When I was a kid, I loved to spend rainy afternoons making collages. I’d sit with a stack of magazines and cut out pictures that inspired me. Then, I took the photos and organized them into different themes.
At the end of this project, I had a collection of collages that represented many of my thoughts and dreams. Whether it was a trip that I wanted to take one day or the treehouse I hoped to build, these collections showcased my ideas for getting there.
I probably would have continued making collages into my adulthood if it wasn’t for the introduction of Pinterest boards. When I started my business back in 2012, Pinterest was just in its early stages. You still needed an invitation to join.
Once you had an account, you could create Pinterest boards of different sizes representing all of the ideas that you had. It was like curating my collages again, but on the computer.
Of all the social media tools out there today, Pinterest is one of my favorites. It’s a little different than when it first started. Now its a search engine and, when used correctly, can be a powerful tool to grow your business.
But, Pinterest hasn’t lost all of its roots. I love that I can still go onto the mobile app – as I did in the beginning – and type in anything I’m thinking about. A second or two later, I’m surrounded by visual inspiration.
This visual inspiration has given me ideas for design, our home renovation, birthday party planning and many other projects I’ve pursued. Each of them is pinned to a Pinterest board and left there until I need it. No more crumpled up papers and thrown out magazines. Everything is neat and pretty – organized on the best Pinterest boards possible.
As much as I love to use Pinterest for my personal inspiration, it’s also a great place to grow my business.
You can create Pinterest boards to inspire your customers and give them ideas on how to use your products.
But the Pinterest boards that you create for your business are a bit different than the ones made for your personal interests. They are curated with your customer in mind, their interests and the products that they’re looking for.
The purpose of these Pinterest boards are to find potential customers that are looking for your product or will be in the future. You need to build these boards carefully with a specific action that you’d like the customer to take in mind.
Here’s some ideas on how to create the best Pinterest boards that will grow your business.
As much fun as making your boards creative (and sometimes wacky) can be, they are the first thing that your customers see when they “click” through your doors.
Think about if you had a brick and mortar shop.
What kind of reflection do you want the first items your customers see to say about your shop?
Each Pinterest board on your account represents your business. The Pinterest board shares something about your business that you want customers to know about.
So in order to create a collection of the best Pinterest boards, choose your board topics wisely. Select ideas that say something positive about your business and products. You want your boards to be a happy reflection of the items you sell. This will convince potential customers to share more and visit your website.
All about You
Many people have asked me what their first Pinterest board should be in their collection. I recommend thinking about the items that you want customers to see first when they come through your doors. Collect all of these things onto a “Best of” board and arrange that board at the very top. This way they won’t miss the most important products and things you share.
Most viewers of your Pinterest account will not scroll through long lists of boards to figure out what your shop and business are all about. These boards need to be at the very top so they are easy to find.
On my shop’s Pinterest account, I include a “Best of” board, “Free Printables” (from our blog) and then product based boards. This gives customers an easy way to navigate the things we sell and get to know our shop better without a lot of effort.
If you’re trying to grow your Pinterest views, create some boards based on the latest trends. Although these boards are not very evergreen – meaning that they’ll be with your business forever – they are a wonderful way to bring in lots of new viewers who might be interested in your other boards too.
To create a Pinterest board based on a latest trend, figure out the popular keywords that searchers use to find inspiration for this theme. Include those keywords in your Pinterest board descriptions as well as the pins you add to the board. This way Pinterest users can more easily find your boards.
Not sure what’s trending? Figuring out the latest trends can be tough since they’re always changing. You can find lots of ways I like to study the latest trends here. It’s actually one of my favorite parts of designing.
Although I include our products mixed into my inspiration boards, sometimes viewers don’t want to guess what your shop sells. The products that you create should be pretty clear when they click on your Pinterest profile.
In order to showcase the different types of products you can find in our online shop, I’ve created a set of Pinterest boards with the product themes.
For example, there is a Pinterest board about birthday invitations, baby shower games, birthday tees and gifts for moms. Each of these Pinterest boards include different designs from our shop.
By having separate Pinterest boards for these topics, it’s easier for potential customers to find the items that they’re looking for. Think about it. When someone walks into your shop for the first time, they want to know what you make. Your first few Pinterest boards tell them.
These boards also help Pinterest users find your products more easily. If you use really specific product descriptions filled with keywords, Pinterest’s search engine will bring up your product pins in the results more frequently.
Some of my favorite best Pinterest boards to create for my customers are inspiration boards.
An inspiration board is focused on a topic related to your niche.
Since I design party stationery, my inspiration boards are about different party themes. Each Pinterest board includes the products that we sell for that party theme and other ideas from the Internet.
Browsers will find collections of party treats, favor ideas, crafts and activities for the party and other celebration fun. I even send potential customers to these Pinterest boards when they are just starting their party planning to get ideas.
You can also create inspiration boards sharing how to use your products. If you’re a jewelry designer, you could include Pinterest Boards with outfit suggestions or accessory ideas that match your jewelry. A wall art designer could have room decorating idea boards based on their different art print themes.
The purpose of your inspiration themed boards is to give potential customers ideas for how to use your products.
When creating your inspiration boards, make sure that they’re pretty and have great ideas with links that work. Nothing is worse than when someone clicks on a pin and it leads to a non-working page.
Find what Relates
Although it’s important to get Pinterest users who are interested in your products to browse your Pinterest account, you also want to get new customers who didn’t even know about your products.
One way to do this is to create Pinterest boards about related topics that your audience is also looking for. Once they are on your account, they’re more likely to browse your other Pinterest boards longer and even follow you.
For example, in addition to stationery and inspiration boards, I also create Pinterest boards about creative cakes, craft ideas and family organization. These are topics that moms who love to celebrate and spend time with their families search for.
So in order to expand the Pinterest boards in your shop’s collection, figure out different board themes that relate to your niche. Create a Pinterest board for each and fill it with inspirational pins for your ideal customers. It’s a great way to bring more views to your Pinterest account.
One way to grab the attention of Pinterest browsers is through amazing board covers. These little square images are a great way to create a Pinterest board with your business branding and make your page look professional.
Using board covers also brings uniformity to your Pinterest account. It makes all of your boards look like they belong together – even if they include an array of pins with different colors, type and other design elements.
I will say this about board covers, though. They are helpful, but not necessary. Making covers for your Pinterest boards can take a lot of time. This might not be time you have right now. If not, focus on curating amazing boards for your Pinterest account, instead, and come back to making board covers when you have more time.
I’ve been at the Pinterest game for over five years and I’m still in the process of making uniform board covers. Although I love the way they look when I post them!
You can find more details for setting up your board covers here. Since Pinterest board covers are like a pin, they need to be linked to a web address. This web designer links her board covers to the Pinterest board, which seems kind of smart. That way if they come up in search, you can always find the board they’re associated with.
The Pinterest board description is your opportunity to tell potential viewers what your board is all about. I used to dismiss the importance of these carefully chosen words because who really read board descriptions any way.
It turns out the words you choose for this section are REALLY important. They need to be keywords that a viewer would search for. Remember, your Pinterest board (just like a pin) needs to be the answer to someone’s search query.
So before writing your Pinterest board description, do your research.
Go into the Search bar in Pinterest and type in a word or two about your board topic. In the example above, I wanted to find keywords to put with my board about panda party ideas. I typed in panda party and Pinterest shows me what other searchers are looking for. (This is also a great way to come up with blog ideas… more on that here.)
These are the words and phrases that people are searching for related to “panda party”. I will use these keywords when writing the description of my Pinterest board. That way people looking for all of these ideas will have a chance to be directed to my board.
So, when making a new Pinterest board do your own search for related keywords. Use them when writing your board descriptions. This way your Pinterest board comes up when someone searches for those words. It helps you get found by new Pinterest users.
Don’t Get too Personal
Have you ever had an idea that you wanted to explore further so you created a new Pinterest board?
Maybe it was a board for your upcoming family camping trip, recipes for the new diet you just started or ideas for homeschooling your preschooler.
As much as you want to let your customers learn more about you and your business, some boards are just not meant to be shared. If your new Pinterest board idea is related to your business niche, then definitely include it in your assortment.
But if you have an idea that is solving more of a personal problem, then keep it secret. You can click on the Secret button and no one else will see the board.
The titles of your Pinterest boards and keywords are chosen to bring a potential customer to your profile. When you start adding boards that are too far out of your niche or things another audience might search for, you can confuse the search engines. You will start to get followers that aren’t interested in your products or your shop.
So, stick with boards that will relate. And if aren’t sure if a board topic is appropriate, just make it secret.
The best curated Pinterest accounts work hard to only have the Pinterest boards that their audience will look for.
Pinterest is a powerful tool for growing your online business. It’s a place to showcase your products, share blog posts that bring important traffic to your shop and provide inspiration for customers.
It’s ability to reach more potential customers, though, only works if you set your account up correctly. The types of boards you choose to share, the pins that are on those boards and how you integrate your products throughout define your success on Pinterest.
If you already have a Pinterest account set up for your business, review the boards that you have created.
Make sure each board has an assortment of related pins (both yours and others), a keyword rich description and even add a cover that visually connects the Pinterest board with your current shop branding.
As you create new Pinterest boards, make sure the topics are things that your customer would search for. Think about how they will find your Pinterest boards and use those keywords in your pin descriptions.
No Pinterest account yet? Now is as great a time as any to set up a business account. Check out this simple tutorial to help.
You might be surprised, but with the right elements in place, Pinterest will help you grow your business and find more potential shoppers.