The latest social media network to be slowly sweeping its way across the pond over into Europe is Pinterest, and like Google+ 1 did, it requires an invitation but with many ‘experts’ in the SEO world making bold predictions on how it will be the next Social Media site to start taking up peoples time (free time that is… obviously) it may well be worth signing up to it.

Although it’s still in its early growing days, more and more people are starting to work out how best to utilise Pinterest for SEO gain and especially local search. A site labelled as a social network instead of a photo sharing site like Flickr, this site attracts normal people (those not in the world of SEO) with it’s easy to use interface and ease of interaction with friends.

At the time of originally writing this blog SEO’ers were salivating to get their acceptances from Pinterest as they could link images to their relevant sites and the links would be followed, however unfortunately (well, for us guys anyway) they have now either caught on to this or had enough of us and made the links NOfollow. Somewhat disappointing news, but fear not local search SEO’ers, there is still plenty of reason for us to stick around.

The local search benefits are that there is still the opportunity to make your location and “About” description visible and include your main target keywords, so when asked don’t be all secretive and hide your location, let people know where your company is located (a no brainer really!). Of course these small changes aren’t going to revolutionise the way local search is done but it all adds up and especially if you can steal a march on your competitors on Pinterest you will be standing in good stead. Pinterest is also a great place to build up your company’s awareness in the local area and get on the good side of other small businesses within the area. Instead of getting ‘Pin’ happy on all your own photos, like other local business photos and ‘repin’ them as well, they may even return the favour but even if they don’t you are still building up the awareness and value of your area within Pinterest. If you are already dominating your targeted keyword rankings then think about using your Pinterest profile to link to a well know directory that has a page which has glowing praise about you and your company – by doing this you could get your positive review page to rank for your name searches.

Over the coming months it will be interesting to see whether Pinterest does pick up interest in the UK or whether it falls in to the foursquare category and just doesn’t have the same popularity in the UK as it does across in the states. But with its easy to use functionality and not politely nudging you to sign in at whenever you cross the road or enter a different coffee shop it may grab the interest of the UK and force them to see what all the hype is about.