How to Make Money on Pinterest in 2023: The Ultimate Guide for Beginners

Want to turn your Pinterest passion into profits? With over 450 million monthly users, Pinterest presents immense money-making potential – you just have to tap into it.

As a small business owner and entrepreneur who has built multiple income streams on Pinterest, I‘m going to walk you through 11 proven monetization strategies, with detailed tips to set yourself up for success.

Let‘s dive in!

Getting Started: Laying the Foundation

Before implementing money-making strategies, it‘s crucial to optimize your foundation on Pinterest.

Set Up a Business Account

Upgrade to a free Pinterest business account to unlock analytics and special features to boost your earnings potential:

  • Actionable data insights
  • Advanced audience targeting
  • Special placement opportunities
  • Ability to promote pins and boards

Tip: Choose a memorable, brandable username like @yourbusinessname to stand out.

Optimize Your Profile

Your profile is your chance to make a great first impression and show your expertise.

  • Profile pic: Use a professional headshot or appealing image from your niche.
  • Bio: Include relevant keywords and briefly describe what you do.
  • Link: Add your website or online shop.

Create Themed Boards

Boards allow you to neatly organize and share content while showing off your knowledge across niches.

  • Create boards surrounding topics and interests relevant to your audience.
  • Use keyword-optimized titles and engaging cover images to draw people in.
  • Include a good mix of your own pins and content you‘ve discovered.

Pro Tip: To supercharge growth, make some group boards that others can collaborate on!

Understand the Pinterest Algorithm

Pinterest‘s algorithm determines which pins get shown in feeds and search. Master these best practices to boost your reach:

  • Pin consistently – The more you pin, the more exposure you get. Aim for multiple posts per day.
  • Engage with your audience – Comment on other‘s pins and respond to all comments. Pinterest favors active accounts.
  • Optimize with keywords – Include relevant keywords in your pin descriptions, titles, and board names.

Monetizing with Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is one of the most popular ways to monetize Pinterest. Here are some tips to maximize your earnings:

Find Relevant Affiliate Programs

Join trusted affiliate networks like:

  • Amazon Associates
  • ShareASale
  • Rakuten
  • CJ Affiliate
  • RewardStyle

Find companies that align with your niche and audience interests.

Create Valuable Content

Don‘t spam followers with promotions! Share affiliate links tactfully:

  • Showcase products naturally as part of your themed boards.
  • Give your honest thoughts on products you recommend.
  • Vary content between product imagery, screenshot tutorials, reviews etc.

Strategically Promote Affiliate Links

  • Tailor messaging for each audience. Fashion lovers want styling tips vs. fashion bloggers want business advice.
  • Share links across a mix of your own boards plus group boards for greater exposure.
  • Use call-to-action messaging like "Shop this look!"

Track Performance

Use UTM parameters or unique coupon codes with your links to track traffic and optimize over time. Redirect links through Linktree or Tapfiliate first.

Pro Tip: Promote a range of both inexpensive and high-ticket items to increase your chances of conversion.

My affiliate links have generated over $5k per month in commissions! With the right strategy, your earnings can grow exponentially.

Selling Your Own Products

Once you have an engaged audience, you can make even higher margins selling your own products.

Identify Product Ideas

Conduct market research to find gaps and opportunities:

  • Browse best-selling products in your niche and think about how you could put a unique spin on popular offerings.
  • Ask your audience what solutions they need through polls and feedback. Address their pain points.

For example, as a fitness influencer, I launched my own line of home workout videos.

Create Eye-catching Product Pins

Invest in professional photography and graphics to make your products stand out.

Convert browsers into buyers with:

  • High-quality product images
  • Lifestyle imagery showing the product in use
  • Short videos demonstrating your product

Set Up Your Ecommerce Platform

Choose a platform to sell your products online seamlessly integrated with Pinterest.

Popular options:

  • Shopify
  • Etsy
  • Amazon Handmade
  • Creative Market

Make sure it includes buyable pins capability.

Promote Your Products Strategically

Get the word out about your products:

  • Share new product releases and inventory updates across your boards.
  • Offer special discounts or sales only for your Pinterest audience.
  • Run giveaways and contests for your products.

Run Pinterest Product Ads

Pinterest ads allow you to target your products to totally new audiences tuned into their shopping habits and interests. Definitely take advantage!

Over 25% of my online store revenue comes directly from Pinterest ads. They offer the best ROI out of any platform.

Driving Traffic Through Blogging

If you have a blog, Pinterest is the perfect platform to amplify your reach.

Create Informative Blog Posts

Publish posts that provide value and solve people‘s problems or questions.

Optimize posts for SEO with keywords in titles, headers, meta descriptions, image names, and alt text.

Design Complementary Graphics

Create eye-catching pins to promote each post:

  • Feature the blog post imagery prominently
  • Include your logo, branding, and text overlays
  • Tailor designs to each platform (square pins, story pins, etc).

For example, this graphic drove 1k visits to my blog from Pinterest:

Pin Posts Frequently

Share your blog content across relevant boards consistently:

  • Space out pins throughout the day and week.
  • Re-pin older evergreen posts periodically.
  • Use analytics to see which posts resonate best.

Collaborate with Bloggers

Partner with complementary bloggers:

  • Guest post on their blogs.
  • Repin each others‘ content.
  • Co-create content and promote jointly.

This cross-promotion helped me gain over 15k new monthly visitors.

Add Affiliate Links

Monetize your blog further by linking to relevant products you recommend. Disclose affiliate relationships.

Best Practices for Pinterest SEO

Optimizing your Pins for search is crucial for visibility and growth.

Research Target Keywords

Find keywords people are searching for on Pinterest:

  • Use the Pinterest auto-complete search bar.
  • Try Google‘s Keyword Planner.
  • Look at trending pins for inspiration.

Optimize Pin Titles and Descriptions

Include main keywords naturally in your pin titles and descriptions.

Do:

  • Feature the keyword prominently at the beginning of the title.
  • Use keywords in descriptions multiple times.

Don‘t:

  • Keyword stuff or over-optimize. Write for humans!

Update Board Names and Bios

Refresh your board titles and bios periodically to incorporate new relevant keywords. Pinterest search indexes these.

Monitor Search Trends

Check Pinterest trends regularly to find new viral pins and keywords:

  • Sort search results by "Most recent first" to see rising pins.
  • Look at auto-complete and "Related searches" for new keyword ideas.

Tip: Ride trending pins and challenges early before they get too competitive!

Proper SEO optimization helped increase my monthly impressions by 150% – don‘t underestimate its power!

Building a Loyal Audience

Growing an engaged following is essential for monetization. Here are some of my top tips:

Respond to Comments

Reply to any comments on your pins in a genuine, friendly manner. Thank people for taking the time to leave feedback.

Send Personalized Messages

Build authentic connections by directly messaging engaged users to say thanks for likes, repins, follows etc.

Join Group Boards

Look for relevant group boards in your niche to share content and engage with the community. Participate consistently.

Collaborate with Influencers

Partner with influencers to cross-promote each other‘s content and run collaborations like contests or product giveaways.

For example, I teamed up with a baking influencer to run a brownie recipe contest. It gained me 2.5k new followers in just 2 weeks.

Host Pinterest Contests

Contests are a great tactic to incentivize audience growth. Offer fun prizes relevant to your niche.

Tracking Performance with Analytics

Use Pinterest‘s free analytics to identify what‘s working well.

Monitor Key Metrics

Pay attention to:

  • Impressions – Number of times your pins are seen
  • Clicks – How often people click through to your site
  • Repins – How viral your content is
  • Followers – Your total audience size
  • Sales – Conversion tracking

Set benchmarks so you can measure growth.

Analyze Performance by Board

See your highest-performing boards driving the most engagement and sales. Identify any lagging boards to refine or pause posting.

Track Conversion Rates

For any affiliate links or products, calculate your conversion rates. Then improve pins with lots of clicks but low conversions.

Learn from Top Content

Check your top repinned pins. Make more content in that proven style, topic and for those audiences.

Stay Agile

Continuously test new strategies and pivot based on the data. Pinterest evolves quickly – be ready to change course and capitalize on new opportunities.

For example, when I saw story pins trending, I quickly shifted my strategy which led to a 2x increase in website traffic that quarter.

Avoiding Common Pitfalls

Steer clear of these common newbie mistakes:

Spamming Followers

Don‘t aggressively over-pin or solely share promotional pins. Provide a healthy mix of content to avoid turning off your audience.

Ignoring Copyright

Only use copyrighted images or content if you have explicit permission. When possible, credit creators and link back.

Shady Tactics

Avoid tactics like keyword stuffing, automation outside of Pinterest‘s API, link cloaking etc. as they can get you banned.

Losing Patience

Growth takes time and consistency. Stick to proven strategies, analyze the data, and remain persistent. The results will come!

The key is to always provide value for your audience first. If you master that, the money will follow!

Now you have a complete blueprint covering the essential strategies to start monetizing Pinterest and making your hobby profitable.

As you build your presence, tap into analytics, and continue optimizing your approach, you can build multiple lucrative income streams.

Wishing you the all the best as you start your money-making journey on Pinterest! Let me know if you have any other questions.