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How to Search Optimize Your Pinterest Profile Name

How to get Your Profile Found on Pinterest by Vincent Ng #Pintalysis

I received an e-mail question from Natalie Lo of Natalie is launchbing a children’s clothing company and she sent me two questions. The first one was about search optimizing a Pinterest profile name to show up under pinners search and the second question was whether she should include her personal name on her Pinterest business account. A big thank you to Natalie for her questions.

Katherine Kotaw on Pinterest

There are three different types of searches for Pinterest. You can search by pins, boards, or pinners.

Two Pinteresting Questions from Natalie of Natty New York

Dear Vincent,
I have been getting a lot from your articles on Pinterest. I just started a Pinterest account for my business, Natty, a children’s clothing company and I have a few questions.

Question 1:

My business is just called Natty. When I used this name Natty as my Business Name on Pinterest, I could not find myself on Pinterest when I did a search. Only when I changed my Business Name to Natty NY did I show up as a pinner on the search. Why did I not show up under pinners search “Natty?”

Question 2:

When I started this page, I just used my full name because I thought I could express myself, my personality and interests more as a person rather than a business. Many posts suggested I use my business name. But many people, I’ve read, are more likely to follow people rather than businesses. What is your opinion on this? What about doing a hyrbrid name with your business name followed by your personal name?

Thanks a lot!

Natalie Lo

Why Does My Business Name Not Show Up on “Pinners” Search?

Answer 1:

Thanks Natalie for both your questions. To answer question one, I wish I could give you a definitive answer on to why you weren’t able to find Natty under the pinner search. I know that there are a variety of accounts that have this same issue. What’s interesting is that there are a lot accounts that have the word Natty which are showing up.

There’s a lot of mystery that’s going on. Pinterest is similar to a lot of search engines in the sense that the use of a keywords doesn’t guarantee that it will show up, but does increase the chances.

There may be several reasons for why your account under the profile name, Natty, didn’t show up. Pinterest does take time to “crawl” information of Pinterest accounts. They have over 70 million plus global users. Even with Google, they don’t crawl all websites for information every single day, and I would imagine that Pinterest doesn’t either. It could be a matter of patience and waiting.

Depending on when you’ve started, I’ve heard that Pinterest’s search engines can take up to 3 days before it’s able to “discover” your Pinterest account.

The other possible reason, and I’m not saying this is your specific case, but it could be because the lack of pinning activity on the account.

The lack of people searching for the term may be a contributing factor as well. I’m very confident that Pinterest has a huge database of searched terms and they use that information to pair it up with relevant accounts, boards and pins. If people aren’t searching for the term, Pinterest MAY interpret that the word isn’t that important.

I ended up finding out that your board for the pinner search under “Natty” did show up, but it was ranked 113th at the time. To help search optmize your Pinterest profile page to rank higher for the keyword “Natty” you’ll need to obtain more followers. The follower to following ratio actually does play a role in the ranking.

Another factor in optimizing your Pinterest profile for search is the number of recent repins that an account has. Pinterest assumes that an account that hasn’t repinned recently is assumed to be stale. So the account slowly moves to down.

How to Search Optimize Your Pinterest Profile by Vincent Ng

Should I use My Personal Name, My Business Name or Both in my Pinterest Profile?

Additional Resource: If you’re wondering how to get your pins discovered in search results, check out 4 Pinterest Tips to Make Your Pins More Searchable.

Answer 2:

2) Naming your Business Pinterest account can be a tricky thing. I think it’s important to figure out which one has a stronger brand, the company or yourself.

If you’re a solopreneur and your company is you, for example Tony Robbins is his company, it’s best to have the name first, and then your company. But a company that’s been established for a long time such as Louis Vuitton, where the brand is more important then this should be put first in the Pinterest profile.

The good thing about a Pinterest business name is that you can technically make it as long as you want. There are no limits, only what’s visible to people on Pinterest. I don’t suggest anything too long because it does get really annoying when a Pinterest name occupies the notification feed on the desktop version of Pinterest. I ended up blocking the person because of that.

The other pet peeve is that when someone tags you with Pinterest the name that shows up becomes extra long as well.

Your business profile name on Pinterest can technically be as long as you want.

Your business profile name on Pinterest can technically be as long as you want.

It really comes down to what you believe people will search you for. When I first started my own Pinterest account, I created two personal accounts, one for my company at MCNG and the other as a more personal account. I noticed that a few social media influencers were following my personal account, which I realized was a result of searches done for my name and not my company.

What many of them were really looking for was my professional account, so I decided to make my Pinterest business name be MCNG Marketing = Pinterest Marketing by Vincent Ng. This way when people searched for my company, or by personal name, I would show up in the pinner search for both terms.

A technique that may be a bit of an overkill is to actually add a keyword you want to be searched for. That’s why I added Pinterest Marketing to my profile Pinterest name, but that’s optional.

For example, something you may consider is Natty NY by Natalie Lo (Children’s Clothing) but this has to be determined by you. This is designed to help maximize search results for the pinner search if someone happens to be looking for children’s clothing under pinner search by some chance, as well as helping you optimize for search results with Google.

What about brands versus people when it comes to adding that “personal touch”?

What about personal profile pictures? Or A personal profile to express yourself? Here’s what I use as a simple rule. If you have an extremely strong brand that is beyond the solopreneur, then you should use a logo. Companies like Zappos and ModCloth are examples of this. And some of the biggest brands on Pinterest like Whole Foods and Lowe’s use logos.

The other option is to put a personal photo, and this is great for solopreneurs or people who are the FACE of their company, that don’t have partners or a lot of employees representing the brand. Good examples of people who are faces of their brand are professional speakers like Brian Tracy or as mentioned earlier Tony Robbins.

Brian Tracy on Pinterest

Brian Tracy, who is the face of the brand, is a good example of putting a personal picture on a profile.

The good thing is that you can also mix it up, which is to add your logo with your personal photo, my workshop partner Cynthia Sanchez does this with her profile. This will make it nice a visible on the desktop version, but can be very hard to see on smartphones, especially with the circular photos shown on pins now.

Thanks for your questions Natalie. Best of luck with your launch!

Do you have a question that you would like answered on an upcoming blog post or on my podcast Pictures to Profits? I won’t be able to answer everyone’s questions but will do my best. Feel free to e-mail me at and I’ll do my best to feature your question.

Do you have some great tips for optimizing your Pinterest profile for search results? I’d love to hear them, please feel free to share them in the comments section below.

How to Know if Your Pinterest Board Covers are Visually Optimized

How to KNow if Your Pinterest Boards are Visually Optimized by Vincent Ng of MCNG Marketing. #Pintalysis I have to tell you that I was very excited when I discovered this tool. I think it’s no exaggeration that my eyes lit it up like a ball of fire, and I almost wanted to do my happy dance.

There are a lot of different studies out there that show how to visually optimize pins, and some blog posts that talk about optimizing board covers, but the hard part to know is whether your board covers are really attracting the attention of your viewers when they see them. But before I talk about the tool, let’s talk about Pinterest board cover tactics.

Your First Two Boards Matter the Most

The design of your first two board covers matter the most when it comes to grabbing potential customers’ attention. This is because these two boards are the best prime real estate for both the desktop and the mobile versions of Pinterest.

On the Android device, the first two boards are the ones that people see first before they have to scroll down. On the desktop, since people generally scan in F patters on websites, these two boards are essential.

EyeQuant Can Tell You if You’ve Visually Optimized Your Pinterest Boards

I first discovered this tool while doing research for my upcoming book, Pinterest to Profits with Pintalysis, and it has since changed the way that I see board covers.

EyeQuant is an artificial intelligence engine that helps predict the hotspots on a website. This is done by using the data from previous eye tracking experiments and from the observation of thousands of websites. This doesn’t mean that the tool is 100% accurate, but does have a great prediction rate.

Here’s an example of Brazil’s top Pinterest expert, Denise Tonin,Pinterest page and where the “hot spots” for attracting eyeballs are.

How to use eye tracking software to optimize your Pinterest board covers by Vincent Ng of

Other than her board covers, notice how her profile picture draws a lot of attention for her profile. According to data from Eyequant, pictures of faces will generally grab the attention of people.

Notice that one of her board covers has big bold texts, and a good contrasting background. This is predicted to draw the attention of eyes, while the board next to it, which has smaller text, doesn’t draw as much attention.

Here’s an example of my own Pinterest account and boards.

Find Out if Your Pinterest Boards are Optimized for Pinterest by Vincent Ng of MCNG Marketing #Pintalysis

You’ll notice that my logo profile doesn’t get a lot of attention, but the title of the Pinterest account does. According to the analytical software EyeQuant, it seems that my second board cover does a lot to attract the attention of users. Based on my observations it seems that board covers with letters that are clear and big, and have a darker colour background, do much better than those that have white backgrounds.

If you notice in Denise’s board, her board with bold lettering and a black background has done well in terms of grabbing people’s attention.

Now if you look at my profile picture, you notice that it doesn’t draw a lot of attention, and you may interpret that people are better than logos in drawing a user’s attention. While this is the case for my specific profile, profiles logos, like Whole Foods draws in a lot of attention.

How to Know if Your Boards are Visually Optimized by Vincent Ng of MCNG Marketing. #Pintalysis

But as you can see, based on EyeQuant, the cover photos do draw the attention of people. If I had to make a suggestion about Whole Foods’ account, I would suggest that they consider adding noticeable texts to their board covers.

Here are some Pinterest board covers created by car company, Volvo USA, they used a customized tool created by ShareRoot. Using ShareRoot, Volvo USA created customized boards. As you can see, all four board covers grabs the attention of viewers.

How to Know Wich Boards are Visually Optimized by Vincent Ng of #Pintalysis

Visually Optimized Board Covers Will Help you Stand Out in Search Results

A really great byproduct of all of this is that when you do add texts, it’s most likely going to stand out during search results for board searches. Search optimizing your Pinterest boards with keywords is important, but making sure that once you’re found that people are going to select your board is just as important.

I want you to be the judge for yourself. Here are some of the results that showed up under board search for the word, social media marketing. Which ones do you find grab your attention?

How to Know Which of Your Board Covers are Visually Optimized by Vincent Ng of #Pintalysis

Test it Out For Yourself

I haven’t done this yet, but I’ll testing this out and seeing if changing my board covers will have any affect in getting people to follow the boards.

What do you believe are important aspects to optimizing board covers on Pinterest. Please feel free to share in the comments.


Cynthia Sanchez, from Oh So Pinteresting, and I are back at it again. We’re going to be hosting an excellent live online workshop for business owners and bloggers who are looking to drive more traffic to their website. We’ve already opened up registration for the course that Starts on April 30th.

Since this class is taught live, spaces are limited to 20 people. And 7 spots have already been sold. Find out more, check out the course outline. Or you can click on the picture below.

Cynthia Sanchez and Vincent Ng's Pinterest Business Workshop Series

4 Pinterest Tips to Make Your Pins More Searchable on Pinterest

Pinterest Marketing Tip: Can't find your pins on Pinterest? Here's 4 tips to help your pins be more searchable within Pinterest.

Note: This post was updated to include more findings on how to use the Pinterest Search Engine to your business advantage. There will be some more tips added on to the original four that were posted.

Pinterest is amazing, I can honestly spend hours at a time looking at different infographics, advertising boards, and pins. Now with more than 70 million users of the social media, it’s a great social media marketing tool. But with 70 million users pinning dozens of pins to amass more than 30 billion pins, trying to get your pins to show up on Pinterest search results are much harder.

Old school tactics such as constantly pinning again and again for a category used to help drive traffic.  And the Pinterest feed used to be in chronological order but this is no longer the case with the Pinterest smart feed, which “recommends” pins based on what Pinterest believes a user is interested in.

Learning to search optimize your pins for keywords on Pinterest’s search engine will be very vital. And I will try to answer the age old question “Why don’t my pins show up on Pinterest search?”

As marketers, we need to think about how Pinterest works as a search engine, not just a social network.

While this blog post doesn’t have all the answers, it will shed some light as to how to increase your chances of getting them found at the top of search results for specific search terms.

This specific post only discuss about optimizing your pins. I will write another article about search optimizing your board names, and your user profile in the future.

Optimizing your pins will be more important, since this is the default search setting for Pinterest and since it’s blatantly in the middle of the desktop version of Pinterest.

Here are four ways to make your pins more searchable on Pinterest.

How to Get Your Pins to Show Up in Pinterest Search Results

1) Keywords Should be in the Description of Pins

Please don’t be mistaken, I’m not talking about search optimization for Google or Bing, this is just for Pinterest’s search engine when looking for pins with the keyword.

The first thing you need to do to optimize your pins for search is to ensure that you put keywords into your pin’s description. For example, let’s say you want to create pins that are more locally targeted, then you may put in keyword, “Fashion trends in L.A. or fashion trends in New York.”


It’s important for localized businesses that they put their city in pin’s descriptions. The huge majority of pins that were searched based on a keyword, I believe, are found using this particular method.

What really bugged me was that some of the pins that were searched by keywords never even had one single keyword in the actual description itself, yet it was showing up. This is when I clicked on them and was able to determine that the second factor played a role in which pins showed up in search feeds.

Pinterest Tip for Search Optimization 2 2)The Pin Should Come From a URL with the Keyword In It

What I also noticed when searching for pins was there was a good chunk of pins that didn’t have any of the keywords that I was searching for but still popped up in the searches. For example, when I typed in Pinterest infographic, I would sometimes get social media marketing in the description. Though the number of pins that did show up without the keywords in the description were much lower than those that did.

I know for a fact that Pinterest can’t read text on pictures (but they are able to identify colours and shapes), so I decided to click on where the pictures were hosted. And what I noticed was that the many of the pictures that didn’t have the keywords in the descriptions had keywords in the urls that they were from.

When I clicked on it the pin that had social media marketing as the description, it led to a site that had the key words “Pinterest Infographic” in the url such as.

My speculation is that Pinterest scrapes the url, or the webpage and takes that into consideration into its search algorithm.

Pinterest Tips for Search Optimization 3 3) Keywords Should be in the Name of the Picture/Photo File

What also helped, but I couldn’t find as a strong correlation, was the name of the file contained keywords as well. Based on closer inspection I believe why it helps is because some people will pin the actual url where the file is hosted.

For example if the name of your infographic or pin is whateveryouwant.jpg and it’s hosted on the site then Pinterest probably won’t pay too much attention to it. However, if you if the file name is pinterest-infographic.jpg and your pin is directly taken from then this will help in the search results of the actual Pinterest search feed.

This is really just an extension of the second point that was made.

4)The Number of Recent Re Pinterst Tips for Search Optimization 4 pins and Repins Matter

I typed in a bunch of random keywords and noticed that many of the pins that showed up for heavy used keywords such as, red velvet cupcake and cotton candy were quite interesting. It was hard to find pins that showed up on search that had not been repinned at least once.

For strongly competitive words, the number of recent repins that a pin gets can help shoot it straight to the top, but once the number of repins has cooled down, it’s mostly likely going to move much lower in the search results or completely disappear.

One of the clients I worked with operated a hair styling blog.I was able to help them rank for a specific keyword that received 92,000 monthly searches. The pin hovers at spot number 1 and 2, and has received over 3300 repins within 2 and half months, and it’s still going, and it seems to be staying at the top, however I believe it’s not just the number of repins, it’s also who is repinning that content.

As an experiment I bought repins for some of my pins to see if they would help in the search results, while they do impact search, it wasn’t as strong as I expected. I believe that the reason is because Pinterest can detect whether these repins are coming from genuine active users, after all they are processing trillions of data sets.


More Tips On Getting Your Pins Found

Use Exact Word Matching:

I’ve also noticed that the exact keyword match plays a role in how your pins show up. If you want to be found for the words, Christmas tree skirts, it’s best to make sure that those words are together, instead of using the description, skirts for Christmas trees.

This doesn’t eliminate your pin from the original search term, Christmas tree skirts, it just makes it less likely that it’s going to be one of the pins showing up for that particular search term if you don’t use exact phrasing.

What I was also able to find based on a small sample of searches was that keywords that contained plural words showed the same search results for the singular version on search. For example, if you go and type in the word Pinterest Strategy, you will see the same results as Pinterest Strategies. This is quite different from Google search engines, that take in such small nuances.

I would suggest that you mix up your description keywords to have words that are plural as well as singular to maximize your potential of being found in Pinterest’s search engine.

If you use a # in between the words, I believe it doesn’t interfere with how it’s read by the internal search engine.

Short Descriptions Are More Likely to Show Up:

This is going to be a tough call, pins with descriptions of about 300 characters long tend to be repinned more often according a to an infographic by Dan Zarella.

However, based on my research, there seems to be a correlation between pins that had less than 100 characters that tended to dominate popular search words. A good example is the search word recipe, one of the most used words in pin descriptions, and yet when the word is searched on Pinterest, the descriptions remain relatively short for almost all the pins. Considering how many popular pins that have the word recipe in in it, you would think that more pins with longer descriptions would show, but that’s not the case.

Google has an algorithm that calculates keyword density, which is the number of times a word is found in a post divided by the number of words written in total. I wouldn’t be surprised if this is a ranking measure for Pinterest, where they take keyword density as a measurement. However, keyword stuffing doesn’t work, so repeating the word recipe three times in your description isn’t going to help you rank better for those specific words, it will only help you rank better if a person purposely types in the word recipe three times in the search box.

I’m speculating this is to make it easier for mobile users when they are searching for pins, since long descriptions can be an eyestrain on a smart phone.

What about Alt Tags and Titles of the Pins?

Based on my research and clicking on dozens of pins, it didn’t seem that the alt, or the title played a dominant role in showing up in the search results, but this would need more research and bigger sample size. I would imagine this isn’t of much interest because Pinterest isn’t interested in being a search engine like Google or Bing.

I still highly encourage you to properly label these pictures with a correct and detailed tag for your images. The reason for this is because when someone does use Pinterest’s official pin bookmarklet then the description automatically becomes what the alt tag is, however if you use a pin it button like the one I have on my site that’s from Addthis, they take the title tag from that particular page or blog post.

And it’s good for SEO on the Google and Bing search engines. This is why it’s important to ensure that you have an integrated optimization strategy.

Colours and Shapes Play a Role

In the last half year of 2013 I started finding more and more results that had less and less to do with texts. Instead I will see the EXACT same keyword search but from a different user. What’s interesting to note is that the description will not have any of the keywords, nor will it have a url with a keyword in it.

I’m speculating that Pinterest is using the data of certain keywords to be associated with certain shapes, colours and even specific photos. Like my friend Jack, from Call2Pin stated, Pinterest has been very good at detecting pins of porn. (Jack works in the lingerie wholesale business and has done extensive testing with Pinterest about visual recognition.)

To further support this statement,Pinterest acquired VisualGraph, further supporting that they may be moving towards being a visual search engine.

Keep in mind that this is all speculation based on observation. It would be interesting to see what other marketers and search engine optimizers think. I highly encourage you to do your own tests and see if you notice any patterns.

So if you’ve been asking the question, “Why are my pins not showing up in Pinterest search results?”

Now remember, the Pinterest search engine is always changing, but learning how it works can be the difference from a pin receiving 10 repins and a dozen visitors to 1000 repins and receiving hundreds of visits to the website, for more tips on how you can improve your Pinterest marketing, make sure you sign up for my newsletter.