7 Steps to Create The Perfect Pin

7 Tips to Create the Perfect (Attention-Grabbing) Pin

You’ve likely heard this shouted from fellow business owners everywhere: Pinterest drives more traffic to my website than any other social media platform!

Well, it happens to be true for me. I see growth in my email list daily, and I get consistent sales for my ebook, pretty much all thanks to Pinterest. But, of course, it wasn’t always that way. It wasn’t until I studied the ins and outs of Pinterest strategy — and made some strategic moves — that my website traffic, email list, and sales increased.

Today, I’m going to share one (very important) secret to getting loads of traffic to your site from Pinterest: How to create the perfect Pin.

It probably goes without saying, but Pinterest relies on visuals, so it’s extremely important that the Pins you upload look attractive and, well…pinnable.

Here are a few tips on creating beautiful, attention-grabbing Pins for your blog:

1. Get clear on your brand

First and foremost, get clear on your brand’s colors, fonts, and tone or “mood.” It’s extremely important that your Pins be consistent and look on-brand.

Example: If your brand is punk rock, then something light and airy with pastel colors wouldn’t be on-brand, but something edgy and bold with bright colors would be. Colors and fonts are a great way to express your brand so be sure to choose wisely!

Below are two Pins that are different, yet similar. The trick is to use the same colors and fonts, and use photos that have a similar mood.

2. Create a template (or two)

The easiest way to maintain consistency (see above) is by creating templates for your Pins. That way, you can simply plug in different titles and images while keeping the overall look the same. (Bonus: This also saves you time!)

I shudder thinking about the awful blog graphics I had on my first website. They were all over the place, with no consistency in font, color, or size. Now I create all my Pins using Canva, a free online graphic design tool. You can create your own templates in Canva or use the templates that Canva provides that already have the ideal size and proportions for an attractive pin.

3. Stick to vertical pins only (No landscape, please!)

Vertical images (tall, not horizontal or square — see One Woman Shop’s example below!) tend to get more clicks and repins. One main reason is because they’re easier to see. Most Pinterest users are on their mobile devices, so it’s important to make your Pins easy on the eyes.

Images that use the ratio of 2:3 or 4:5 are best. I make my Pins 600px by 900px and it works perfectly. When I upload the Pin to my blog it doesn’t look overly huge, yet it looks clear when viewed on Pinterest.

Again, Canva’s Pinterest templates already have the perfect ratio so there’s no stress about getting the correct ratio. #loveyoucanva

4. Make it easy to read

This tip is short, but not always easy: Make sure you use an easy-to-read text overlay. Remember, most people are on their tiny phones looking at these pins. If pins are difficult to read, it’s unlikely they’ll inspire people to click or repin.

5. Choose eye-catching photos

Beautiful images are key. If you’re using your own images, make sure they look professional (even if they’re shot from your iPhone). You want to avoid anything dark, out of focus, or messy-looking.

If you’re using stock photos, be sure to steer clear of anything cheesy. (You know what I mean. We’ve all seen those goofy photos with fake smiles and garish colors. Leave the cheesiness for the infomercials!) You want something on-brand and inspiring that your ideal client will love.

Some of my favorite stock photo sites are Haute Chocolate, SC Stockshop, and Bloguettes. They’re not free, but their photos are worth it. Instead of wading through pages and pages of questionable stock photography to find one beautiful, on-brand photo, you’ll have lots of gorgeous photos to choose from.

Remember to always keep your target audience in mind and choose photos that both showcase your brand and appeal to your peeps.

6. Get strategic with your blog titles

Creating a snappy title is just as important as creating consistent-looking Pins.

Your title needs to be specific and communicate exactly what your audience is going to get out of the article. You want to stir up an emotion in them and make them curious enough to click through to read your article or repin it to their board to read later.

For example, if you’re a health coach creating a Pin about what you eat in a day, the title “What I Ate Today” isn’t going to get many click throughs or repins. It’s too general.

Instead, try a title like “What a Health Coach Eats.” That’s much more intriguing, because your reader probably assumes that a health coach is more knowledgeable on healthy eats than the general public.

For extra credit, include a tantalizing subtitle. For our health coach example, you can try “What a Health Coach Eats (It Might Not Be What You Think!)” That title suggests that perhaps the health coach doesn’t eat healthy all the time, piquing your curiosity even more as to what exactly they eat. Makes you want to click through and see for yourself, doesn’t it?

Still need help finding a catchy title? Here’s a great article to get you started.

7. Add keyword-rich Pin descriptions

The Pin description is the text that shows up under the Pin.

Your description should include keywords and phrases relevant to your blog post and brand to help people find your Pin when searching Pinterest. Explain the purpose of the article without giving too much away and perhaps even invite the pinner to click through to read more.

For instance, if someone was looking for a yellow chair on Pinterest, they would search “yellow chair.” If your pin is a picture of a yellow chair but doesn’t have the words “yellow chair” in the description, it’s going to be very difficult, if not impossible, to find.

How exactly do you add descriptions to your Pins? When you upload your Pin to your blog post you’ll want to add the description to the Alt Text of the image. And if you’re using an SEO plugin like Yoast SEO you’ll want to write a description for the meta description, because sometimes this shows up on Pinterest too.

Once the Pin is uploaded to your site you can use your Pin It button to save to your Pinterest boards.

Make the most of your Pinterest presence

In addition to creating pinnable Pins, you’ll want to repin fresh content to your boards daily or almost daily (a mixture of your content and others’). Consistency is key! Pinterest rewards those who pin great content and often.

Pinterest is an amazing platform with tons of potential for driving high-quality traffic to your site. (And it’s so much fun!) Use these tips on how to create the perfect Pin and you’ll be on your way to growing your business using Pinterest!

P.S. Get 7 steps to creating a consistent overall brand here.

The Best Sources for Free & Premium Feminine WordPress Themes

If you’re a One Woman Shop regular, you know we’re huge fans of the WordPress platform for running your website and blog. In the past, we’ve run special highlights for some of our favorite WordPress themes for female entrepreneurs and bloggers – like BluChic’s feminine themes and Angie Makes’ ladylike templates. But, knowing it can be cumbersome to search through the wealth of templates out there, we decided to make it easy for you by spotlighting a few fantastic sources of both free and premium feminine WordPress themes in one place. Happy template shopping to you!

BluChic

As always, BluChic tops our list because we have yet to find a flaw in their sleek designs. There’s a theme for nearly everything: from beauty and fashion blogging, to career coaching, to editorial websites. What’s more, we adore BluChic’s “bundles” including business card and social media design, as well as a newsletter template. Could they make it any easier?chic feminine wordpress themes

Angie Makes

It doesn’t get much girlier than what Angie Makes. And we love it. Her signature themes are adorned with accents like lace, pastels, and watercolors, but the tech side of things is anything but dainty. All her themes, priced at $70 each, are fully responsive, meaning they smartly resize to whatever device the site is being viewed on. With theme names like Anna Grace, The Lucy Lou, and Gracie Girl, it’s hard not to fall in love.sleek feminine wordpress templates

Restored316

Lauren’s mission at Restored316 is to help other women like herself start a successful business and/or blog by giving them an exceptional, quality, and affordable website design. Her set of themes, all created on the Genesis framework and priced at $50, are clean, simple, and incredibly easy on the eyes. Check out some of our favorites you’ll find in her shop: Tasteful, Amplify, and Lovely.

restored316 feminine designs

Beautiful Dawn

Both the name Beautiful Dawn and the names of all of her themes instantly communicate the vibe that Tiffany is going for. We’ll give you a few examples of titles: Sweet Home, Everyday Style, Simplicity, and Serenity. We keep calmer just hearing them! And speaking of calm, you can pay a $25 fee for theme installation help from Tiffany. Score.

beautiful dawn feminine wordpress designs

17th Avenue Designs

Kate’s own website is pink, black, and gold — did you really think we would be able to resist her themes? In The Shop, you’ll find $49 premium themes, like Uptown, a bunch of more economical $35 themes, like Hepburn, and a $69 Classic WordPress Package. Also, bonus points to Kate for making e-commerce integration easy!

chic sleek wordpress themes

A Prettier Web

Unfortunately, Mel Karlik of A Prettier Web only has one WordPress theme available for purchase (as of right now, at least). If you’re a #girlboss, you’ll love the name of her theme — Boss Lady. In her words: “…entrepreneurs are savvy online. I know you need to grow your mailing list, capture leads and ultimately sell your product or service.” So, she designed a template that addresses those needs.

boss lady wordpress theme for women entrepreneurs

Lovely Confetti

The name of this shop is a pretty darn good indicator of the kind of WordPress themes you’ll find there — geometric-shaped accents, sprinkle designs, and glittery adornments. And the creator of these adorable themes? Her name is Cristina — which at least half of the One Woman Shop thinks is lovely, indeed 🙂

lovely confetti wordpress themes

This post contains affiliate links. As always, we only showcase products and services that we believe will benefit you and your business.

8 Styled Stock Photography Shops for the Solopreneur

8 Styled Stock Photography Shops for the Solopreneur
The first time we found a styled stock photography shop, we had a big slap-hand-to-forehead “oooh, so that’s how it’s done” moment. Before then, we thought maybe there was some required course in setting up beautiful, perfect desktops that we’d missed out on in school. But no! The internet is fancy, and we’re all just a few clicks away from access to these beauties. If you’re new to these shops, we think you’ll find they’re quite useful.

So what exactly IS styled stock photography?

Unlike traditional stock photography, styled stock photography is usually designed around a color palette and/or theme to help you display your own work. These images are generally created with clear areas to insert your designs or text and are usually highly-staged setups, like tabletops or desktops.

If you’ve seen these styled photos around but are wondering how to use them in your business, there are so many ways! Use them for: 

  • Creating blog post images
  • Making images for landing pages for new products and/or services
  • Sharing images of your newsletter on an iPhone via social media 
  • Showing off your ebook on a tablet or Kindle
  • Displaying a styled laptop scene displaying your latest e-course
  • Showcasing your design work on a photo of a mug or print

If you’re not sure where to find these types of photos, we’ve gathered up some shops we adore to get you started.

Dear Miss Modern 

Specializes in “mixing business with pretty.” We’re especially lusting after her fall stylings, like this glam pumpkin!

Dear Miss Modern Styled Stock Photography

KateMaxShop 

Perfect for all you pink and gold lovers out there. Plus, donuts almost too pretty to eat. Almost.

KateMax Styled Stock Photography 

SC Stockshop 

Filled with gorgeous choices, like this fun desktop party and so much more.

SCStockShop Styled Stock Photography

Type & Style 

Many fantastic options in this shop — take note of their bundle deals in particular.

Type&Style Styled Stock Photography

UpStyled

A modern and practical shop with stylish options perfect for products or blogs.

Upstyled Styled Stock Photography 

Don’t Tell Anyone 

A small but impressive collection of hip, modern styled photos.

Don't Tell Anyone Styled Stock Photography

Kristina&Co

A lot of to choose from in this shop, like this pretty accessories scene below. Also check out this fun holiday photo!

Kristina&Co Styled Stock Photography

LittleSparrowShop

A great shop with adorable photos that will make your site or products look fantastic.

LittleSparrow Styled Stock Photography

We hope you check out these shops and they give you some rad ideas! Do you already use styled stock photos in your business? Have you ever tried using stock photography to spark your imagination? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!

We are affiliates of Creative Market. As always, we only promote products and services that we think will benefit you and your business. 

Feminine WordPress Themes from Angie Makes

You may know by now that we love a sleek, feminine WordPress theme as much as probably more than the next person. Whether it’s one with a muted color palette or bright pops of color, we’re suckers for a functional website theme that looks good too.

Which is why we love the WordPress template designs from Angie Baldelomar of Angie Makes. A few of our favorites:

The Daphne Theme

Great if: you’re looking for a two-image slider on your homepage and you love frilly, lacy details

daphne theme from angie makes

The Amelie Theme

Great if: you want a one-photo slider on your home page and you love subtle background patterns

amelie theme angie makes

The Kensie

Great if: you love watercolor and simple home pages

watercolor wordpress theme

The Me + You

Great if: you want an e-commerce ready template, you love the rustic look of burlap, and you want a footer area

small business wordpress theme

All of the themes are $70 and are fully responsive, compatible with multiple browsers, drop-down menu enabled, and have a fully loaded back-end with easy upload options for header, background, and favicon unless otherwise listed.

P.S. Looking for feminine clip art, like watercolor letters, vintage roses, or washi tape strips? Angie’s got that too.

We are affiliates of Angie Makes. As always, we only promote products and services that we think will benefit you and your business. 

One Woman Shop Resources: Creative Market

If you haven’t heard of Creative Market, you’re missing out- it’s “a platform for handcrafted, mousemade design content from independent creatives around the world.” In plain terms, that means loads of website themes, graphics, templates, fonts, and other add-ons for all of your solo business design needs.

A few of our favorite Creative Market finds, which includes social icons, WordPress themes, pre-designed PowerPoint slides, flower graphics, and stylish fonts:

Amelie Responsive WordPress Theme by Color Splash Studios

Screenshot 1 Screenshot 2 Screenshot 3Creative Market Responsive WordPress Theme - Amelie by angeldazie

Styla Italic Font Set by URW  styla italic font from creativemarket

Minimalista Theme by The Bloggerette Studio
minimalista genesis child theme wordpress

Peonies Clip Art Collection by Angie Makespeonies watercolor graphics

Flat Icon Set by Vintage Design Co

Flat Icon Set by VIntage Design

PowerNote PowerPoint Presentation

pre-designed powerpoint presentation slides

Delightful Genesis Child Theme by Restored316

delightful wordpress theme

P.S. Be sure to check out the Free Goods section on Creative Market!

Disclosure: We are part of Creative Market’s partner program and will receive a commission on sales bought through the links above. As always, all opinions are our own!

A WordPress Theme for Coaches, Entrepreneurs, and Consultants

It’s no secret that we love every single WordPress theme that BluChic puts out. We think they’re a great stepping stone if you’re not ready to invest in a custom design and they’re perfect themes if you want just a few customizations.

So naturally, we were so excited to see the newest theme, Jacqueline, which is specifically designed with entrepreneurs, consultants, and coaches in mind. Why? A WordPress theme for coaches and consultants needs to help you grow your email list and showcase yourself as an expert in your field, but also — in our humble opinion — show off some personality so that your clients know what they’re getting.

bluchic wordpress theme for coaches and consultants

A few of our favorite features:

    • A prominent email opt-in box (since we all know how important having an email list is!). 
    • The very visible social media button bar
    • The black, white, and pink color scheme (which can be easily edited in CSS)
    • The option to buy an all-in-one bundle, complete with WordPress theme, social media design, newsletter design, and business card design, for $109

Disclosure: We are part of BluChic’s affiliate program and will receive a commission on sales bought through the links above. However, we are huge fans of BluChic and use their products all the time, so all opinions are our own!

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How (and Where) to Find a Graphic Designer

First off, congratulations to you on doing your own thing – be it starting or growing your business! One lesson you will quickly learn (if you haven’t already) is that you cannot do everything yourself. Most entrepreneurs quickly grow accustomed to the Jill-of-all-Trades syndrome but let’s face it, you simply cannot be good at everything. There are a few things you can attempt to do on your own, but others should be left to those that specialize in those areas, graphic design being one of them.

There are a lot of misconceptions about design these days–particularly that it’s easy and anyone can do it, which is just not the case. Graphic design is a communications tool used to build awareness and influence people to do or buy things and it includes a mix of research and discovery, problem-solving and creativity. Thus, good design can add an enormous amount of value to your business.

But how do you go about finding a graphic designer to meet your needs? And where do you find one? It will take some work, yes, but breathe easy, it’s not as hard as you think.

1. Start with yourself

In order to figure out where you’re going, you need to know where you are. Give some thought to who your customers are and how you want to communicate to them. If you are your business (as many solopreneurs are), think about your style and how you want to present yourself to the world. Be able to articulate what your business goals are and what you want to achieve as these are questions you’ll be asked (or at least should be asked!) by any designer you contact.

You also need to establish a budget. Graphic design is not an exact science and you will find that prices can vary drastically. So while you may have to interview several designers in order to find one that can stick to your budget, knowing what you have to spend will help you in the process. Bring it up early on in the discussion to avoid wasting anyone’s time. Keep this simple concept in mind when evaluating prices: good work ain’t cheap; cheap work ain’t good. Rudimentary yes, but you get what you pay for.

2. Get referrals

Start with the people you know and trust- ask them if they have or know a designer they would recommend. Is there a place you frequent- like your salon, a local coffee shop or even your neighborhood bar- whose design you admire? Ask the staff who did it. Word of mouth is still the one of the strongest marketing tools around. Many websites list the web designer in the footer of the site, so scroll to the bottom to see if a link or name has been included, then email the site owner to see if they would recommend the designer.

3. Be a social butterfly

With all its outlets, social media is like the world’s largest bulletin board, available 24/7 to people all over the world. Start with the platform you know, use and are most comfortable with.

  • Facebook: Broadcast your search for a designer to your connections or use the Facebook search function. Try searching for terms like “design” or “designer.”
  • Twitter is another great option that a lot of creatives use. Again, broadcast your needs to your network and ask for recommendations. Using hashtags like #freelance, #graphicdesign or #designjobs will allow your message to potentially travel farther and be seen by those you’re seeking. You can also do a hashtag search using those terms to find someone yourself.
  • Meetup is another resource for finding a designer who is local to your area. Search for graphic design groups and email the organizers. Ask them to post your contact information in their member area or discussion board. Keep in mind, however, that with this route you are opening yourself up to a lot of people. So if want to keep it more intimate, I’d start with the methods above.

There are a number of websites you can search in lieu of getting a personal recommendation. Remember, you are starting from scratch here, so it can be a bit more work. If you decide to go this route, I’d start with AIGACreative HotlistCoroflot, or Freelance Switch.

4. See for yourself

Once you’ve collected a few names, check them out for yourself. Basically, GTS (Google that shit). Take a look at their portfolios–do you like what you see? Is their work in a style you could see for yourself and your business? Like people with their clothes, designers also have a style- make sure it’s something you like.

Read the designer’s about page to get a feel for their personality and communication style. Read their services page and get an idea of their process, how they work and what they offer. Go through the various pages on their site and see if it jives with you. From here, make a shortlist of people you actually want to contact.

5. Hear it from the horse’s mouth

Now’s the time to contact the people on your shortlist. While it may be old school to pick up the phone, being able to hear and/or see someone is the best way to really get a feel for if you’re going to mesh well. You can hear their voice, understand how they communicate (are they speaking a language you don’t understand?), and even see them (thanks, Skype).

While it has to work for you, it’s got to work for them as well. It’s really an interview that goes both ways. You should find a designer who is willing to invest in you the way that you are willing to invest in your clients; a designer who is as passionate about creating something for your business as you are about providing your products or services.

I like to think of the relationships I have with my clients like that of making a new friend or even like dating. There’s a getting-to-know-you phase where you find out what each person likes, dislikes, their tastes, their communication style and generally whether you mesh well. Find a designer that you would be friends with, one who you trust and feel connected to and is willing to dive head first into your project.

6. Be Realistic

Chances are, if you’ve found a designer whose name came up repeatedly and is quite popular, they are going to be hard pressed to get you in immediately. Be realistic with your budget and timeline (clearly communicate both) and be willing to make some adjustments if necessary, whether that means saving a little more money or waiting a little longer to begin your project.

This is by no means a comprehensive list or the end-all-be-all to finding a designer, but it should at the very least give you a frame of reference to start your search. Hiring a designer is an investment and doing the work to find one you can build a relationship with will benefit your business and your brand. If you’ve done your homework then you can make a decision based on both knowledge and instincts!

P.S. A shameless plug from One Woman Shop- be sure to look through our Designer Profiles if you’re in need of great graphic design. Morgan will be featured soon!