“Makeover blog” has been on my to-do list for quite a while. In fact, it’s always on that list. You see, the downside to being able to install WordPress, design and edit themes, write, produce and market your own blog (that is, “doing it all”) is that because you can change it without the help of others you always are!
Normally giving my blog a makeover is based around finding a cool new font or discovering a WordPress plugin with to-die-for functionality. The kind Rachel Zoe might call “bananas”. But not this time…
1. Pinterest is like an online vision board, full of images you like that you’ve discovered around the web
2. Images (usually) link back to the website on which they were found
3. Pinterest users can sometimes click on the image to discover more about it (for example, if it was a picture of a hairstyle, they could click through to get the how-to directions)
4. This in turn drives traffic to the website or blog on which it appeared
Sounds pretty simple, right? Yep, it is. But it’s actually had me awake at 3am, staring at the ceiling. Let me explain…
It’s because of point 4: Pinterest is turning into a huge traffic-driver. H-U-G-E. It’s got the internet buzzing and I’m seeing posts on it pop up almost daily. Mashable reported late last year that it was expected to compete with the top 10 social networking sites, and they also reported on a study just a couple of weeks ago that claimed it drives more traffic than Google+, YouTube and LinkedIn combined.
But how much traffic are we talking about? From a single visitor to tens of thousands of visitors overnight. The Nester claimed the site sent her over 100,000 “hits” during September 2011, while a blogger from Savvy Blogging saw Pinterest help generate 43,000 page views in a single day. And I know from my own experience that a simple image of mine that I added to Pinterest sends me up to 100 extra visitors a day. (Not the five- or six-figure results the other bloggers have experienced, but am I going to scoff at potentially finding 3,000 new visitors from a single picture? Nu-uh!)
So what if you want to experience these king of Pinterest-driving traffic numbers yourself? Here’s what you need to know:
- Make sure you have a Pinterest button on your blog (Blogger instructions here, WordPress plugins here). iFabbo is using the Pinterest “Pin It” Button plugin, styled with a little CSS (the plugin developer provides examples of this you can play with if CSS isn’t really your cup of tea). This plugin is used in conjuction with the Digg Digg plugin.
- Make sure there is a HOT image associated with your post. The kind that’s so good, it makes you want to lick the screen*
- Make sure the image looks good when resized to around 190 pixels wide. That’s the width Pinterest users will first see it when browsing the site on their laptop
- Join a couple of images together. Again, using a hairstyle as an example, it’s clearer to Pinterest users there will be how-to instructions if the single image shows the before and after, rather than just showing the “after”. Check out Lauren Conrad et als’ The Beauty Department for great examples
If your blog posts are text-heavy, it’s time to get creative! I’ve seen some bloggers create Pinterest-specific images to sit within their posts so there is something worth pinning, and I’ve seen other bloggers create images that are essentially post headings in picture format (like on this post). I’m taking it one step further and will be redesigning my blog to suit posts created purely with Pinterest in mind.
Pinterest is growing fast. It went from 1.2 million visitors in August 2011 to 4 million by the end of 2011. Its core audience are females aged 25-44 (and if you’re reading this, that’s likely your blog’s target audience too!). If you’re not on Pinterest, you need to join – pronto!
How has Pinterest helped your blog traffic? Have you noticed any pageview spikes or new readers as a result?
Need a Pinterest invite? Simply let us know in the comments below, using the e-mail address you’d like us to send the invite to! Find iFabbo on Pinterest here.
*This is how some magazine editors determine which cover option they think is going to sell best when it’s sitting on the newsstands. Really!