Types of Pinterest Images

Does your blog get much traffic from Pinterest? If not, you might be missing the boat! With over 70 million users, Pinterest is creating more referral traffic for websites and blogs than Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, or YouTube. Source: Copyblogger

Since Pinterest is all about collecting beautiful images, let’s talk about how to make yours most appealing so your post can be a pinned and repinned traffic driving animal!

There are 3 types of images that we create and at least one, and often all, will appear in every post we do.

  1. The Beauty Shot
  2. Pinnable Image
  3. Story Board Image

Let’s take a closer look at each of these.

The Beauty Shot is going to be the picture that really shows off the project, tip or topic you are discussing in the post. Since it is all about the visual, you obviously want this to be an attractive image. Try your hardest to take your picture during the day with natural light. This will help your photo be well lit, the colors stand out, prevent weird color casts, and help the background to be even and natural.

  • Brighter images are repinned 20x more often than darker images
  • Images with <10% background receive 2-4 times more repins than images with >40% background.
  • Images with multiple dominant colors have 3.25 times more repins than single dominant color images

Source: Hubspot

I try to make the beauty shot vertically. Vertical pictures work more naturally with the way Pinterest is set up. They take up more real estate on the Pinterest Feed giving more of the screen and chance for attention to you!

Set the scene. Make the picture interesting with items that compliment the subject of the photo. For example, we recently posted some printable lunch box notes. Instead of printing out the note and taking a picture of it sitting on the table, I pulled out a lunch box, a piece of fruit, a napkin, a water bottle and some chips. It gave the photo, much more color and dimension, as well as filling the background to create interest!

Water Bottle


When you compose the photo, make sure that you fill the frame with your scene. Don’t just have a tiny subject that is overtaken by the background.

and always… I mean ALWAYS, include your URL on that image.

The Pinnable Image is an absolute MUST if you are doing DIY, recipes, tips, or tutorials of any kind. All this means is that your picture will have text added to it that describes the pin. Having a pinnable image allows you to tell all the people who see the pin on Pinterest exactly what YOU want them to know about it regardless of who pins/repins it and what is written in the description box.

For example, I posted a recipe for homemade croutons. If I hadn’t included a pinnable image when it appeared on Pinterest, people would just see a pretty salad. However since I made a pinnable image, now everyone who sees this pin will see a pretty salad but know that the post is about how to make scrumptious homemade croutons! Be creative and pique people’s interest with descriptive titles and yummy adjectives.

and always… I mean ALWAYS, include your URL on that image.

Crouton Salad

Another great thing that a pinnable image allows you to do is make a post pinnable even when you don’t have a photo. On a post I wrote about things I wanted to do for my kids every day I chose to just make a text graphic instead of leaving the post with no photo. Now my post can float around Pinterest and drive additional traffic to our site.

Kids' Activities

You can create pinnable images with or without pictures easily with any photo editing software including PicMonkey, which you can use for free!

The Story Board image is a series of images that tell the story of how to do something or describes it. Right here I am telling the reader that this is everything they have ever wanted in a cookie using a story board image.

Cookie Recipe


This story board from another post that has been popular on Pinterest shows how to prep baby finger foods. You want to give the story without giving away all the details so the readers will still click through.

Baby Finger Food

I have no fancy statistics to share with you on this one. Just my own personal experience. I find that in posts I include a story board image in, people choose this image to pin over any other image in the post (including the pinnable image) about 80% of the time.

Case in point, this is a screenshot from our Pinterest Analytics showing that 4 out of the top 5 most clicked posts from Pinterest are the story board pins.

Cookie Recipe

I have to assume that this is because it engages a reader by telling a story, and again as above, takes up more valuable real estate on the Pinterest feed.

I use PicMonkey to easily add my photos into their collage maker and position them vertically to get the most bang for my Pinterest buck!

and always… I mean ALWAYS, include your URL on that image.

In case you are wondering why I keep repeating and always… I mean ALWAYS, include your URL on that image,  it’s because there are people out there who will steal your awesome image and link it to their site. Once a pin starts to become popular these people will take all of your hard work and use it for their gain. Also, at times pins just end up heading to the wrong place. By always having your URL on your pictures people who pin will know where the original source is.

Yes, you can just put your logo or site name, but I like to make it as easy as possible for people to find me. The easier it is the more people will find me, so I just spell it out for them. Literally!

I hope you enjoyed the tips I shared with you today! What tips do you have for increasing your Pinterest appeal?

Kimber is one of two mamas pin testing, crafting and creating recipes at The Pinning Mama. She’s  an engineer by trade but a hopeless right-brain by practice. She loves God, her family, food, photography and most anything that is pink, sparkly or dark chocolate. Connect with her on Pinterest, Facebook, Google+, Bloglovin, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.

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{ 16 comments… add one }

  • Leah August 15, 2013, 9:51 am

    Such great tips – totally pinning this post!
    Leah recently posted…I Hate That I’m HatedMy Profile

    • Kimber August 15, 2013, 4:18 pm

      Thank you Leah! I really appreciate the kind words!
      Kimber recently posted…{Pin Test} Jewelry CleanerMy Profile

  • Felicia August 15, 2013, 10:43 am

    This are some awesome tips, Kimber! I’ve recently been trying to figure out how to drive blog traffic with Pintrest and haven’t had much success as of yet. I’m going to be taking your advice and tips to hopefully start getting more traffic from there. Thanks for sharing!
    Felicia recently posted…A Night at the American Music TheaterMy Profile

    • Kimber August 15, 2013, 4:19 pm

      Thank you Felicia! I hope they help and you start to kick up some great pinterest traffic!
      Kimber recently posted…{Pin Test} Jewelry CleanerMy Profile

  • Kristi August 15, 2013, 10:49 am

    Great post Kimber! Love all of your pics, I can see why those do so well on Pinterest.
    Kristi recently posted…Netflix Helps Me Keep My Sanity!My Profile

    • Kimber August 15, 2013, 4:22 pm

      Thanks Kristi! Pinterest can at times be surprisingly hard to drive traffic, but I think the right type of images really helps things get going!
      Kimber recently posted…{diy} How to Make an Easy Ribbon WreathMy Profile

  • Laura / The Shed by Pet Scribbles August 15, 2013, 12:28 pm

    Awesome post! And I’m pinning it too! ;)
    Laura / The Shed by Pet Scribbles recently posted…29 Creative Lampshade DIYsMy Profile

    • Kimber August 15, 2013, 4:23 pm

      Thank you Laura! I really appreciate your kind words and you sharing the post!
      Kimber recently posted…{Free Printable} Back To SchoolMy Profile

  • Sue - The Spin Cycle August 15, 2013, 12:56 pm

    Love, love, love. Especially the part about “branding” your pics with a watermark…I need to get on that. Thanks, Kimber!
    Sue – The Spin Cycle recently posted…The SitterMy Profile

    • Kimber August 15, 2013, 4:25 pm

      Thank you Sue! You spend so much time putting together your content, it really is a crime for someone to steal it! Watermarking just makes it one step harder!
      Kimber recently posted…Pear and Gorgonzola PizzaMy Profile

  • Kim August 15, 2013, 3:16 pm

    Thanks for sharing. Great tips that I am going to incorporate in my Juicing posts!!

    • Kimber August 15, 2013, 4:26 pm

      Thank you so much and I hope it helps you build traffic!
      Kimber recently posted…{Free Printable} First Day of School Chalkboard SignMy Profile

  • Shana Norris August 15, 2013, 7:32 pm

    Great post, Kimber. I need to practice more with making images (that don’t include photos) in PicMonkey. RE: the one you shared above – did the lime green background come from PicMonkey or elsewhere?
    Shana Norris recently posted…Twitterature :: August 2013My Profile

    • Kimber August 15, 2013, 11:26 pm

      Hi Shana- So glad you enjoyed the post! I use Photoshop Elements to create all of my images without photos. The green background was one I picked up somewhere on the web (I prob found it on Pinterest haha) an just opened the file and layered the other shapes and text on top. Let me know if you have any more questions!
      Kimber recently posted…The World’s Best Buttercream Frosting RecipeMy Profile

  • Ally Campbell August 18, 2013, 2:17 pm

    Thanks for the great … not tips, it’s a whole fully comprehensive lesson which I will surely use as a guideline in the future. Well done for the post and I’m now following you
    Ally Campbell recently posted…Getting the Kids into the Arts and Music to boost their competence.My Profile

  • Jackie August 27, 2013, 11:49 am

    Thank you for posting this great article. I have seen a significant increase (about 20%) in traffic from Pinterest since I started adding my website AND more importantly the title of the featured recipe.


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