How To Use Pinterest For Affiliate Marketing

Unlike any other major social media platform; Pinterest had a strict policy regarding affiliate links and until May 2016, it was forbidden to include affiliate marketing links within your URLs with the pictures you upload to your Pinterest boards – that ban has now been lifted.

affiliate links on pinterest
The official statement on the Pinterest Business blog.

Us “old-time” Pinterest users remember the days when Pinterest was all for having affiliate links on the platform but once that changed, many moved on to other networks.

Now that the ban has been lifted, I expect many affiliate to go rushing back to the colourful pages of Pinterest with the hopes making a fortune with the viral potential every single pin has.

This is what today’s guide is going to be about; educating and informing the general affiliate marketeer populous that’s currently setting up Pinterest accounts how to use Pinterest for affiliate marketing.

So here’s how to do that;

How To Use Pinterest For Affiliate Marketing
93% of Active Pinners Said They Use Pinterest to Plan for Purchases

Include Affiliate Links On Your Pins & Boards

You can now easily include affiliate links with all the pins you share in the pin description and can also use these links on your boards.

With several free-to-use URL shortening services available to an affiliate marketer today, adding shortened affiliate links to pin in the description section is not a big issue.

Most affiliate programs and companies also provide you the ability to add tracking codes to your affiliate links and this will allow you to monitor the conversions from Pinterest easily.

Promote Your Pins or Boards with Affiliate Links

pinterest ads review
78% Say It’s Useful to See Content from Brands on Pinterest

With more than 100 million users and billions of pins and boards across them, Pinterest is a vast ocean where finding a pin or board can be almost impossible.

Chances of a random user arriving at your board or pin are extremely low and as such many users actively promote their pins and boards using various methods.

This is even more important for pins and boards with affiliate links as without a sufficiently high number of visitors, affiliate links are not going to be of any help to you.

You can use various methods for promoting your pins.

Promoted Pins is Pinterest’s version of Facebook ads which allows a user to promote their pins by paying a small fee. Promoted pins are quite like other modes of advertisement found on other social media networks.

With promoted pins, you can direct a user who clicks on your pin to your website and in this case, you’ll on a pay per click basis.

This option is ideal for you if you want to redirect a user to a specific URL or website after clicking on a pin posted by you.

There is also an option to select engagement in the promoted pin campaign objective which can help you in increasing the engagement on your pins.

If you use this option then you’ll have to pay for re-pin, close-up views, and clicks as engagement require you to pay on a pay per action taken basis.

Many people also share their pins and boards on their other social media accounts such as on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram etc. as this will allow you to tap into your followers on other social sites and can vastly increase the reach of your pins and boards.

Need Ideas? See how these 18 Pinterest experts do it.

Remember Not to Be Too Sales Focused

the joy of not being sold anything

Marketing on Pinterest is quite like marketing on other social media channels and using a too heavy sale based approach can backfire and may even reduce the number of your followers.

The first goal of anyone who joins Pinterest is to look for awesome and attractive content. Too many pins with affiliate links will be a big turn off for your users.

You must maintain a healthy balance of pins with and without affiliate links.

Although there is no fixed ratio, many users cite various ratios such as 80% pins without affiliate links and 20% pins with affiliate links.

Others cite ratios of 70-30 or 60-40, you’ll have to do a little bit of testing and see what works for you as when it comes to intricacies of affiliate marketing on Pinterest and social media there is no one size fits all solution available.

Read: The 4 Best Affiliate Programs For Beginners

Avoid Spamming aka Don’t Ruin It, Please

Many users to generate more sales and profits forget the line between social media marketing and spamming.

You must share your pins only on your profile and related boards which are focused on the same topic.

Over recent years, Pinterest has revised its algorithm and has added quite an advanced spam detection tool which can detect most types of spam activity.

The image in the pin must be consistent with the destination URL.

If you are using a picture of a product, but the users are directed to a completely unrelated webpage, then this is spam and can get you banned from Pinterest.

Some users also advise against using shortened URLs in affiliate links, but there is no clear evidence to suggest that this is the case and the jury is still out on the question of using shortened URLs for affiliate links on Pinterest.

Use Disclosures (If You Want To Play It Safe)

FTC guidelines make it necessary to disclose if you are going to be paid when a user buys something using an affiliate link.

This is also a question of ethics as selling someone a product without telling them that you’ll be paid a commission for each sale also doesn’t sound right from a moral point of view.

Disclosing your affiliate links can indeed have an overall positive effect on your followers as research has shown that people tend to trust those who disclose any financial or monetary interest in a product which they are promoting beforehand.

Read: How To Increase Your Earnings As An Affiliate Marketer




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Final Words

Pinterest has emerged as one of the leading social media sites in a short amount of time and has become an indispensable tool for marketers using the powers of images and graphics for selling products and services.

By following the above-mentioned tips, you can use this wonderful tool for affiliate marketing and add another income stream to your online income.

Despite the focus on graphics, general rules of using Pinterest are quite similar to other social media networks and the above tips in one way or another can be easily applied to sites such as Facebook and Twitter also.

Thank you for reading. Be sure to leave me a comment down below if you have any questions.

Talk soon.

can you make money on pinterest with affiliate marketing

8 thoughts on “How To Use Pinterest For Affiliate Marketing”

  1. I’m an affiliate marketer for about 3 months now. My Pinterest account is even newer- only about 2 weeks old and I have to admit I don’t really know what I’m doing when it comes to it. I also had no idea that Pinterest accounts for so much traffic so I haven’t been putting too much effort into it. But from now on I think I will! Thanks for the great tips:)

    • It will build in time – trust me on this; Just keep at it, use the guidlines and tips otlined here and you’ll be ok. If you have any Qs, be sure to let me know.

  2. Hi Chris,
    This is a great post. I never realised that Pinterest worked so well for affiliate marketers. I just thought it was for sharing cool photos!
    For a platform that hasn’t been around for long it’s amazing how people have seized on it. Is it easy to build a following on Pinterest, or do you need a strategy in place like Twitter?

    • As with everthing ,the bigger the platform gets; the harder it will be to get followers and traction on there. As they say; the best tiem to build a tree is 20 years ago, the second best time is today.

      Go get started with Pinterest and start working on buidign your loyal following. 🙂

  3. Great post! I’m happy to hear that the ban for putting affiliate links has been lifted. I wonder why they did this?

    Out of all social media platforms for my niche Pinterest is the key to drive traffic to my site. I haven’t gotten many saved pins from people even though they see my pins and I think it’s because I don’t have any photoshop/graphic designing skills. I just select a picture and I upload but the most popular pins seem to be those with some fancy text in the pictures. Do you know what I mean

    What kind of programs can we use to create these fancy texts in our pictures without having to actually learn graphic designing and etc?

  4. Chris,
    I agree with you that Pinterest is really an undervalued method used by marketers in being able to drive traffic to his/her online business.

    Just like any other social media platform you have to build up a following first; done by performing this same task for others. Too often people like to “pin” in this case links to articles/posts soon after joining a social media site as if they’re shilling something way too soon.

    I also read the link to another article that you wrote which provided training on exactly how to get tons of traffic through Pinterest as well as the thoughts you shared with the 18 business owners who have created success through this site.

    Great article sir!


    • Thank you Jeff. Glad my article was insightful to you. 😉 Let me know if you need help getting started with Pinterest. 🙂


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