Hey blogging family! Today we’re going to talk about how to to optimize your website for Pinterest pins, repins, and traffic.
We will also talk about a highly used plugin we do NOT recommended.
If you’re new to these parts, just know that we will be referring to and taking pictures from our health and wellness blog, Avocadu.com.
Just for better clarification, we blog at Create and Go about our authority blog (Avocadu) and its success. That’s right.
We don’t just blog about blogging! 😉
These tips are VITAL to optimizing your website for Pinterest.
Missing any of these will hurt your website’s chances of getting repins and followers.
9 Steps to Optimizing Your Website for Pinterest
1. Verify your website with Pinterest.
Pinterest has a system to help confirm your website with their platform.
Not confirming your website will lead to less repins, engagements, and pretty much no love from Pinterest.
They do these things to prevent spam, and this is not a skippable step for a serious Pinner.
If you don’t know how to access the header and are using WordPress, there’s a free plugin called Yoast SEO that can be used for this process.
This is a great plugin, because you’ll need it for the next step as well. It also helps with making your website a little more Google SEO friendly.
2. Enable rich pins of your website.
Here’s an example of what a pin looks like with and without rich pins:
Aesthetically and professional, that big bold text makes a big difference. There is also another indication of where it is coming from, so you know that it can’t possibly link to spam.
Rich pins are also an indicator to Pinterest that you’re actually taking things seriously and tells them about the content you’re primarily pinning.
Here’s their article on how to install rich pins (opens in a new window).
Note** this can be a pain in the ass as the verification process can be a little screwy. We also cover it in more detail in our article here.
3. Truly understand the mobile Pinterest experience.
You want to think of your average Pinterest user as young mother of two curled up on the couch with a glass of wine, enjoying the day’s end going through social media.
This person, most of the time, is NOT on a laptop. In fact, 70%-80% of your Pinterest traffic is going to be coming in from mobile and tablets.
Preparing for mobile traffic is like making sure you have enough chairs at your wedding reception.
Here’s what needs to be done:
Your website needs to be FAST!
Want to crush the chances of ever making it on Pinterest? It’s simple: Have a Slow Website.
I can’t tell you how many times I have clicked a pin, got impatient with the load time, and bounced. Not only that, but when a user is on the Pinterest mobile app, they aren’t even taken OFF the app to view your website!
They are viewing your website IN the app, and that makes it that much easier for them to move on when your website is taking more than 3 seconds to load.
Speed is everything, and our appetite as consumers for fast and easy to read material is only going to get stronger as time goes on.
You can use Google’s page speed tool here. Anything slower than 50 is an issue that should be dealt with immediately.
We had this issue once on Avocadu, and our traffic NOTICEABLY increased immediately after we sped things up.
This is also impacted by your images…
Images must be optimized.
Poorly sized and optimized images are the primary culprits behind a slow website.
Stock images especially are very high quality, high resolution, and take up a lot of space on your website.
I upload every single photo on our blogs in Optimizilla first, and I use PicMonkey depending on the circumstances and whether images need to be edited at all.
Your website needs to look clean, readable, and correctly spaced.
Go and check out our website on mobile to get an idea.
The real key here is to be a practitioner. We noticed these things from using Pinterest on OUR phones and paying attention to things we need to fix.
Use your phone every now and then, access Pinterest, and check out your own Pins the same was a typical user does.
It may bring more insight than you’d expect.
4. Have big, sexy, pinnable images at the beginning of every article.
If you flip through some of the Articles at Avocadu or Create and Go, you will notice they all start the same.
Right under the opening paragraph will be a Pin sized image with wrapping text going down the right side.
This isn’t by accident.
If you are on a laptop or desktop and you hover the curser over the image with your mouse, you will be prompted with the ability to share the image on social media.
This format makes it VERY easy for people to repin our Pinterest pin, leading to more shares and traffic.
5. Install a social media plugin for direct image shares.
This is a plugin that we searched high and low for. Some plugins didn’t look good enough, and some of them didn’t have the capabilities that we wanted.
SumoMe is the best one that we found, and they have a free version.
This plugin creates a social media sharing option upon hover that allows users to share your content easily.
You never know what images people are going to share, and that way any potential pinner can pin your images and get you more traffic!
6. Install social media on every webpage and at the bottom.
It seems obvious enough, but it’s often missed.
The plugin we use to accomplish this is Ultimate Social Deux by Code Canyon. Note that this is a paid plugin, but it’s only $15 (one-time payment).
We did tons of research, and this was by far the best one that we could find. A lot of other plugins we looked at also seem to slow down the website a bit.
Ultimate social has a crisp and clean feel to it, which I like.
Also, as people read your articles, they will have a tendency to scroll all the way to the very bottom of the page.
This is strange to me, but I used to track and watch how visitors used our website with hotjar, and it happens A LOT.
This is why we have social media icons at the bottom.
We use this opportunity to try to get our visitor to follow us on social media, but you can insert anything from blog posts to products if you like.
7. Be careful with Pinterest sidebars.
When we started, a lot of bloggers were recommending using a Pinterest widget sidebar and many still do on popular blogs.
We tried it and everything seemed fine until I checked our website speed with that plugin…
Slower than a sloth in traffic:
The reason it slows down websites so much is that in order for the webpage to load, it pulls all of the most recent, huge, and high quality images from the Pinterest server.
This is not good.
Yeah it looks beautiful in that sidebar, but having a sexy website doesn’t matter if people bounce before the page loads!
This is why we opt to not use them and do not recommend them.
8. We created our own “Follow Us” button. Here’s what happened…
About 5 months into Avocadu, we got clever and tried creating our own Pinterest follow us button to get more subscribers. We thought it was genius!
We added them to every single one of our blog posts, and we really didn’t see any increase in followers at all. I think this is because when people browse on their phones/tablets using Pinterest, they technically stay in the app.
Pinterest also has other popups that prompt users to follow you once they pin and/or view your content.
I wish I had some measurable data for you on this, but you’re just going to have to trust that Lauren and I are as anal about Pinterest as we come across.
Clever buttons don’t generally work, and they are a waste of time.
9. Add a call to action in your email newsletter.
The final step is to add a CTA in the first email of your newsletter.
You can see it in the bottom of ours:
We mention the number of followers, because it adds social proof when other people are following you. You could also say something like:
“Follow my amazing Pinterest Account, and I’ll Shower You With Amazing Pins!” or something like that.
Again, I’m not sure how many people actually use this method, but I’m sure we have a few and EVERY FOLLOWER COUNTS.
You never know when a super pinner is checking you out.
Trust us when I say that having a one million-follower Pinterest account repin you is worth its weight in gold (story for a later date!).
Alright sexy Pinterest people, check out our other Pinterest resources below.
- Pinterest for Business: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide from Actual Power Pinners
- How to Set Up Your Account and Drive Traffic Via Pinterest
- 10 Pinterest Tips and Tricks for Beginners
And our ultimate resource for success on Pinterest: Pinterest Organic Traffic Avalanche
Create something awesome today.
Create and Go
P.S. I want to hear from you today. No for real, get out from behind that keyboard and let us know about yo bad self! Use the comment section and introduce yourself. 🙂
P.P.S. Want the down and dirty insider Pinterest tips? Join our FREE Community Support Group of Honest Bloggers where we talk about blogging, Pinterest, pugs, and more. Click here to join, you sexy beast.
Alex & Lauren
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