Remember when I said you had to make your own Pinterest board cover? No? Well, then you should hop on to this article about How to Properly Optimize Your Board Names on Pinterest in 2021 so that you can get on “board” with what I’m about to say.
If you’ve read that article and you’re ready for more, then continue on reading because we’re gonna be talking about numbers. Dredge up those Math lessons from the depths of your mind because you’re going to need them for this one.
Let’s get down to business: If you’re an avid user of social media, you’ll notice that when you post an image, it doesn’t always show up the way you want it. Personally, I notice this a lot when I’m tweeting on Twitter.
It’s so damn annoying when the image you upload gets cropped.
That photo of you looking out in the distance with the perfect caption? Yeah, once you upload that, you’re usually deadass left with a cropped-out photo of your, well…ass.
Of course, when you click on the photo, you can see it as a whole, but isn’t it annoying when you can’t see the entire thing from the get-go? Plus, people on social media have a low attention span (like me) so they won’t want to click on your ugly cropped-out photo just to see what you’re talking about.
That means less clicks and less engagement on posts and tweets. Inevitably, this could lead to the downfall of your brand because you need those engagements for promotion.
Luckily, social media apps like Twitter and Instagram have built in editing systems that allow you to crop the image so that it shows up right once you decide to post (or tweet) it. But most images are created to conform to a specific size. Important details could be removed when you rely on cropping images post-edit.
That’s why you have to create your posters and image covers with the right size in mind. Unlike other social media apps, Pinterest doesn’t have a built-in editing function, which means you have to take the cropping and image sizing into your own hands.
So, why did I recommend that article in the beginning? Well, you needed to know a little bit about Pinterest optimization, and part of that is knowing the basics of a Pinterest board cover. I mentioned that Pinterest board covers are icons that reflect the contents of your Pinterest board.
In the creation of a Pinterest board cover, you need to use the best Pinterest image size so that your viewers see the full picture. This logic applies to everything else you plan on posting to Pinterest.
But a Pinterest feed doesn’t crop out photos tho??
You’d be right in saying that—to an extent. In fact, if you go to your Pinterest feed right now, you’re probably going to see a bunch of images laid out as a whole regardless of their size. They’re even arranged to ensure you see the entire image without needing to click on it.
But there are moments when an image is considered “too big” or “too long” and Pinterest decides to do its own cropping. Despite their assurances that they crop images and focus on the middle, relying on Pinterest’s cropping methods is like jumping into a vat of acid without knowing what’s going to happen next—it’s a LOTTERY.
And besides, it’s not just a Pinterest feed you have to consider. What about videos? Pinterest stories? Collection Pins? Each of these kinds of Pins have their own cropping to ensure viewers get the full picture from the very beginning.
Hol’ up, why do I need Math?
Ah yes, the dreaded subject of almost every person who’s had to trudge through Algebra 101. Don’t worry, you don’t have to do much Math because the image editors can usually do this job for you.
In this article, we’re going to be talking a shit ton about ratios, and maybe a handful about pixels, but it’s pretty simple to understand.
When I say you need to use an image ratio of 1:2, that means the sizes can be simplified to the values 1:2 or ½ when you divide them by a common number. Getting confused? Let me break it down:
Say you have an image that’s got a width of 5” and a length of 10”. They are both factors of 5, so you can divide them both by 5. This means your 5” divided by 5 becomes 1, and your 10” divided by 5 becomes 2.
Now that you’ve simplified them, you’ve got a ratio of 1:2. Congratulations, this means your 5” x 10” image has a 1:2 ratio.
This applies to the rest of the ratios I’ll be talking about in a while. If I say you need an aspect ratio of 2:3, then choose values that can be simplified into 2 and 3, respectively, like 3000 pixels and 4500 pixels. When you divide each measurement by 1500, then 3000 becomes 2, and 4500 becomes 3.
Got the hang of it? Let’s the move the fuck on from this Math headache.
So, what’s the best Pinterest image size?
The best Pinterest image size depends on the kind of Pin you’re going to be Pinning. Let me define a few types of Pins you may interest yourself in:
Board covers are recommended at a standard 1:1 ratio—or a square, if you’re feeling extra trigonometrical. Board covers reflect the entire contents of a Pinterest Board so it has to pack that extra oomph.
Themed board covers look so damn good and if you do this on all your boards, then congratulations because that is a sight for sore eyes. Here are 13 Additional Tps to Create Stunning Pinterest Board Covers.
Carousel Pins are like a bunch of Pins packed in one photo. You know how you can post more than one photo on Instagram then scroll left or right to see more? It’s the same thing, but this time, it’s with Pinterest.
But the beauty of Carousel Pins is that each individual image in the “Carousel” can be linked to a different webpage. When you’re planning a Carousel Pin, you should follow the recommended Pin size ratio of 2:3 or if you want, you can also follow the Square Pin ration of 1:1 for all the images in the Carousel.
Say you’re showcasing a room design and you want to feature each individual piece of furniture your brand is selling. You’re going to have one main image that shows the whole room, and once your customer clicks on it, links to the products in the main images can be found to the side.
For example, your main image is a bedroom with a four-poster bed, polished side tables, and a curtain that leads to an outdoor balcony. Very aesthetic, much wow, such manly. Once viewers click on the main image, they’ll see at least three additional images to the side: a four-poster bed, side tables, and a curtain.
This gives them a direct link to the products you’ve featured in the main image.
Sounds easy enough, right?
That’s because it is.
When you’re creating a Collection Pin, the main image should follow the recommended Pin size ratio of 2:3 and the additional images should have a 1:1 square ratio. You can have a minimum of 3 additional images, and a maximum of 24.
Did you know you could create Story Pins on Pinterest? I neither confirm nor deny that I just found out about this beauty today. Anyway, I am here to spread the good word.
Much like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter Stories, you can also create your own Pinterest Story Pins. This is best for featuring promos, special deals, and discounts that your brand is offering.
However, you need to know a little bit more about Story Pins because there are some limits to what you can upload. First off, to ensure you capture the entire screen, your photo or video orientation should have a ratio of 9:16 or 1080 x 1920 pixels.
That’s just the standard ratio most phone cameras film in, so it shouldn’t be too hard.
Next, keep in mind the file size. For photos, you can get away with a maximum of 20mb and for videos, then make sure your file size is no bigger than 100mb. Pinterest is also a lil crabby when it comes to video length so each “Story Pin” should be 60 seconds long at the most.
If Pinterest is a bit crabby when it comes to video lengths, then the Pinterest community gets even crabbier when you decide to post long infographics. Generally, most people are discouraged from using long infographics because users have to click on them to read the words.
Some bloggers say it works for them, while others say it doesn’t. Nevertheless, if you have some magic luck in your luck pouch, then there’s no harm in trying out long infographics.
While the recommended Pin Size is a strong 2:3 ratio, a long infographic has a 1:3 ratio. To get even better engagement, make the infographic easy to understand. Use visuals. People love that kind of attractive shit.
Don’t try out any of the bad shit, namely overdoing it on the words. It’s an infographic, not a fucking essay.
Remember that anything longer than a ratio of 1:2.1 is going to get cropped out by Pinterest. Chances are, that’s going to happen to your infographic.
Why not try breaking it up into friendlier 2:3 infographics and place them all in a Pin Carousel? That should allow most of your information to be seen immediately.
Pinterest has evolved so much. If you feel like your brand is best expressed through video, then go for it! But remember that your video ratio differs depending on what kind of video you’re going for.
Luckily, you have me to outline them all for you:
|Standard Video Pin||2:3|
|Long Video Pin||1:2|
|Vertical Video Pin||9:16|
|Square Video Pin||1:1|
You’ll notice that there are no ratios or proportions that support horizontal videos. That’s because they’re not recommended. In fact, most of the media you’ll find on Pinterest is more on the “Portrait” ratio rather than the “Landscape.”
Because Pinterest lays out its media vertically to make it easier to scroll down while holding a phone to its optimal orientation. Most people don’t scroll down holding their phone in landscape mode because you see less content that way.
Keep in mind as well that people on Pinterest won’t activate their audio, so make sure your videos don’t rely on audio to be more interesting. I recommend using the Standard Video Pin (2:3) and Vertical Video Pin (9:16) as the optimal video proportions.
In addition to everything I’ve said, you also need to keep in mind the optimal specs for Video Pins. Length is generally best left between 4 to 15 seconds, while the file size shouldn’t go beyond 2GB. The normal video types should be all right, like .mp4, .m4v., and .mov and encoding is either H.264 to H.265.
Problem: I don’t know how to Math o.O
Worry not because technology has evolved to give us image editing software such as Canva (which is my personal holy grail of photo editing) that does the work for us. If the powers that be are once again not fucking with me, Canva’s standard size for Pinterest formats is already at the recommended 2:3 ratio (1000 x 1500 px).
But if you want to go for the other fancier Pin sizes, then unleash the inner creative in you and create your own design with a custom size. Fair warning, you might have to do the Math on your own for custom sizes, but what else are calculators for, eh?
A sweet summary on the best Pinterest image size
In general, the best Pinterest image size has the standard 2:3 ratio, but you can also kick it up a notch by using a 1:1 ratio if you prefer a square. You gotta make sure your image or video is already sized up correctly right as you’re beginning to create it so that there aren’t any weird crops or resizing mumbo jumbo.
And hey, this doesn’t just stand for Pinterest sizing. Whichever social media interface you use for your brand, make sure you’ve got the sizes right so that you don’t get any weird ass cropping upon upload.
That’s it for gaining more clicks just by adjusting the sizes of your Pinterest images! If you need more help, then this article on 10 Actionable Pinterest Tips That Will Generate More Followers Today can give your brand that extra moolah to gain more popularity.