I don’t know about you, but when I first started on Pinterest, I loved all the different images and way everything was organised, but was really confused about which pins to use for what and how best to display my information, especially as I provide information and sell services, rather than the traditonal product offerings that can do so well in Pinterest …. so where do we start?

Well, a pin is just an image which you add to Pinterest. It can take a number of forms:

  • An infographic; which is an image, which shows data in bullet or graphical form. They are easy to read and provide lots of useful facts and figures on as single image. These are the most likely type of pin to go viral on Pinterest
  • List pins provide a list of information, and are good for getting people to click into your website. You provide the 1st helpful tip on the Pinterest image, but they need to click on the pin, which takes them back to the blog post, to see the rest.
  • There are two ways of using Tutorial/How To posts. You can either use it to show a graphic of the tutorial, but then you have to click through to your website to actually see how it works in practice, or you can show everything on the pin and hope they click through to your website because they like what they see and want to see similar products/services
  • Product in use pins show how you use the product or service and have been found to be more appealing to followers who can see how products might work together.
  • Video pins are where you can add a video from sites such as Dailymotion, TED, YouTube, Vimeo.


When you share someone else’s pin with your followers, on one of your boards, or they share one of yours. The average Pin is saved 11 times, which means the number of people who actually see your Pins can be far greater than the number of followers you have. It also allows you to be seen as an expert in that field and the more re-pins you get the more likely it is that it will get seen, potentially making it go viral! So before you create a pin, make sure you think about what information your followers find valuable and whether your pin will solve a problem for them?

Rich Pins

Rich pins are the next step and imperative if you are using pinterest for busines.. Rich Pins contain extra information about the pin, such as the author as well as a lengthy description and links to your website.

The Rich pin description comes directly from the meta data of the image on your website and is independent of the actual pin description. This ensures that all useful information is tied to that Pin. Once you’ve applied for rich pins any content on your site with metadata will turn into a rich pin when a user saves it.

You will need a business account to request Rich Pins and make sure that you have had your website verified by Pinterest. Then, if you haven’t already done so, install Yoast SEO plugin onto your website. Once you have installed the Yoast SEO plug in, go to the Yoast dashboard, click on the features tab and ensure that the Advanced Setting Page option is enabled.

You can then go over to the Rich Pins validator to verify your rich pins prior to them appearing on Pinterest. Enter any page on your site that you’ve added metadata to. Enter the URL in the validator and press enter. Now you just have to wait a while, while you get verified. If there are any questions or queries, Pinterest will send you an email. Having this one link verified enables rich pins across the whole of your website, as long as you have meta data in place.

As part of your request you need to decide which type of rich pin you want:

  • Product; includes the description, price and where to buy. Each pin will need to have the URL of the landing page of the product
  • Place; provides the address, telephone number and map location.
  • Article; shows the headlines, author and story description.
  • Movie; includes ratings, cast members and reviews.
  • Recipe; shows the ingredients, cooking times and serving information.

You will choose the pin most appropriate for your product, service or target market. For instance, if you write blog posts you will choose Article, if you are targeting film buffs, you will chose Movies and if you are a photographer, or Travel Agent you would choose Place, so you could highlight interesting places.

The next step is to apply for rich pins with one URL (ie. Home page, blog page, services etc). You will then receive an email confirmation that your site is enabled. You then need to validate your rich pins, by choosing a page on your website which has your metadata added to, enter your chosen URL and validate. Your rich pin should be enabled within an hour. If your page can’t be validated, it means the required metadata wasn’t detected.

Reasons why you need to use Rich Pins

  • These pins can appear more relevant and useful to the pinners who are then more likely to click on your pin or re-pin it.
  • They are designed to increase engagement as the ability to have the full description available helps with searches, which can result in more traffic to your website.
  • If you decrease the price of your products, Pinterest sends an automated email about the price drop to the people who pinned your product for free!
  • The biggest benefit of rich pins that I can see is that they are dynamic, which means that if you change any of the metadata on your website, it will automatically be reflected on your pin in Pinterest, so a change in price, description etc. will automatically update, rather than you having to manually update everywhere it has been pinned.

Buyable Pins

And another new(ish) feature of Pinterest is that you can now sell your products directly from Pinterest. The pins have a blue price tag so people can easily see that it is in stock and available to be purchased. Pinterest offers this services for free, but you will still need to be able to handle the shipping and customer service. Once you have been accepted to be able to create buyable pins, each time you create a new pin you need to ensure the pin’s URL points to your product detail page on your online store and the Pinterest will automatically activate it as a buyable pin. Pinners can then buy your products by clicking on the “Buy It” button, then use apple pay or a credit card to pay.

Promoted Pins

Then you get to the paid version.. promoted pins are another name for Pinterest Ads which boost your ideas so the right people see them at the right time. They help you grow your audience, drive website visits and increase sales.

Choose a pin that is already doing well on Pinterest or upload a new image which aligns with it, either similar type of post, topic etc. This makes it more likely that it will do well once promoted.

Cannot promote the price in it. You are allowed to put promotions on I.e. 10% discount until 31st December etc. or where you always provide something for free or at a particular discount.

Go to https://ads.pinterest.com. Choose your goal, of which there are two choices:

  • Engagement; this is where you paying for likes, closeups, and clicks and is the cheaper of the 2 options. This is a good option if your main aim is to increase awareness of your brand.
  • Traffic; where you pay for the amount of traffic driven to your site. This is the best option for gaining more clicks on your website.

The next step is to set yourself a daily budget, with a start date and optional end date. This way you can see whether it is working and extend for a longer period of time. You need to consider key words and descriptions to ensure your pins work as efficiently as possible, such as having text overlay, a call to action or show multiple products on the one image

You can either use Pinterest suggested key words for your pin or you can use external platforms such as google search and add a list of all words you would like to bid for. Pinterest says you need to bid on at least 30 terms and also suggests that you start broad and hone down, once you know what works well. You add your target audience and then monitor your results and tweak where necessary.

Pins last for a number of months, so promoted pins may get pinned to other boards and then when they get re-pinned from that board, it is like having a free promotion as they are considered to be “earned” clicks.


There are a number of different pins on Pinterest and which ones you need to use will depend on what you need it to do. If you are selling something then I would strongly suggest that you need Rich Pins, to ensure that your intellectual property remains yours. Promoted pins do appear to do better than normal pins, but then you would expect them to, as they should be more visible to your target audience. I would suggest that if you sell products on line, that you try them using a small amount of money, use the tips above and then monitor to see if its working and then perhaps tweak. As a blogger I use rich pins, to create more awareness of my website and I would definitely recommend using buyable pins for your product related pins, as anything that makes it simpler for the customer is more likely to attract buyers and therefore a no-brainer!