Back to Basics (Part I): The Step By Step Guide to Setting up your Pinterest Business Account
Are you just getting started with Pinterest for business? You've heard great things about Pinterest and you're ready to hop onto the Pinwheel. You want to make sure you are setting off the right path with Pinterest marketing for your business.
In this first part of my Back to Basics Pins series, I'm stripping down to the basics of Pinterest for business so you can start your Pinterest journey with a fully optimized Pinterest account.
Here's the step by step guide to setting up your Pinterest business account for success.
Step 1: Create a business account
There are two ways to set up a Pinterest business account. You can convert an existing personal account to a business account, or create a new business account.
Converting a Personal Account to a Business Account
If you already have a personal account that you want to convert to a business account, you can do so by clicking the 3 dots on the top right corner of your page, and select "Upgrade to a business account". You will be led to a step-by-step set up section where you can enter your Pinterest business account details, such as your business type, your website, username etc.
Tip: Does your personal account have boards unrelated to the topics that your business audience is interested in? If so, you will want to make those boards "secret" so your account will not be cluttered with unrelated boards. By making boards secret, only you will be able to see those boards.
Create a new Pinterest Business Account
To create a new Pinterest business account, you can sign up here. The process is similar to converting a personal account. This is a more clean cut approach if your existing personal account is totally unrelated to your business.
Step 3: Add a profile photo
Use the same profile photo you're using for other social media accounts so that your fans recognize you at a glance. Unless your business is a brand with a recognized logo, it is recommended to use a headshot of you for your profile photo.
Making your photo fit nicely into the Pinterest profile photo format can be a little tricky, especially if you have a rectangular shaped photo. You'll need to crop it proper in order for your photo to fit nicely in the center of the frame.
To save you time, I created a Canva template for Pinterest profile photos. Download it FREE below.
Step 4: Fill up your Business Name
Now, the business name is one of the places you want to optimize with the right keywords. If your business is a big brand name like Target, you can easily get away by just using your brand name. For most of us small businesses, it helps to add a brief description of your business of what you offer. When people search for for things you offer, you'll show up in the search.
Tip: Note that there's a 30 character limit when you set up your Business name on your desktop. You can by-pass this by using the Pinterest app on your phone to create your business name. You'll get up to 65 characters. You're welcome!
Step 5: Fill up your About section
This is the space where you can further optimize your account with keywords your target audience is searching for. State what you offer and who you serve. Be sure to include a call to action at the end (e.g. a freebie), because ultimately, we want your Pinterest profile to lead the audience to your website.
Here’s an example from Kayla of Ivory Mix.
It could be as simple as pointing people to your Pinterest board with your blog content like what Kristie Hill has done here:
Step 6: Claim your website
Claiming your website simply means linking your Pinterest account to your website. It tells Pinterest that you are the original owner of any pins that come from your website url.
After you have claimed your website, here's what you'll see in your Pinterest account:
your profile picture will appear next to any Pins that come from your website.
your website url will show up on your profile.
you'll get access to website analytics to get insight into which pins are most popular, which pins people are saving most, which pins are bringing traffic to your website, and more.
How to claim your website
Go to "Settings".
Scroll down to the claim website section, enter your website url, and click "Claim".
From the two claim options that appear, select "Add HTML tag". (I chose this as this is the easier option)
Copy the code and click "Next".
Now, this is the more technical part but it's pretty straightforward. You'll need to insert this code into a certain page in your website. Go to this page from Pinterest and look for your website host for the step-by-step instructions on how to add this code to your website.
Once Step 5 is done, go back to Pinterest and click "Submit".
And you're set!
Tip: Do you have an Instagram account, a Youtube account or an Etsy account? If you intend to pin any content from these sources to Pinterest, you should also claim these accounts so that Pinterest can recognize you as the owner of the content from these sources. But no worries, you can come back to this later.
Step 7: Enable Rich Pins
Rich pins, as the name implies, help make your pins richer with additional information! There are four types of rich pins as at the time of writing of this article:
Article pins (Shows the title, description, and author of the article - most relevant for bloggers)
Recipe pins (Shows Ingredients, prep time etc.)
Product pins (Shows price, availability and product information)
App pins (Shows an install button so people can install your app right from Pinterest)
How to validate Rich Pins
Validating rich pins is a quick and easy 3-step process. You only need to do this once.
1. Add metadata to your site
If you're using Wordpress, the easiest way to do this is to use the Yoast SEO plugin. Melyssa Griffin has written a quick and simple guide on this. Read her post here. If you're on Squarespace, good news! You can move straight to Step 2 as Squarespace sites are already setup with metadata for rich pins.
2. Validate your pins
Copy a url of one of your blog posts (This applies to article pins.) and paste it into Pinterest's rich pin validator and click "Validate". Once you see the "Your pins have been validated" message, you can click "Apply".
3. Wait for approval
Now wait for Pinterest to approve your rich pins. Once approved, a message will appear on that same page. It can take from a few minutes to a few days for your rich pins to get validated.
If you get stuck along the way, or if due to any changes the above steps no longer work as of the time of this post, I highly recommend you read these instructions from Pinterest as it is the best source for the latest updates.
Congratulations! Your profile is now ready to be beautified with boards.
Creating boards is the fun part! I covered this in depth in Part II of the Back to Basics Pins series. And remember to download the Pinterest profile photo Canva template to save time perfecting that profile photo.