How to Use Pinterest Hashtags

How to Use Pinterest Hashtags

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Have you heard the news? We can use hashtags on Pinterest now!

Everything You Need to Know About Pinterest Hashtags is not just going to teach you why hashtags are brilliant and how they work on Pinterest, but also exactly how you should be using them — sliding them in right alongside your existing keyword strategy — to get more monthly unique viewers, followers, and click-throughs to your blog.

Just a couple of years ago, marketers everywhere were telling you to avoid using Pinterest hashtags like the plague.

The social platform hadn’t yet utilized the feature, and some people saw them as spammy and/or unnecessary.

In September 2017, however, everything changed. Pinterest announced that they weren’t just allowing the use of hashtags  (finally …), but also actively encouraging them as a new way of categorizing and promoting content.

How do Pinterest hashtags work?

In the same way that hashtags work on Instagram, Twitter, etc., hashtags on Pinterest work to help categorize the content.

A Pinterest user is able to search for #chickenrecipes and see all chicken-related Pins, with that hashtag in the description, making it easier for someone to find everything they’re looking for.

Hashtags can be used by a Pinterest user in one of two ways. Firstly, the hashtag can be typed into the search bar, much in the same way as any other search term — just with a # in the front and no spaces between the words.

#nospaces

The search results will be Pins that have that particular hashtag in the description.

Secondly, a user can click on a hashtag in a Pin’s description to open up all of the other Pins that contain it.

Pinterest hashtags offer a secondary, additional form of searching for Pinterest users, alongside regular ‘keyword’ search terms.

In turn, they offer marketers and bloggers a secondary, additional form of Pinterest promotion.

Aren’t they just like keywords, though?

A little bit, yes, but not quite.

It’s no big secret that keywords are a hugely important feature on Pinterest for growth, and that’s why you shouldn’t forget about them when you start implementing hashtags in your marketing strategy.

It’s no big secret that keywords are a hugely important feature on Pinterest for growth, and that’s why you shouldn’t forget about them when you start implementing hashtags in your marketing strategy.

Hashtags offer marketers and bloggers another form of promotion and categorization, and that’s why you should use them in addition to keywords in the description of a Pin — like the sprinkles and ice cream.

Why should you use hashtags on Pinterest?

Because hashtags are a way of life!

#joking

#notreallythough

Hashtags can actually work REALLY well on Pinterest, offering a range of benefits:

1. They can help to increase awareness of your brand.

Using a branded hashtag in all of your posts means that someone will be able to find all of your content simply by clicking on the tag.

The Pin for this post would be shared with the hashtag #PinterestEverything in the description. What would yours be?

2. Pinterest hashtags can help you to get really specific when organizing your Pins, which in turn helps people to find EXACTLY what they’re looking for.

With so many people jumping on the keyword marketing bandwagon, certain search terms on Pinterest can generate vague results, oftentimes with Pins that have little or no relevance to what was actually searched for. Being relatively new, hashtags have fewer spammy/hashtag-stuffed/keyword-stuffed/vague Pins attached to them … for now.

3. Hashtags bring consumers or readers together with content creators.

People who love #veganrecipes may search for exactly that, or click on the blue link and expand; and if your Pin descriptions contain that hashtag, yours could be one of the Pins they see and click on. Following on from that, because you offered them exactly what they were looking for, they’re going to be more likely to follow you.

4. All of these benefits come together to bring you a brand new avenue of growth for your blog.

On top of using keywords, brightly-colored Pins, great descriptions, and the rest.

5 . The idea of using hashtags on Pinterest is still pretty new.

So you’ll look totally cutting edge with your sparkly new marketing strategy!

How to use Pinterest hashtags the right way

How to Use Pinterest Hashtags

As with most things in marketing, hashtags and other tools will work for Pinterest growth provided you use them correctly.

They’re still a new tool for Pinterest and people are still learning how to best use them, but there are a few do’s and do not’s that can make your journey a lot easier.

Where should you use hashtags on Pinterest?

Hashtags should always be used in a Pin’s description. There’s space for 500 characters in which you’ll need to fit an actual description – what the blog post behind the Pin discusses, a call-to-action, keywords, and hashtags.

It is recommended that you add hashtags to the end of the description text. If you add them to the beginning, the text will be difficult to read. The user will also need to work their way through a potentially spammy-looking list of hashtags before learning what the blog post behind the link is actually about.

On a mobile device, the full description is shown, but the desktop site can sometimes cut text. Only the first 50-or-so characters are shown. If your hashtags were at the front, that’s all people would see.

It is also #important to think about how #readable your Pin’s description will be with #hashtags. I don’t personally recommend including them #randomly in the middle of #sentences because it makes the #Pinterestdescription really #difficulttoread. You just can’t get away with that kind of thing on #Pinterest like you can on #Twitter and other #socialmedia platforms.

(I was just as annoyed writing that as you were reading it!)

The hashtag location doesn’t have any bearing on how successful the Pin will be, but adding them to the end makes the user experience a more pleasant one.

Can you add hashtags to Pinterest comments?

Yes, you can — and they ARE clickable hashtags. Adding a hashtag to the comment of an old Pin won’t make it appear any higher in search results, though. Pins appear in results chronologically from the date they were first shared.

Should you add hashtags to old Pinterest Pin descriptions or comments?

Because Pins are displayed in hashtag search results in share-date chronological order, it is probably not going to be a great use of your time to go back and add hashtags to old descriptions … unless there aren’t many Pins with that hashtag attached and you feel like it is gaining in popularity.

Instead of adding hashtags to old Pinterest pins, focus on creating more, fresh content, including new Pins for old blog posts.

Where should you NOT use hashtags?

There is very little point in using hashtags in your Pinterest bio, board descriptions, board names, or profile name.

They aren’t clickable hashtags, don’t offer value, and just use up space. Focus your attention on adding them to the Pin’s description, and also work on incorporating keywords naturally into the spaces that hashtags don’t fit — your bio, board descriptions, etc.

How to use Pinterest hashtags

How many hashtags should you use?

You can add up to 20 hashtags to your Pin’s description, but that doesn’t mean you should use that many. In fact, using a lot of hashtags can make your Pin look spammy, as can inserting lots of keywords one after the other.

From personal experimentation, I can recommend using between 2 and 5 hashtags, but you should most definitely do your own tests.

If you use too few hashtags, your exposure will be minimal and you won’t note any positive changes. Use too many, though, and you may find that people disregard your Pins completely.

NO ONE LIKES SPAM.

Remembering that you only have 500 characters to play with, using more hashtags (especially at the beginning) takes up space that could be better used with well-researched keywords or more information.

Remember, folks — hashtags are still new and not everyone is using them yet.

Don’t forget to switch your hashtags up!

It is NOT recommended that you use the same hashtags and keywords over and over again in your Pinterest marketing strategy. There’s very little point to that — you’re going to be hitting the same audiences each time and limiting your own reach.

By using different hashtags in each of your Pin descriptions you can ensure that the maximum number of people see them.

Creating multiple, slightly different Pins for the same blog post is common practice now for bloggers and marketers, and this gives you the perfect opportunity to increase your reach using different hashtags.

If you create 3 different Pins, create 3 little groups of hashtags to use with them.

  • The first one could have — #ChocolateCake #DessertIdeas #DarkChocolate
  • The second one could have — #ChocolateCakeRecipes #Chocolate #Baking
  • The third one could have — #BestChocolateCake #CakeRecipes #EasyChocolateCake

All three of them contain different hashtags, so it doesn’t matter what combination of words is searched for, your Pins will have a higher chance of showing up in search.

How to find Pinterest hashtags

If you insert a # into the description of a Pin during the ‘Create Pin’ process, a list of hashtags will appear, alongside the number of Pins that contain them.

You can search for hashtags in the Pinterest search box too, but if you want to see a drop-down list of suggestions, insert a space before the #. Otherwise, nothing comes up.

It should also be noted that you do not get hashtag suggestions in the drop-down list, but instead a list of related keywords/search terms.

Another great way for you to find Pinterest hashtags is to think about what someone would search for if they were looking for what you had to offer.

You should definitely look at what hashtags other people are using, especially in the descriptions of Pins that pop up on the home page.

Those are *popular* Pins that Pinterest has chosen to show you, and you can make note of what has made them popular — including any keywords or hashtags used in the description.

Make sure you include the evergreen hashtags!

Evergreen hashtags are hashtags that are relevant all-year-round, perfect for using to promote blog posts that are also relevant throughout the year. Your black jeans-based outfit would absolutely suit evergreen tags like #outfits [1.4m Pins], #outfitoftheday [190k Pins], and #outfitideas [115k Pins].

I found all of these hashtags by spending 5 or 10 minutes tapping out # ideas in a blank, not-to-be-published Pin’s description box on my phone and seeing what else comes up.

When you do this, make a list of all the hashtags you think might be relevant in your posts, and then use them in future Pin descriptions.

 

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