guest post by Traian Neacsu
Search engines remain to be the king for searching content online. However, the results in search engines have become very much based on SEO instead of actual relevance to the query.
How many times have you cursed Google for giving you a long, long list of online stores when what you actually wanted when you typed "trench coats" or something similar was just a detailed description on a trench coat’s parts and their functions?
When it comes to providing searchers with excellent and eye-catching results, Pinterest is cementing a strong reputation at a very fast rate.
First launched on March 2010, it reached 1.2 million members by August 2011. As 2012 rolled in, is membership already ballooned to 10 million, which quickly increased further to 17 million as of March 2012. In fact it is recognized as the fastest growing social media site today, ranking third after Facebook and Twitter (and is actually catching up real fast to snatching the second place slot from Twitter). Fab.com, a daily deals website, even noted that they are getting more traffic leads from Pinterest than sites like Twitter.
Comscore reported that Pinterest member spends about 98 minutes on site in Jan 2012. That is another point which online and non-online business owners will do well to capitalize on.
Why Do People Love Pinterest?
People always love trying out something new. For the last couple of years the world had dabbled with the wonders of Twitter, Facebook and all other existing social media networks. When Pinterest emerged, it presented an entirely new concept wherein there's less social drama and more sharing of genuine personal interests with other people.
What people do on Pinterest is very different from what they are used to on Facebook or Twitter. They don't share messages or statuses, although they can also follow other people's boards to each new item they pin.
Members can mainly share pictures and videos of their interests by pinning them on their personal boards. As shown on the image above, a person who's interested in flowers, desserts, and very feminine decors can simply pin images of depicting these interests and show them on their Pinterest boards. This is a very refreshing concept and anyone can easily see why people are driven to Pinterest.
With the level of success Pinterest has achieved, it is unsurprising that SEOs now begin to look at this social media site. They've done it with Facebook and Twitter; why not with Pinterest?
How Can SEO's Utilize Pinterest?
What's great about Pinterest is that it requires so little fuss, yet it is very effective at promoting merchandise and services. All you need is a high-def image quality that can attract people's attention and you're all set to promote a website, or advertise a service or merchandise.
Each pinned image is allowed a 500-character caption. If a seller or advertiser writes down a very pleasing description of the product, something that will ignite people's interest without coming across as blatant promotion, people will be encouraged to repin it in their walls and hereby extend the product's visibility to their respective networks.
Sellers can also add a price tag on products that are for sale. The prices will be reflected on the upper left corner of the image.
When people see an item they like accompanied by a price tag that they deem affordable, there's a compulsion to click on the link and check the possibility of actually buying it. According to TheNextWeb.com, 21% of the users have actually ended up buying an item they saw on the boards.
Apparently, Pinterest has achieved something that even Facebook isn't very successful at: converting clickthroughs into actual sales.
All this impressive supporting data proves that this site is not just plain social media. As Mike Wilton from SearchNewsCentral.com put it, it is "the perfect hybrid of search and social."
Tips on Optimizing Through Pinterest
Here's what SEOs can do to utilize Pinterest as one of their optimization tools:
1. Install "Pin It" buttons in your blog and website.
2. Make your own business profile on Pinterest.
3. As much as possible, use your own photos.
4. Add a link back to your website.
5. Don't overdo company and product promotion.
6. Turn off the Visibility Setting so that it will be indexed by search engines.
7. In connection to that, add commonly-used keywords and hashtags in the captions of your images and profile information.
8. Link Pinterest with Facebook to maximize exposure and information dissemination. This is also a great way to introduce your Pinterest profile to your Facebook friends.
9. Promote your pins in your Twitter, Flickr, and other social media accounts.
10. Interact with your Pinterest community. Repin related images even if they're not your own and invite others to pin on your own board.
It is also important for SEOs to understand that Pinterest is first and foremost a social community, not a tool for optimization. It does have the potential to spread visibility and accumulate customers; but for that to happen, merchants need to establish a credible presence in Pinterest. If they merely go overboard with their promotions, the public is more likely to ignore their pins the same way most people turn away from aggressive sales personnel at department stores.
Image credit: 1
About the author
Traian Neacsu, is a professional search engine optimizer who writes for Pitstop Media Inc, a Canadian company that provides SEO services to businesses across North America. For more information, please visit www.pitstopmedia.com.
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