It’s more than a social media network for saving or “pinning” your favorite recipes, dream house, vision boards, and other cute things: you can actually make money on Pinterest.
If you’ve been pinning for years and have been wondering if your pins can translate to cash, you’ll find that there are several ways that pinning can make you money.
However, some of these methods may be outdated or even violate Pinterest terms and conditions.
Today, learn why you should use Pinterest and read about Pinterest-approved ways of making money on the platform.
Why You Should Focus on Pinterest
It should be noted that to make money on Pinterest, you need to sign up for Pinterest for business, which has features that are important for you to develop your strategies to make money.
Pinterest is a darling of businesses and marketers alike because it’s a massive search engine filled with stunning visual content.
This makes Pinterest a great marketing tool for highly visual industries such as food and drink, weddings and events, beauty, fashion, DIY and crafts, home décor, travel, and many others.
In addition, Pinterest users are highly engaged; they actively pin, repin, click links, and share content on Pinterest.
Its analytics tools also provide insight into what your Pinterest audience loves right now. You can then use that information to create content that they can’t help but be drawn to.
More importantly, users who find products on Pinterest are more likely to actually buy them.
Set Up Your Pinterest for Success
Hopefully, you’re convinced that Pinterest can be a lucrative platform.
The next step for you is to set up your Pinterest account so you can grow your account and start making money on Pinterest.
Find your niche.
Your Pinterest account is more effective if your content is cohesive instead of pinning content of any random topic.
You do need to balance finding a niche you’re genuinely interested in and a niche that is profitable.
To give you an idea, here are some of the most popular and profitable Pinterest niches.
- Food and Drink
- DIY & Crafts
- Women’s Fashion
- Health & Fitness
That said, know who your target audience is. For instance, if you want to run a travel-themed Pinterest account, you need to keep in mind what type of traveler you specifically want to attract.
Younger people may be attracted to places off the beaten path or where they can backpack through, while older people may be attracted to places with more comfortable accommodations and has activities that aren’t too rigorous.
Create beautiful Pins.
You want content that catches Pinterest users’ eyes and inspires them to click or tap on your Pins, and possibly like, Repin, and comment on them. That interaction and engagement is at the core of your money-making strategy, so you need to make sure that you only use the best images.
As much as possible, images should be high-quality, in focus, and well-composed.
In contrast to Instagram photos, Pinterest photos are more effective when they’re in portrait mode because they fill smartphone screens better.
With that in mind, don’t be afraid to collage square or landscape images into a single portrait mode image.
Learn how to write search engine-friendly captions.
As I’ve mentioned, Pinterest is really a search engine for images.
But creating search engine-friendly captions means your content can show up in search results not only for Pinterest but for Google search and other search engines.
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Build your audience.
Working on your visual content and captions only go so far; the next step is to go out there and actively engage with your audience.
Visit Pinterest accounts of those who have liked, Repinned, and commented on your Pins, and do the same to their Pins. Follow their accounts, too.
Create a group board and encourage followers to Pin in your group boards. You can then prioritize engaging with these Pins as these are “fans” of your content.
Make sure you’re posting consistently. Follow a specific schedule so that your audience can anticipate your Pins. Use applications and software if you must.
Know how to use Pinterest Analytics.
Yet another key part of making money on Pinterest is knowing what’s working for your audience.
Pinterest Analytics allows you to look at how often your Pins are shown, which Pins are getting the most engagement, and how many times your links are being clicked.
5 Ways to Make Money on Pinterest
The following money-making methods below require that the Pinterest member should have a well-established account.
This means you already have hundreds or thousands of pins organized on your dashboard before you begin any of these monetizing options:
1. Become a Pinterest Influencer
If you’ve read our post about Instagram Influencers and how they’ve been making bank, you’ll have an idea of how you can become an influential personality on Pinterest and use it to earn money.
An influencer on Pinterest is someone who has plenty of followers and, more importantly, engages with their followers. Brands are likely to pay them to promote products and services.
“Promoting” can mean anything from Repinning a company’s Pins to inviting a third-party company to join a group board.
Pinterest is okay with this and has been working on solutions and policies to make collaborations between Pinterest members and companies as hassle-free as possible.
How much can you make?
Unlike Instagram and Facebook influencers who have been doing this for years, Pinterest influencers are relatively new to the game. As such, there isn’t much information being shared regarding fees for promoting third-party companies.
Expect influencers to earn anywhere from $50 per promotion to thousands of dollars per campaign.
2. Get a Pinterest VA Job
If you’re up for a part-time or full-time job with fixed schedules, you can turn your Pinterest knowledge into a full-blown virtual assistant (VA) job.
Individual entrepreneurs and businesses know the power of Pinterest to grow their brands and sell their products and services but may not have the time to create content, examine analytics, run Pinterest ads, and manage their Pinterest account themselves.
As most VAs do, the job is likely a home-based or remote job, but you’ll likely be given a regular schedule.
Your knowledge of Pinterest for business will be very useful for this job.
How much can you make?
Depending on your experience as a Pinterest VA, you can earn somewhere from $20 to $50 an hour.
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If you prefer working freelance, you can offer Pinterest management plans (paid on a monthly basis) for $150 to $300 per client.
3. Become a Pinterest Consultant
As a Pinterest consultant, you’re more than just the average VA. You’re the expert in the field.
Someone who has plenty of experience and tricks up her/his sleeves to make a client’s Pinterest game competitive.
In short, you have to be the authority in turning Pinterest into your client’s gold mine.
Michelle Schroeder-Gardner of Making Sense of Cents details how she has shared everything she knew about Pinterest, finding her first client, expanding her network, mistakes she’d made, and how she promotes her own services.
How much can you make?
Like Pinterest virtual assistants, you have two options when pricing your Pinterest consultancy services. You can either go by-the-hour (around $20 to $30 an hour), or a monthly rate (from $100 to $500/month).
The fees you set would depend on the services included in the packages. One-on-one Skype calls, for example, often demand a much higher rate.
4. Cash in as a Pinterest Affiliate Marketer
Affiliate marketing remains an unbeatable way to earn income online, but not everyone knows that you can take advantage of the millions of Pinterest users by including affiliate links in their Pins.
The statistics of Pinterest users and their buying power are pretty impressive. Many Pinterest users go to the platform to find what they want, plan and save for future purchases, and actually buy those items in the future.
With Pinterest affiliate marketing, you don’t need a blog or thousands of followers either. You just need to master how to use keywords on your pins and descriptions, and the users will find your content via search.
This method of earning money from Pinterest has become so popular that Pinterest actually banned the practice in February 2015. The company tried to get back 100% of the control from external affiliates, but eventually lifted the ban and officially allowed Pinterest affiliate marketing again in May 2016.
Pinterest made rules about affiliate marketing clearer in their Community Guidelines under Affiliate guidelines, Paid Partnership guidelines, and Spam rules to prevent abuse from users.
Bear in mind, though, that Pinterest can take this back at any time as they did before. You can still do affiliate marketing indirectly; that is, you can post affiliate links in your own website or blog, and then link to that page on your Pin.
This strategy is actually much more favored by affiliate marketers who are in it for the long run. Aside from being safe from changes in terms and conditions by Pinterest, directing users to a blog post about the product you’re offering allows you to sell its benefits and features more thoroughly instead of being limited to a short Pinterest caption.
How much can you make?
The income potential of Pinterest affiliate marketing is entirely up to you. And since everything you put out into the Pinterest world will forever be online, you can build a passive income stream with your past and current pins.
Like any kind of affiliate marketing, don’t expect overnight results with Pinterest affiliate marketing. You’re likely to start earning mere pennies a day, which will gradually increase if you do affiliate marketing correctly and have your Pins go viral.
5. Sell your own products
If selling other people’s products doesn’t sound very appealing to you, why not try selling your own products instead?
You would need to have an e-commerce website where you can link your Pins to.
Pinterest for Business actually has features that can help you increase your sales. For instance, they have Product Rich Pins that integrate important information on your website to your Pins.
As a result, when you post a Pin of the product you’re offering, Pinterest users can see right on your Pin the latest price, whether it’s in stock, and the description of your product. When they click on the link, it takes them to your website where they can order it immediately.
You get to see which products are popular with Pinterest users and you can use that information when deciding which products to sell.
It takes a bit of learning to implement, but this is a very useful feature.
Moreover, it works for all kinds of products, whether physical or digital.
How much can you make?
There are many factors that can affect how much you earn from Pinterest-directed traffic to your ecommerce website that it’s hard to put a dollar amount on it.
What’s the best way to make money on Pinterest?
There is no single best way to earn from Pinterest.
You’d need to study all the options and pick which one best suits what you want out of Pinterest.
Aside from getting a Pinterest virtual assistant job, all the other four methods of making money on Pinterest require patience and consistency to grow from pennies to dollars to a four-digit monthly income. It’s a long game, but if you do it right, the rewards are definitely worth the wait.
Becoming a Pinterest influencer takes time and a lot of pinning. You can’t just create a Pinterest account and become an influencer instantly. Those with business know-how, perfect communication skills, and an A+ personality will get far as an influencer.
Pinterest consultancy, as with all kinds of consultant jobs, will only work if you know what you’re talking about (and can back it up with proof).
As a fan of passive income, Pinterest affiliate marketing makes a lot of sense. However, it isn’t for everyone. You’d have to be ready for the work involved (it could take weeks or months for your pins to earn cents) and experiment with A/B testing, various strategies, and other campaigns.
Promoting products is perfect for people who already have an e-commerce website. They can direct traffic from Pinterest to their main business, plus access a wealth of marketing insights through Pinterest Analytics, all without spending a cent.
Start Making Money on Pinterest Today!
Hopefully, this guide has inspired you to choose one of these opportunities and implement them so you can start earning side cash from all your Pinning.
Of course, it may well be the opposite; you may have learned that Pinterest is not for you. Maybe other social media platforms are a better fit for you. Read our guides on making money on Instagram, making money on Twitter, or making money on Facebook.
Ever made money on Pinterest? Did I miss out on a legit, Pinterest-approved method? Share your Pinterest story with us in the comments!