26 Tips for Using Pinterest for Business

social media how toAre you wondering how your business could use Pinterest?

To say there’s been a lot of buzz about Pinterest in recent months would be putting it mildly!

Pinterest’s ease of use for visually bookmarking, organizing and sharing things you love has made it a hit among individuals and businesses alike.

What follows are 26 tips, an A-Z guide for creating a business presence on Pinterest.

#1: Add a Pinterest “Follow” and/or “Pin It” Button

One important way to let your clients and prospects know about your presence on Pinterest is to add a Pinterest button. Pinterest has several choices available on their goodies page. Find the one that works for you. When you add a Pin It button, you can encourage your customers and readers to pin your products onto Pinterest.

follow button for websites

Follow buttons are a great way to let users know you’re on Pinterest. (You can see what I'm up to on Pinterest, too.)

#2: Brands and Pinterest

While Pinterest hasn’t yet created a distinction between a personal profile and brand page (like Facebook), early adopting brands are making good use of their Pinterest presences and the pins and boards they’re sharing.

Brian Honigman points out that because Pinterest’s integration with Facebook is still only for personal profiles and not fan pages,* you should choose the email associated with your brand’s Twitter account to set up your Pinterest profile.

“Once you’re on Pinterest, it’s time to either keep the profile photo that’s been pulled from your Twitter account or upload a new one… You can alter the name and email associated with your account, add a location and website and then add a brief description of your brand. Here you can also choose to link your Twitter profile to your Pinterest account publicly.”

*Note: Pinterest is one of the 60 new open graph websites and apps that allow a tighter integration with Facebook’s Timeline.

request an invite

Remember to use the email address associated with your company's Twitter account if you want to link your Twitter and Pinterest profiles.

#3: Crowdsource

Lauren Drell‘s tip about crowdsourcing can be very effective for brands. She suggests you ask fans of your brand to pin pictures of themselves with their favorite product of yours and tag you, then you can repin those photos onto a VIP board. “It’ll give a shout-out to these fans and show potential customers that your current users really like using your product.”

west elm on pinterest

Sharing the West Elm love on Pinterest.

#4: Do Follow Links

Pinterest is not only a great visual representation of your business; it also has the extra bonus of having SEO value. As Angie Pascale points out, “Other large social media sites—Facebook, Wikipedia, etc.—started out with Do Follow links, but eventually implemented No-Follows in an effort to deter spamming. While we cannot predict whether Pinterest will also make this change as they grow… the current setup provides legitimate SEO value.”

do follow links

Pinterest currently offers Do Follow links.

UPDATE: The links from the images pinned on Pinterest have now been changed to “no-follow” links. For now, it appears that “do follow” links can still be added to the pin description. We’ll keep you posted as we learn more.

#5: Etiquette

Be mindful of pin etiquette as outlined by Pinterest: be nice, credit your sources, avoid self-promotion, report objectionable content and tell them how they’re doing.

Brian Honigman has some pointers regarding etiquette for brands: by sharing images and videos from other industry-related user’s boards, you will “keep your profile community-based and not just a promotion center for your assets and products. Repin and like other content that suits your community, which will help strengthen your reach in the long-term.”

#6: Focus Group

Pinterest users’ likes and interests are easily viewable for all to see. Lauren Drell points out that with millions of people using Pinterest to keep track of objects “they love, places they enjoy, foods they devour and things that inspire them” that marketers can use Pinterest as a focus group.

She suggests you look at the pinners who follow your brand and see what they’re pinning and who else they’re following. “They’re volunteering a lot of information about their interests, passions, dreams and sense of humor in a more natural way on Pinterest than they would on, say, a survey or even on Facebook, where they have to manually enter ‘sarcasm’ or ‘travel’ as an interest. Use this information to your advantage to glean insights about your target consumers.

#7: Grow Your Pinterest Pins and Boards

Pin and maintain your boards regularly to keep your Pinterest presence alive and well. If you have a regular update schedule for other platforms you’re on, make a point of going to Pinterest on a pre-determined schedule to see what’s being pinned by people/brands you already follow, everything and popular pins (ones with a high number of likes, comments and repins). By looking at popular pins, you’ll also get an idea of the type of content that the Pinterest community tends to favor.

#8: How to Use Pinterest

Wild Hair Media‘s post about how Whole Foods Market is using Pinterest demonstrates some good takeaways that other businesses can adopt. They write, “Instead of posting things like their weekly newspaper insert to advertise sales, Whole Foods has taken the opportunity to enhance its brand image instead.

With theme-based pinboards such as Edible Celebrations, How Does Your Garden Grow, We’re Using to Reusing, Super HOT Kitchens, Sweet Tooth, and Who Wants Dinner, Whole Foods is pinning items that “relate to a lifestyle that can be achieved by shopping at their store.”

What types of pinboards will enhance your brand image?

whole foods on pinterest

Whole Foods Market is a good example of a brand on Pinterest.

#9: Install the “Pin It” Bookmarklet to Your Browser

The Pin It bookmarklet lets you grab an image from any website and add it to one of your pinboards. When you pin from a website, Pinterest automatically grabs the source link to credit the original creator. You can find the bookmarklet on Pinterest’s goodies page.

pin it bookmarklet

Grab an image and pin to Pinterest in one easy click from your browser window.

#10: Justification for Creating a Presence on Pinterest

Feeling like you need to justify to your company why you need a presence on Pinterest?

For starters, you can pass along Monetate‘s influential infographic, Is Pinterest the Next Social Commerce Game-Changer? Wow them with this info: Pinterest reached 7.2 million visitors in the U.S. in December 2011, according to Compete.

is pinterest the next social commerce game changer?

Is Pinterest the next social commerce game changer?

You can always share the Shareaholic Referral Traffic Report that states in January 2012, Pinterest drove more referral traffic than Google+, LinkedIn and YouTube combined. And how the Experian Hitwise report listed Pinterest as the #7 social network, beating out Google+ for share of visits.

These should help get their attention!

#11: Keywords and Hashtags

When creating a description for a new pin, you can optimize the pin by adding keywords that users may be more likely to use if they’re searching for specific content on Pinterest.

Sharon Vaknin writes, “You can also add multiple hashtags (keywords) at the end of your description. For example, you might add “#fashion, #style, #dress, #bright” to the end of a pin about a dress. Add as many as you want, but beware that too many hashtags can look like spam.”

#12: Link Back to Your Own Sites

Want to make sure that people can find you online? Be sure to add links to your company website and Twitter page on your Pinterest profile. You can also bring users to specific web pages by adding the URL in the pin description.

add link

Get a lot of bang for your buck. Add your URL in the pin description.

#13: Me + Contributors

Pinterest has great collaborative functionality with the “me+contributor” posting capability where you can allow others to contribute to your boards (note: they must already be one of your followers to be added).

me contributors

Let other people contribute to your board.

#14: Network With Others

Francisco Rosales sees Pinterest as a great way to network with other users. “Connect, comment, like and repin others, this is a s-o-c-i-a-l network after all. Interact with others as you do on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. You can also expand your reach by getting out and sharing pins on other networks. Or promote specific boards.”

You can also cross-network by embedding a pin directly onto your blog.

get embed code

Click on the Embed button to access the HTML code.

embed pin

Embed a pin directly on your blog by copying and pasting the HTML code.

#15: Observe and Comment

It’s clear to see that users’ observations and comments are very welcome and appreciated on Pinterest. People like to know that their pin was helpful and their board served as an inspiration. You can mention other users in a comment by typing @username.

observe comment

Engage with pinners by commenting and adding their names with the "@" tag.

#16: Pinterest for Content Marketing

Janet Aronica says that B2B companies or business-oriented blogs can drive traffic to their content if they’re willing to get creative. She offers five great examples:

  • Curate infographics relevant to your industry.
  • Collect charts to share statistics for your industry.
  • Create more visual content for your followers to share.
  • Don’t list your tips—put tips on a visually appealing slide with a short phrase.
  • Include a photo with each blog post—give your readers something to pin.

#17: Quality Photos

Images and videos are at the heart of the Pinterest experience. Angie offers three tips regarding photos:

  • Because Pinterest emphasizes pictures over text, it’s important to have high-quality photos.
  • Make sure your photos can be pinned; sites in Flash do not allow photos to be pinned.
  • Ensure that photos are tagged correctly on your site so that they index properly within Pinterest.

#18: Referral Traffic

Monetate‘s infographic below shows how referral traffic from Pinterest to five specialty apparel retailers rose 289% from July to December 2011.

monetate infographic

Pinterest referral traffic has yielded impressive results in a short period of time.

If you’re already on Pinterest, do you check your analytics reports?  Has Pinterest been a source of web traffic for your business? How does it compare to your other efforts?

#19: Search for Pins From Your Website or Blog

Want to see what’s being pinned about your company? By using this specific URL, http://pinterest.com/source/socialmediaexaminer.com/, we can see everything that has been pinned from Social Media Examiner.

Tip: Substitute your company URL (http://pinterest.com/source/ADD YOUR URL HERE) to see what’s been shared from your website or blog.

pins from sme

Check out what's already been shared from your business.

#20: Team Communication on Pinterest

Pinterest is a great way to communicate with members of your team. At Pinterest headquarters for example, the team has a board entitled, “Office Grub Shopping List”  which is described as, “Go to Costco.com => click Business delivery.” Multiple people at the corporate headquarters pin to the board to keep track of shopping wants and needs.

You can also use boards creatively for team-building. Maybe a board about a new business book you’ve read or a link to an upcoming webinar you signed up for? The possibilities are endless!

office grub

Make your pinboards collaborative team experiences.

#21: Useful

Brands that are perceived as being helpful to Pinterest users are making a splash on Pinterest. How can you be useful? In the same ways that you might offer thought leadership ideas in your blog posts or white paper, you could use your pins and boards to educate (ideas might include: pin an instructional video, a business book that you recommend, a link to a blog post that you think would make your customer’s life easier or pins to productivity and business apps for smartphones or iPads).

#22: Videos

Videos have their own distinct section on Pinterest. Brian Honigman suggests another way to draw attention to your videos is by adding annotations—basically a call to action—for your audience to pin videos they find appealing. These annotations should tell the visitor to “pin this video to Pinterest” or provide a link to your Pinterest profile. The annotation serves as another reminder to users to engage with you in another way in a different community.

#23: Welcome and Encourage Comments

Popular pins on Pinterest have three things going for them: likes, comments and repins. Rather than leaving it to users to decide on their own whether to take the time to comment on a pin, you can help create interest by asking a question (e.g., “Guess where was this photo taken?”, “Tell us what you think of our new product offerings.”). Use your new pins and boards as opportunities to converse with users on Pinterest.

comments from users

Popular posts on Pinterest contain many comments from users.

#24: (E)xamine Use of Pinterest for Your Business

Pinterest may not be right for every brand. Angie suggests that if your brand has “stunning imagery and develops unique products, Pinterest might be a good fit for you.” She has a list of 13 verticals that can leverage Pinterest.

  • Apparel—men’s, women’s and children’s
  • Food/beverages, especially recipe-driven
  • Architecture
  • Interior design
  • Wedding themed
  • Technology
  • Sports
  • Health care
  • Personal care
  • Home improvement/DIY accessories
  • Pets
  • Kids products/toys
  • Travel

If your business doesn’t fit into these categories, you’ll still want to examine the ways you can use Pinterest. What makes Pinterest intriguing to you?

#25: (Wh)y Pinterest?

Why do businesses love Pinterest? Let us count the ways:

  • Skyrocketing popularity
  • Ability to drive traffic
  • Build SEO value with Do Follow links
  • Appeal to multiple vertical markets

…to name but a few!

By this point (here at letter “W” in our A-Z guide), we can see that creating a presence for your business on Pinterest may very well be a wise decision. However, it’s always important to not let yourself get caught up in the “next shiny object” syndrome and take the time to assess whether you realistically have the resources to manage another social media platform. What will you decide?

#26: Zine

Still having a hard time wrapping your head around the appeal of Pinterest? Think of Pinterest as a much-loved zine and a user-friendly way for people to move through content, whether on their desktop or on a smartphone. It’s a visually appealing way for users to interact with products and ideas.

pinterest on iphone

Flipping through Pinterest on an iPhone.

pinterest on computer

Scrolling through Pinterest on a computer.

What do you think? Will you create a business presence on Pinterest? And if your business has been one of the early adopters, what tips would you add? Leave your questions and comments in the box below.

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About the Author, Debbie Hemley

Debbie Hemley is a freelance writer and social media coach. She helps businesses develop and maintain social media content strategies. Follow her on Twitter @dhemley & Facebook. Other posts by »




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  • http://twitter.com/WorkingBoomer WorkingBoomer

    I find this very useful. I am adding it to my favorites.

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  • erikhorton

    This is a great article with some really great tips.  I am a Health Counselor and am using Pinterest as another way to connect with my clients between counseling sessions.  Currently I have a board set up for “exercise motivation” which is designed to provide that extra push when the motivation to exercise is lacking.  I have plans to add a recipe board as well as a board for healthy products I endorse. http://www.pinterest.com/echortonhealth

  • http://www.antavo.com/ Zsuzsa Kecsmar

    I like this list very much Debbie! Our next aim now it to upload tutorial videos on promotion building with Antavo. I find Pinterest a very good tool! We managed to spread our infographics fast, key influencers – as you too – posted it, so we got many visitors to the site.

    #27: try this trick with your board: http://mashable.com/2012/02/16/pinterest-hack-how-to/

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  • http://twitter.com/aboutbart Bart van der Kooi

    There are many ways of using Pinterest for companies. Webshops must be very curious for Pinterest, as seen in the statistics for referral traffic (and adding Price Tags to your pins!). But even for companies based on intangible services, there are possibilities; pinning your employees, services, offices, making boards for contributos, etc.

    When pinning as a company, innovative, humoristic or cool pictures of your products of company are being repinned in dozens!

    As long as there ain’t going to be problems with the copyright issue (Flickr is already using a ‘nofollow’ in their website), this is going to be a hit in the Social Media landscape!

  • deb1221

    Very happy to hear it’s useful to you! Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Great points, thanks for your comments.

    Interesting to note too that last week Pinterest added “What if I don’t want images from my site to be pinned?” to their help pages– that contains code that sites can add to the head of any page. When a user tries to pin, they will see the message, “This site doesn’t allow pinning to Pinterest, etc.”

  • deb1221

     Very happy to hear it’s useful to you! Best, Debbie

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  • deb1221

    Hi Zsusza, Glad to hear that you were able to spread your valentine’s day infographic on Pinterest. Thanks for sharing the board trick from Mashable.  Really loved that, haven’t tried it yet!
    Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Hi Erik, Great ideas for using Pinterest! Recipes are really popular. I’ve been finding loads of great ideas for what to make for dinner.  Good luck with your boards. Best, Debbie

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  • http://www.redmudmedia.com/ Ralph du Plessis

    I hate to be a party pooper, but has anyone read the Pinterest Ts and Cs? Put plainly…. if you pin copyrighted material and the owner decides to sue you and Pinterest then YOU have to find and fund a lawyer for BOTH!! 
    http://ddkportraits.com/2012/02/why-i-tearfully-deleted-my-pinterest-inspiration-boards/

  • Darrell Ellens

    Hi Debbie, it’s nice to have such a detailed article on “How To Use Pinterest For Business” I like the observe and comment part. Great job!

  • http://twitter.com/Kevinthk geek’s Code

    Awesome Article!!! Thanks for the TIPS! 

  • lpinkston

    Do you believe the “no pinning” code takes the legal responsibility from Pinterest and puts it on the website owner to make sure that copyrighted material is not pinned? It will be interesting to see how this may change the site. (Although, I’m all for people pinning for our website!)

    Leigh Pinkston

  • http://www.jwsocialmedia.com/ Jocelyn Wilhelm

    Very useful information! Goes to show why SEO and social media really work hand in hand in the overall success of inbound marketing strategy. Great write up. Thank you for writing it.

    Jocelyn

  • http://artdesignpost.com/ Christopher Hill

    I think Debbie created a great list of options to consider. If wish lists are the most popular activity, how can we transform that to include our brand?  

    People search, select, label, pin. We want to create an activity on Pinterest that is more interesting and relevant than just collecting images into web scrapbooks. I just don’t know what it will be. 

    My point is to study the activity or the gamification to find a way to embed your brand into that experience. All of these ideas are about creating experiences by persuasive activities involving your brand.

    Check this out: http://gamification.co

    : )

  • http://mailVU.com/ Kamilla Gary Wyatt

    This is awesome info and I will definitely bookmark this blog for future reference! Pinterest is quickly becoming my favorite socmed site. Thanks for including the descriptor about hashtags too; I’ll have to begin experimenting with them.

  • andreainfusino

    hi there i developed a wordpress more complete plugin that displays your pinterest feed.
    let me know what do you think about it :)
    Download it here: http://bit.ly/zukgjV

  • Bobbi

    How does this site help bloggers and photographers

    since one can not self promote? 

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  • http://www.expertsem.com/ Angie Pascale

    Hi, Debbie, 

    What a great and thorough article! Thanks for using me as a reference. Unfortunately, Pinterest made their links “no follow” about a month ago, so there is no SEO value to be gained in that way. However, if a pin is embed in a blog, there can be even more link weight. The updated blog with more info on the embed pins can be found here: http://l3m.me/wq39Z6.

    Thanks!
    Angie

  • Kelly Mirabella

    I use Pinterest for personal use and I recently started using it for my business and for 2 of my clients. There are a lot of fantastic uses for it as long as you don’t do 100% promotional. The possibilities are endless and if you are visual it really is amazing. I recently did a podcast where I talk about using Pinterest for business and give some ideas on how you can use it. You can listen to the podcast at http://www.masteringsocialbusiness.com. I especially love to see what Whole Foods is using it for. Did you know that the Military is using it too!

  • deb1221

    Thanks for reading!

  • deb1221

    You’re welcome.

  • http://inspiretothrive.com/ Lisa Buben

    Do you need to add a URL if you are pinning a photo or an image from a website? If they click the image it will take them to the site without looking so promotional, no?

  • deb1221

    I know, seems like something more will come down re: code. Thanks for your comment.

  • deb1221

    Yes, great example of seo and social. I hope it’ll stay that way!

  • http://www.facebook.com/lerche.brian Brian Hizhoe Lerche

    I was under the impression that Pinterest links are no longer Do Follow links. Angie Pascale points this out in her article. Can anyone confirm?

  • deb1221

    Hashtags and using descriptions makes Pinterest very nicely searchable. Thanks for reading.

  • deb1221

    Great question. I see it as walking a fine line, showing your work but not going out of your way to sell yourself or promote your services. Pinning with discretion!

  • deb1221

    It will grab the code of where the image came from. And you can put the url in the description if you want to make sure users can find the website.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/survivalstrategies Survival Strategies

    Thanks for the great tips. I’ve been hearing more and more about Pinterest lately and in fact wanted to figure out how to utilize it for our business consulting company. You gave me some great ideas!
    - Andrea Lattanzi

  • Kirsty Wilson

    Great post Debbie! Maybe you can answer my question. None of my pins appear in search results which has me baffled. I’ve played with the settings but nothing has changed this. Do you know if Pinterest is set not to return your own pins/board in a search or is something amiss?

  • deb1221

    Kirsty, I was curious so did a search on one of your boards and it did come up in google search results. It was on page two of the results, but it did come up. Not sure….
    Business Ideas / How Social Media Can Generate Sales – Pinterestpinterest.com/pin/70509550385905864/Add a Pin. Upload a Pin. Create a Board … How Social Media Can Generate Sales. Repinned from How I Can Assist… by Kirsty Wilson · Login to Comment …

  • deb1221

    Kirsty, I did a search on one of your boards and it did come up in google search results. So, I’m not sure why you’re not seeing them. Thanks for reading!  Debbie

  • deb1221

    I’m happy to hear that.  Hope you’ll enjoy Pinterest. It is great fun! Debbie

  • http://jimharrer.com Jim Harrer

    This really helped me fill in the blanks, thank you!

  • http://www.EnlightenedNetworker.com/ Ilka Flood

    Debbie, these are awesome suggestions on how to use Pinterest. Where there’s a will, there’s a way. Got some fantastic golden nuggets from your post and so appreciate it. Thanks! ~ Ilka

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  • Wanda

    Can Flash Banners be pinned?  Thanks 

  • deb1221

    Thanks, Jim!

  • deb1221

    I’m very happy to hear the post was helpful to you! Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Thank you for raising the question! My post was submitted several weeks ago and I wasn’t aware of these changes.  

    Angie updated her post a few days ago with the following statement:”At the initial launch of Pinterest, the link included on each pinned page was a “do-follow” back to the original source page, which means that it passed link weight and therefore SEO value. Then, towards the end of January 2012, as was to be expected, Pinterest instituted a “no-follow” on those links, most likely to keep people from spamming the site for link juice. However, there is still one SEO benefit from using Pinterest for a linking strategy.
    Each pin comes with accessible embed code for users that want to add that image on their own website, blog or social profile. The embed code can found on each pin (see image below), and can easily be copied and pasted into the HTML of other sites.
    When you embed the code into your website or blog, at the bottom of the image you will see “Source: original source URL,” which passes direct link juice back to that page.
    These links will vary in quality depending on the sites they are embed in, but the value here is much stronger than the original links that were found on Pinterest, because they could come from multiple root domains (should multiple people embed on their sites). The downside, however, is that users must embed code, which means they really have to like the image to put in the effort and they must have a basic knowledge of HTML. In other words, the imagery has to be very high quality for users to go through the effort to embed or learn how to embed.
    These links will vary in quality depending on the sites they are embed in, but the value here is much stronger than the original links that were found on Pinterest, because they could come from multiple root domains (should multiple people embed on their sites). The downside, however, is that users must embed code, which means they really have to like the image to put in the effort and they must have a basic knowledge of HTML. In other words, the imagery has to be very high quality for users to go through the effort to embed or learn how to embed.”

  • Jeanie Duncan

    Hi Debbie. I really enjoyed your article, and I’m still thinking about how Pinterest would be an effective social media channel for my business (and maybe it’s not). I have a consulting firm with services in the area of strategy, board and team development, executive search, and professional coaching. I don’t produce/sell a “product” and am not sure how I might visually present my ideas/brand on Pinterest. Thoughts or ideas?

  • deb1221

    Hi Wanda, No flash is not recognized. –Debbie

  • ibusblogger

    Wow. Finally a really great article on how socially to market using Pinterest. I love this line of thoughts and wish I could somehow add to it but sadly I did not know half of these tips let alone anything to add for others

  • http://www.wordconstructions.com.au/blog Tash

    Nice they are giving an option but many people may not know how to do that, or that they can, and adding code on every page could be rather time consuming!

  • http://www.wordconstructions.com.au/blog Tash

    Thanks for the tips, Debbie. I haven’t touched pin interest as I don’t think it has enough value for me (as a B2B service) to warrant the time required.

    You have given me some ideas of how I can use it though so I may dabble my toes and see how long it does take me to pin a few things.

    Given it is social media, is there a frequency factor in the success of pinning for business? I mean, if I pin a couple of things today when do I need to pin again to get value? I understand that you get more if you put in more, but I have no idea how often businesses a re pinning to get any results.

  • http://www.towerflower.com/ Alan

    Just getting geared up to start using Pinterest, so this article was a useful guide.  Forwarded the article to our web designer as well.  Thanks.

  • http://www.microsourcing.com/ MicroSourcing

    Pinterest is getting the same kind of attention that Google + did when it started out. Businesses will always want an advantage over the competition, and this can come in the form of establishing their presence in a soon-to-be popular social networking site. 

  • http://www.socialdon.com/ Facebook Statistics

    Brilliant article. Such a great platform for lots of images gathered in one place. I heard about Pinterest before but don’t know about its use. Great guidelines which really makes me to use it easily.

  • http://www.inspiretothrive.com/ Lisa

    I found if I click on an image I pinned and click on again when it pops up it does go back to the original website – so it can still generate traffic for pins. But the SEO value may not be high as you mention without the coding?

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  • Jill Celeste

    Fantastic info! Suggestion for SM Examiner: how about adding a “Pin It” link to your blog articles? Believe it or not, I pinned this one! =)

  • deb1221

    Hi Jeanie,

    Off the top of my head I think you could do things with research and data, recommended books,
    infographics.

    Mariam Shahab has an excellent Pinterest board, “Brands, Businesses & Blogs on Pinterest” with currently 955 pins where you may get some ideas. Also check out Beth Kanter, for some non-profit ideas,

    http://pinterest.com/mshahab/brands-businesses-blogs-on-pinterest/
    http://pinterest.com/kanter

    Best,
    Debbie

     

  • deb1221

    Thanks for reading! Debbie

  • deb1221

     Hi Tash,

    I think you’d want to spend some time building up your boards and then continuing to add to them via pins, through your week. I think once you set up the boards which mean something to you as you’re online during the course of the day you’ll start seeing things you want to bookmark and share. Your curiosity will also get piqued and you’ll want to see what the people who you are following are sharing. Hard to quantify the amount of time but I’d think before you know it you’d be there a few times a week (?)

    Hope that’s helpful!
    Debbie

  • deb1221

    Thanks, Alan. Hope you enjoy Pinterest!

    Best,
    Debbie

  • deb1221

    Hi, I agree. Some will stick around and some may find that it doesn’t do it for them but it’s always good to get your toes wet. I’ve learned about things on Pinterest I may not have come across otherwise and for even that, it’s been well worth my time. Best, Debbie

  • http://www.i95dev.com/ecommerce-magento Henry Louis

    Awesome list of tips. I will share this post with my friend as he is a new business man. So, it would be more helpful to him.

  • deb1221

    Thank you. Good luck with Pinterest. Let us know how it goes.  Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

     Thank, Jill. I’ll pass along your suggestion! I the pinned the post, too! And if you follow tip #19, you’ll see for social media examiner how many times people have pinned things!  Best, Debbie

  • http://cindyking.biz/ Cindy King

    Hi Jill, we are reviewing this, but at the moment continue to focus more on our Facebook page, Google+ and Twitter.

  • http://www.onlineexistence.co.uk/ Letitia Smith

    Lots of useful tips for businesses to use Pinterest. I am pleased though that you have pointed out Pinterest will not neccessarily work for all brands. It is so important to think about social media strategy and where Pinterest fits into this. I talk more about a Pinterest strategy here http://blog.onlineexistence.co.uk/index.php/how-do-doughnuts-apply-to-social-media/

  • http://valwriting.net/ essay help

     I really enjoyed this article. It is always nice when you read some thing that is not only informative but entertaining. 

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/VW3CEEU3JVY4UJWHDHD7X2ZI2I billie

    Great article! I started with a Pinterest account and now want to use it solely for my business. How do I do this? Again thanks for this article, will bookmark it for sure!

  • deb1221

    Thank you!

  • deb1221

    Thanks, love that you found it entertaining, too!

  • Dorothy

    I have a similar question to the one Kirsty asked regarding search. I have added hashtags to the descriptions of many of my pins, yet when I search that hashtag in the pinterest search bar, nothing comes up. I have tried three different hashtags and have logged in as myself and as my company and nothing appears in the search results. Any ideas?

  • Aimee West

    I have on my personal site where I’m talking about the great people I work with. I have pics them in the shirt, cup and bags that I helped design. I tried to keep it fun and just showing off that I love my job. Not me.

  • deb1221

    Hi Billie,
    I’ ve seen people who dedicate boards to their business, have their name as the profile name but used their business logo as the image. But if people would search for your business solely as business name then you might want to create a new business profile and keep separate. Check out my board on pinterest, contributors to blog post where you’ll see some different ways people have handled. Also check out Mariam shahab’s board on businesses, she has over 900 businesses!

  • deb1221

    Thanks, Cindy!

  • mrschmidt

    Just a thought – #24 should be #1. I’d also suggest taking “Technology” off the list.  That covers a wide swath of products, from video games (could be a good Pinterest) to B2B specialized tech components with highly complex IP (which shouldn’t be a bulletin board.) Further, many businesses continue to be overwhelmed by the wave, after wave, after wave of THE social media YOU MUST USE!”  This, when many have difficulty groking what a good web site should be.  Last but certainly not least, many businesses (especially start-ups and SMBs) have limited resources to implement new marketing tools. (And social media is a set of tools. Not a magic solution for everything.)  

    P.S. Always good to talk to the customers. If they give you a blank look when you talk about G+ or Twitter, they’re probably not dying to use Pinterest. 

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  • HRK2012XYZ

    Great information. Thanks for the incite!  New Ideas are always helpful!

  • deb1221

    Thanks for your thoughts and comments. Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Appreciate you taking the time to read and comment. Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Dorothy, Hmm, I can’t say for sure why nothing is coming up for you. What happens when you search for something like e.g., recipe or #recipe. Do you see results? 

  • http://www.socialbutterflymarketing.net/ Bex Mitchell

     Fantastic article! I do social media for other companies and have been pushing Pinterest on some I think it makes sense for. It’s a great platform. And your tips are perfect! Thanks!!

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  • deb1221

    Thanks, Bex! So glad to hear. Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Thanks, Angie. We’ve added an update to this post. Thanks for including your link. Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Hi Kelly, Thanks for sharing the info about your podcast.  Best, Debbie

  • HRK2012XYZ

     thank you for this great information and it is good to find new ways to generate traffic!

  • Dorothy

    When I search for #recipe or #marthastewart, it works. When I search for #SunshineStateofMind from the pinterest.com/VISITFLORIDA pins, I get nothing.

  • http://twitter.com/WatchInsiders Watch Insiders

    Hm… probably the most obvious one – “Gifts” wasn’t even mentioned.  You can add pictures of your products and they can appear under “Gifts” if you add a price to the description i.e. “awesome cutest widgets, $1.99″.  I’ve seen it’s used with dollars and British pounds, I assume other currencies may also work.

  • Monika Szabadkaiova

    great article and many great tips. thanks for posting :)

    i´ve started using pinterest to keep all the cool pictures at one place but then later i´ve seen an opportunity for work too… which is how http://pinterest.com/miceslovakia/ was created to show how beautiful Slovakia really is :) i know that currently in Slovakia there are very few people who know about pinterest and actively use it but im sure it will eventually warm up to them too, just like facebook did. 

  • DrMiaRose

    Great food for thought. I’ve been enjoying Pinterest as a personal user, but I have been concerned about copyright violations and have read posts by legal eagles advising everyone to take their boards down. I’ll have to research the risk of pinning and repinning content more before making a final decision.
    Thanks for the article. 
    Mia Rose

  • deb1221

     Thanks for adding! Debbie

  • deb1221

     Mia, I’m seeing some of those same articles and will be researching as well. Thanks,
    Best, Debbie

  • http://learnit2earnitwithlynn.com Lynn Brown

    Debbie you put together a great resource for this very popular platform.  I am enjoying learning more ways to utilize Pinterest for my business.  Thank you for sharing these helpful tips and ideas!

  • deb1221

     Hi Lynn,
    I’m very happy to hear that the post is helpful to you.  Best, Debbie

  • http://callboxinc.com/ Judy Caroll

    Hi Debbie, 

    Love the way you have put this out;)  Although the number of users is not as high as what we’d find on Twitter and Facebook, Pinterest is still gaining traction, and can be very helpful in spreading the word about our business.    We can just simply pin our products/services to share with other users in the appropriate categories or share them with a particular customer base.

    Thanks, 

    Judy

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  • http://www.downloadfrostwire.org/ Frostwire

    This is a great blog. Thank you for all your effort and the info you give.             

  • Hayes

    Why didn’t you create a Pinterest board out of these points, instead of a plain old blog post? 

  • D Moffatt

    Great post.  I run a car leasing website in the UK and can honestly say I’ve never heard of Pinterest before now (i don’t think it’s reached the UK market yet!!)
    It will be interesting to see if it takes off over here??
    Dave

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1314713425 Angela Gibney

    26 Tips for Using Pinterest for Business » Social Media Examiner http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/26-tips-for-using-pinterest-for-business/ via @smexaminer – Get invited to Pinterest it works

  • deb1221

    Hi Hayes, Interesting thought, although most of the readers come to SME looking for blog posts. I pinned the post to Pinterest along with many other readers so there’s been good representation there, too. Thanks for reading. –Debbie

  • deb1221

    Hi Dave, Yes, it will be very interesting. Let us know! Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

    Thanks for reading and commenting! –Debbie

  • deb1221

     Hi Judy, Yes, as you say Pinterest can be very helpful in spreading the word. Best of luck. –Debbie

  • Dorothy

    Any further insight on searching? Previous post: 
    When I search for #recipe or #marthastewart, it works. When I search for #SunshineStateofMind from thepinterest.com/VISITFLORIDA pins, I get nothing.

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  • Cameron

    Very cool list, I will be putting this into my plan of action. Thanks!

  • deb1221

    Dorothy,

    I’m not positive about this but I think Pinterest doesn’t like the long hashtag with no breaks. So, I just re-pinned one of your photos and put in the hashtags, #sunshine, #state of mind, #sunshine_state_of_mind, #sunshine state of mind–and when I searched, it came up. So you might try doing something like that.  Let me know how that goes. Best, Debbie

    p.s. it also looks like your web url in your profile isn’t working. You might try editing it to see if you can fix it.

    ***Follow-up Note: I’ve searched a few times and It looks like the words in the description that are most effective are sunshine state of mind (no spaces) It’s bringing up all of your board now. If you want to go the route of hashtags, I would try, #sunshine_state_of_mind (with underscores. also, worth noting, be sure to search on “boards” when you search.)

  • deb1221

    Thanks, Cameron! 

  • http://palveluhakemistosuomi.fi/ Keke Jantunen

    I already heard a lot about pinterest and it seem really good and interesting and using your blog is a greastest way to know about it.

  • deb1221

     Thanks, Keke! Glad the post has been helpful to you. Best, Debbie

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  • Lara Soares

    Great list! I wrote 10 more tips here! Some different from the ones here, so we can use the knowledgments together and do it even better 
    http://www.cafundoestudio.com.br/blog/en/web/10-dicas-marotas-de-marketing-no-pinterest

  • deb1221

    Hi Lara, Very nice! Thanks for sharing! Best, Debbie

  • Dorothy

    Unfortunately, your suggestions are still not working for me. It seems that any description word I search for that I use in any of my pins does not show up in the results. Really weird, because anything else works. I wanted to have our Facebook fans share their Florida photos on Pinterest and use a hashtag that we could then follow to repin their photos to one of our boards. 

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  • http://www.facebook.com/amzigmarsh Amzi Griego Marsh

    Thanks for the well written article and some solid information on this new SM platform that seems to be rising like a tidal wave. :)

  • deb1221

    Thanks, Amzi!

  • http://www.downloadfrostwire.org/ Frostwire

    This Blog is nice , informative and very useful. I realy impressed by author. Thanks a lot.

  • http://www.socialcubix.com/ Allenbrayan

    Amazing, I never knew pinterest could be used for generating business. I am going to implement these tips ASAP. Thanks.

  • trixie

    Yeah for Pinterest! Like I needed an excuse to do this. Thanks for all of your great articles. I am just beginning this online business adventure and your website is so very helpful.

  • deb1221

     Hi Trixie, Sounds like I was preaching to the choir? Hope your time on Pinterest if fun and rewarding! Best, Debbie

  • deb1221

     Thanks for reading. Enjoy pinterest! Debbie

  • deb1221

     So glad to hear the post is useful to you! Appreciate your feedback. Best Debbie

  • txbluecat

    2 questions! 
    First, saw this statement above ” Sharon Vaknin writes, “You can also add multiple hashtags
    (keywords) at the end of your description. For example, you might add
    “#fashion, #style, #dress, #bright” to the end of a pin about a dress.
    Add as many as you want, but beware that too many hashtags can look like
    spam.”
    I’m new to all of this & don’t know how to add these keywords or where to place the hashtags. How do I do this?

    Second, I see many large photos/pictures on profiles, but the space for mine is very small.  How can I post a large profile picture?
    Thanks much!

  • Verbenacottage

    Debbie, can you recommend suggested links to show us how to create or add the Pinterest icon/link for each product/photo posted on our retail website?

  • deb1221

    Hi Kathy,
    Two answers!
    Add the hashtags in with the descriptions for your pins, so if you were pinning a black sweater, in the description you would write, #black #sweater.

    And, I’m wondering if your profile photo was loaded from either your twitter or facebook profile when you created your new pinterest profile:you can edit the image by going to the edit profile page and uploading a new image if the one you used was too small first time around.

    Hope this helps!
    Debbie

  • deb1221
  • deb1221

    here’s the code from bigcartel.com
     Pin It

    one good place to put that button would be just after this line of code:  {{ product.description | paragraphs }}  That way the button will appear just after your product description. Another good place would be either above or below the “Add to cart” button, which begins with  and ends with .

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  • Scott Sowle

    Thanks Debbie for this informative Pinterest article. We just added Pinterest to our non-profit social media and the learning curve has been slow, with your article I feel we’ll be heading in the right direction.

    Scott Sowle
    Executive Director
    Redeeming Soles
    http://redeemingsoles.org

  • http://thereadingclinic.com/ Reading Tutor

    Hey that’s a great way to stay on top of your brand and to see what people are sharing from your site. I’m excited to get the pin button on my blog and I’m very excited to start collecting targeted boards for people to follow.

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  • lcsharp

    To those of you who manage Pinterest boards for brands… are you concerned about the legalities of pinning or repinning given Pinterest’s Terms of Use? 

  • Kenbarton

     I’ve been reading about “Pinterest” in various Linkedin groups and was going to explore this further for our online business, until this morning I read an article by a Lawyer/Photographer in the LinkedIn ReDesigner group, as well I have also noted there is already a lawsuit in place in the USA in which the use of “Pinterest” is involved. The sum of this information has given me reason to reconsider. I would strongly suggest to all interested in using “Pinterest” that they read the Terms and Conditions very closely indeed and you may want to take legal advice, before “pinning” anything for which you do not explicit permission, from whomever may be involved, to share/forward onwards.

  • http://www.mediavisioninteractive.com/ Thomas Schonenberger

    Hi Debbie

    Very useful and casual to me
    finding out the no-follow that Angie mentioned. I just had to go update my own post with that fact and
    thought I would link to yours as you have a lot more in depth info for our
    readers!
    Tom

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  • http://twitter.com/BelindaMath Belinda M. Mathew

    I’ve used pinterest to optimize my site and the result was amazing my site was jumped from #234 to #9 in few weeks time. The trick is we must got our website pinned and repinned by many people this is the hardest part. Most of pinterest users won’t doing repin when they aren’t like what we pinned. I do simple thing to outsource it on fiverr and got my site pinned by more than 70 people, I don’t know how can he did it just search by typing pinterest on fiverr and you will find it.
    As I know currently pinterest is best for SEO for these reason:
    1. Once our website pinned it has 3 backlinks counts
    2. Google interest in social media signal so it will not tagged as links farm
    3. Currently pinterest links are dofollow even the image
    4. Also support anchor text, it’s perfect for placing our keywords

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  • http://twitter.com/JanetAronica Janet Aronica

    Thanks for the shout-out :)  

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  • deb1221

    My pleasure. Great content as always!  –Best, Debbie

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  • Firedup

    Wow great tips – I’m definitely going to use pinterest to promote my business!

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  • Kathrynmlord25

    Can you have a personal and business page ? Every time I try it takes back to my personal page .

  • http://www.facebook.com/millslydia Lydia Mills

    I think that pinterest for a business is great, it allows them to interact with customer in a way that twitter and facebook dont. they also give space for competitions. Here’s a great example 
    http://www.printed.com/blog/printed-com-pinterest-and-bigstock-easter-competition

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  • http://epicfit20.com/ Epicfit20

    Just what I’ve been looking for. Thanks!

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  • http://reelseo.com/about/grant Grant Crowell

    It’s probably good to mention that this SEO link juice for Pinterest embeds won’t work for YouTube or Vimeo videos, but I think people wouldn’t need that anyway since Google already indexes both of those video sharing sites.

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  • http://www.freerateupdate.com/ Bank Mortgage Rates

    Thanks for the info about backlinks.. I do know a little bit about them but this cleared just about everything else up that I could’ve been wondering. I appreciate it!!

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  • http://www.goldenvisionforyou.com/internet_marketing_training.html Marywang9

    I found your site while I googled whether Pinterest still offers dofollow backlinks.  Thank you for the comprehensive information provided. 

  • http://www.goldenvisiontraining.com/internet-marketing-training-toronto-testimonies Marywang9

    Hi Debbie,  I just did a test and found that backlinks in the description part are also nofollow.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001903090363 Hillary Miller

    Hi Debbie, 

    Thanks for the tips.
    One thing that I like the most about Pinterest is that we can arrange our pinboard easily and display those that match to the current season.

    Unfortunately I can’t find the method to arrange the pin itself, do you know how?
    Thanks

    http://www.pinfaves.com

  • http://www.afterhourscreative.co.uk/ Peter Saunders

    I really can’t decide whether to give Pinterest a go, it seems ideal for photographers and designers but everything i’ve read about their T&Cs puts me off using it. There’s a lot of conflicting info and i can’t make up my mind! Really enjoyed reading this article Debbie.. thanks for sharing! 

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  • http://www.cyberlinkmedia.com/ DanceF

    Pinterest allows businesses to interact with
    customer in a way that Fb and Twitter don’t.

  • http://twitter.com/stevebeisheim Steve Beisheim

    I’m pretty sure that Pinterest will take off..  It’s very popular with women and is a great online bulletin board.. Thanks for sharing all the great ways to incorporate its use in the business world

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  • http://guillaumeherault.com GuillaumeH

    Great ^^ Thanks for this article 

  • rm

    Thank you so much for this post! I keep hearing about how great Pinterest is, and this really drove it home for me. Signed up to your mailing list too :)

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  • http://marketingstrategist.co.za/ Byron Martin

    Awesome post! Thanks for sharing the load of valuable Information and tips. Dearly Appreciated. 

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  • http://yourwindowguys.blogspot.com/ Mike Haslam

    Great post I am becoming so addicted to Pintererst for many reasons , You help me more too .

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  • Mike Haslam

    Thanks for Post I am  new to Social media and blogging these pinterest tips have helped me a lot 
    I wrote a post on my own blog about Pinterest , would appreciate any feed back from to Social Community
    Thanks Mike Haslam

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  • http://www.rattan-lounge-moebel.ch/ kissenbox

    Be sure to add links to your company website and Twitter page on your Pinterest profile. You can also bring users to specific web pages by adding the URL in the pin description.

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  • Debbie

    Help! How do I add a URL within the Pinterest Pin itself?
    I can add it to the description but it tends to get lost over time, I have seen this where there is a URL you can click on within the actual Post, how does one do this?
    Thanks,
    Debbie

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  • http://www.nextage.ch/ e-mail marketing

    When creating a description for a new pin, you can optimize the pin by adding keywords that users may be more likely to use if they’re searching for specific content on Pinterest. 

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  • http://www.danielmcbane.com/ Daniel McBane

    I’ve been trying to get into Pinterest for a few weeks, but hadn’t really got the hang of it. After reading your tips, I feel like I actually know what I’m doing a little bit and I’m motivated to give it another go. Thanks.

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  • http://www.rachelleizard.com/ Rachelle

    What kind of alternative can you suggest for those of us who have flash websites but still want to share our “look book” of products and services on Pinterest?

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  • http://twitter.com/byteLaunch ByteLaunch

    BTW the links on Pinterest are ALL no follow now. 

  • Jordan

    Hey, just wondering if you can give direction on how to add a URL in the pin description that is a text only link (i.e.. doesn’t have http….prefix, just the clickable word?)j Thanks

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  • http://www.ducktoes.com/webdesign/seo.php Cathie Dunklee-Donnell

    Good ideas and a lot of them.  Thanks.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004118591644 Lisa Wheeler

    This is great, thanks! It’s so
    wonderful that there’s such a tremendous amount of resources available to
    Pinterest marketers. With that, an excellent Pinterest Influencer Network I’ve
    come across that’s been really helpful to my biz is PinLeague. They’re
    basically a one-stop shop of Pinterest marketing resources definitely worth
    mentioning. Hope this helps and thanks.
     

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  • http://www.consultancymarketing.co.uk/ Ian Smith

    Is it at all possible to upload multiple images at once into a Pinterest Board? Anyone have any ideas?

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  • sibz solutions

    Finally a clear and easy to follow article about the amazing benefits of
    Pinterest. Such an fabulously inspiring concept. Thank you for breaking
    down the ideas for using it to our client’s advantage. I am going down
    this path and planning to make the most of this marketing opportunity

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  • http://www.PrimaMedia.com.sg/ Shaun Ling

    wowo.. very comprehensive tips on making full use of pinterest!

  • Christine

    Hi! I see that the article was updated with the addition of “no-follow” links and that there might still be a way to make them “follow links.” Do you have more information on how that is possible? Thank you so much for such great info!

  • Etinifni Creation

    Best Pinterest info page I have found yet, thank you.

  • swasha

    Question: I need advice on what to do when someone repins one of your images from your board, but removes your info and adds incorrect info with the image – do I politely correct them? This is a business image, I don’t want incorrect info about our product out there…

  • Tatiana Sedliacikova

    Thanks again for a great article, Debbie.
    Tatiana x

  • charles prowell

    Hi,
    I have a web site (launched in 1995) with image-heavy content that is copyrighted, original works that I’ve recently discovered has over 5,000 links on Pinterest. I’m okay with this, as each image is watermarked, but I noticed in browsing some of the pins that they are not linked to my web site, and are commonly not even credited. Is there a way for me to link the images on my web site to that same page such that when they are copied for Pinterest users, and pinned, they will link back to their original site?
    Thanks for providing a forum for my inquiry. I appreciate it.

    Charles Prowell
    http://www.prowellwoodworks.com

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    I was already convinced, but that was really cool. Your site contain a many useful information.

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