5 Steps to Optimize your Pinterest Account to Increase Visibility

One of the biggest misconceptions about Pinterest is that it is a social media platform, rather, Pinterest is a catalog of ideas, a center for information and inspiration. More importantly, it is a huge opportunity to drive traffic to your Etsy shop! Most people who visit Pinterest are already in the right frame of mind to buy, and here is how to use that to your advantage!

You can’t just make an account, pin some of your products, and expect the sales to roll in. We all wish it was that easy! Building a good Pinterest account takes time, but here at Novelty, we believe the eventual conversion rate is more than worth it. And… get ready for it… it’s FREE!

Here are 6 steps to building a successful Pinterest account for your Etsy business.

setting up a pinterest account

1. First, you have to set up an account.

But not just any account; you need to create a business page. Biggest advantage: analytics! You can track clicks, repins, and more. If you haven’t switched yet, go do it!

2. You aren’t done yet! Next, make sure your profile is SEO ready.

What is SEO? It stands for “search engine optimization.” Google can be your best friend or your worst enemy. When you optimize your content you make it easier to be found in searches on Google, Etsy, Pinterest, and more! That is another post in itself, but long story short you need to make sure you use keywords in your account name and description. Something like “Little Bird Clothes | Etsy Shop” is a good format. Next, make sure you have keywords in your description. An example: “Etsy boutique specializing in high quality, handmade children’s clothing made with love and attention to detail every step of the way.”

3. Now set up some boards! Again, not as easy as it sounds.

Don’t skip the descriptions. You can use more keywords here, just make sure the description is readable. Last, make sure you select a category. This helps Pinterest’s algorithms categorize your pins and figure out when to pull them up in searches. Last, but not least, make boards for a few topics other than just your products. If you have a children’s clothing company you might also make boards about healthy snacks for kids or kid-friendly vacation spots. Other good categories include cooking, quotes, travel, and DIY. This diversification helps add value to your account, which we talk about more in step 6.

4. You might be asking, “How do I know what keywords will work?”

There are a few methods for figuring out successful terms to add to boards and pins. One way is to type a word into Pinterest’s search bar that relates to your business. If I type in “Children’s Clothing,” the drop-down might show suggestions like “Children’s Clothing Boutique.” This is one of the keywords for my imaginary shop! I would make sure to keep using that phrase. You can do the same thing with Etsy’s search function. Another way to find keywords is to use an Instagram hashtag generator. Sounds weird, right? But those programs are really great for finding related terms, and in my experience work better than the Pinterest search bar. If you really want to go the extra mile and find keywords there are services out there like moz.com where you can get incredibly helpful keywords and statistics about the effectiveness of those words. You have to pay to use some of them, but most have a free trial so you can get a feel for the program.

5. And finally, we come to the actual “pinning” part.

Again, keywords are crucial. But make sure you use your pin’s description space to provide not only keywords but something that draws pinners in. A sentence about why the product is special, or if it is a best seller or a new product in your shop is a good place to start. And good news: Pinterest just rolled out hashtags! Before now, hashtags could be placed in a description, but they really didn’t do anything. Still, be careful about “keyword stuffing.” Not only can it make your post look spammy, but eventually the algorithm catches on and can filter you out of search results! Stick to ten or so hashtags, but make them good ones!

Bonus tip about pinning:

You have to pin regularly. This makes your account “look better” to the algorithm, and having recent activity boosts your visibility and as well. You can do it the old-fashioned way and log in every day, or you can invest in a pin scheduler like Tailwind. If you don’t have money in the budget for that no worries! Getting on there and pinning at least 15 pins a day in various categories works, too.

pinning on pinterest

6. Did you know that pinning only your own images actually hurts your online visibility?

This one might come as a bit of a surprise. You might be thinking, “Don’t I want to get as many of my own pins out there as possible?” The short explanation is this: Pinterest categorizes pins by value, in addition to keyword relevance. That means that if your pins don't seem “valuable” they won’t show up in other pinners’ feeds! How do you increase that value? There are a lot of ways to do it, but here are a few basic ways. Like I mentioned, you need to pin other people’s pins, especially popular ones like the pins that show up at the top of the page when you search your keywords. For example, if I have a board full of children’s clothing pins and I pinned top results for that category along with my own products Pinterest will see that and A) it creates a relationship between those pins and mine, so they are cataloged in that category and seen as more relevant and B), if my boards are full of popular content, my profile looks more up-to-date. Getting re-pins from “valuable” accounts or onto valuable boards boosts your pins as well. These actions boost your visibility and help get your pins moving up towards the top of searches and suggestions for your target category! There are a lot of suggestions out there but a good rule of thumb is the 1:4 ratio: pin one of your own products or posts for every four pins from other pinners.

There you have it! Six tips to create a Pinterest page that will set you up for Etsy marketing success!

We would love to hear about how these tips work for you, and we are here to help if you need it! Pinterest is an amazing marketing tool, and best of all: it doesn’t cost you anything! If you use these steps, you are on your way to organically build a successful following.


Interested in advertising your Etsy shop on social media? Check out some of our other blogs on creating Facebook and Instagram Ads for your Etsy products