Pinterest affiliate marketing is almost unheard of despite the platform a major source of referral traffic for many websites.
A lot of new bloggers and online entrepreneurs take on Amazon Associates and Google Adsense as their first source of revenue.
But what many of them don’t realize is that on Pinterest — there’s a lot of money to be made.
Think about it — Pinterest is the first port of call for people who are looking for inspiration.
Whether it’s for their outfits, travel itineraries, recipes, fitness goals, or hobbies, Pinterest traffic almost always gives you qualified leads.
In fact, 93% of Pinterest users turn to the platform to plan for or make purchases.
Why are not a lot of bloggers and affiliate marketers taking advantage of this?
…because they think it requires a ton of work.
…because they don’t think it’s working.
Today, that’s about to change.
Before diving into the nuts and bolts, I will give you a concise definition of Pinterest affiliate marketing.
And then we will tackle how to make money on Pinterest.
We will also cover some important reminders and tips on how to go about your affiliate marketing on Pinterest and some frequently asked questions.
What Is Pinterest Affiliate Marketing?
Pinterest affiliate marketing is a clever way of promoting or recommending affiliate products to your followers on the platform through pins, even if you don’t have a website.
True to the nature of affiliate marketing, you get a commission from the products purchased through your affiliate link.
This comes at no cost to you or your follower.
Want to know the ins and outs of affiliate marketing?
Check out the best affiliate marketing courses in 2020!
3 Ways to Make Money on Pinterest
Now that we got that out of the way, let’s dive into the different methods on how to make money on Pinterest with affiliate links.
1. Embed Affiliate Links in Your Pinterest Pins
It works pretty simply.
There are two ways to do this:
1. Create new pins, publish them on Pinterest, and place your affiliate links.
2. Edit your existing pins and replace the current link with one of your affiliate links.
Pro tip — when designing pins, always include an image of the product you are promoting.
Also, add a text overlay to the image that describes what the product is and why it is worth buying.
This motivates potential buyers to click on the pin and hopefully put the affiliate product in the cart.
For digital products, make sure to include a mockup. If you can’t manage you obtain a mockup of the product, create your own.
In your pin description, add keywords relevant to the affiliate product.
This makes sure your pins show up at the top of the search results for the right keywords.
And that could mean more views, more impressions, and more clicks.
It is important to follow FTC rules to avoid run-ins down the road. And make sure to declare that you are using an affiliate link on your pin.
One good way to do this is to write “affiliate,” “aff,” or any equivalent words on the image or pin description.
2. Drive Qualified Traffic to Your ‘Money Posts’
If you have affiliate posts, you want to drive traffic to them as much as you can.
These are not called “money posts” for nothing; these could drive significant affiliate revenue.
Luckily, SEO is not the only way to do that.
Pinterest can be a great platform to drive not just any other traffic but qualified traffic.
The best affiliate posts to drive traffic to are those that are already performing well.
Here’s what you can do — select 5 – 10 of your most popular affiliate posts, whether it is a product roundup, buyer’s guide, product review, recipes, or how-to guides.
Then design 5 new pins to boost each of these blog posts.
And when you publish these new pins, make sure to embed the right blog post link.
Don’t have a blog yet?
Learn how to start an affiliate website and start generating passive income.
3. Promote an Affiliate Email Sequence on Pinterest
This method requires more time and energy, but it can pay big dividends if you do it right.
The only thing you will need is your email list and a reliable autoresponder.
Don’t have an email list? Well, it is a good time to start building one.
So what is an email sequence, by the way?
It’s simple — an email sequence is a series of emails you send to your email subscribers ideally daily for a few days to a week.
By the end of the sequence, you will promote or share your affiliate products with your list.
Where does Pinterest fit in the process?
1. Design an opt-in freebie
The opt-in freebie should be related to the affiliate product you are promoting.
The freebie could be a workbook, template, cheatsheet, video tutorial, or even a mini-course.
2. Craft a follow-up email
The follow-up email for the freebie should be around 3 – 7 emails.
Each follow-up email must give value to prevent your subscribers from opting out of your email list.
3. Promote an affiliate product
In your last email, promote a relevant affiliate product and include your affiliate link within the email.
When introducing the product, make sure to focus on the benefits rather than the features.
Again, include an affiliate disclosure. Place it before the affiliate link.
A simple statement like, “This email contains affiliate links” should do.
4. Design 5 new pins
These pins should promote your opt-in freebie.
When publishing these pins, make sure to link them to the landing page for the freebie.
Pinterest Affiliate Marketing Ideas
If you have a niche and a website up already, feel free to skip this part.
But if you are still exploring your options what industries are the most effective and lucrative when doing affiliate marketing on Pinterest…
Here are some ideas to get you off the ground:
- Food blogs
Cooking and other food and beverage-related stuff are highly favored by the Pinterest gods.
You can create boards and pins for your kitchenware, recipes, cookbooks, aprons, and kitchen appliances.
- Fashion blogs
Fashion blogs are a goldmine for affiliate links!
You can link shirts, pants, jeans, shoes, watches, sunglasses, hats, belts — literally everything you have in your closet.
- Mommy blogs
Mommy blogs are huge on Pinterest!
You can bank on pretty much everything you have in your house — from your little boy’s clothes to toddler snacks to children’s books to kitchenware.
- Make money online blogs
This type of blog does not have as much audience as the previous niches, but I’m telling you this is a pretty profitable area.
You can link courses, email providers, business software, domain and web hosts, etc.
- Save money or coupon blogs
Personal finance, particularly saving money, is a popular subject.
You can share pins about cash-back websites, companies that can save you money, banking, daily deal sites, online consignment stores, etc.
- DIY blogs
Link your favorite craft supplies, DIY tools, online courses, etc.
Pinterest Affiliate Marketing Tips
To help you become more effective with your Pinterest affiliate marketing game, here are some tips and reminders you should keep in mind:
1. Always disclose Pinterest affiliate links
I have said it twice and I will say it again — include affiliate disclosure on your pins to avoid any potential problems.
Failure to do so may get you banned from the affiliate network you are a member of or get penalized by the FTC.
In your pin description, you can use the hashtag #affiliate or #aff at the end.
2. Create boards
Boards are a great way to organize your pins according to themes or categories.
It’s also a more effective way to promote affiliate products.
Create 8 – 10 boards and name the boards accordingly to make it easier for your followers to navigate around.
Your boards have to be diverse (not random, though) that your future audience can appreciate.
For instance, if you are running a fitness blog, you may include boards for weight loss, bodyweight exercises, yoga, pilates, cross-fit, etc.
Be specific with your boards like “Travel Gear,” “Home Office Tools,” or “Best Tools for Bloggers.”
3. Write compelling descriptions
Pin descriptions are as important as the pin itself.
Make sure that your descriptions are compelling enough to tell your followers to visit your blog, review, website, or affiliate site.
A good description is informative and straightforward.
Use 2 – 3 sentences, and add in relevant keywords.
4. Design multiple pin variations
It’s good to have not just one but a couple of pinnable images.
Diverse source of traffic.
Five pins for each Pinterest affiliate link means five sources of traffic.
Also, multiple pins enable your single link to be promoted multiple times.
Ideally, design 5 variations of a pin.
5. Avoid link shorteners
Using link shortening tools like Bitly, Ow.ly, and Pretty Link is against Pinterest’s Acceptable Use Policy.
6. Don’t go too crazy with your links
I know what you are thinking — more pins with your affiliate links in it means more money.
But don’t go too crazy. It might backfire.
Your followers — even the non-savvy ones — will see right through your intentions.
Promotional links are annoying, let alone hundreds or even thousands of Pinterest affiliate links.
So calm down with your links!
Pinterest Affiliate Marketing FAQs
We at Performance Funnels have been asked quite a lot of Pinterest affiliate marketing questions.
Here are some of the burning questions:
1. Are affiliate links allowed on Pinterest?
Yes, of course!
Pinterest banned affiliate links on its platform in 2015 due to the overwhelming number of spams.
But on May 12, 2016, Pinterest made affiliate links a thing again.
2. How can I use affiliate marketing on Pinterest without a website?
You can do affiliate marketing on Pinterest by adding affiliate links straight to your pins.
Or you can build or buy an email list where you can promote your affiliate products.
Check out the #1 and #3 ways to make money on Pinterest above.
3. Can I make money from Pinterest?
Yes, you can definitely make money with Pinterest.
Pinterest affiliate marketing is the most effective way.
Check out the different ways to make money on Pinterest above.
4. Can you use Amazon affiliate links on Pinterest 2020?
A very common question!
Yes, you can use Amazon Associates affiliate links on Pinterest.
But what about direct Amazon links?
No. You are not going to make money off it.
Take note that using Amazon’s pictures on Pinterest (or anywhere else for that matter) is strictly prohibited.
Alternatively, you can use office product images and turn them into pinnable images using Canva or any other tool.
5. How many Pinterest followers do you need to get paid?
Having followers on Pinterest does not get you paid.
But you can leverage your following to promote your affiliate products.
It does not matter if you have 100 followers or 10,000 followers.
If you are not doing Pinterest affiliate marketing, you are not going to get paid.
Final Thoughts – Is Pinterest Affiliate Marketing Worth It?
Pinterest affiliate marketing takes a bit of practice.
But once you get the hang of it, you are on to greater things.
Pinterest delivers an impressively high return on investment than other social media networks.
It is, in fact, free.
If you decide to invest in a social media tool to automate your pins, the cost is very minimal.
Tailwind, for instance, costs around $10 – $15 per month.
A small investment to save you a ton of time and effort.
Yes, Pinterest affiliate marketing is not simple or easy, but it surely is worth it.