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How Long Should My Pins be on Pinterest?

I’m sure many of us who use Pinterest want to know the answer to “How long should my pins be on Pinterest?” Having pins that are long can help your business pins stand out from the vast ocean of pins.

Longer Pins Get More Repins

According to data by social media scientist, Dan Zarella, pins with dramatically longer pixels actually do get more repins.

According to his data of 11,000 pins, there’s no correlation that the longer a pin is that the more repins it gets. For example pins that had lengths of 450 had more repins than those with 500.

What is significant is when pins extend beyond 800 pixels in length. They had on average over 1000 repins. What we don’t know is the actual widths of the pins. As you read on this will become apparent why it’s important.

The ability to create such repinnable images is one of the fundamental pillars of the Pintalysis Pinterest Marketing Blueprint. There are some wonderful resources out there about how to create stunningly beautiful images for Pinterest.

There’s even a great cheat sheet made by Mitt Ray of Social Media Writing on the sizes of images for Pinterest. I use this cheat sheet all the time, but one of aspects of Pinterest that I was really curious about was how long pins could be before the “Expand Pin” area popped up. And the second question I wanted answered was whether this “Expand Pin” area is different for different devices like iPad, Android, and desktop?

The Quick and Dirty Answer for “How Long Should Pins be on Pinterest?”

Attached is the infographic I created that answers the two questions above if you want a quick answer. But if you want more details then I highly recommend that you read the WHOLE article.

Pinterest Infographic: How Long Should Pins on Pinterest Be?

Expand Pin Areas Show Up Because of Length to Width Ratios

The reason why the “Expand Pin” areas show up on your Pinterest feed is because of a length to width pixel ratio, and not the actual pixel length of the image. However, the “Expand Pin” area no longer shows once a user has clicked on a specific board and is viewing the pin from within that board’s collection. There are two different ratios.

The First Ratio: The Golden Ratio for Pins on Pinterest

The first ratio I have termed the “Golden Ratio for Pinterest.” This ratio applies to Pinterest for iPhone, iPad, and for desktop versions of Pinterest. The Golden Ratio applies to pins on those particular devices. This ratio allows for users to clearly see the huge majority of the pin without requiring further scrolling to see to the whole picture.

The Golden Ratio is a pixel ratio of 3.67:1 (length:width). This means that if your pin is 100 pixels wide, that it should not be longer than 367 pixels to prevent the “Expand Pin” area from showing on Pinterest feeds. However, if you do want to fully maximize your length on these devices then use the ratio of up to 3.75:1. The reason why I recommend using the 3.67:1 is because this wouldn’t require the user to scroll down to see the whole picture.

What’s interesting is that if you go beyond the 3.75:1 ratio, and decide to make an image that is 100 pixels wide but 400 pixels long, the image that’s shown on the Pinterest feed then shrinks dramatically to a different ratio.

The ratio then changes to about 3.33:1 (there are some minor differences between desktop and Apple mobile devices). This area only includes the length of the pin shown BEFORE the expand pin area. You can imagine how this might affect your pin. I’m going to go into more detail when it’s actually beneficial to have an expanded pin area.

How long should pins be on desktops and Apple mobile devices?

The Second Ratio: The Android Ratio for Pins on Pinterest

The second ratio is dramatically different from the first ratio. The Android Ratio applies to devices that use Pinterest Android app. For pins not to have an expanded pin area show up on a pin, it must have a ratio of approxmately 2.55:1. If the ratio get larger than the expand pin area shows, the amount of visual that is shown gets reduced to a ratio of 2.37:1.

How long should pins on Pinterest be for Android devices?

When Should You Have the Expand Pin Button?

Having the “Expand Pin” area for your pin may not be a disadvantage. In many ways it can be advantageous because it can grab a viewer’s attention and get them to take a second look at your pin. The expand pin can be very beneficial in some cases.

1) Infographics

Let’s say that your infographic is 200 pixels wide, you want to ensure that your most compelling information is put in the top 474 pixels. This way it compels a user to click on the expand pin to find out more that’s past the first 474 pixels.

Ensure you have a great headline, and an informational graphic that will grab the eyeballs’ attention. Your using curiosity to luring a person to click on the actual pin. With mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones, once a person has clicked on a pin that has an “Expand Pin” area, a full image of the infographic will then pop up.

You now have taken away that person’s attention from other competing pins so that they can focus on the infographic that has been created.

2) Instructographics

The same applies to instructographics. Ensure that the top part is the most compelling so that it encourages people to click through to your pin. Trying to shorten an instructographic so that it fits in nicely with the different ratios is a bad move. It could come off chunky and confusing. Never sacrifice fitting your pin within the ratios and sacrifice good visual content.

When it’s Not a Good Idea to use the “Expand Pin” Area

1) Fashion Photographs

If you’re in the fashion business it’s best to show off an entire outfit. This means that if shoes are very important to the outfit ensure that they fit within the ratios. It’s very easy for users to ignore the bottom 10% of the picture if they feel that there’s no mystery to the dress or wardrobe.

If the shoes add that extra zing and can lead to more people clicking on the pin, then make sure it’s part of the picture.

The ratio can be very vital to the fashion industry, where a marketer islive pinning, and having their audience view their content on iPads. Having pins within the Golden Ratio can enhance the experience of seeing multiple pins of full dresses to give a more enjoyable and less disruptive experience.

2)Travel Photography

This also applies to travel photography. If you’re taking a beautiful picture of a waterfall, and the bottom of the waterfall is extremely beautiful and can tip the iceberg from someone clicking on the photo and not clicking on the photo, then ensure it fits within the ratios provided.

BONUS TIP:

Having two or three long pins shared in a row can help get those pins noticed since they’re occupying a lot of real estate. It’s important not to overdo this. This can look spammy and people are interested in looking at other users’ pins, not just yours (sorry it’s the truth.) This can be helpful if you have two infographics pinned in a row from your company, or if you pin two long pictures of waterfalls in a row.

Curious to know your thoughts. Any ways you think that long pins can be beneficial, or even harmful to marketing on Pinterest?

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Vincent Ng is the founder of MCNG Marketing, and the author of Pinterest to Profits with Pintalysis and the host of the Pinterest podcast, Pictures to Profits. You can grab your free e-book on How to Search Optimize Your Pins for Pinterest and Search Engines."

Comments

  1. Hi Vincent,

    Thank you so much for mentioning me and my infographic. You have written a fantastic post here – Very helpful!

    Cheers

    Mitt

    • You’re welcome Mitt, it’s the very least I can do for all the great content you’ve given me and to the social media community. Hope your weekend goes amazing.

  2. Thanks so much for the mention!

  3. Hey Vincent – great post and glad you took the time to write this as I will just sent this to people who ask about it now! I had someone just comment on one of my posts frustrated about the “expand pin” process and that longer pins get cut off so I explained that it is not a bad thing, and here is how it works + gave them your post. Google and ye shall find ha ha.

    • Thanks Donna, I’m glad I could be of service. Expand Pin area isn’t a bad thing, but I’m really glad they do offer it. I remember the days when pins would go on and on forever, used to drive me nuts.

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