Practical Ecommerce

6 Pointers for Using Etsy and Pinterest Together

Marketing items on Pinterest may be the simplest way for Esty sellers to promote their unique crafts and vintage items.

“I love Pinterest because it makes me money,” wrote Charles Huff, author of the recently released book, How to Sell on Etsy with Pinterest (Selling on Etsy Made Ridiculously Easy).

“Pinterest users,” explains Huff, “are buyers. (They pin stuff they want all day long).” What’s more, again according to Huff, “Pinterest users are buyers of things that aren’t cheap (they spend nearly double what Facebook and Twitter users spend, combined.) Pinterest users like things that can be expressed visually. Pinterest user like things that are creative, artistic, individual, aspirational.”

In short, Pinterest users, according to Huff, like the sorts of unique products that Esty businesses offer, and they like to buy things. For Etsy sellers, Pinterest might be the best, easiest, and most effective place to start marketing.

In short, Pinterest users, according to Huff, like the sorts of unique products that Esty businesses offer, and they like to buy things.

Note that “easy,” in the context of marketing any online business, is a relative term. Getting folks to discover your brand on Pinterest; like, repin, or click on your posts; and ultimately make a purchase from your Etsy shop will still require a significant amount of work. But compared to trying to become a search engine optimization expert or investing in pay-per-click advertising, Pinterest can be much less expensive and, potentially, more productive.

What follows are six pointers for using Pinterest to promote items for sale on Etsy.

1. Open a Pinterest Business Account

Etsy sellers are often artists, collectors, and craft makers. So it may be the case that they think of themselves more as individuals than as businesses. Nonetheless, on Pinterest, Esty sellers need to open business accounts. As Huff points out in his book, there are many advantages to having a Pinterest business account, such as promoting your business name, and it is a requirement in Pinterest’s terms and conditions.

“I don’t know anybody who has had their Pinterest account closed down [because of] hawking their new product line” on a personal Pinterest account, explained Huff, but “as Pinterest grows…they will get more and more stringent with their guidelines.”

Setting up a business account is fairly easy, at business.pinterest.com.

2. Try to Earn Sales

Pinterest can feel a little like a competition. Businesses are racing to get followers, likes, and repins. But for Etsy sellers marketing on Pinterest, the goal should always be to earn sales. While the number of followers one has can certainly impact sales, aim for quality and know that sales will follow.

Build a Pinterest presence that matches your Esty store’s brand — i.e., your way of looking at the world.

3. Participate in the Community

Pinterest, like many social media networks, is a community. When a seller markets in that community, it is important not to simply promote products and beg for attention, but rather to genuinely contribute.

With this in mind, don’t just pin your own items. Start many Pinboards and post items that are consistent with your brand. If you sell baby clothing, posting pins about mothering, child care, education, and nursery furniture would be consist with your Etsy store’s products and industry. If you sell hand-tied flies for fishing, posting images of rivers and fish or pictures of fly rods might be a good strategy.

Follow others and repin what they post too, affirming those Pinterest users who have interests similar to your store’s identity, industry, or interests.

Finally, don’t forget that Etsy has a Pinterest button on every product page, right between a button for Twitter and one for Facebook.

Etsy has a Pinterest button on every product page, between a button for Twitter and one for Facebook.

Etsy has a Pinterest button on every product page, between a button for Twitter and one for Facebook — see black arrow at lower right.

4. Form Group Boards, Invite Others

On Pinterest, you can create group boards that allow you and those you invite to pin. These boards can become popular and are an excellent way to increase awareness.

As an example, brand new group board — this one devoted to Star Wars gained more than 1,200 followers in just eight weeks and was recently made one of Pinterest’s recommended boards for new users.

Consider starting group boards around topics relevant to your Etsy products. The board’s followers may be folks that would make good contributors.

Pinterest Star Wars clone board.

This Pinterest Star Wars clone board gained more than 1,200 followers in just eight weeks.

5. Make Pinning a Habit

Using Pinterest as a way to promote your Etsy business is going to require some work. Plan to pin several images daily, six or seven days per week. Also try to pin at different times of the day. And don’t pin in bursts, monopolizing a follower’s home screen.

Add your new Esty items, and add pins that genuinely contribute to the community.

6. Remember that Pinterest Is a Visual Medium

Finally, don’t forget that Pinterest is a visual medium. Its users communicate with pictures, so you will need to make certain that you have good product photography for your Etsy items.

Huff, in his book, goes into great detail about how to take pictures, set up lighting, and more. The space he devotes to the topic is indicative of its importance as part of a Pinterest marketing strategy.

You will want more than just product photos on a white background, which is a best practice on Etsy, for your Pinterest pins. Try lifestyle images, close ups, or even photo filters to make your product visually interesting.

Armando Roggio
Armando Roggio
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Comment ( 1 )

  1. Ema J, Digital Marketer May 21, 2014 Reply

    This article is great! Pinterest is an amazing marketing and visual tool. Any business with products that can be visually presented do amazingly well on Pinterest. But especially Etsy sellers, like you point out here. My advice would be to balance your boards with rich content to keep your visitors coming back. Make pinning your habit! You can even use one of those useful automation tools for social media marketers (for example I started to use Mass Planner: http://www.massplanner.com, this is my go-to tool for social media from now on)

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