In just over 3 years, Pinterest has over 70 million users, drawing in 30 million unique visitors on a monthly basis. Pinterest is the sixteenth most popular site in America and the thirty-fifth most popular website in the entire world.

It’s easy to see why – human beings are visual and Pinterest helps people discover things in a simple, visual way. But it can be used for so much more than just posting recipes or DIY projects.  Businesses can use it to tell their story, show their products, and develop relationships with potential customers.  In fact, there are already over 500,000 business accounts.  The good folks at Pinterest have even put out a handy beginner’s guide to Pinterest for business (PDF format).

Some simple tips when using Pinterest for your business.

  • Complete your profile.  You want people to know who you are and where to find you on the web (or you wouldn’t be on social media in the first place).
  • Verify your website.  Doing so will not only show that you are trustworthy, but it also gives you access to Pinterest’s analytics tools.
  • Install the Pin It or Follow Us widget on your website.  Easy to install and gives people a convenient way to find and pin your pins.
  • Pinterest is all about images.  So make sure yours are bright, colorful, and vibrant.  Vertical images work better than horizontal ones.  If you can, make your images 730 pixels wide by 1200 pixels tall.  And remember to add variety – 30 pins of salsa will appeal only to a very limited audience!
  • While images are the first thing you notice on Pinterest, don’t forget to fill in the description area of your images.   You have 500 characters to pique people’s interest and let them know something about you and your company.
  • People can visit your website/blog/Facebook page etc. from your pins. Make sure to add your business URL to the pins you create (but not those you pin from other people’s sites or boards).

But will Pinterest benefit your business?  You’d be surprised at the variety of businesses on Pinterest.  Business as diverse as Constant Contact (an email service) and Monument Pharmacy in Colorado have fun and interesting boards.   A little bit of creativity, some imagination, and a few minutes a day go a long way.