How to Create Great Pinterest Images that will be Repinned
The Art of the Pin: Deconstructing Pinterest Images
If you're a seasoned website veteran you may have trouble adapting to Pinterest because it is completely imaged based - and page-wide images that scroll for hours are actually a GOOD thing (rather than a hindrance to getting the search engines to notice you).
The key is to create a Pinterest optimized image but to also support it with great relevant content that can also be search engine optimized. Plus, as a Pinterest user, "dead end pins" that leave you wanting more information and don't provide any, are one of my pet peeves.
Great Pinterest Images
Don't assume you know what they are, so they tell you with a nice bold headline.
They also include details in the image so you don't have to go clicking all over the place to learn more (even if you can't read them at thumbnail size, at least you know they are only one click away).
Same Content, Two Pins, Side By Side - I repinned Both, But Saw 300% Responce Improvement From One to the Other
I originally saw this idea on my Pinterest feed with the image on the right. I loved the idea and wanted to learn how to do it. But I wondered if there were any foods you shouldn't mix together in the jar because they'd rot faster, or if there was a certain order to putting them in the jar. Unfortunately, when I clicked (twice, once to see the larger pin for details and a second time to get to the webpage the image came from) there was nothing there. It was a dead end pin.
However, a few days later, the picture on the left (the drawing) showed up in my feed. I was excited because it had many answers to my first question, and I only had to click once to get them. The details weren't clear to read at thumbnail size, but when enlarged I could see them. I didn't even have to visit the website to see them; however, I did still visit the blog this salad in a jar image originated from to see if there were more tips - unfortunately there weren't. To me, that was the blogger's loss. They could have stacked the blog with affiliate links to buy cheap jars, etc. I would have purchased jars online from a link like this if I needed them and for the right price.
Best Pinterest Image Size (width)
Pinterest resizes all images down to two sizers (one for a thumbnail view and the second for a zoomed-in view).
The thumbnail view is a 192 pixel wide image. If the image being pinned is smaller than 192 pixels wide, it stays the size it is and grey edges appear at both sides of the image on the pin.
The zoomed-in view is a a 600 pixel wide image. If the image that was used for the PIn is only 400 pixels wide it will be streched (and pixelated) to fit the 600 pixel width.
So you want to design images for Pinterest to look best at 600 pixels wide.
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Pinterest Image Height - How tall should a Pinterest optimized image be?
Images for Pinterest can be as tall as you like. So if you want you can design your image to be 600 pixels wide by 5,000 pixels high.
Think of your image size like a newspaper classified advertisement (because ultimately, that is how they display on the screen). You can choose a small square sized classified, or you can choose a longer classified (the size of three square classifieds). With Pinterest, you don't have to purchase your ad - but you can design a tall image so that it will appear three times as big as the other Pins it displays next to.
So for a Pin that will appear about three times as big as the average Pin, you will need to design a Pinterest image at 600 pixels wide by 1800 pixels tall. However, I would not create any Pinterest optimized image larger than necessary to display the content you have. A lot of blank space is just annoying.
The other thing to consider when choosing a Pinterest Image Height is not making your image so long that users have to scroll up to click the Repin button. You can read more about average screen sizes, and what the best Pinterest image height is by clicking here.
Pinterest Images with Rounded Corners
ROunded corners can set your image apart in a Pinterest feed.
What about Search Engine Optimization for Pinterest?
Pinterest traffic is great - but search engine traffic is still more consistent. However, images by themselves, don't have a lot of opportunity for great SEO. About the only thing you can do with an image, is give it a good key-phrase dense name.
That's why I love Squidoo. Squidoo allows you to post modular sections of content that the search engines gobble up, and post BIG 600 pixel wide images that Pinterest users can devour! It's the best of both worlds.
The other thing that can be search engine optimized is pin descriptions and board names and descriptions on Pinterest. A well-named board, with relevant keywords in the description can also show up in top 10 results. I see them more and more all the time.
If I had a nickel for every pin that has a caption like, "SO FREAKING AWESOME!" I'd be a wealthy woman. The thing is, this description is not search engine friendly. People don't search for "SO FREAKING AWESOME" they search for "Retro Kitchen Apron." Make sure to include helpful key phrases in your descriptions (for both boards and pins). If you feel compelled to comment on a pin's awesomeness at least be specific - ie, "This Retro Kitchen Apron is SO FREAKING AWESOME!"
Caution: Good Pinterest Images Never Die!
Pinterest Images Can Outlive Web Content
Even if you take your image down, quit blogging, or delete your website - Pinterest will continue to operate just the way it always does. That means, your images that exist on Pinterest will continue to exist on Pinterest, and continue to be repinned.
This is a great power, but with great power comes responsibility. Be VERY careful to spell check, grammer check, and spot image check any image that you are optimizing for Pinterest. A typo could well outlive you. :)