Pinterest SEO in 2018: How to Optimize Your Pins for the Changes (Updated)

Want a winning Pinterest strategy? Bloggers should know that Pinterest made some major changes in 2017. In this in-depth guide, we'll share Pinterest SEO best practices for 2018.

Pinterest SEO How to Optimize Your Pins for the 2017 Algorithm Change

Is Pinterest on your list of things to do this year?

Well, the first thing you should know about Pinterest is that it isn’t a social media site.

It’s a search engine.

There are over 2 billion monthly searches on Pinterest.

But, why should you care? Surely only DIY, food, and mom bloggers are having any luck on Pinterest?

Actually, Pinterest is a huge driver of website traffic across all industries, responsible for about 5% of all referral traffic.

But traffic isn’t the only consideration for hopping on the Pinterest bandwagon. It’s also good for business.

via Brandon Gaille

You see, Pinterest users are ready to buy. While surfing their Pinterest feeds, shopping carts ring up at $58.95 on average. That’s more money than people spend from Facebook or Twitter.

Pinterest also represents a huge opportunity to overcome your competition, as many online businesses are using Pinterest all wrong, or not at all.

Leveraging Pinterest SEO can give you a practically unlimited supply of free traffic to your site. Traffic that is ready to buy. Are you ready to learn how?

Good! Let’s start by introducing you to the 2017 Pinterest algorithm change…

Affiliate Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link.

Meet the Pinterest “Smart Feed” Algorithm

The “Smart Feed” is the name of Pinterest’s algorithm. It determines what a user sees in their Pinterest home feed.


Here’s how it works:

Pinterest wants to show you a mix of content you care about. Good content. The kind of content that will have you clicking and coming back for more.

Pins used to be seen in real-time, however, that’s not the case anymore. Pins are shown as “best first” rather than “newest first”. And Pinterest’s Smart Feed is responsible for prioritizing and ranking pins based on their quality, with quality being determined by their algorithm.

There are three different content pools of content that your home feed is drawn from:


  • Repins from users you’re following
  • Related pins
  • Pins from your interests

Pinterest chooses pins from each of these three pools to display in your Smart Feed.

But how does Pinterest decide which pins to choose? Well, like any search engine algorithm, Pinterest’s Smart Feed algorithm is complex and they hold their cards close to their chest.

However, there are 4 main factors which are known to influence whether or not your pins show up on Pinterest:

  1. Domain Quality
  2. Pin Quality
  3. Pinner Quality
  4. Relevance

Once you understand how to optimize each of these 4 factors, you’ll be well on your way to driving consistent traffic with Pinterest!

Let’s begin with how to increase domain quality…

1. How to Increase Domain Quality

Domain quality is Pinterest’s idea of the quality of your website.

Pinterest can see how popular pins from your website are, and it learns whether your site is a source of high-quality content over time.

How do you improve your domain quality ranking and get Pinterest to trust you?

Step 1. Convert to a business account if you haven’t already done so.

Step 2. Verify your website to show Pinterest that you are a legitimate pinner.

Step 3. Enable rich pins on your account.

Rich pins add extra information to your pins directly from your blog. The best part is that if you update the information on your blog, it’ll automatically transfer across to Pinterest. The added information helps to improve your ranking.

Step 4. Create and pin high-quality content that gets many repins and likes.

Easier said than done, you say? Don’t worry, we’ll explain how to get more repins and likes in the next section…

2. How to Increase Pin Quality

Pin quality is determined by the popularity of your pins.

If a lot of people repin and hit the “Tried It” button on your pin, Pinterest will view that as a high-quality pin.

Pinterest also looks at all versions of your pin when determining pin quality. So if you repin one of your pins to another board, Pinterest adds up how many repins and “Tried It’s” that pin received as well.

How do you improve your pin quality?

Step 1. Write compelling blog post titles.

The entire point of a blog post headline is to get people to read the next sentence. Similarly, a juicy or compelling headline goes a long way towards getting repins and likes on Pinterest.

Step 2. Create pin-worthy graphics.

You can have the best post in the world, with a great headline, but if your pin graphic is ugly it isn’t going to do well on Pinterest.

Here are some best practices for creating pin-worthy graphics:


  • Make sure your image is tall rather than wide.
  • Use a high-quality image.
  • Overlay your blog post title on the image.
  • Use multiple images in your pin. This works well for food, DIY, and craft bloggers who can show the steps in their process. It also works well for outfit posts, roundup-style posts and before/after transformation posts.
  • If you have a free download you’re giving away with your blog post, create a mock-up of it and add it to the pin. People like to see what they’re getting and it shows that your post is packed with even more value.
  • Use longer images. They take up more space in the feed and get more engagement.
    Note: As of November 2017, there are reports from some users that long pins are truncated in the feed – this change hasn’t rolled out to all users yet.

Step 3. Monitor your Pinterest boards for repins and clicks

If your pins aren’t being repinned from your personal boards or your group boards, consider leaving (or deleting) them. However, also check for clicks to your site in Pinterest Analytics – you don’t want to leave a board that’s getting you clicks!

Should you participate in share/like exchanges?

If you want to give a certain pin a boost, there are many groups on Facebook that run promo days where you can post a link to your pin and ask for repins. However, are share/like exchanges really beneficial?

On the plus side, participating in share exchanges gets you:

  • A boost in repins that helps your pin look better to Pinterest.
  • Increased reach from the shares you receive.

On the negative side, you might find:

  • Your pins may be negatively affected by being pinned to irrelevant boards.
  • Your pinner quality ranking could be negatively affected by reciprocating and pinning poor quality pins that don’t fit your niche.
  • It takes a great deal of time to reciprocate on exchanges.

Should you participate? As a general rule, we recommend that you avoid like/share exchanges because most of them cause unnatural pinning activity and can get you penalized by Pinterest.

However, feel free to participate in promotional activities with other people in your industry who you think would genuinely love your content. Look for industry-specific support groups where you can promote your pins… there are tons of them on Facebook!

An alternative to share exchanges is using Tailwind Tribes. Join niche specific Tribes and promote your own pins and you’ll also have access to high-quality, relevant content to pin to your own boards so you don’t have to spend as much time curating content.

3. How to Increase Pinner Quality

Pinner quality is Pinterest’s estimation of you as a content curator.

Does Pinterest trust you to curate the best and the most relevant content? Or not?

Pinner quality is largely based on how well your content is received. Do you receive a lot of repins and Tried Its? Do you pin content that Pinterest already rates as high quality? Are you an active Pinterest user? How often do you pin?

So, how do you improve your pinner quality?

Step 1. Be active on Pinterest throughout the day.

You can invest in a Pinterest scheduler like Tailwind or BoardBooster to save time. This keeps your account active on Pinterest throughout the day, without you spending all your time pinning.

As a bonus, Tailwind is packed with analytics and other features that will help you identify your best performing boards and pins and tweak your strategy for more repins and likes.

Step 2. Pin already popular content to your boards.

There are several ways to find popular pins. Here are some you can try:

  • Browse the “Popular” category.
  • Check out for the most repinned Pinterest pins by category.
  • Simply do a search for your topic on Pinterest, and usually the first pins to come up are very popular with thousands of repins (even if you can no longer see the exact number).
    Tip: If you want to check how many repins a pin has had, you can simply add /activity to the end of the pin URL.

Step 3. Increase your repins

Follow the steps in “How to Increase Pin Quality” above.

4. How to Add Keywords to Pinterest (Relevance)

Up until this point, we’ve discussed how to increase your authority in Pinterest’s eyes. But even if Pinterest views you as a high-quality pinner, they won’t show your pins to their users unless they think your pins are relevant to their users.

Relevance is how closely your pins fit your audience’s overall interests, specific searches, and recent search history.

If you know much about SEO, you’ll know that the only way for a search engine to know what your content is about is with keywords. Just like on Google, keywords influence what appears in searches on Pinterest.

While domain quality, pin quality and pinner quality tell Pinterest how important your pins are, keywords tell Pinterest what your pins are about.

So how do you use keywords to show Pinterest that your content is relevant?

Step 1. Do Pinterest keyword research.

When it comes to optimizing your pins for SEO, you may be wondering whether there is a good Pinterest keywords tool you can use.

Actually, the best way to do keyword research for Pinterest is on Pinterest itself. Here’s how:

When you’re typing in a search query on Pinterest, you’ll notice that it auto-suggests keywords to you. Similar to the way Google does. These suggestions are popular search phrases.


After you’ve run a search, a set of suggested keywords will appear beneath the search bar for you to add to your search to narrow it down even further.


Like Google SEO, Pinterest SEO is all about long tail keywords (think multi-word phrases rather than single words). There’s a lot of competition for general keywords, so the key is to get as targeted as possible with long tails.

Sadly, you can’t see the exact number of searches for keywords on Pinterest. But, if you’re interested you can look at Pinterest categories and drill down into Topics to see how many people have indicated that they’re interested in the topic. This will give you an idea of how popular any given keyword is.

Now you’re a big step ahead of the competition just by researching keywords, but you still need to know what to do with them. Where and how should you add these keywords? We’ll cover that in the following steps…

Step 2. SEO your Pinterest profile.

There are three places you can add keywords to optimize your profile:


  • Your username
  • Your business name
  • Your bio

Your username determines the URL of your Pinterest profile. You can use this to add one of your broader keywords or, alternatively, use your business name.

To add a business name, you’ll need to upgrade to a business account. You’ll get access to analytics, promoted pins, and you’ll also be able to verify your website.

Pinterest gives you plenty of space in the business name field to add keywords. Add keywords right after your business name to show people what you do.

For example, Pinterest experts like Peg Fitzpatrick and Anna C. Bennett show up in the top results for “Pinterest Tips” because they’ve included the “Pinterest Tips” keyword in their business name.


Next, add keywords to your bio. You’ve got a short 160-character space to fill with your bio. This is not the place to get wordy. You need to be concise, mission-focused, adding keywords and a call to action in there as well.

If you’re not sure where to start, try this Pinterest bio formula:

“I help __________ to __________ by __________. Learn more/Click here/Sign up for my free thing: [your URL].”

Here’s an example from Summer Tannhauser. Her bio reads:

“I teach small business owners to build a list, gain leads + secure clients through Pinterest. FREE 5 Day Pinterest Power Biz Course:”


Step 3. SEO your Pinterest boards.

If you want your boards to be found in the search, optimize them with intelligent keywords. Both in the title of your boards and in their descriptions.


It’s easy to get carried away when naming your Pinterest boards. Unfortunately, cute board names like “Yummy!” or “My Style Miles” are probably never going to show up in a search. That’s not what you want if you’re using Pinterest for business.

You also need to add keywords to the description of your board. Don’t leave it blank! You’ve got 500 characters to spend on your best keywords. You can simply list your keywords out separated by commas, or you can work it into a short paragraph.


As of November 2017, there doesn’t appear to be any penalty for “keyword stuffing” your board descriptions. However, this may change in the future, so strive to make your board descriptions as user-friendly as possible.

Also make sure to categorize your boards correctly. If you’re pinning marketing content to a board that’s categorized as “Animals”, you’re sending conflicting messages.

Step 4. SEO your pin descriptions.

Don’t forget to optimize your pins themselves by adding keywords to the descriptions. As of 2017, Pinterest has updated their platform to only show titles in search and the feed. It’s not enough to just write an enticing description anymore, sadly, most pinners won’t even see it unless they click on your pin.

So which do you choose? Keywords or an enticing description?

You need to be doing both!

Keywords are what will get your pins found in search and enticing descriptions are what will get you the click.

Step 5. SEO your text overlays and make relevant image choices.

One of the changes that Pinterest made in 2017 was the introduction of Lens, a visual search function that allows you to take a photo of a product and Pinterest returns pins it thinks are a match.

What does this mean for you?

If you sell a physical product, make sure it’s front and center in your image!

If you don’t sell a product, this is still relevant to you because it’s clear that:

  1. Pinterest can read your text overlay.
  2. Pinterest can see your images and is making associations with similar ones.

Make sure you’re using your keywords on your text overlays and making relevant image choices.

Step 6. SEO your pin image name.

Not many people take this final step and take the time to keyword their image names. Rather than allowing your image to go out named “IMG10486.png”, change it to something meaningful with your keywords in it, like “chocolate-butterscotch-cake.png”.

Step 7. SEO your blog posts.

Another thing you can do with your keywords is to use them in your blog post title and in the body of your post. Using keywords here will transfer through to Pinterest if you’ve enabled rich pins.

Step 8. SEO your buyable pins.

If you are using “buy it” buttons on your pins, don’t forget to SEO those pins as well by using keywords in your pin title and description.

Step 9. SEO your hashtags.

Hashtags are new to Pinterest, but that’s no reason not to use them! Make sure you’re choosing hashtags that are relevant and specific to your content.

When you save a pin, if you type the ‘#’ sign and start entering in a potential hashtag, Pinterest will populate a drop down list that shows how many pins are within each hashtag.

Step 10. SEO your board sections.

Board sections were rolled out on Pinterest beginning in September 2017, and looks like they’re here to stay! Basically, board sections are like boards within boards.

Here’s a suggestion on how to use board sections:

  • use them to showcase your best pins in different categories
  • if you sell multiple types of products, use them to showcase each type
  • if you have recipe boards, use board sections to sort by meal type or by cuisine

No matter what you choose to do with board sections, remember that Pinterest is a search engine. Even though there’s no official word about board sections affecting your Pinterest SEO, it’s just one more place that you can, and should, use keywords you want to rank for.

Frequently Asked Questions about Pinterest SEO

Now you know how to get your pins to show up on Pinterest. However, there are still a few questions that are commonly asked about Pinterest, especially when it comes to SEO.

Let’s go ahead and answer those questions right now…

1. Should you delete underperforming pins?

There is some anecdotal evidence that deleting pins with low recount numbers can increase your Pinterest quality ranking. Which means better overall rankings in the feed, more repins, and more followers.

On the flip side, there’s also stories of pins going viral months or even years after they were first pinned and had few repins until then. If you’d deleted that pin you might’ve missed out on thousands of visitors.

Ultimately it depends on where you’re willing to invest your time. Do you want to spend time deleting pins or creating new content?

2. Should you change the description when you repin other people’s content?

There are a lot of bloggers and website owners out there who don’t know much about Pinterest. As a result, there are a lot of great articles being let down by descriptions lacking in keywords.

It takes time to change the descriptions on pins. And it seems like it would benefit the blogger who owns the pin more.

However, it benefits your pin quality to get more repins, even if they aren’t your own original pins. If you try this, monitor your results and weigh it against the time investment.

3. Should you use hashtags?

Yes! Hashtags are a surprising new addition to Pinterest given their previous anti-hashtag stance. Pinterest now recommmends using no more than 20 hashtags per pin.

Hashtags are clickable and searchable, but unlike the rest of Pinterest, pins are shown in order of ‘freshest first’ rather than ‘best first’.

4. How do you make sure your optimized descriptions are used when people pin your blog posts?

If you run your blog on WordPress, you can use a WordPress plugin like Social Warfare to add the description and image that you want people to use when they pin your blog post from your website.

Alternatively, if you aren’t using a plugin, add your description to the “alt text” of your image. The alt text is where Pinterest automatically pulls your description from.

What’s next for Pinterest SEO in 2018?

Like most online platforms, Pinterest is constantly tweaking and improving their service.

In 2017, some of the most noticeable changes were the introduction of hashtags, board sections, visual search, and the removal of likes and repin counts.

With all these changes, it’s impossible to predict with certainty the direction Pinterest SEO is going to take in 2018. If they loosely follow the evolution of the Google algorithm, it’s possible that we’ll see a crackdown on duplicate content, keyword stuffing, and penalties for pinning irrelevant content.

All of these tactics are a way of “gaming” the algorithm, which certainly puts them in a precarious position.

What can you do about it?

The answer is simple. Do what every search engine wants you to do: focus on creating high-quality content for your readers.

Wrapping It Up

In this guide, we showed you how to use Pinterest SEO to boost your blog traffic this 2018. We also introduced you to the new Smart Feed algorithm, and how to optimize your pins so they show up.

Now it’s your turn. Go ahead and flesh out your Pinterest bio, boards, and pins with relevant keywords so that your content gets found. Try out the different tactics we shared above, and make sure to monitor your results. If something’s working, you’ll want to know what it is so that you can do more of it!

How’s your Pinterest strategy going? Are you optimizing for Pinterest search? Let us know in the comments!


Cath Oneissy is the blogger behind This Mama Learns where she shares her love of Pinterest with the world. When not hanging out on Pinterest, you can find her whipping up tasty treats to appease her picky toddler.


  1. Babs says:

    Good article Cath.

    I’m a Pinterest marketing pro myself. Reached a milestone of 7 million reach few days ago. Joy for me 🙂

    All these are good tips… Although I’ve not been much of a curator, focused on sending my pins to those group boards. Usually like stuff I want to see later and just move on.. I’ll work on curating by saving more pins.

    Good post, Thanks for sharing.

    • Cath says:

      Hey Babs! Congratulations on the milestone! That’s a great reach.

      Pinning your own content to group boards is definitely an excellent way to get your content seen by many. You must have some great group boards!


      • Babs says:


        Just seeing the replies. Thanks guys. And yes Cath… Ive got an awful lot of high quality group boards. Been collecting them for a while and its totally worth it.

        Reach at the moment is 17 million monthly BTW 🙂

      • Hey Pritesh,

        You are right, every niche isn’t going to be popular on Pinterest. However, tech is actually huge on Pinterest!

        Here are the top niches on Pinterest right now:

        Top Niches on Pinterest

        These are just the big niches, but there are a lot of smaller niches that do well on Pinterest too… for example, graduations and blogging.


    • Kelsey says:

      What tips do you have? I am new to using Pinterest as a platform, and it is not going so smoothly lol.. Thanks in advance for your time! 🙂

      • Cath Oneissy says:

        Hey Kelsey
        My best tip for Pinterest is to make pins that stand out and include keywords as we talked about in this post.
        Apart from that, using Tailwind Tribes and group boards as a new pinner can help you get that first bit of traction.
        Hope that helps!

      • Catherine says:

        First you need to be a collaborator on a group board (you can contact the board owner and ask them to add you as a collaborator.) Then you can simply save pins to it like you would your own personal boards.

  2. Cath says:

    This was such a great article! I shared it on Pinterest and on Twitter highly recommending your knowledge.

    As someone that is in the SEO industry, it is hard to find information about Pinterest SEO. But it can be just as important as Google SEO.

    Thank you so much for sharing! I have already made some important changes to my Pinterest page with your recommendations.

    Thanks again,

    • Cath says:

      Thank you, Cath! I’m so glad you found it helpful.
      I was surprised myself at how rare up-to-date information is on Pinterest SEO. Particularly when it is so important for Pinterest.

      I hope you see a big upswing in your results from the changes you made.

  3. Excellent work here Catherine! I think many people still fail to see Pinterest as more of a search engine than a social network and therefore don’t even consider SEO as something that applies.

    • Cath says:

      Hey Dustin, thank you for your kind words 🙂 I know Pinterest still baffles a lot of people. There’s so much talk about the Facebook and Instagram algorithms, I’m surprised that few people talk about Pinterest’s!

  4. Simone says:

    This is a really great article, and I learned a lot from reading it! Thank you! Recently, I noticed a drop in my Pinterest traffic. Online I found many blogger who have been having the same problem. Have you noticed it as well? Could they have changed the algorithm again? Would love to hear if you might have some ideas or tips about this.

  5. Cath Oneissy says:

    Hi Simone,
    I’m glad you enjoyed my article 🙂 It’s possible that Pinterest has made some tweaks to their algorithm, it’s also likely that some of the other changes they’ve been making are starting to roll out across more users and we’re seeing some effects.
    For example, many pinners now have an image-only feed (no pin descriptions or headlines). This probably isn’t as much of an issue in your niche but, for others, if you aren’t including text on your graphic, your image has to be incredibly eye-catching to stand out and get someone curious enough to click on it and see what it actually is. It’s added an extra step and people are more likely to gravitate towards the easier options.
    My advice is to go back to your analytics and see what’s still working for you – what pins are doing well and really dig into the ‘why’. Is it the image itself? Is it the keywords? What pins does Pinterest think are related?
    Hope that helps!

  6. Alyson says:

    The best Pinterest guide I’ve seen in a long time. Pinterest has changed so much over the last few years, it seems to get harder and harder to get the big traffic. As my following has grown, the number of clicks to my website has been falling since the big boom a few years ago. Anyway…nice job, great post.

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Thank you Alyson 🙂 That is high praise! I hear you on the Pinterest changes – even in the last few months things have changed a lot.

      I hope this post helps you increase your traffic again.

  7. This was super helpful! I am a new blogger and having a hard time getting repins. I’ve done most of what you have suggested. But I do have a question… what is the range or amount of pins you should do daily? I’ve heard the 80/20 rule but should I only be posting 10 pins a day or like 50?

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hey Melissa
      Thanks for commenting! Have you tried using Tailwind Tribes? It’s a great way to get a boost of repins that can start the ball rolling.

      I recommend pinning at least 50% of your own content (up to 80% once you’ve got more posts up your sleeve) and building up to 30 pins per day. Sometimes Pinterest is a bit of a slow burn when it comes to traffic, so keep at it!

  8. Hi, I have invested some effort over the last few months on creating beautiful quality content, using keywords, Tailwind, group boards, tribes, I have enabled rich pins and I am growing soo slowly. I only still have something like 200 followers. I look at accounts with tens of thousands of followers and I wonder how do people manage it? Was it easier years ago to attract followers or does your follower’s rate grows the bigger you get?

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hey Severina,
      Yes, it was actually way easier to get followers in days gone by. A lot of established accounts have huge numbers that would take forever to reach now. But don’t get too upset.
      The thing is, Pinterest doesn’t seem to care too much about follower numbers anymore – I’ve heard story after story from bloggers who find that their top referring pin (in Google analytics) was pinned by a normal Pinterest user with less than 50 followers and no Pinterest optimization. Crazy, right?
      If you need to have the social proof of follower numbers, the best thing you can do is encourage people to come to Pinterest to follow you – you could use the MiloTree app, mention your account in emails/other social media, and use Pinterest follow or board widgets on your site.
      Hope that helps!

  9. That’s a really good article. I have a big interest course which is amazingly Popular. I just didn’t major update over the weekend that I think I touched on every subject (nearly) in this blog post.

    One thing I didn’t noticed, is many bloggers that have old domains may have evergreen posts that I have no pin attached to them. It’s an excellent idea to go back to depose you feel are important and make the original images to make a pin for the post.

    Is also another huge plus if you using rich pins and structured data. Also, during my research I realize that Pinterest, can handle JSON-LD almost as well as Google and is able to recognize a lot more than I have ever seen posted in their documentation.

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Thanks for the compliment Jason. And great tip for those bloggers who have older posts with no pinnable images – adding a pin graphic would breathe new life into those posts for sure.

      Pinterest is definitely getting smarter (it’s probably smarter than we realize).

  10. DNN says:

    Pinterest is open season to serious marketers looking to earn good money from promoting affiliate links along with links to their blogs and websites offering true value to their loyal targeted audience.

      • DNN says:

        You’re absolutely right about SEO and Pinterest. That’s why I actually take time to write natural content for every pin description and only use their. And that’s also the reason why I focus primarily on Pinterest because the world is there.

  11. I am a new blogger ,we have a website on digitalmarketing ,my question is font size and alignment matters in seo. how can i change my font style ,at present my font is very lite and not appealing

  12. Rachel says:

    Thank you Cath! This is probably the best article I’ve read on Pinterest marketing.

    I’m relatively new to Pinterest from a marketing perspective so am keen to learn.

    We are a local, traditional bricks and mortar furniture business. Based in Melbourne, Australia – it would benefit us to specifically target locals.

    Do you think Pinterest can work for us? If so, do you have any recommendations?

    Many thanks,

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      You’re welcome, Rachel! I’ve not used Pinterest to market a local bricks and mortar business before but it can be done.

      I’d suggest setting up your account to include lots of local boards. Here’s a great post from Summer Tannhauser that includes some info on how to set up Pinterest for a local business (look at the real estate agent section) –

      You’ll also be able to use promoted pins (Pinterest advertising) to market directly to locals. Pinterest advertising can be extremely good value for money!

      I hope that helps! Let me know if you have any more questions 🙂

  13. Brian Caspe says:

    Here, I’d like to add the best tool for pinterest ever made.. www [dot] PinPinterest [dot] com.
    I’m using it myself for more than 7 months now, and I’ve gained unparalleled results both in the form of followers and revenue. It lets me schedule as many Pins as I want, and it also intelligently pins only images related to my business. It learns this every time as I keep using it. PinPinterest is free to use, based on the cloud, has a mobile ready website, works on Intelligent algorithms and sets up quick.

      • Brian Caspe says:

        thanks for the reply…
        Yes, I was also stunned to see this. I saw a youtube video, in which they said that PinPinterest’s software learns and evolves. And when I gave it a try myself, I saw that its actually true… It learns my preferences and pins accordingly. I’m happy because I don’t have to continuously clean my boards, as is the case with other automation softwares.
        I think I’ve read somewhere that they have deep learning artificial intelligence embedded in their systems, which allows it to understand our preferences and act accordingly.


        • Cool– thanks for the info Brian! I’m all about automation and time-saving tools, so I’ll have to check them out.

          Only thing I don’t understand is their pricing… I wonder why don’t they have any subscription options available? It seems you can only purchase a certain number of days?

      • Cath Oneissy says:

        I have a workaround to see repins… but you have to do it individually, pin by pin. Just append “/activity” to the pin url and it’ll show how many boards it’s been saved to.

        I don’t know of any tools that make this any easier (yet). Interesting change though! Maybe it’s intended to even the playing field for each pin to stand on it’s own merit?

  14. Eric G. says:

    Hey Cath, great post! Always trying to stay on top of best practices for Pinterest, so I appreciate you sharing your tips here.

    One thing I’ve seen on popular pinner accounts recently are “new” pins (i.e. they are listed first when you look at the person’s profile/pins page) that seem to carry over the stats of older pins (i.e. “tried it” count, etc.).

    When you’re re-pinning your own content (to new group boards or wherever), is it better to re-pin one of your existing pins, or create a new pin fresh from your blog? Or does it matter?

    I’ve always created new pins (just easier that way when using Tailwind) but I’m worried that maybe I’ve been missing out by not manually re-pinning existing pins, if that makes sense.

    Thanks in advance for helping with this question!

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hey Eric,
      Great question! It’s a little hard to answer, because Pinterest makes so many changes and this seems like something new.

      I’ve noticed that established pins will sometimes retain their stats when pinned. This doesn’t often seem to be the case for new pins.

      Just thinking out loud here, but when you’re re-pinning your own content, if it’s a newer pin it might be best to do it manually so that Pinterest ‘sees’ the pin being repinned around Pinterest. Manually pinning will also credit the board being pinned from whereas creating a new pin won’t.

      Hope that helps! I also use Tailwind almost exclusively (have added some manual repinning recently) so I’m right there with you!

      • Great tips, Cath. Especially given what you just said, my strategy going forward is to make sure to pin new pins to my main board first, and then repin them once with Viraltag when adding them to my evergreen queue (Viraltag automatically recycles them from there).

          • Cath Oneissy says:

            With Pinterest removing repin counts it seems like they don’t want us to focus on those metrics (which is a bummer, since a lot of people use that as an indicator of whether something is good content).

            Pinterest is getting much smarter. They can conceivably tell that an original pin and a repin of the same pin graphic and the same source is the same… whether you use Tailwind, Viral Tag or manually repin. Does that make sense?

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      It looks like Pinterest has changed their minds on hashtags… and it’s looking like that change is going to stick. The way I see it is it’s another way to get your pins seen which can only be a good thing!

      I’ve also noticed on a client’s account that her most repinned pins the last few weeks have hashtags… so… using them is definitely a good idea 😉

  15. Isaiah says:

    I realize that the titles and descriptions I have optimized with keywords for Pinterest get the most views, sometimes it’s so easy to forget that when trying to come up with a catchy headline— at least for me as a new blogger. But Pinterest is quite rewarding when taken seriously, thanks for this post, Cath 🙂

  16. Cath Oneissy says:

    Thank you Isaiah! So true – I get carried away with my own cleverness sometimes and forget that simple, keyworded headlines that tell the reader exactly what to expect and what’s in it for them are the ones that do well.

    Glad you liked the post!

  17. Jason Norris says:

    This is a really great article one one of the very few that’s actually recent and relevant to Pinterest SEO.

    Having helped run recipe blogs for the past few years, it’s amazing how much has changed in the past 12 months alone. It used to be that once a recipe “hit the big time” and got repinned, the traffic would stay high and steady. Not anymore. It’s a big roller coaster.

    Also to someone’s point above, it can be an ordinary user with just a handful of followers, who repins a recipe and it suddenly takes off. So strange.

    One thing that has been good is that many of the useless/automated recipe sites are disappearing from Pinterest. The real recipe blogs are more and more prevalent.

    Kudos again on the great article!

  18. Erika says:

    Oh! I enjoyed reading this post every step of the way, like literally anticipating the next line! Great job! High quality content with lots of valuable information.

    Thanks for this, I am definitely going to try most of your tips on my profile.

    Love your blog and love the way you write your content. Not many bloggers know how to convey information to their audience efficiently myself included.

    My writing is all over the place, anyway, thanks for these tips and cheers to more success!

  19. Abe says:

    Thank you so much for this article. I read several other articles online and watched many YouTube videos on Pinterest and your article, by far, provides the most detail on actual tactics and tools. I also really appreciate the focus on the latest changes and updates to Pinterest since many articles written even a year ago don’t seem relevant any longer.

  20. Amber Roshay says:

    Wow, what an outstanding post. I’m a Pinterest fanatic and love to read anything regarding its intricacies. Your article really makes everything super clear and easy to read. I’m super impressed!

  21. Wishes says:

    Wow , I never throught Pinterest has huge potential signs to drive traffic. Overall well written & informative, but I feel a little trimmer version is necessary bcz you provided too much of general Info’s to take care 👋👏;-)

  22. Estelle says:

    Wow, this was truly a quality article, with much detailed actionable effort and thought put into it.
    Thanks Cath.
    You mentioned your work-around for finding the count of saves of a pin by mentioning that you add /activity right after the pin URL. Is this still working for you? I’m getting an error. So I’m doing this as an example
    I then end up getting this URL – which is just a re-direction back to the ‘home’ feed.
    Same for you?

    • Estelle says:

      **just a modification to that link example i gave out it should be:

        • Estelle Steenkamp says:

          Ah, that’s interesting. Thanks for the screenshot. It’s one of two things I reckon.
          Either my location, I’m in South-Africa. Or more likely, I was trying this on my personal account, I need to upgrade to business, I reckon that’ll fix it.

          Thanks anyway Cath.

  23. Jackie says:

    Great post. Thank you! One question I have…I can’t get my head around duplicate pins. I hear so many mixed messages about this. From no duplicates at all (use Pin Dr. regularly), to duplicates are inevitable, to no duplicates on a single board but duplicates across boards are okay. Any help would be appreciated! Thanks tons.

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hi Jackie
      There are a lot of mixed messages about Pinterest! I’m in the ‘duplicates are inevitable’ camp and here’s why:
      >>> when pinning for business you need to pin your own content frequently.
      >>> if you do this you’ll soon run out of boards to pin to… meaning you’ll start having duplicates on your boards.
      >>> there doesn’t seem to be a penalty for having duplicate pins (as of right now as far as I’m aware)
      >>> you could mess about with deleting pins and using pin doctor… but the life cycle of a pin is very long. Here’s a fascinating article from Tailwind about a pin that went viral after initially being pinned almost a year before it took off >>>
      >>> the time you’ll spend (and money, with pin dr!) deleting duplicates is better spent creating new content, split testing your pins, using Tribes, and applying to group boards.
      I hope that helps!

  24. Luke says:

    Great read agree with everything you said. Creating high-quality content should be always first rule.

    When I tried to schedule this blog through Tailwind button, it doesn’t populate the right image – just thought you might want to check that.

    Thanks for sharing such a valuable read.

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hey Luke, thanks for commenting and I’m glad you liked the article!

      Are you using the Tailwind browser extension? I’ve noticed it usually only picks up images that are visible on the blog post. If you use the Pinterest share button at the top of the post the right image definitely populates. 🙂

  25. Katya Malkin says:

    Amazing article! I was really enjoying reading all the comment replies too! Thank you!
    I have an Etsy shop which most of my pins come from, and since spring 2017, they stop showing up as rich pins, which really tanked my traffic from Pinterest. Also, I used to have 80 followers a week and now it’s less than 30. I’m really lost on how to improve the situation!

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hi Katya

      Etsy pins have always automatically been rich pins… however, there appears to be a problem right now which Etsy users are discussing here:

      It’s not easy to get followers on Pinterest anymore. Luckily followers don’t have a huge impact on your success on Pinterest. If you want to increase your number, you could try repinning your pins from users who are pinning them (check your Pinterest notifications or source page – or following users who’ve recently followed one of your competitors. Hope that helps!

  26. Julie says:

    This is a great article! Thank you. One of the things that I’ve done to see how a pin does is by adding my pins to a tribe I created in Tailwind for just my pins.

  27. Clare says:

    This is a great article, and I understand *what* I should be repinning (balance of my own and others’ content, good images, good SEO, etc), but I still don’t understand *how*.
    If I have a Board relating to my blog posts, as well as adding new pins, I find older pins on that board, repin them so they appear at the top of the board and in people’s feeds, and then delete the original pin (otherwise the board would contain duplicates and become huge over time), is that right?
    And/or if I have two Boards on related content, I repin from Board A to Board B, and then delete the pin from Board A, and then later, I repin from Board B to Board A and delete it from Board B? One of the Boards might be a group Board (although I always have a tough time finding my pins again on busy group Boards in order to delete them)?
    And/or do you keep secret Boards, repin from them to visible Boards, and then later delete the visible pin and repin again from the secret board?
    I keep reading that I need to repin, but I can’t find the answer to this question anywhere!
    Many thanks for any advice.

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hi Clare
      I don’t recommend deleting pins – it’s ok (and expected) that your boards will grow over time and contain duplicates. Pinterest isn’t penalizing boards for either of these things right now.
      So, you could literally pin the same pin to the same board every thirty days and it would be ok.
      I wouldn’t recommend keeping secret boards for repinning from either – there’s no point in consistently repinning (and showing Pinterest that your board is awesome) from a secret board that isn’t going to get any benefit. Does that make sense?

  28. Denzil says:

    Hi Cath, thanks for this very informative post.
    I have a question about pins on books (I review books). A book cover seems to be the ideal size/format for a pin. Do you recommend using the book cover as a pin, or making a customized pin for that book, for example a collage of the book cover, a title, background image etc.?
    The first option is obviously quicker; but would the second be better from a SEO point of view?
    Thanks for your input

    • Cath Oneissy says:

      Hi Denzil
      I wouldn’t use just the book cover unless that pin is leading directly to a store that they can purchase it from.
      Instead, I’d create a quick graphic in Canva maybe using a book mockup and a headline that lets people know that your post is a review.
      It’s all about user expectations – if I saw a book cover, I’d expect to be sent to a product page to buy it. Whereas if I saw a custom pin with a mockup or a collage that had a headline saying ‘review’ I’d know what to expect. Hope that makes sense!

  29. Alaina says:

    For once I found a article explaining Pinterest SEO info that actually makes sense. Even as I was reading it, I was making quick changes to my business account. I can’t wait to go home and implement the other tips and watch the progress. Stay tuned for an update!

  30. Monica Badiu says:

    Thank you so much for putting this comprehensive Pinterest guide together. I was actually struggling a bit figuring out what to do in 2018 – 2017 brought on so many changes, it was really hard to stay on top of everything.

  31. Thanks for sharing such important matters about pinterest SEO optimization. I was also thinking that pinterest is only for food, fashion, health but since I started testing my own way it was like a boom result. I will surely follow your guideline and improve my statistics. Hope it will boost my result for sure.

  32. Lionel says:

    Great piece!

    Two questions:
    1) can you put a URL in the first 75-100 characters of the pin description so it just takes one click to go to the website?
    2) What percentage of a brand’s boards pins should have their product/content compared to others pins?


  33. Susie Lindau says:

    There are tons of Bait and Switch articles out there with absolutely no valuable information. Yours is jam-packed with new updates and ideas!
    Thank you so much for the helpful information!

  34. Great Post! Thanks for all of the fantastic data. I too have been playing around with the “change the description” method. I am interested to see how it effects traffic or not! Will stay tuned.

  35. Ritika says:

    I loved reading this! There are definitely a few things on my list that I’m not doing that I should be. I’ll spend some time making sure I do! I feel like my content is actually standout, but I don’t get as many pins and views as some other blogs – and even though Pinterest is my top traffic source, it’s nowhere near where it should be at this stage in the game! I wonder if I’m doing something wrong – or if there’s a secret untapped. I do think that some of the things you mentioned will make a huge difference!

  36. Vera says:

    The best article about Pinterest SEO!
    Question: would it be a good idea to create a few long-tail keyword Group Boards with some SEO rules for invited contributors?
    For example, they can pin only relevant pics with 1-2 suggested long-tail keywords inside their 500 characters-long descriptions. Will it be more helpful?
    All other group boards that I joined care only about the number of pins per day and not repeating them within 30 days. None require SEO optimized descriptions.

  37. Leah says:

    Thank you so much for this very well-written, thorough article! I am just getting started on Pinterest and the information you’ve provided has been very helpful. I now feel like I have a pretty good handle on what I need to do to optimize my pins and boards to get some traffic to my travel blog!

  38. Anonymous says:

    great article, but how do you actually monetize traffic if you’re not selling anything? I really do wish there was a way to receive publisher revenue. Pinterest ads… but i guess not

    • Catherine says:

      Lots of bloggers aren’t selling anything from their blogs. Bloggers are running ads through an Ad Network like Google AdSense or Mediavine, using affiliate marketing with companies like Amazon, or even doing sponsored posts… there are plenty of ways to make money without selling a product.

  39. Grant says:

    Wow! Thanks for the information. I’ve learned that I’m a babe in the woods as far as optimizing my SEO on Pinterest. But then, I’m pretty new to Pinterest and other media sites for marketing. I’ll be reviewing your post a couple of more times because it’s a lot of info for one reading. You rock! BTW, my wife’s name is Cathy so you have extra credibility with me.

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