Pinterest search results are not random

We start our series of articles focusing on Pinterest search results for the most popular and competitive keywords. Last few months we’ve been doing daily check of the following search queries: clothing, fashion, fashion blog, food, home, lingerie, style and travel.

What was the purpose of such a choice?

As you can see, we selected 5 terms related to the fashion industry, as this is the “most e-commerce” market advertised on Pinterest, with the highest potential for online sales as well. Three other keywords (food, home and travel) are the top searched queries expressing our dreams or things we plan to do in the future.

Lately we have received many questions about Pinterest’s SEO. The most common question was whether Pinterest displays results randomly or if there exists any correlation between some factors and order of pins showed up in the search results.

In this article we’d like to prove that Pinterest doesn’t display pins randomly. I guess this statement might worry some of pinners. Why? Mostly, because we like to simplify things around us. Although Pinterest’s popularity grows very fast, it is still a very young social media site. Probably the youngest one among all the biggest social platforms. We want to believe that it is still not developed much and the Pinterest’s algorithm is easy to get around. Checking search results and looking for any correlation we take into consideration only few factors. Couldn’t figure out what really has impact on search list we finish our research saying that there is no correlation and pins must be displayed randomly.

Unfortunately both answers are wrong because there is correlation or rather there are many correlations. The whole process is called Pinterest’s SEO and it is definitely much more complex than we want it to be.

Today we present again the results of our first Pinterest’s campaign for – lingerie wholesale site. As a quick reminder – this campaign let us discover the impact of Pinterest on Google search results (our publication at It’s been also very successful in Pinterest itself where pins which come from this account rank very well. Till the end of September we were focused mainly on the “lingerie wholesale” query. Since the middle of March 2013 we have conquered search results list for these keywords.

These results showed that our pins are regularly indexed and displayed by Pinterest and could be considered as a proof that search list is not created in a random way. However, some of you are not convinced that it is enough to give the final answer as the “lingerie wholesale” query is not as competitive as the keywords mentioned at the beginning of this article. We decided to expand the scope of our research and get focused on the “lingerie” query. We were sure that the account of Lingerose is strong enough to reach the first 100 results for this keyword. It’s important from the research point of view. Basing on the experience from the other campaigns we knew that creating a new board provides an additional signal for Pinterest to index pins.

At the beginning of September we created “Lingerie Wholesale Blog” board and started adding photos from the Lingerose’s blog articles. As predicted the new pins ranked very well. All the pins descriptions contained the names of the articles they came from (mostly “brand’s name + lingerie”) and additionally we included “lingerie wholesale blog” there.

After a few days on the 10th of September Lingerose’s pins appeared in the top 100 for the “lingerie” query:

What was interesting they were very similar to the results for the “lingerie wholesale” query:

That means that Pinterest displayed pins in similar order. If a particular pin was important enough to be displayed as the first one for the “lingerie wholesale” – it also occupied the highest position among our pins in the “lingerie” search results. Pinterest changed its results and displayed new pins every few days for both of the queries.

On the 14th of September our pins showed up in the top 60 for the “lingerie” query. During the next few weeks some new pins from Lingerose’s account which were the highest ranked, appeared always between the 50th and the 70th position.

On the 20th of September we decided to check how many pins are displayed for the “lingerie” query. We found 100 pins in the first 600 results displayed by Pinterest. So one of each 6 pins which showed up belonged to Lingerose’s account. All of the pins came from the new board “Lingerie Wholesale Blog”.

By the way I want to say that having so many pins displayed for competitive keywords brings great results – number of repins, likes, new followers and visits to your account. Further information soon, below I present some pins from the “Lingerie Wholesale Blog” board.

At the beginning of October we started our tests, optimizing pins description to find the best possible one. We tried many possibilities changing the order of keywords or removing them from the description. Whenever we changed the description’s pattern we noticed some discrepancies of our pins’ positions in search results. For some patterns the highest ranked photos were placed lower than usually or there were not so many pins displayed in the first 200-300 results.

In the meantime one of our pin reached the top of search results for the “lingerie” query and was indexed as the first one:

As you can see this pin contained the first pattern of descriptions that we used for the purpose of our research. After almost 4 weeks of tests we also noticed that this is the most effective pattern from all we tried. Few days ago we decided to use again this description. The positions of our pins in Pinterest search results have been exactly the same as they were in September. There is also the same correlation between results for the “lingerie” and “lingerie wholesale” queries.

Below results from the 28th of October:


Lingerie wholesale

Our research definitely proves that Pinterest doesn’t display pins randomly. There are many factors which play important role for the Pinterest’s algorithm. There also many strategies which help optimize our pins. In the next articles we are going to show more analysis of the results for the most competitive keywords in Pinterest. We will also demonstrate how worthy and important is being ranked high in search results.