Stumped as to how to write the BEST pin descriptions for your Pinterest profile in 2021? In this quick blog post I’ll give you 16 tips that will ensure well-optimized pins that get you CLICKS!
Whether you’re a small business owner or a blogger, whether you’re experienced or a complete Pinterest beginner, I have 16 tips that you will want to bear in mind when you’re writing your Pinterest pin descriptions and titles.
I’ll show you how to include keywords in a way that doesn’t appear spammy, how to batch out the writing of your pins and tips for what else to include – and what to avoid.
Writing pin descriptions is easy… writing pin descriptions that convert is another thing entirely. Learn the best way of optimizing the powerhouse of a search engine that is Pinterest!
This article will take your through everything you need to know about how to write the perfect pin descriptions for Pinterest. I’ll also touch on writing a great Pinterest title as well.
It’s actually really important what you write in your pin description. Why? Well, it can be a very easy way of getting more eyeballs on your pin and therefore more traffic to your site.
I’m going to assume that if you’re reading an article about writing perfect pin captions, you’re using Pinterest for business. You’re looking to get more clicks and not so much in the vanity metrics of growth on Pinterest itself per se.
👉🏽 Prefer to watch the video? Check out the video from my YouTube channel, below. This will link you to my channel which is all about growing your solo business through organic online marketing.
If you want the COMPLETE guide to using Pinterest for business, be sure to check out my full, detailed blog post linked below.
1. Find great keywords to target
My best tip is that in order to grow on Pinterest and succeed with your marketing efforts, you need to do your keyword research and planning.
The first step of writing great pin descriptions is finding awesome keywords to target. If the keywords have no search volume, nobody will find it. If the keywords are too competitive, other users’ pins will appear ahead of yours, so the outcome is the same!
I would suggest doing your keyword research on the Pinterest platform itself, not using your keyword research tools for Google SEO. Sure, that may be a good place to start, but ideally you will want to see what’s actually ranking on Pinterest already. That will be sure to give you some good ideas!
- Use Pinterest’s own autosuggest feature when you type in a search term.
- Look at what keywords are being targeted in the pins that rank high for your desired terms.
- Go on the Pinterest ads platform (as if you’re creating an add, but you won’t actually need to make your ad live), and scroll down to the ‘keyword’ section. This will give you search volume estimates as well as great keyword ideas!
2. Put your keywords in the right places
Now you have your keyword ideas, that’s great. But where are you going to place them? I always say be sure to place keywords (naturally, of course) in the title of your pin, pin description and on pin graphic itself.
Side note: Pinterest actually reads the graphic – so that’s why I avoid excessive use of cursive fonts. It may be hard for an algorithm to read.
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3. Introduce the main keyword or topic early on in the pin
Use the most important words early on. Start with the keyword if possible. If you spend a lot of time telling stories or going off on tangents, Pinterest will not be able to tell easily the actual subject of the pin. So start and end with what’s important.
4. Utilize your full character count in title & description
Go right up to the 500-character limit for the description and the 100-character limit for the pin title if you can. Don’t limit it to just the title of the blog post or one keyword variation. That’s valuable real estate and there’s always space for optimizing more than just the very basic title. So have fun with it and make it a challenge to write up to the character limit.
5. Use two or three hashtags
Include two or three hashtags at the end of the description. Use general hashtags like #wedding #photography rather than specific ones like you would on Instagram like #theweddinglegends #livethelittlethings (these are just examples). Hashtags aren’t searched a ton on Pinterest, so I see hashtags are more like a clue you’re giving to Pinterest so that it can categorize your pin more effectively.
6. Make sure your title and description are branded
Include the name of the website or brand at the end of both the title and description. I use a pipe / separator (looks like this |). This just helps with brand recognition and also if someone tries to steal your pin! (yes, it happens!). Sometimes with all the repinning and sharing, pins can get disconnected from the original source. This way, if someone comes across your pin they’re more likely to be able to able to see where it came from.
7. Use natural language
Keyword stuffing doesn’t work that well and can get you categorized as spam if you’re not careful. So, write as if you’re talking to a friend or at least, like you could speak your pin out loud. You’ll see many pins that do well that do use the keyword-stuffing technique, but all I can say is that they may have been created LONG ago. Or by accounts with thousands of followers. For small/ new accounts, it’s best to follow best practices. Pinterest has an aggressive spam policy, so you never know.
Remember to keep to your brand voice, and don’t try and sound like a robot! Be yourself, this is ultimately what will create a connection between you and your target audience and entice them to click.
8. Write for both Pinterest and for users
You’re writing to help Pinterest categorize and understand the pin and where to show it. You’re also writing to catch the eye of potential customers or readers and entice them to click through. So be sure to optimize for both! Most readers don’t pay attention to the description – unless you make them! Always try and infuse your brand voice as well as your keywords throughout.
9. Make your pin as rich as possible
If you just stick to adding as many keywords as possible, the text could read very stale and boring to humans. So keep it as lively and human as possible, with words and phrases you’d actually use if you were sitting and talking to a customer. Be you and be engaging! Find ways to add interest and richness to what could otherwise be a plain and boring description. Enthusiasm is contagious!
10. Avoid words like ‘click here’ or ‘buy now’
Anything that sounds too spammy may not do as well in the algorithm. A gentle call to action like ‘learn more on the blog post’ or ‘find out more’ may fare better. But also, these days there’s little need to tell the reader that there’s a blog post or other piece of content linked. It’s a waste of valuable word count telling them WHAT to do, so stick to telling them WHY to do it.
11. Recycle your blog posts
Text from your blog post will already likely be keyword-optimized and information-rich. So, if you’re stuck for what to write, copy and paste text from your introduction and tweak for clarity and punchiness. You can also just use it as a starting point. There’s nothing I dislike more than watching a blinking cursor. At least this way your blog post is a springboard for wherever direction you want to take your pin description.
12. Write your pin description at the same time you’re drafting your blog post
Batching together writing tasks is much easier than coming back to your blog post at a later date and trying to get back into the same headspace you were in before. When your head is filled with all the little nuances of that blog post, that’s the perfect time to write the pin descriptions and store them in a document for when you’re ready to post (or in your pin scheduling system such as Tailwind!)
13. Use an app that counts your characters as you type
Use Hemingway or Grammarly or other web-based editing software that allows you to see in real time how many characters you are using. It’ll also check your spelling and grammar and offer suggestions so your language is easy to read. Both are free at the basic level. This really saves time as I can instantly see if what I have in my head is going to fit in the allotted character count, and can edit on the fly if it’s too long.
14. Keep a swipe file of ideas
To avoid that blinking feeling we talked about, compile a document of phrases that you can draw from to get you going. You might have phrases like,
- ‘The topic of X can be a difficult one. Fortunately…
- ‘Are you looking for an easier way to X so that you can Y’?
- ‘Interested in learning more about X from an experienced expert’?
- ‘Ever wondered why…?’
It doesn’t have to be anything much, but again it helps to get you started if you’re just feeling stuck. Keep things fresh by adding to this list every time something comes to mind or you have success with a particular pin variation!
15. Use empathy
Put yourself in the user’s shoes and show that you understand their pain points. A pin description is like a microcosm of the hero’s journey, with your reader as the star. Identify the exact problem they are dealing with, introduce the tension, offer the solution, then paint a picture of your reader that is now empowered and victorious.
Here’s a quick example I came up with. I could have emphasized the reader’s success a little more, but you get the idea. Be focused on solving problems, or otherwise emphasizing the value that your product, service or content can bring.
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16. Practice makes perfect!
It can be daunting when you’re beginning on Pinterest to know what to write. Ultimately, once you start you’ll find the process of coming up with pin titles and descriptions becomes much quicker and easier.
I hope that was helpful as you get to grips to writing your Pinterest pin descriptions and titles! If you want to binge more Pinterest content, the best place to do that is on my Pinterest for Business playlist on my channel. I’m constantly adding to this as I learn more about the Pinterest platform.
Keep an eye on what’s going on with your Pinterest analytics and even more importantly, your Google Analytics. If you are experiencing drops in traffic and engagement, it may be worth looking into the causes.
Thanks for reading or watching – and happy pinning!
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This was super useful! Thank you!
You’re welcome! Glad it helped!
Thank you Zoe! This is exactly the information I needed. It was easy for beginners to understand, yet detailed and inspiring!
Aw thanks so much Heidi! Did you check out the video too? Also feel free to experiment with different approaches – this is what I do but I’m sure there are a ton of different strategies you could play around with for your Pinterest growth!
Great post Zoe. I’m new on Pinterest so this helps a lot. I’m just wondering, when writing pin titles and descriptions, does exact word order matter like it does on say Etsy?
Thanks for the post, Zoe. I’m new on Pinterest so this helps a lot. I’m just wondering, when writing pin titles and descriptions, does exact word order matter like it does on say Etsy?
6 Comments on How to write the perfect pin description on Pinterest