This post will provide some tips and guidelines for creating Pinterest graphics that not only look good but also drive traffic to your site!
I'll be going over:
- What Pinterest is and why you should create Pinterest graphics for your blog posts
- Some Pinterest graphic design and optimization guidelines
- Some social share tools to help you boost your traffic
- A step-by-step tutorial on how to easily create Pinterest graphics yourself, even if you're not a designer! And for free!
SOME BACKGROUND INFO
WHAT IS PINTEREST
Pinterest is a place to shop, curate, and discover new things around the web. You use it like a virtual "cork board" to organize and share ideas, products, and content you like through a process called "pinning." I like to think of it as a visual search engine, kind of like Google, but prettier. 🙂
WHAT IS A PIN
A Pin is visual bookmark that users can save and organize on different boards. Each Pin is clickable and links back to the site it came from, so you can learn more—like how to do it, or where to buy it.
By creating your own pinnable graphics, people are able to click through to your website or blog to learn more about your products or services, which could potentially lead to a direct purchase or a purchase through an affiliate link you might be promoting.
WHY YOU SHOULD CREATE PINS FOR YOUR BLOG POSTS
People simply like visuals. That said, content with relevant images get 94% more views over content that doesn't have many relevant images.
Articles with an image once every 75-100 words gets double the number of social shares over articles that have fewer images.
PINTEREST GRAPHIC GUIDELINES
1. CREATE VERTICAL IMAGES
- Vertical images stand out better in Pinterest's vertically-oriented feed where horizontally wide images tend to get lost
- Vertical images are more likely to be clicked on and re-pinned, which means more traffic to your site!
- Recommended image dimensions are 735 x 1102 pixels
- I personally use Adobe Illustrator to design my Pinterest graphics, but if you're not a designer per say, you could use Canva, PicMonkey or Adobe Spark
2. USE HIGH-QUALITY PHOTOS
- The images you use should be crisp and clear
- Here are some resources for FREE stock photos: Pexels, Pixabay, Unsplash, Gratisography.
3. USE TEXT ON YOUR IMAGES
- Add a catchy title or description to get people curious about it
- Don't write too much; try to be short and simple while leaving a little mystery so people want to click through to read your post
- Use the same fonts that you use in your branding
- Mix and match serif (curly) and sans-serif (straight) fonts to highlight the most important words
4. STICK WITH A SIMILAR THEME
- People prefer brands that have a consistent visual theme and seem well-organized
- When people see pins that look similar over and over again in their feed, they are going to start feeling curious and are therefore more likely to click on them
- Try to stick to the same colors you use in your branding
5. ADD A KEYWORD-RICH DESCRIPTION IN YOUR IMAGE'S ALT TAG
- Use relevant keywords within an ALT tag (also known as alternative text) to help improve your search engine optimization
- Describe the image or what the image is representing with enough information for people (or search engines) who can't see the images so they will be better able to understand what the image represents
- The description in your image's ALT tag will be automatically pulled into the description of your pin in Pinterest
SOCIAL SHARE BUTTONS
Social Share buttons are usually found floating on the left hand side of your screen or at the top and bottom of your post. They make it super easy for people to share your content and drive more traffic to your site, which should always be your goal!
HERE ARE SOME FREE SOCIAL SHARE PLUGINS I RECOMMEND:
SumoMe (Use either the "Share" or "Image Sharer" feature)
HOW TO EASILY CREATE A PINTEREST GRAPHIC
Below is a step-by-step tutorial to help you create your own Pinterest graphic using Canva, even if you're not a designer! It's easy and it's FREE!
1. SIGN UP FOR A FREE CANVA ACCOUNT
Click here to get started.
2. ONCE YOU'RE SIGNED UP, YOU'LL SEE THIS SECTION AT THE TOP
Click on + More...
3. CLICK ON THE PINTEREST GRAPHIC IMAGE
This will help you create a vertical image that is 735 x 1102 pixels.
4. YOU SHOULD NOW SEE A BLANK CANVAS THAT LOOKS LIKE THIS
Your design tools will be on the left and your canvas will be on the right.
5. FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH THE DESIGN TOOLS
You can choose one of your own images by clicking the Uploads tab or search for an image in the search field.
Or use one of the pre-made Canva layouts (scroll through the images under "Canva layouts").
If you want to be able to add your own customizations, click on the Elements tab. You can search for photos, or choose different grid styles, frames, shapes, lines, illustrations, icons and event charts! There are elements that can be purchased for a small fee, but many of the free versions will do you just fine!
Choose your font styles by clicking on the Text tab.
Choose a background pattern or color by clicking on the Background tab.
6. LET'S GET YOU SOME HANDS-ON TRAINING AND CREATE A PINTEREST GRAPHIC FOR THIS POST!
The title will be "How to Create Pinterest Graphics that Drive Traffic to Your Site."
Search for a photo in the search field. I'm gong to search for "traffic" because the post is all about driving traffic to my site.
Click on the photo of your choice from the free photos section in the Elements tab and it will instantly show up on your blank canvas.
To adjust the size of your image, click on one of the corners and pull it to the edge of the canvas. If you'd like to rotate the image, click on the circular arrow at the bottom. When you see purple both horizontal and vertical guide lines come up as you resize your image it means your image is centered.
Now let's add a transparent screen over the image. Start by clicking the Elements tab and then select Shapes. Let's choose the square shape.
Now let's change the color of the square. Click on the shape and then click on the color changer in the top left area of your canvas. I'm going to change the color to black.
To adjust the transparency, use the button on the upper right corner of your canvas and then slide the slider until you reach the desired transparency.
Let's make the square more of a rectangular shape. You can stretch the size by clicking on the little circles on the edges of the square. I'm going to leave a little room around the edge; make sure the edges are all equal in size so it looks cohesive. 🙂
Now let's add some text. Click on the Text tab on the left and then choose "Add heading." You should see an area pop up on your canvas where you can add your text.
Double click on the text area and type in "How to."
You can change the font by clicking on the font drop down and choosing one of your liking.
Let's move the font up to the top. Click on the font box until you see crossed arrows and move the text to the top. Remember to center it vertically by looking for the purple lines!
Once you're done with that, we'll add a subheading. Click in the text box and to change it to say "Create Pinterest Graphics".
Let's change the color of the subheading text. Highlight the text and then click on the color changer box at the top. To use a custom color that matches your branding, click on the "+" sign . I'm going to enter the color code "f6a1b7" in the field but you can use your own colors or choose another color by clicking anywhere in the color wheel.
Now let's change the size. Highlight your text and then click on the text size drop down at the top of your canvas. Choose a bigger size so that it fills a good portion of the graphic. Make sure it's centered!
Now let's change the font by highlighting the text and clicking on the text drop down. I'm choosing a font that matches my brand (which luckily they have!) You can also upload your own fonts by clicking the green button at the bottom.
Now let's add the final text at the bottom. Click on the Text tab on the left and then click "Add a little bit of body text."
Type in the phrase "That Drive Traffic to Your Site," then change the font to match your branding.
Now I'm going to upload my logo to put at the bottom of my pin so people on Pinterest know where it came from. Another option is to add another text area and then type in your website address such as www.whippeddream.com.
To upload your logo, click on the Uploads tab and then click "upload your own images."
Please note: The logo I'm using is a PNG file that has a transparent background, which allows it to look good as an overlay. If you need help creating a logo or an image that has a transparent background, feel free to contact me for a quote!
Move the logo to the bottom area of the Pinterest graphic.
Time to save your graphic! Click on the Download button in the top right and choose PNG as your file type. Then click the green Download button. This should save your graphic to your downloads folder on your computer.
Click on the graphic in your downloads folder. You should see some info underneath it showing the file name and dimensions.
Search engines, like Google, can't read images without text, so by providing detailed, informative filenames, your content is more likely to be found and promoted in search results, which means less time and effort you have to spend promoting it. 🙂
For example, how-to-create-pinterest-graphics.png is a lot more informative than IMG00017.png.
That said, make sure to rename your file name to match the title of your post.
See the image below as an example!
7. NOW IT'S TIME TO ADD YOUR NEW PINTEREST GRAPHIC TO YOUR BLOG POST
In your WordPress dashboard, click on the Media Library tab then click "Add New."
Upload or drop your file into the designated box.
In the Attachment Details, let's optimize the Title and ALT text (ALT tags) of your image.
The Title should give a quick description of what the image is (I usually just use the same description as the filename.)
Example: "How to Create Pinterest Graphics"
The ALT text should be some different, additional text that describes what the image is about and be limited to 10 words or less. This text does not have to be a sentence but more a descriptive, keyword-rich phrase.
Example: "Canva tutorial guide to create Pinterest graphics that drive traffic"
Once you've done that, open your blog post, click add media, select your image and click the insert into post button.
I recommend using the full size of the image so that it looks better when it's pinned on Pinterest.
Your image should look like this in your blog post:
Having these pinnable graphics make it super easy for others to share your content on Pinterest, providing you have a social share button on your site.
You can see my floating social share buttons to the left and a Pin it button that pops up over my images when you hover over them.
I would use your social share button to pin your Pinterest graphic to a board on your Pinterest account right after you publish it. Also, be sure to double check that it links back to your site!
See my Pinterest account as an example (notice how the first board is named "WhippedDream.com"? Do that for yours and pin all of your blog post content onto that board.)
ADDITIONAL CANVA INFO
Your layout will automatically save as a template for future use (you can find it by going to your Canva dashboard and click on the All of Your Designs tab).
You can also set up your brand area with your color palettes, fonts and logos so you have them ready for future use!
If you need some inspiration or ideas, check out Canva's pre-made Pinterest graphic templates.
NEED SOME EXTRA HELP FROM ME?
If you're looking for more tools and resources to help you grow your business or blog, check out my Biz + Blog Resources.
If you're looking to set up your own WordPress blog, check out my How to Create Your Own WordPress Blog post.
If you need professional design services like branding and website design, check out my Work with Me page!
WAS THIS POST HELPFUL?
Comment below with any further questions or things that I may have missed and I'll try to help!