If you follow Pinterest marketing experts, you’ll learn that most are using Canva to create their Pinterest pins. Even as a graphic designer, using Canva has saved me hours for my digital design projects. I don’t have to switch programs, find tools to export my videos or pull elements from various locations. You can use templates for almost any kind of Pinterest pin which can be achieved inside the Canva workspace. Having pre-made layouts where changes to various elements can be made easily and simply is key. But how do you use templates? Where do you find them? Let’s talk about how you can start using time-saving templates for your Pinterest strategy and business.
What are Pinterest Templates?
First of all, Canva is a free design program that allows you to create all kinds of social media graphics and print designs. Although they have a paid version, the free version can be used to create your Pinterest graphics. Templates can be used with Canva to shorten the time it takes to create a pin. Every time you go to create a pin, you start out with a blank canvas. Every pin requires you to create a layout and design, which takes a lot of time. Pre-made templates are already designed and laid out for you. All you do is drop in your own titles and text, add your images, input your call-to-action, adjust a few colors, and then you are set!
Interestingly, you do not need to be a graphic design expert to use Canva. In fact, you don’t need to mess with aspect ratios or sizing or know how to create graphics. You just need to drop things in place, adjust them, and save them. That’s it!
I sometimes refer to myself as a lazy designer. It’s not because my designs are poor or because I don’t want to learn the ropes, but because I don’t have time to start everything from scratch. You probably don’t have that kind of time either. That’s why templates are amazing time-savers.
Free Canva Templates
Canva includes various templates to use, but it’s important to remember that they are popular and over-used. Recently, I had the opportunity to listen to a webinar with Cara Chace. She was talking about Canva templates from Tailwind. The screen displayed one of the free templates from Tailwind and she said that she was on Pinterest and someone used the template without changing anything, not even the photo. Her point was that if you are going to use templates, make them your own because a wide variety of people are using those templates. Your goal is to stand out, so try finding Pinterest templates that are original or less used.
Canva allows you to create standard and video pins. Using templates, you can create a video pin without using complicated software or tools. Using the elements within Canva, it’s easy to stand out in your Pinterest feed with animations, doodles, and other graphics. Templates allow you to focus on the content instead of the concept and layout of the design.
Be Careful with the Canva License for Photos
While Canva does provide many free graphics, photos, templates, and other elements, it’s best to read their use license. For instance, using Canva photos and music have limitations. I opt to collect my own paid photos and not use the ones on Canva since their license isn’t that great. Also, the free version is ideal for creating graphics, but if you find you are wanting to use other elements, you might want to try the paid version.
Why do I need Canva Templates for Pinterest?
As previously mentioned, Canva Pinterest templates allow you to quickly drop in your visual elements and save them as pins. This time-saving method benefits you because overall changes can be made simply and saved for future use. Instead of making these changes every single time you need to create a pin, you can just use the template designs for multiple pins by changing the headlines and images and using them for new pins.
Instead of spending all day creating 5-10 pins for a post, you can create the pins in 15-20 minutes. It’s even faster once you get the hang of it. Also, it’s a huge cost-savings. You don’t have to hire a graphic designer. You can just plug in your own visuals and titles yourself and pocket those dollars for something else.
Canva is Easy to Use
Using Canva is user-friendly. You can find all kinds of tutorials and help for Canva online. There is a large user base, so you’ll be sure to find answers if you get stuck. Unlike the high-tech software such as Adobe, it’s not rocket science to use. The interface is user-friendly and easy to learn. Using a design template just requires clicking a button and saving it to Canva.
Of course, you can use Canva without templates, but you’ll be spending hours designing from scratch. I recommend using templates because it’s a no-brainer. On top of that, you can spend more time on your business goals and less time trying to figure out how to layout a photo or other design elements. With plenty of availability, templates are easy to find and use.
Create Stand-Out Designs in Minutes
Another reason to use templates is that your designs will stand out. Isn’t the entire point of using Pinterest to promote yourself? How do you stand out when all your pins look identical? Templates solve that problem. You can have a professional-looking pin without much effort which attracts your viewers back to your content. If running an ad, templates are even more important. You want to attract people to your brand and templates are set up to do just that.
How do I use Templates to Create Pinterest Pins?
Using templates is amazingly simple. First, you’ll need a free Canva account. If you want to it out, grab my 10 free templates here, or use the opt-in on this post (scroll down). Then, log into your account and use the templates.
Inside of Canva, go to File–>Make a copy so you always have a new template ready to use. Inside the copy version, rename it appropriately. While it’s ok to use the pins “as is”, I suggest making them your own. Here are some quick & dirty suggestions:
- colors – Change out the colors on your pins to fit your brand palette
- fonts – Choose 2-3 free fonts for your brand. If you have a paid Canva account, you can upload your own fonts
- logo – Use your logo, or if you prefer, your website URL
- images – Canva has free images, but I suggest you start to collect your own using reputable sources.
Other elements might include arrows, doodles, stickers, or animations. Add these sparingly but do try to create your own look and feel on your pins.
For further instructions, take a look at my video tutorial for making pins with my Pinterest Bundle:
Where do I get Templates for Canva?
There are many places available that offer Canva templates. Some templates are well-designed, while others are not.
- Canva – Canva includes its own templates. If I use these templates, I change them up quite a bit. Most of them can be seen all over the internet. Not very appealing when you are making pins that look like everyone else!
- Creative Market – various designers offer Pinterest templates for sale. You’ll have to judge if these are ones you’ll use and will work for you.
- Tailwind – offers free monthly Pinterest templates. I’ve personally used these and find they are nice to use. However, Tailwind is popular, so expect to see a whole slew of these around the Pinterest feed.
- Happy Pin Design – Not to toot my own horn, but I offer a Pinterest template bundle. I try to keep my templates well-designed and easy to use, while still standing out from other templates around. I also offer tutorials on how to edit the templates. Headline generators are also included with the bundle.
Grab the free Pinterest Templates
Get free customizable templates for Pinterest! Just sign up and get 10 templates for Canva and start designing pins now!
What do I need to get started using Canva Templates?
Before you get started with templates, you’ll need content. Pins direct to posts, pages, or other content that lives on your website. Choose which piece of content you want to create pins for and then create 5-10 working titles (vary the titles in each) for every pin you plan on making. You’ll need your pins to all be different, so try not using the same titles more than once. Co-schedule is helpful when trying to define headlines and titles.
You’ll also need photos for your pins. You can find a list of free stock photos sites here, or join a membership such as Ivory Mix for unique and stand-out images that you don’t have to worry about licensing.
Save Time by Re-using the same photo
I like to use a set of 20 templates and batch the content. Depending on what I’m creating pin images for, I’ll search for 20 images that I can use, or I’ll use some of the same images, but crop them.
Here’s an example of what Tailwind did to make their images all different using the same image. They cropped the image or used various parts of the image instead of having it look the same in each pin.
Likewise, you might want to resize your images or optimize them. Trying to upload images full-size and full resolution to Canva will probably produce an error. I use Optimizilla or Tiny PNG and create a smaller file size. You can also use Photoshop to resize your images by automating it.
Photoshop Automated Resizing
To resize a batch of images with Photoshop, do the following:
Open up Photoshop and go to File > Scripts > Image Processor.
This will open up a box for you to make some selections.
For #1, browse to the folder with your photos (all the photos you want to resize should be in one folder) where it says “select folder”.
For #2, make sure it says to save the folder in the same location.
In the 3rd area for file type, this is dependent on your needs, but generally selecting a JPG and resizing the image to new dimensions is important. For mine, I set the quality to 7, saved it as a JPG, and chose the image size 1600 x 1070. This is the standard size for my website. If you were using Pinterest image sizes, you could set it for a 2:3 aspect ratio such as 900 x 600 px or 1500 x 1000 px.
It’s important to note that it won’t necessarily resize the image to that exact dimension, but the image will fit inside those dimensions and will not be any bigger than that. The image retains its proportions.
Before running the batch process, click on SAVE to save the settings for next time. That way you won’t have to run through this all over again. After you save, click on RUN. Photoshop will run through all the photos and resize them in a new folder. Now you’ll have your originals where they were initially, but also have a folder with the smaller images that you can work with. In this example, the new file is labeled “JPEG”.
After resizing or optimizing, upload the images to your free Canva account using the “upload” tab. Just browse to the images and upload them. After that, drop the images into your pins and edit the colors, text, and CTA fields. When you finish, download the new pins to your computer. Lastly, go to Publish and click to download. Select all the images you want to save and then choose “PNG” for the image type.
Pinterest Templates: Key Points
- Use Pinterest Templates for Canva to save time and money. You don’t need to know graphic design, specific sizing and aspect ratio, or difficult programs.
- Canva is easy to use, even for beginners.
- You only need the free version of Canva to design.
- You can start designing and editing templates immediately.
- Use free or paid templates but make them your own with branding, photos, and more.
- Before you start using templates to create pins, make sure you have your content ready and a working title to use. You can use Co-Schedule for headline rankings.
- Stock photos are a must, but find ones with clear licensing for commercial use.
- Canva allows you to create standard pins, but is also easy to use for video pins. You can do it all in one program.
Want to Get Started Using Templates?
Grab the free 10-pack of Pinterest Templates for Canva specifically designed for Pinterest pins! Sign up to the list and start creating your next set of professional-looking pins for your business.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links that, if clicked and purchased, I earn a small commission. If you take issue with that, visit the direct link and defund my latte coffers.