We think the best place to start understanding how to improve your success with Pinterest search results is with tips direct from the Pinterest team. We'll start there and then add a few observations of our own.
Here's what the Pinterest team has to say:
Now, when pinners come a-pinning, the pin they end up with is easy on the eyes, and it links to the right page. Best of all, it comes preloaded with a smart, helpful description, which pinners love almost as much as search engines do. This means beautiful pins from your pages are going to do much better in search results!
Let's break this down into two bite-sized pieces.
1) Helpful Pin Descriptions
The first point of interest that the Pinterest team mentioned is "helpful pin descriptions."
2) Search Engine Friendly Pins
The second thing they mentioned is that pinners and search engines need to love your pins. So, what's the common element? It's keywords. Both people and search engines want to know what it's all about in a few well chosen words.
Let's pretend you're about to publish a fashion tip pin. The title of your web page is "Fashion Trends for Teens." The title of the page is a must have. If your image pictures a young girl in a wool coat, you might consider adding details about the coat and the season it should be worn. If you're are a local business hoping to find new customers through Pinterest, it's a good idea to include your city too.
Here's an Example:Fashion Trends for Teens | 100% Pure Wool Coats for Winter 2015 - TeenThreads.com, New York City
3) Board Titles and Descriptions
Another big factor to consider are board titles and descriptions, as people can also choose to search by "Boards." These two pieces of the pie should be chock full of keywords too. Think about how someone might search for your board, and use those keywords in the title and description of your board. You might search for a few boards yourself to see what other folks are doing. Usually the biggest fish in the pond has the recipe for success. Copy it.
4) Great Image Names Make for Searchable Images
While no one knows every factor in Pinterest's search algorithm, their search engine does seem to be scanning the websites that pins link to. The reason we feel this is true is that some pins don't have the keywords that you typed in the Pinterest search box in their description. The search algorithm must be considering keywords on the external website. If it's doing that, it makes sense to carefully consider image file names as well. You don't need to go to town with a description like you did for your pin description, but you should include a few of the more important words.
Here's an Example:
fashion-wool-coats.jpgSince you're not the only person adding your images to Pinterest, the Pinterest Team also recommends the use of image tags. Adding an alt tag or a helpful description to your picture will also help with images in search.
Here's an Example:
5) Pinterest Analytics
Did you ever wonder why Pinterest would build a really expensive analytics tool and offer it for free? We've wondered, and in our wondering we've imagined that their analytics tool might be a big part of how their search engine delivers pins.
Pinterest Analytics profiles your account, measuring impressions, views, clicks and repins to name just a few. Like Google, Pinterest values the popularity vote. Google measures this with links. Pinterest does it with repins and likes. It's what drives pins to the top of the search results almost every time. Google has also outwardly stated that they value "large and well established websites." On Pinterest its algorhithmic equal seems to be pinners with a strong following.
If your still small potatoes in the Pinterest world, don't give up. Pinterest is a business, and they just want to show the best content because that's what visitors are looking for. Don't be bummed. Just keep working to build your followers, repin often, and create graphics that people can't help but be attracted to.