Pinterest Image Optimization: 5 Tips to Increase Visibility in Search

Frank Isca
Posted by Frank Isca on June 26, 2012

With the explosion of Pinterest as a new tool in many marketers' social media toolbox, it's become more common to now see the "Pin It" button on certain eCommerce websites and blogs. But before you think it's as easy as slapping some code into your site to display the "Pin It" button it's important to understand how this integration gathers and references images from your site or blog when posting to Pinterest.

Here's an overview that will walk through the steps to fully optimize your website and blog images to increase their visibility when users conduct a direct search in Pinterest for your product or service.

1. Start With Quality Images

  • When adding images to your website or blog for others to pin, take the time to find or produce quality images that will both inspire others to pin and that will stand out once they enter the world of Pinterest
  • The more unique your image is the better your chance of having it stand out among the growing sea of pins

2. Size Images Appropriately

  • Ensure images are at least 400 pixels wide (the maximum Pinterest allows before resizing is 554 pixels), and longer images like infographics have a better tendency to stand out
  • Also ensure your image file is one of Google's supported formats (GIF, JPG, PNG, BMP, etc.) as outlined on their Webmaster Central Blog

3. Use Keyword-rich File Names

  • Using non-descriptive and non-keyword-rich image file names only limits your image to being found once it's pinned
  • As noted, Dream System Medias Pinterest Image Optimization infographic, an image with the original date stamp file name (Feb2012_20120.jpg) is not going to rank as well as the file name "chocolate-tort.jpg"
  • Pinterest will also pull the image file name for the pin's description if an "alt tag" is missing. This is your opportunity to assign a predetermined description that eliminates this step for the user

4. Use Keyword-rich Image Alt Tags

  • Similar to your file name, attributing a keyword-rich "alt tag" to your image is another factor that increases its ability to rank in search
  • If assigned to your images, Pinterest will pull this image description over your file name which allows you to write a more descriptive description than your file name. Just try to stick to 80 characters or less

5. Ensure Pin It Button Is Installed Correctly

  • When installing the "Pin It" button be sure to follow the guidelines from the Pinterest website to ensure the button is referring to the appropriate page link. It's important on your blog for example, that the pinned image links back to the specific post where the image lives rather than your main blog home page

For more Pinterest optimization tips, check out our post Pinterest For B2B: Tips To Optimize Your Profile & Presence. 

Social Media Optimization Playbook

Topics: Search Engine Optimization, Social Media

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