Updated February 19, 2018
At least two times per year I like to go through my Pinterest boards and make sure they are cleaned up and organized. This DOES NOT involve deleting pins. Move your finger away from that delete button. I have a simple four-step method that I use to clean up Pinterest boards that isn’t overly time-consuming.
How to Clean Up Pinterest Boards: A Step-by-Step Tutorial
Step 1: Profile Cleanup
Take a quick glance at your boards. Do they still reflect your mission or niche? Does your profile picture, description, and overall boards still communicate your message? If not, make a few changes.
- Change out your profile picture making sure to use the same picture you have on other social platforms. Consistent profile pictures can make a huge difference in brand identification.
- Update your description with keywords that tell pinners what you are all about. Plus, you can add in a link to your email freebie (see example below).
- Then do a quick scan of your boards to find any that aren’t a reflection of the direction you’re going.
Step 2: Moving & Re-titling Boards
Starting first with the boards that no longer fit your niche, move these to secret or archive them without losing followers. If you delete, you WILL lose followers. Don’t delete! Before moving to secret look through the board to identify viral pins. With the need-to-know metrics feature you’ll be able to tell how that pin is doing.
Do a double check in Pinterest analytics* –> Your Profile –> Clicks –> Boards with most clicks. You want to do this to make sure the board you want to move to secret is not listed. If it is, it indicates that the board is driving traffic and we don’t want to interrupt that. If there are no viral pins feel free to convert to a secret board.
Pinterest added a new tool for organizing boards and sections. For the archive feature, Pinterest will no longer send you information in your Smart Feed regarding this board. It’s basically taking it off the table. This is a great tool for those who are average users no longer using the board. It sends a message to Pinterest that it’s no longer an interest to include in their Smart Feed.
A note on sections, this is a useful tool for the average user, not a tool for marketers. Pinterest has said in a recent webinar that sections do not hold any relevance to search. So use them if you’re OCD but if not, just leave ignore them.
Now let’s move onto adding new Pinterest board titles.
If you haven’t ditched your cutesy titles (YUM….anyone?) then it’s time to get a little more savvy with your titles. Google will index board titles so it’s important not only for Pinterest but also for Google. For example, last month I googled, “what to do with leftover baby cereal” and someone, a non-business user, had titled their board that! The pins were getting good interaction too.
Aim to be savvy with your Pinterest board titles. Use keywords!
Here’s how I do keyword research for board titles. Look at the search bar inside Pinterest using the search prediction terms that pop up.
Then when you click on that term you’ll see all applicable Guided Search boxes pop up. These keywords are GOLD for creating board titles. This is how Pinterest is organizing content so it’s best to fall in line with how they are already organizing content.
For example, take your “Morning” board filled with breakfast recipes and title it “Simple Breakfast Recipes” or better yet move all specific pins (pancakes, maybe) to a new board and title it “Easy Pancake Recipes.” The keyword variations are endless.
Step 3: Assess Group Board Effectiveness
Group boards should only be one part of your strategy, not all of it. If you are exclusively pinning your content to group boards I would strongly suggest you dial that back to 30/70 ratio (group boards/personal boards). Not utilizing your personal boards and relying so heavily on group boards puts you at the mercy of a group board owner. A group board owner could remove you at any time or delete the board altogether.
Here’s a quick guide for evaluating group boards:
- Does the topic still fit within your niche or do you write content that will fit on the board?
- Is there activity on the board or does it seem to be a dead space with little to no repins?
- How many contributors? Boards with over 100 contributors appear to be struggling right now. I find that boards with less than 100 contributors get more interaction regardless of the number of followers. Less than 50 is even better!
- How many followers are on the board? If there are 100K followers, 2000 contributors and little to no repins this tells me that the feed moves too fast OR Pinterest is not showing the board content to very many people.
Group boards come and go all the time. It’s okay to leave if the board is no longer helpful to your business. Consider joining up with just a few friends who have a similar niche.
Step 4: Create Board Order
Hallelujah, Pinterest has finally listened and has added a feature to reorder pins AND boards! I’m a total sucker for a beautifully ordered profile. Don’t skip this step when it’s time to clean up Pinterest boards. You can choose from the options below or go with the order I list below the photo.
I start with my blog/product boards on the top left and then list my most popular boards. For example, for food bloggers I choose all recipe boards, then kitchen, DIY, decor and if they have any lifestyle boards, followed by seasonal and lastly group boards. If someone lands on my profile on a desktop I don’t want them to see group boards first.
For reordering pins, on iOS and the web, long press on a Pin to drag and drop it to a new spot. Or from any platform, tap Organize from a board or section to drag Pins to new positions. Keep in mind this is mostly for you and not for users unless you want your pins at the top at all times.
For board covers and a clean look make sure you choose an image that does not have text. It’s hard to position the photo to show how you want so if something doesn’t have text it makes it easier. I’ve gone the road of creating custom board covers. Only do it if you’re bored and spending the evening bingeing on the latest Netflix show.
That’s it! Your Pinterest boards are cleaned up, organized and ready for more beautiful pins. Download our printable How to Clean up Pinterest Boards Cheat Sheet to make spring cleaning your boards easy peasy.
Questions? Comments? Tips? Join the fun below.
FYI — I have a private Facebook group where I love to chat all about Pinterest. Join me.
If you haven’t listened to the Simple Pin Podcast start with these episodes:
- 2018 Ultimate Pinterest Planner
- New to Pinterest? Start here.
- Keys to Creating a Pinterest Marketing Plan
- Understanding Pinterest Analytics
FREE Download -- Pinterest Board Clean Up Checklist
Get a jump start on cleaning up your Pinterest boards. Download our FREE printable Pinterest clean-up sheet making it easy to organize your boards.