Pinterest and Etsy go together like a needle and thread. Like paint and paper. Like a hammer and nailed it! In this post, you’ll find out how to maximize your Pinterest account, and thereby drive traffic and buyers to your Etsy shop. The world is full of DIYers these days and to be honest, is filled with even more MILLIDIMers (make-it-look-like-I-did-it-myselfers). Stop depriving these MILLIDIMers of your wonderful product and start catering to your crowd with these simple updates to your Pinterest strategy, with a focus on growing your Etsy shop. Using Pinterest to promote your Etsy shop doesn’t have to be complicated but does require a little time to get organized.
This post contains an affiliate link, which means I will make a commission at no extra cost to you should you click through and make a purchase. This helps fuel all the super awesome content on the blog, keeping you on top of your Pinterest marketing game!
YOU SET UP YOUR ETSY SHOP. NOW WHAT?
You’ve put your heart and soul into some amazing products and uploaded a beautiful photo of your creation to Etsy. So where are all the customers? While I’m certain your creation is worth every penny you’ve asked for it, you need to get that product in front of someone looking to unload their pennies. Last year, Etsy had more than 33 MILLION buyers, so the odds must be in your favor right? Wrong. With over 50 MILLION users, you need to work pretty hard to get your piece of the pie. And I’m going to show you how to do just that using Pinterest for marketing your amazing products. Make sure that you convert your Pinterest account into a Pinterest for Business account. Want a helpful tip? Be sure to give your Pinterest account the same name as your Etsy shop. That is step one. Go do that and come back…
HOW PINTEREST CAN HELP ETSY OWNERS
According to Pinterest, “…people use Pinterest early in their shopping process when they’re open to new possibilities.” If you can reach a potential customer in this mindset, your chances of making a sale are significantly increased. They are asking to be introduced to new products so HELP them by sharing your products on Pinterest.
BUT ISN’T PINTEREST AN INSPIRATION TOOL?
You bet your glue gun it is! People often turn to Pinterest for DIY inspiration. Have you heard the term “Pinterest Fail?” Yeah. It’s huge because it turns out, not everyone can wield a needle and thread like the best of ’em. And when those people borrow your idea to make a gift, or a bookshelf, or an embroidered pillow, then figure out they can’t execute it? Well, suddenly your product and price looks pretty darn awesome. Although most of us LIKE to think we have time to create beautiful handmade gifts, most of us do not have the talent or skill to – so HELLO ETSY.
Let’s also keep in mind that having handmade items, and a DIY feel to decorating and LIFE, is a major style choice for many, many people. But, let’s face it. Not everyone has the knack, the inclination, or the time. These are your people. They want the look, without the work. And try as they might, they won’t find handmade items just lying around Walmart. They need you and your Etsy shop. So let’s chat about HOW to use Pinterest to drive traffic to your Etsy shop.
HOW DO I USE PINTEREST TO PROMOTE MY ETSY SHOP?
MAKE IT PRETTY
Pinterest is a visual inspiration tool. So inspire them visually! The Pins of your products you create for your Pinterest boards should be beautiful, clear and themed (if that’s your thing!), meaning a Pin from you, should look like a Pin from you. It just makes your life easier if you begin to develop a look to your pins.
But while you want Pinterest users to recognize your pins for you, you also want to observe how other Etsy creators similar to you are designing their pins. Stick with me, here. Let’s say you’re selling crocheted creatures and you’d like to gain some Etsy traffic via Pinterest. You’d dive into a good ole’ Pinterest search of “crocheted creatures” and take note of what the Pins in your search look like. You’d then create your Pins to look similar to those, without breaching your own originality. Why is this? Well, Pinterest uses “image matching” to increase the likelihood of your Pins getting seen. Ever notice the “More Like This” feature underneath a Pin when you click on it? That’s just another spot on the platform that your product will show up. Your Pin will be image matched and you’ll be helping out the algorithm.
A Pinterest account comprised of only your own Pins is frankly, for everyone other than you, boring. You need to focus on establishing a beautifully curated feed that educates, inspires etc., it conveys your shop’s personality to your customers. When someone visits your account, they should see in a glance, what catches your eye, because chances are, if they like what they see, they’ll also like your products.
Maybe this is old news to you. Of course your images are beautiful, otherwise, you wouldn’t have used them for your Etsy shop. When pinning from Etsy, there is one extra step to keep in mind.
The thumbnails on Etsy are horizontal images.
The most successful Pins are vertical images.
HOW TO DEAL WITH THIS:
Since the column width is always the same, a horizontal image only gets half the visual real estate of a vertical image. You want your Pins to be vertical to optimize your appeal and the likelihood of being re-Pinned. You are always able to adjust which portion of your image is going to appear in the thumbnail, so my advice would be, design your image with a horizontal and vertical image combined. Let’s do some math. Ugh.
An optimized Pin size is 2:3. An Etsy thumbnail is 1:1. An Etsy gallery image is 170 x 135 or 34:27. They can’t make it easy, can they?
Etsy tells us that the recommended image size is 1000 pixels wide. They also tell us that if your image isn’t 170×135, they will resize the image, so make sure to keep your content in the middle of your photo. Here’s how you win this mathletes image contest:
Create an image that is 900 x 1200 and center your content. If you don’t want to have Pinterest optimized images exist on your Etsy account, you can manually upload images to Pinterest and enter the product URL that is relevant to the image. Enter a KEYWORD rich description (learn more about that below)… and boom. You are going to be golden.
Ta-da! All image sizes win!
DESCRIBE YOUR PINS THOUGHTFULLY
When we think of Pinterest, we primarily think of imagery and snapshots, not descriptions. And on Etsy, descriptions of each image barely matter. But your Pin description is very important as it increases the likelihood of it being repinned and found via search results. Your Pin description should be a (SHORT) story about your product – do some research about relevant keywords and make sure that your description is keyword rich! Pinterest has some great insights to share on developing the perfect description. You want to help folks who are SEARCHING for your products to actually find it when they search “handmade glass ornaments” or “designer custom pillows”. Do not leave this area blank!!!
As you describe your Pins and throw some hashtags out there, it’s important to keep your SEO in mind by putting on your Google goggles. Think of which terms people might be typing into that magical search bar that would land them in your shop! Include as many of those keywords as possible, everywhere you can think of, and you can up your chances of being found by the people who are actually looking for you.
The magic of Pinterest doesn’t stop there! If you add a price tag to your Pins, Pinterest will automatically include your Pin in the gift section, increasing your chances of being seen by shoppers. To keep the magic going, giving your Pin a price tag will give you the option to link your Etsy shop directly to your Pin.
PIN WITH A PURPOSE!
Pin content that is relevant to your niche. Try to add “fresh” content – add images from your favourite online sources -blogs, content creators, Instagram, stores etc. Pinterest favors accounts who are active and adding new content to their platform. That relates directly back to SHARING your own content! As you make and save your Pins, have several different images, lead back to the same place (and in this case, that is YOUR Etsy shop). If one image or description doesn’t speak to one person, another one might. Stack the odds (and the Pins) in your favour. Make sure that you are consistently adding your OWN content to Pinterest. Be strategic. Don’t just add a zillion of your own pins. IF you are pinning regularly, you should be adding enough complementary “other” content that you sprinkle your own content in amongst the other pins. This way, when you reshare a pin you shared a week ago, no one notices as you have been busy sharing lots of other content in the meantime.
NOW LET’S TALK BOARDS!
You may be wondering if you should have a Pinterest board just for your products. In short, the answer is yes. Creating a central product board will be beneficial to anyone who happens to stumble upon your account AND can help you keep track of which products you’ve already created Pin for.
However, you should also be creating boards related to your different types of products. Let’s circle back to those cute little crocheted creations you’ve made. Maybe you sell 3 different animals and a few styles of blankets. You might want to set up a board for each animal, a board for blankets, and a board for general crocheting. This will allow you to share your products over and over throughout time without boring your audience on a board of solely your products, kind of like what we had already established earlier in this post.
LINK PINTEREST TO YOUR ETSY SHOP AND VICE VERSA!
You’ve spent endless hours creating your Etsy shop products, so obviously you want everyone to know your face, right? You can do this in 3 short clicks right from your Pinterest account. Click 1: Head over to your “Settings” page in Pinterest. Click 2: Hit “Claim” Click 3: Select the “Claim” option next to Etsy. Pinterest will then prompt you to enter your Etsy information, so technically it’s more than a 3-click process, but you get the hunch (meaning it’s easy peasy). After you’ve followed these steps, Pinterest will begin sharing your name and profile picture to Pins from your Etsy shop.
From the otherside, you can also add your Pinterest account to your Etsy shop to gain you some truly dedicated followers. To do so, hop over to your shop on Etsy and click “Edit Shop”. If you scroll down to “Around the Web”, you’ll have the opportunity to enter your Pinterest link for all of your customers to see (and follow).
ACCEPT YOUR INVITE TO THE PIN PARTY!
Although Pinterest is not a social media platform in the traditional sense, there is a sense of community among its users. To grow your following, it is essential to follow others, and Pin from many (reliable, eye-catching) sources, to get your name out there, and have a comradery with other Pinners. Imagine if a brand selling something you liked, started Pinning your images? Wouldn’t you grow an even fonder fondness for them? Do the same for your potential customers and guess what’s going to happen! Comment on pins when you see something cute, try out the “tried” function. Use Pinterest HOW it was built to be used.
Many Etsy shop owners have developed tangible strategies to make Pinterest work for them. This sense of community is extended to sharing tips and tricks. Tailwind has a little ebook available for free download, with some of their biggest success stories in the Pinterest/Etsy world. It could be worth a browse. Speaking of Tailwind, it’s my preferred scheduler. I am not just saying this. Tailwind is an Approved Partner (so you know they are legit), they have a TON of great features for busy business owners (HELLO you can schedule out your content) AND this link gives you $15 towards your account. Win-win.
PATIENCE + CONSISTENCY = NAILED IT!
It takes some time to curate an account worth following, but when you work at it consistently and develop some solid Pinterest strategies and habits, you will find that Pinterest will become responsible for a significant amount of your site traffic (if not the vast majority). In fact, on my DIY and Home Decor blog (rowhousenest RIP), Pinterest drives 97% of my traffic. That’s a big carpool! Nice driving Pinterest. Honestly, I haven’t blogged in over 6 months and Pinterest takes care of me.
My point is, these ideas can take a while to implement, but the payoff is undeniable. As a Pinterest Influencer and Consultant, I have shown my clients over and over again, that a few simple, consistent steps pays off big-time, every time.
If you’re creative enough to develop an Etsy shop, it should be reflected in some creative marketing. Pinterest is just that. Armed with some tried and true Pinterest tips and tricks, combined with a little elbow grease, don’t be surprised if the next time we cross paths is when I follow your Pinterest boards! I hope that you begin using Pinterest to promote your Etsy shop and your sales go THROUGH the roof!