Susannah is a Journalist and Blogger with a total social following of over 100,000 people & whose content receives over 15,000 visits/day.
UPDATE: This article was written nearly four years ago. Using this method, I've now received over 200,000 pins on Hubpages, and thousands more on my own sites. It takes some experimentation and practice, but this IS a tried and tested method for getting great traffic.
Pinterest is a very specific type of social media. And I've seen it double the traffic on some of my content. But it's important to make sure you use it correctly to get the most traffic back to your content as there are some big Pinterest copyright issues. Not to mention the fact that randomly pinning just any photo will mean that you only have a random chance of hitting the traffic jackpot - why do that when you can almost guarantee an increase in traffic with the right pictures?
Pinning to Pinterest is not about the number of pictures you pin - but about the number of repins you get from other users.
The following is a guide for using made for Pinterest (MFP) photos for the promotion of your online hubs, articles, blogs, and websites.
Made for Pinterest images WILL increase traffic if attached to an interesting article that is already getting traffic (get your current traffic to do the hard work for you!). I got over 1000 pins in the week after I added an MFP the first time. And only one of those pins was mine.
What Is Pinterest?
Pinterest is a place to bookmark photos but each photo links back to a website. For more information, you can read my basic explanation of Pinterest.
1. Choose a Free, Modifiable HD Image
There are plenty of free image sites on the internet, many of which allow you to modify the images and use them without attribution as you wish. Just make sure that you've read the fine print before grabbing any online image.
The image I've chosen on the right is taken from Pixabay.com. It's important that the image is of reasonably high quality as the full image will be displayed on Pinterest. If it looks pixelated or dodgy you'll reduce interest, views and repins.
It's also a good idea to choose an image that has a large area of the same colour (such as sky or a wall.)
Alternatively, you can use one of your own images, if it's based on something you've created (such as a craft project or recipe.)
2. Modify and Change It
You can use a simple free site like Picmonkey to change your image around, make it darker or lighter, add a border, soften it or anything else to make it more visually appealing.
There are plenty of other free image editing sites around as well as programs you can download such as GIMP.
The more appealing and professional it looks, the higher the chance people will notice it instead of skim over it.
3. Add Your Text
Add your title to the picture using an interesting font that matches the image and lets people know what your article is about.
The best text is simple and to the point—generally, a well-keyworded title of five to ten words is enough to grab interest.
Don't make the text too small or complicated - you only have a few seconds to grab the viewer's attention before they go on to look at other images.
Don't use a caption, use a promise or a teaser.
Example of a caption: This is a beautiful purple flower.
Example of a promise: Click here to find out how to grow a purple flower.
Example of a teaser: Learn 10 ways to grow purple flowers without water.
4. Add it To a Prominent Place In Your Article
With more and more people regularly pinning photos from all over the internet, it's important to place your newly created image somewhere that visitors will see it. Close to the top of the page, generally in a right aligned position, so that it's seen as one of the first images on the page.
You can also place another full-size version at the bottom of the page if it fits the flow of the article.
Quick Tips to Make a Great MFP Image
- Create a 'teaser' title so that people want to click the photo to find out more.
- Don't use boring serif fonts that look too clunky and homemade (such as Times New Roman).
- Put everything you want to say in the image. When people repin your image they'll often change any text you've added when you pinned it, so make sure the image will convey the full message.
- Another idea is to use a quote from your article. However, this method can lead to lower views unless you add an appropriate teaser or use a quote that can easily be understood to be part of a larger piece of content.
Why It Works
1. No matter how many followers you have, everyone on Pinterest can see your pins. So if you pin an image, you can get hundreds of repins if it gets enough interest, even if you have no followers at all.
2. Anyone who visits your page can simply and easily share the title of the article on Pinterest, instead of just randomly pin an image that doesn't appear related when not in the context of your article. You can also pin the image yourself.
3. People are curious. Give them a teaser image and they'll want to click and read more.
Examples of MFP Images
Other Pinterest Tips
- Edit your pinboards so each one is in the most relevant category to increase the chance that your pins will be viewed by the most interested people. For instance, a pinned article photo about dogs will do far better in the pet section than the sports section.
- Have you written interesting articles on saturated topics? Getting no views on them? Try pinning them... since you're bypassing Google you might be surprised how much Pinterest traffic you get!
Does This Break the HubPages Rule on Watermarked Images?
Several people have questioned whether adding text to an image would break the HubPages rule that forbids watermarking an image.
I have been in contact with the team via email, and although they have not given a definite yes, they have indicated that creating a "made for Pinterest" image should generally be acceptable as long as the image meets the following criteria:
- High-quality image (not pixelated or low quality).
- The text complements the picture and is added tastefully.
- The text does not obscure important parts of the image or detract from the image.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Farrah Young from Lagos, Nigeria on November 05, 2019:
I just started using MFP to get traffic to my website and I have seen an increase in my traffic by over 200% , so this post is definitely one to be bookmarked!
Melody Collins from United States on September 19, 2018:
NT, I thought so too at first. However, after reading this advice years ago I started to see that Pinterest is less of a social media site and more of a search engine for users. When your targeted traffic searches a term, they are interested in the pins. If you make yours stand out with made for Pinterest images then its is more likely they will click through. Since I started seeing it this way I get regular daily Pinterest traffic.
Nt on September 11, 2018:
I don't understand the type of people that click through and repin these sorts of images? To me, they just look like visual spam and aren't interesting at all.
Kimberly Lake from California on September 02, 2018:
Thank ypu. Great article with good information. I will try it out.
Gayane Virabyan from Yerevan on March 26, 2018:
Thanks for the great tips. I agree that made-for-pinterest pins are great for driving traffic if that is your goal. However if you are aiming to grow your followers, it is best to invest in some good quality photography and post original images with keyword optimized captions.
Thank again for the article.
K S Lane from Melbourne, Australia on January 06, 2018:
I had no idea that Pinterest could help drive up traffic so effectively. Thanks for the tip!
Melody Collins from United States on October 07, 2017:
I took this advice the day I read it. Now I get regular Pinterest traffic. This is a must read! Some of the same techniques work with other sites and services, too. It is wonderful to get Google traffic, but it is nice to have other steady flows of traffic for when Google goes on a roller coaster.
Gina Valley from Arizona on October 05, 2017:
Thank you so much for the tips! Do you recommend a certain size for pictures that will work best on Pinterest? Thanks!
Ellen Gregory from Connecticut, USA on February 09, 2017:
So very informative. Up until now, I get very little traffic from my pins. I am going to try your method. What I don't understand is " Close to the top of the page, generally in a right aligned position, so that it's seen as one of the first images on the page." Are you talking about in the Hub or in Pinterest? I don't see any option in either to control placement of a photo.
Nadine May from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa on September 18, 2016:
Many thanks for that information,especially the images!
Sukhdev Shukla from Dehra Dun, India on September 15, 2016:
Congratulations, WryLilt, on your getting the Hubbie award for the best all round hub. It is always pleasure to go through such Hubs to recapitulate and update on issues like Pinterest.
Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on September 15, 2016:
Congratulations for the Hubbie award for the best all round hub! This is definitely very helpful, evergreen and informative hub.
I appreciated it earlier and appreciate it again!
Thanks and enjoy your well deserved win!
Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on September 13, 2016:
Excellent article and congratulations on winning the 2016 Hubbie Award for Best All-Around Hub!
Anna Marie Bowman from Florida on March 08, 2016:
Awesome advice!!! I now want to go back and edit all of my Pinterest worthy hubs! This could take a while...
FootballNut on January 03, 2016:
Glad this worked for you. The overall statistic I would be interested in though is did curating content and getting re-pins on your content bring your web pages many product sales in the end?
Karine Gordineer from Upstate New York on August 18, 2015:
Interesting and informative - thanks for sharing!
Carole from Papua New Guinea on August 04, 2015:
Thanks for the Pinterest and MFP tips - it is very useful.
Robert Morgan from Hutchinson Island, FL - Myrtle Beach, SC - Gilbert AZ on July 22, 2015:
Thanks for this info. I have not really thought about the economic aspects of HubPages, but I do want to get more readership. I will implement some of your suggestions. Blessings
poetryman6969 on July 21, 2015:
Very interesting information. Voted up.
Andrew from Rep Boston MA on July 06, 2015:
After seeing a rise in traffic from Pinterest I went looking on how to expand my view-ability there and found your hub. Thanks for the in-depth look a how to get a hub ready for Pinterest.
Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on May 08, 2015:
This is a fantastic hub, WryLit. I'm new to Pinterest and also to sharing them here on HP this month. I would give Pixabay's website a look, since I've been using other free image websites for my hubs. I would keep your tips in mind to increase traffic. Voted up for useful!
Raffy from United Kingdom on April 16, 2015:
You give me an idea how to do it good.
tiffanyrose2015 on April 15, 2015:
Very cool, thanks for the information! :-)
HennieN from South Africa on April 06, 2015:
Very interesting article. The caption in any image provides great back links for Google as well.
Greensleeves Hubs from Essex, UK on December 24, 2014:
Interesting. I use Pinterest, but I've always used it in a very casual, unstructured way. I just pin links to my hubpages and selected photos with links to the hubs they are taken from, but not MFPs with 'teasers'. (I'd never even heard of MFPs before). Sometimes the photos take off and are repinned many times but without any noticeable increase as yet to any of my hub views. I will have to spend more time I think on trying to ensure maximum repins and clicks in future.
monia ben saad from In my Dream on December 01, 2014:
great huand elpful tips and there was many people use pinterest to make money from adsense
viryabo2 on November 23, 2014:
I read this article about nine months ago, but it was way over my head then, however I joined Pinterest but didn't do much.
Today i came back to re-read and digest it further, and i am now beginning to implement your tips.
Tara Woodruff from USA on October 13, 2014:
This Hub has the value to stand the test of time! Great tips on how to leverage Pinterest! Thank you.
Dorian Bodnariuc from Ottawa, Ontario Canada on September 15, 2014:
Great ideas Susannah, I have too much on my plate now, with the migration from Squidoo, but once I 'm done with that, I'll start using your tutorial.
mumsgather on September 06, 2014:
Very helpful. I create a lot of my own graphics for my online writing but this idea is new to me. I will think of making it pinterest friendly from now on. Thanks.
John Hansen from Queensland Australia on September 01, 2014:
Very helpful hub WryLilt. I enjoy using Pinterest but this could add another dimension.
Chocolatealchemy from London, United Kingdom on September 01, 2014:
Great article - thanks for a brilliant tip! I am a bit of a pinaholic; but I think it's time I created my own pins too.
Barbara Tremblay Cipak from Toronto, Canada on August 24, 2014:
thanks, excellent tips here
BarbaraCasey on August 20, 2014:
As a new Hubber from Squidoo, I'm tickled to come across great articles like this as I explore our new home. Enjoyed your teaser hub, too.
Margaret Schindel from Massachusetts on August 20, 2014:
Just read this terrific article after it was recommended on a forum. So glad I did!
Camille Harris from SF Bay Area on July 05, 2014:
Using this Hub and sprucing up some of my images as we speak! (I LOVE Picmonkey!) Glad you're seeing success on HubPages. Keep writing :)
Nell Rose from England on June 17, 2014:
Definitely going to try this with the photos in future, thanks so much for the awesome advice, nell
Jacqui from New Zealand on June 16, 2014:
Awesome, I am going to give this a go when my daughter is asleep! I wish there was a way to favourite hubs on this site....oh well, I'll add this to my bookmarks!
george gorden from Walnut, CA on April 25, 2014:
Posting in pinterest was challenging for a business promotion executive because your pin reach million of peoples they are watching for new technology's .your pin must drive traffic for your business development.
Frank Jackson from CA on April 21, 2014:
Interesting Blog...detailed explanation on pinterest as an entrepreneur its really helpful develop an business as well generate traffic for our boards. moreover it will get good revenue for organization. Once again thanks for your blog ..
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on February 26, 2014:
Jesper Seest, thanks, link updated!
Jesper Seest from Espergærde, Frederiksborg, Denmark on January 29, 2014:
Great article Wrylit :), really got me think about how to change, how I work with Pinterest. Btw. your Facebook link does not work
Nadine May from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa on December 19, 2013:
Thank you. I'm so glad to have come across your hub on Pinterest. I'm an active member on Pinterest myself and create most of the images for my articles, so yes some I have published on Pinterest. What is so great in your hub is the information on how to create your own images. I'm going to share your article on our Kima Global authors group page on Facebook. I've been trying to get our authors onto hub pages, but its often the image that stopped them. I love creating images for my articles, but I do not have the time to help them with images.
Kelly Ann Christensen from Overland Park, Johnson County, Kansas on December 10, 2013:
Thanks for this fun and informative hub full of great ideas. I also appreciate the photo editing page. Voted up!
Ken Kline from USA on December 08, 2013:
I admit I have listened but never followed your advise. Then I took a look at my earnings and you are so right. I promise in the future to follow your every word. I was always a fan- now I am a dedicated fan.Thank you so much for the practical information that we need. Keep hubbing!
Stacie L on November 13, 2013:
I have read this Hub a number of times and finally tried your suggestions...and guess what?
It worked!Thanks! :-)
svenster on November 10, 2013:
Great hub introducing pinterest as a means to improve your hub and increase traffic by sidestepping the all powerful google! Thanks! I'm gonna have to try this.
Pamela Dapples from Arizona now on November 05, 2013:
I read this hub with relish. Then I discovered Dorsi's hub and her accolades of your hub and your knowledge. Both of you are much appreciated. I will next try to learn a bit at the site you mentioned: PicMonkey. Thanks, Wrylilt.
passionate77 on November 02, 2013:
excellent hub, great information you shared wrylilt dear. really so helpful and i just bookmarked it for further reference as well as i don't know much about pinterest and need to learn a lot yet, anyway thanks for such a wonderful post, million blessings ahead dear!
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on October 31, 2013:
As linked in the hub, Picmonkey is a good option.
The Examiner-1 on October 31, 2013:
Do you have a Hub which explains how to add text to a photo? Is it done in HP or Pinterest?
Samita Sharma from Chandigarh on October 12, 2013:
This is very useful hub.. I am really looking for this information
Thanks dear for sharing it...
cheeluarv from INDIA on October 10, 2013:
You have won "Two Awards" Congrats :):)
TurtleDog on October 09, 2013:
Excellent post and congratulations on the award!
moonlake from America on October 09, 2013:
Congratulations on your Hubbie win on this hub.
Dennis AuBuchon from Ohio on September 06, 2013:
I have been wanting a list of free photo sites. The information will benefit me in a big way with the articles I write. I voted up, useful, awesome and interesting along with pinning, and tweeting.
Goodpal on August 07, 2013:
On the photo related IQ I must have the least developed brain, but after reading this really cute way of article promotion I am reorganizing my grey matter to try editing some photos and make them what you guys call MFP.
Thanks Wry for writing such a wonderful hub.
Howard Allen on August 05, 2013:
WryLilt, I've been reading your stuff for a few months now and it's really great. I'm experimenting with some MFP images but I haven't mastered them yet. Your advice has given me hope that i'll be able to get decent traffic at some point. Thank you.
(Sorry if you've seen a comment like this from me already: I posted one a few days ago but it didn't show up in "My Activity" so I don't know if it worked.)
C E Clark from North Texas on July 28, 2013:
I first read this article quite some time ago and yes, I do have some MFPs on some of my newer hubs. This is an excellent source for anyone who wants to better understand Pinterest and how to get the most benefit from it.
Jennifer Suchey on July 26, 2013:
Excellent hub. Thanks for all the info. I saw a forum thread you mentioned this in a while back, but didn't have time to invest in reading and understanding what a made for pinterest image was and how to make one. I was thinking about the best way to promote hubs on pinterest and remembered you had written a hub on that very thing. So . . . here I am and I'm glad to have this new found knowledge. Thanks so much!
Kas from Bartlett, Tennessee on July 24, 2013:
Wow Wrylilt. I'm impressed. I'm definitely bookmarking this article as I need info like this that I can use. I'm always on the lookout for interesting ways to increase traffic. Thanks! Voting up and sharing!
Ericajean on July 20, 2013:
I need this article, because I enjoy using Pinterest to display my favorite articles and books. Thanks!
Mary Craig from New York on July 18, 2013:
Great tips. I love how you write so clearly and make your point so well. We can all surely benefit from your advice.
Voted up, useful, and interesting.
Thelma Alberts from Germany on July 16, 2013:
Thank you for this clear and understandable information. I will try it. Thanks for sharing. Voted up and useful.
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on July 15, 2013:
RMCreech, the number is displayed in the right hand sidebar, below the number of times tweeted and liked.
RMCreech on July 15, 2013:
Sorry if this is a dumb question, but how do you know how many times your images have been pinned? Is this stat displayed somewhere?
Rain San Martin from Fort Wayne on July 09, 2013:
I'll have to go back and do this on my Hubs (just starting out). Thankfully I have Photoshop experience and create my own photo's which makes the process more simple.
Helen Lush from Cardiff, Wales, UK on July 08, 2013:
Very interesting and useful stuff - thank you Wrylilt. I use my own images in my hubs and will try making some of them Pinterest-friendly very soon.
twentyfive on July 07, 2013:
Wow, thank you for sharing this tip Wrylit. Definitely gonna do this now :)
Justin Choo from Malaysia on July 07, 2013:
I didn't know I need to have MFP photos. Does this simply mean to put up a high quality picture plus caption?
Darrin Perez from Puerto Rico on July 07, 2013:
Most interesting. I'm terrible with picture editing though. :/
Still, I might try it out one of these days. :o
Gina145 from South Africa on June 24, 2013:
Thanks. I'll definitely be trying this out.
Serenity Queen from Rochester, NY on June 11, 2013:
Thanks! This will be really helpful.
Toy Tasting from Mumbai on June 11, 2013:
Wrylit, thank you for this useful hub. I feel this is a great way to build up views as the web is redesigning in a visual way.
Lena M. Christine from Winchester, KY on June 10, 2013:
I'll try that out today and see how well I can do with it. Thanks for the suggestion!
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on June 09, 2013:
@lenamaewrites, I highly recommend Picmonkey
Lena M. Christine from Winchester, KY on June 09, 2013:
I downloaded the GIMP 2 program to try my hand at "made for Pinterest" images. I failed miserably. Maybe I'll try an editing site that is a little more basic.
Lynsey Hart from Lanarkshire on June 09, 2013:
Great hub. I use pinterest as a tool to get traffic regularly, and I definitely think it is best to use a totally unique image to ensure that all repins direct back to your source, rather than someone else's. Voted up and useful!
Sukhdev Shukla from Dehra Dun, India on June 08, 2013:
wrylilt, something new for me. Great tips and I am surely going to try. Thanks for sharing.
Fotinoula Gypsyy from NYC BABY on June 08, 2013:
Thanks for sharing! I love Pinterest !
Shrikrishna Potdar from Bangalore on June 07, 2013:
Thanks WryLit, This sounds interesting & useful. I am going to try this today. I get few likes on pins but expecting more with this..
healthmom on June 07, 2013:
Thanks for all this great information! I love pinterest myself, it's addicting and actually helpful to me for organizing projects and recipes. I was just wondering how I could add text to my pics yesterday and found your post this morning! I was following your advice for new hubber forum and learned a lot! Have a great day,
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on June 04, 2013:
@Bedbugsabscond - I never say you HAVE to interact on Pinterest. If you use MFPs you don't even need an account. But you can interact by liking, commenting, repinning and following other people.
Dorsi Diaz from The San Francisco Bay Area on June 04, 2013:
Thanks Wry for the great hub with the Pinterest tips. I just tried what you said with one of my images from an art lesson on drawing a 3D Hand Print. This makes a lot of sense to add a teaser and that text will stay with the photo. Brilliant. Since I take a lot of my own photos I am going to go back into a lot of my hubs and add text and then pin them. I've also re-pinned this hub onto my board for writers tips. Great advice and thanks again!
Melody Collins from United States on June 04, 2013:
Hi. I am back with more questions. People are starting to repin my MFP images. Yay! Now to the question part. I know you recommend interacting on Pinterest. I am a newb, and I don't understand how one would socially interact there the way we would on other social sites. Do you have a website or hub about this?
twig22bend on June 04, 2013:
Thank you for making a complicated, issue quite understandable.
Robert Thomas from California on June 03, 2013:
Thanks for the advice
I'm going to try it.
Raymond from Cincinnati, Ohio on June 03, 2013:
Thanks for the information I will use this..
Seet from California on May 29, 2013:
Hey WryLit, I am going to use your suggestions in my next June 2013 hub challenge. I will need some feedback. Thanks!
Lizolivia from Central USA on May 26, 2013:
Great description on using Pinterest that's easy to understand! Useful, thanks.
Kenneth C Agudo from Tiwi, Philippines on May 26, 2013:
awesome very helpful ;-)
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on May 23, 2013:
Timetraveller, I've noticed a lot of your pins don't tease me. They make a statement, they don't pose a question that makes me want to click for answers or more info.
Also, you're using a lot of big blocks of background colour. I'd avoid this if possible and either use transparent borders or the fade option, so you don't overpower the original image.
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on May 23, 2013:
You can have any image pointing to any link. You can even upload an image straight to Pinterest then add a link to someone else's website or hub! So it's really up to you - if they're decent quality and have repins, I'd say just leave them.
Melody Collins from United States on May 23, 2013:
You are right thanks. Not to keep "bugging" you... don't worry I don't bite! I have another question. I just went through another hub. I changed all of the pictures. Now they have borders and are a bit higher quality. They were the same pictures, just tweaked to look nicer. I had the old ones pinned. Do I need to repin the new ones? What about the old pins?
Sondra Rochelle from USA on May 23, 2013:
Wry Lit: I just finished putting MFP photos in prime space for every one of my 113 hubs. I also removed many that I posted on Pinterest. I love the way the hubs look, but simply am not getting any traffic whatsoever from the MFPs. I can only hope others who read my hubs will pin them. I cannot figure out how you are so successful with this technique when I can't get anything out of it...but I am trying because I can use extra views. Maybe in time this will work out. How long did it take you to get your pins up and running and how long did it take to get views from Pinterest? Thanks for your help, I just love PicMonkey!
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on May 23, 2013:
No, the beauty of Pinterest is that it's an image bookmarking service. Every photo you pin from the internet automatically links back to the place it was pinned from. Try clicking a few images on Pinterest to see what I mean.
Melody Collins from United States on May 23, 2013:
Hi WryLit. I made my first made for Pinterest image, and it has spurred a sort of excitement in me. I wanted to thank you and ask a question. When I pin the photo do I need to put the link in to the comment box given when you pin a picture or does it automatically link back?
Ingenira on May 15, 2013:
Crystal clear instruction. Thank you!
GAGANPREET SINGH BHATIA from Kanpur, India on May 15, 2013:
Excellent hub. Really useful.
Susannah Birch (author) from Toowoomba, Australia on May 15, 2013:
TIMETRAVELER2, I recommend using an MFP in your "prime ad space" if you think it will get lots of pins - however it depends on the hub for using other images. Most of my hubs I start with an MFP at the top right then have another 2-4 images throughout the hub. I also use videos, polls and blue/grey right aligned text capsules to break up text flow as well.