!
I hope you have found this post useful! I would suggest literally doing this post STEP BY STEP, do not try to do it all in one day as it’s not going to happen.
Bookmark this blog post and do each section at a time, keep referring back and it will all come together!
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