Today we are going to talk about 5 mistakes you’re making on Pinterest traffic and why no one is reading your blog.
- When people are searching for something on Google or Pinterest, they’re looking to get a problem solved, information, or ideas or inspiration. When you write for search engines (and humans), you’re naturally being helpful instead of being disruptive (think FB ads)
- Organic traffic builds on goodwill and with Pinterest, in order to rank high in the search feed, you need people to love your pins and content to increase your own repins
- Pinterest traffic is free of cost and it’s the easiest way to get started
As you know Google made up for over 80% of my traffic for a previous blog I had in the lifestyle/ skin care niche. I was able to get 30K page views per month within the first six months.
So I had high hopes for Pinterest when I hopped on the platform, but I’ll admit that I made a few boo boos. And I’m less than proud of these boo boos because I was too quick to automate pinning.
So today, let’s talk about the mistakes I made the hard way. And hopefully, you won’t have to let that happen to you.
#1 Believing that all group boards are created equal.
If they have a low repin rate, it can harm your account more than lift it! That’s like having a friend who isn’t there when you need help.
Group boards are the bread and butter when you’re starting on Pinterest from the ground up. You want to get a few hundred subscribers on your account to make it look active and legit. And group boards are the easiest way to get your content in front of the eyes of someone else’s followers.
But one of the biggest mistakes I’ve made when I started with Pinterest is joining a few group boards once and calling it a day. I pinned to it consistently and daily and wonder why my traffic was stagnating after three months.
It turns out that not every Pinterest group board is created equal. If the group board you’re on has a low repin rate, this can hurt you more than help you. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to tell if a group board has a high repin rate just by looking at the Pinterest group board.
So what can you do?
There are three ways you can do this:
- Use PinGroupie and when you search for boards to join, filter by repin rate
- Join the group board and give it a two-week test trial
- Check your Tailwind analytics and virality score to see if a group board is worth staying on
Over the last month, I’ve been ruthlessly leaving group boards. Safe to say, it has only helped my traffic and there has been two peak days since I’ve left underperforming boards. The peaks were also because I created a whole new slew of content (almost 20 new articles in less than 1 month!) and double a number of pins to A/B the crap out of what works.
I still think that because my account has suffered a bit since April, it will take some time for it to heal.
#2 automating too much of your Pinterest in the beginning.
Another mistake I made when I started was automating my pinning to early. I know, we all love the idea of marketing automation, right? I know that a lot of big influencers love to teach about automating your Pinterest. They might have been an early adopter and now that their account is ranked higher, automation works for them.
But when you have an account that’s starting from zero followers, according to Pinterest’s algorithm, you have zero points. This means you have to build up your trust with their algorithm by pinning, curating and creating inspiring and actionable content for your audience.
In the beginning, you just have to put in the hard work and be on Pinterest more frequently.
It turns out that Pinterest loves people (including bloggers) who manually pin. And lucky for you, manual pinning, at most, is only a tedious task, not a hard one. Also, Pinterest has a way of knowing if you use tools like Tailwind and Boardbooster to schedule your pins.
So should you stop using and paying for auto-schedulers?
Heck no. Or at least, I’m not going to. There are some days where you just can’t get your butt online. Or maybe you just miss a day or two so schedulers really help you keep a peace of mind. You know there will still be pins going out even when you’re not fully present.
And this brings us to the next point…
#3 Not MANUALLY pinning on a daily basis consistently in the beginning.
In the beginning, you really want to be manually pinning a few times. According to the Tailwind blog, pinning 5-10 times is ideal when you’re starting out. You can pin a little more or less, but it’s more important to be consistent and have your real self on Pinterest rather than pin 100 things today and don’t show up for the next two months.
Who has done that before?
*secretly raises my hand
I tried to focus my efforts too much on different channels and I ended up neglecting the channel that was most important to me.
Try pinning for two weeks, check your Tailwind analytics to see what times your audience is online the most. Then set an alarm notification to go online during those hours to manually pin a few things. Remember, it’s not about quantity, but quality.
#4 Not experimenting and A/B testing as much as you could.
When I see people starting threads on Facebook about, “What’s your least favorite thing about blogging?”, I frequently hear, “marketing.”
Marketing is such a long-term strategy that it isn’t for the impatient. You really want to experiment the shit out of things. On Pinterest this means:
- Testing your headlines
- Testing which content does well
- Testing different images
- Checking your analytics every 2 weeks and adjusting your strategy so you do more of what works and get rid of what doesn’t
#5 Not aiming to get more Repins.
The higher the re-pin and engagement rate, the higher your pin will be ranked in the smart feed!
I knew from the get-go that I wanted to use Pinterest as a traffic channel. So I didn’t really care for repins as much as for a high click-through rate.
Of course, I wanted people to repin my stuff too, but I never tracked my weekly repin rate. I cared more about Pinterest ranking my pins high on their Smart Feed so I optimized with keywords.
Boy was I wrong. It turns out that in order for your pins to rank high in the Smart Feed, a high repin rate was a sign that many people love your content. And if you want it to be in the top two rows on the Smart Feed, you’ll need the pin to be super popular, if not go viral.
Otherwise, its position in the Smart Feed will fluctuate pretty dramatically.
To date, these are two of my most popular pins.
The pin on social media graphics went viral on three boards (including one group board that I’m part of, yay!), according to Boardbooster. The pin on stock photos helped peaked my traffic after a period where my traffic took a heavy dip. Ouch.
I know keeping pulse on analytics might not be the most thrilling thing for you, but it has really helped me track what works and what doesn’t.