• Derick Ho

Introduction To Pinterest Marketing

Don't you get the feeling that when you’ve mastered one social media platform, it’s an easy trap to believe you’ve pretty much conquered them all. There are a few overlapping best practices, after all, between sites like Facebook, Instagram, and even YouTube.

Now in this post, I'm going to talk about another paid platform that is pretty underused by many shopify store owners but yet another powerhouse that is bound to deliver a great impact to your online business.

Introducing Pinterest.

Pinterest is a popular and valuable channel for almost any small business, though makers and marketers alike are often puzzled by Pinterest because it's so different than more conventional platforms such as Google and Facebook.

If you hadn't read about my previous article regarding Google and Facebook, do check it out here.

What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is one of the largest visual social networks, in which it is possible to share images, videos, and all kinds of content that are totally visual.

In other words, it is 100% visual. Similar to Instagram.

Firstly, I will explain some terms in Pinterest that isn't found elsewhere.

Pinterest Terminology

Unlike other platforms, Pinterest uses terms that is totally different or even unheard of in other platforms. A person who is totally foreign to Pinterest will totally have no clue about it. Therefore, in order to make sure that you understand the entire content of this post, I will explain all the terms that you need to know in Pinterest.

In Pinterest, you will constantly be hearing this specific word called "pin". A pin consist of an image or video, pretty straightforward. A general rule is that in Pinterest, you do not usually refer to image and video as itself – you refer to it as Pins.

Below here is an example of a Pin.

Uploading a image or a video to Pinterest as we commonly refers to, is known as "pinning". Pinning can be done by clicking the add (+) button on the top menu bar as shown in the red arrow below.

Next, you will hear of this word called "Board". Think of it like a photo album, which you will usually sort out or move your related photos into a specific album that is most appropriate. The board is exactly like a photo album in Pinterest.

Below here is an example of a Pinterest Board.

Next, you will hear of this word called "Save". Formally called "repin", it is an action when a user save a Pin that is found on their image feeds to their own board while browsing Pinterest. It’s important to remember that when a user save an original Pin, the user who first save the image will also get credit.

You can save a pin by clicking the save button that appears on the right side. Below here is an example on how to save a pin.

Next, you will hear of this word called "Promoted Pins". Promoted Pins are Pins that businesses pay to appear where users are likely to notice them. The Promoted Pins a user sees are based on interests and activity on the platform (or because you visited an advertiser’s site or app). Think of it like a Facebook's Lookalike Audience.

Below here is an example of a Promoted Pin.

Lastly, you will hear of this word called Rich Pins. There are four subsets of Rich Pins: Article, App, Product and Recipe. In eCommerce, we are going to touch more on Product pins, in which I will explain more below.

Why is Pinterest marketing valuable?

Alright, now that you know the terminology of Pinterest, you'll be wondering why would you want to use Pinterest considering that you have powerhouses platforms like Google and Facebook.

To start, Pinterest currently has more than 250 million active users. While this number isn’t quite as big as other social networks, it’s still substantial, especially when you consider the exceptional selling power of Pinterest.

Pinterest can be a marketing powerhouse for online stores. Users now are more inclined to buy products they stumble across on Pinterest organically at a much higher rate than the average social platform. And that’s partially because the nature of Pinterest users are proactively searching for things rather than just reactively scrolling through a feed, unlike Facebook.

If you’re still wondering why creating a Pinterest marketing strategy is worth the effort for your online store, do check out the following statistics:

  • 98% of people report trying new things they discover on Pinterest, compared to 71% on other platforms.

  • Pinners are 39% more likely to be active shoppers than non-pinners; when they shop, they spend approximately 29% more than those who don’t use the platform.

  • 93% of pinners have used Pinterest to plan for, research, or make purchases.

  • 80% of Pinterest’s traffic comes from mobile users.

  • 40% of users have a household income of more than $100k per year, giving them substantial spending power.

When specifically considering Promoted Pins, half of pinners have made a purchase after seeing a Promoted Pin (including yours truly), and 61% of users say they’ve discovered new brands or products thanks to Pinterest ads.

Taking KEYWORDS into consideration

If you know much about SEO (search engine optimization), you’ll know that the only way for a search engine to know what your content is about is with keywords.

Keywords is an essential part of marketing on Pinterest – that is because keywords influence what appears in searches on Pinterest.

To make your pins discoverable by users, learning to optimize your pin titles and descriptions with keywords will help Pinterest suggest your content as a search result when relevant.

Your Pinterest marketing keyword strategy, however, should be to use as many keywords as possible whenever and wherever relevant so your content can be discoverable by as many users as possible searching for pins like yours.

Here's an example below.

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

So if you are selling a print-on-demand shoes with Kanagawa Wave for example, you are more than likely to use certain keywords like "kanagawa wave" or "kanagawa wave shoes".

If you aren’t sure what keywords to target, one strategy I like to use is to go on to key in the specific keyword in the searchbar on top and use their keyword suggestion feature. You type in a general keyword you’re trying to target and they will provide similar suggestions and those suggestions that are on the top are the most popular ones.

Another way of doing keyword research on Pinterest keyword research is by using your ad account in Pinterest. This would require you to have a business account on Pinterest.

All you have to do is to just simply head to create an ad as shown below:

Do not worry, we are not going to create an ad. So after clicking, you will see something like this:

Just hit "Continue". Ignore the campaign objective for now as you are not creating any ad.

After you hit continue, scroll down all the way to the keywords section. You will see something like this.

On your right side, there is a window where you have keywords and you can extend your search by looking for some keywords suggestions on Pinterest. As you can see on the monthly search column, Pinterest is going to show you the monthly search volume for every new keywords suggestion that you see here. Obviously some of the keywords are very broad – hence the huge numbers of search.

What content should I share on Pinterest?

There are various types of content that perform well on Pinterest, so we’ll take a look at the different formats and how best to use them.

Note that all pins must link to another site and include a visual component, and all links should point to the most relevant page. You typically want to avoid sending people to your homepage.

Product Pins

Product pins, a subset of Rich Pins, contain pictures or videos of specific products, which then take users directly to the site to purchase. Product Pins make shopping easier. They include real-time pricing as well as availability. These are among the most popular types of pins, and they’ll be what gets you the best ROI, easily.


Videos are becoming more popular on Pinterest. Autoplay videos are currently only for Promoted Pins, but if you’re able to offer value to pinners, you could build a following with video content. Tutorials and DIY videos generally perform very well on Pinterest.

How to get your Pins noticed?

What your pin actually looks like will determine whether pinners notice it in their feed, and if they decide to see what you’re all about.

Well, there are established practices to follow to boost performance of your pins; while there are exceptions to some of these rules, they’re good ones to stick to for the most part.


The colors you use (and how many you use) in your pin matters. In my experience, very light and very dark images are not repinned often; shoot for a middle-of-the-road saturation and brightness.

Types of content

The types of content you post in your pins matters, too. I do noticed that images with less than 30% whitespace or background performed better than all other pins.

Size and dimensions

When you’re in the Pinterest feed, you’ll notice some pins jump out at you while others blend in. Color and content definitely affect this, but the dimensions of your pins can play a crucial role, too. Pinterest’s own best practices recommends you aim for taller pins, with the maximum aspect ratio being 1:2.8.

Make the most of Pinterest

I hope this article has hopefully given you some insight into everything Pinterest offers for businesses and how businesses can make use of Pinterest to grow their reach and get Pinterest users started in their sales funnel.

Pinterest is unlike any of the other social media platforms, because users are equally motivated to save items for themselves as they are to share them with others.

It has exceptional selling power, particularly for e-commerce. To succeed on Pinterest, have a deep understanding of the customers you're trying to reach, stay consistent with your pins, profile, and boards, and keep up to date on best practices and changes occurring to the platform.

The best way however, is to consistently launching campaigns and meddle around with the interface of Pinterest. As the old saying goes, nothing beats the actual experience of taking action than reading an article. Happy pinning!

Talk soon,