Throughout 2020 and 2021 Pinterest has changed, and not for the better. Have you seen a decline in your traffic from Pinterest or perhaps a complete nose dive? If so this post might help you navigate some of the issues bloggers are having with Pinterest traffic lately and give you some tips on how to improve your odds of luring people off of Pinterest and onto your website.
If you spend any time in Facebook groups or in forums where bloggers and niche website owners are discussing growing their sites you will have come across a discussion of how many feel Pinterest just isn’t worth their time anymore.
Pinterest Impressions Dropping
Many bloggers have seen their Pinterest impressions and traffic from Pinterest drop over the last year.
And for many, the word dropped is an understatement. Completely tanked would be a better description.
It started with some people noticing a drop while others weren’t affected. But by summer 2021 just about everyone was seeing the issue on their accounts.
By July 2021 there was not one of my sites that wasn’t given the snub by whatever Pinterest has done with their algorithm.
Gone are the days of being able to put up a pin and see traffic start coming in within minutes if you had a great pin and good Pinterest SEO.
Instead, you get crickets for days, then weeks, and usually at least 3 months (if you’re lucky) on every new pin you try.
New Pinterest Shinies Shoved Down Our Throats
First, it began with video pins.
Pinterest created these new types of pins that many didn’t want to use because they made the interface clunky. Plus video pins didn’t encourage users to click through to your site. Why in the world would us, as content creators, want that?
So we didn’t make them. And in true “You are going to use what we make whether you like it or not” fashion Pinterest seemed to flip a switch on regular pins. Suddenly what would have gotten 2.3k views in a few hours saw 20 in a week. Unless of course, you used a video pin……
Create a video pin and suddenly all the users saw what you put up there.
This continued on for a bit, and many creators gave in and started making video pins to get people to see their content in some form.
But then someone at Pinterest apparently thought “we must do what every other social media platform is doing” and they created Story Pins.
These didn’t go over too well with content creators either. And instead of fixing the problem and listening to the business owners that used the platform, they renamed them into Idea Pins and acted like it was something totally new.
And who would have guessed, content creators still didn’t like the spit-shined turd (I don’t know any way else to describe them).
So Pinterest flipped another switch and now in addition to your regular pins not getting seen, video pins also are in the dog house too.
To get people to see your stuff you now HAVE to use Idea Pins.
I mean you can pin regular pins, but they’re going to sit for 3 to 6 months before anything happens. And that’s if the Shiny Pinterest Overlords at Pinterest don’t have some other terrible idea that they will force us to use next.
I mean I understand, Pinterest is a public company now, shareholders have to see a return so users need to stay on the platform. But this has really gone a bit far.
Their obsession with keeping people on the platform is even starting to tick off the regular users.
I’ve seen many crafters that have used Pinterest in the past to find projects to do now saying that they can’t stand using the platform because it’s become so user-unfriendly.
Word of the wise to Pinterest here: You need users to keep making some money…. shocker, I know.
Is Pinterest Good For Blog Traffic?
Now I know after all of the gloom and doom above it might seem that the obvious answer is no, but that’s not true.
Using Pinterest for traffic is just different now. Very, very different.
One of the main complaints that people used to have with driving traffic to their sites from Pinterest is that it was exhausting.
You had to pin 30+ times per day. Spend forever creating pins, pin titles, and pin descriptions. Finding yet even more pin templates. And the list goes on.
But the good news is that with the changes that Pinterest has made, you no longer need to spend forever doing this stuff. They’ve actually handed you some time back due to their, destruction….. obliteration….. whatever you want to call the fiasco that they have created.
You can get traffic from Pinterest still. I have a site in the Home and Garden niche, 50% of my traffic still comes from Pinterest. 40% of this site’s traffic still comes from Pinterest. And my craft site gets 80% of its traffic from Pinterest.
The trick is now playing the waiting game, and also caving into Pinterest’s demands that we use the crappy crap they want us to use.
So below are some of the things I use in my Pinterest traffic strategy to still drive traffic from Pinterest:
Still Pin Regular Pins But Only a Few
I still use regular pins in my Pinterest strategy, but the difference is only 2 to 4 pins in a day. That’s it.
This can be a big relief to many who were struggling to keep up with the crazy pinning schedule that was needed before with Pinterest.
I do still use Tailwind for scheduling those pins. My reasons are that I have multiple sites, I don’t want to sit down each day creating pins. Pinterest does have a built-in scheduler but I absolutely hate the clunky thing and it’s much quicker to use Tailwind.
My time saved using Tailwind over the in-house Pinterest scheduler is well worth the subscription cost of Tailwind.
There is also a free version of Tailwind that you can use too. You can check that out here to see if it would fit your needs.
Tailwind Tribes also help out some. While they aren’t anywhere near what they used to be, getting some repins of my regular pins helps out.
Give In To Idea Pins
I know, I know, it makes me want to cry too but that’s how the cookie crumbles.
I’ve seen many Pinterest experts tell people not to make them because they don’t allow people to click through to your site.
And I get that by encouraging others to not use it we’re trying to send a message to Pinterest that it’s crap and they need to change. But let’s face it, if that was going to work they would have listened to us by now and not just create more crap.
Whoever is saying to the decision-makers that this stuff is a good idea, is not paying attention to the creators on Pinterest.
There is a benefit to using Idea Pins, just hear me out here.
In addition to the fact that Pinterest actually lets people see Idea Pins instead of suppressing them like everything else, Idea Pins also encourage people to visit your profile.
This can help bump up your followers and it can help people see some of those regular pins you put up on your profile.
Also when making Idea Pins, in the notes/list section of it put something in there like this: “You can find this and more about [subject] at [yoururlhere.com]“
Doing that will help you in two ways.
#1 People will directly go to your site. I’ve seen it work on my craft site. Once I started doing this my direct traffic doubled.
#2 You get a reduction in your bounce rate, which makes Google happy. Make sure they can find what they are looking for from your home page, and they’ll click through to it.
Encourage People to Pin Your Pins
On my crafting site, I put a button under the pin image that says “Pin this for later”.
And guess what? It works, it works really good.
This can help your pins get traction on the platform.
I have found that pins that are repinned by people on personal accounts actually get thrown in on other’s home pages and the pin will start getting views and clicks before the normal 3 to 6 month time frame.
Do Not Repin Your Own Pins
This is a quick trip to Pinterest spam jail.
Previously the standard Pinterest strategy involved repinning your own pins that were popular and getting clicks.
This is now a big-time no-no.
Pinterest’s spam filter is about the most touchy spam filter I have ever seen.
It flags so many people that are legit and not spamming. And one of the most common things is that a person repinned their own pin.
How Long Does It Take To Get Traffic From Pinterest?
Idea Pins can give you traffic on day 1 as long as you give people specific directions on how to get to your site and don’t give them everything they need in the Idea Pin.
Regular Pins however are taking longer to get traffic coming through Pinterest.
If you have a new account it can take up to 6 months for regular pins. Once your account is better established I’m seeing traffic from regular pins after about 3 months.
My Thoughts About Pinterest Now
While I still feel Pinterest has a place in getting traffic to your site, I don’t feel that it is as good as it once was.
There is still potential there, but not anything like it used to be.
Patience is the key to getting traffic from Pinterest now. You got to sit and wait like you do with Google.
Pin a few pins each day, throw up an Idea Pin and concentrate on other things like creating new content for your site and implement good SEO so you can get even more traffic from Google.