What’s up with the newest 2018 Pinterest changes?
I mean, c’mon Pinterest; how’re we supposed to keep up with all of the random shifts you keep making? How’re we supposed to create content that’s up to date, when you change your way of doing things every hour?
But are those “shifts” really so random?
I wrote this post a mere couple of weeks before writing the one you’re reading now, and things have been turned upside down since then.
We’re all looking for ways to Get Ahead of the Newest 2018 Pinterest Changes, but if you stop and think about it for a second, it’s really not that hard to figure out.
If you’ve found this article, it’s probably because you’re wondering what in the Sam Hill is going on with Pinterest? Why are your Pinterest Analytics all over the place?! Why does it show that there are days when you had absolutely NO views, and others when your views are through the roof?
Worst of all, why are your website / blog traffic numbers falling into the toilet, with Google showing you a heavy decline in page views from Pinterest?
In doing a little research, it’s obvious what’s going on with Pinterest. And like many other bloggers, I could give you a laundry list of things that you could be doing and tweaking in order to get some traction for your hard pinning work.
But I’m not going to do that.
I’m not going to do that because besides the fact that I’m not new to the blogging game, I’m also not one to “blow smoke”.
I’m ‘old’ enough in this game to remember that this isn’t the first time that a platform has switched up the way it does things. And I’m ‘old’ enough to remember why the other platforms (and search engines) did what they did (money), and how those changes first started showing themselves.
Pinterest is no different.
If you’re watching your Pinterest analytics soar while Google Analytics is showing you something completely to the contrary for your site, you’re not crazy. You haven’t been ‘banned’ on Pinterest, and your account likely has not been flagged for spamming (not legitimately anyway), as was the concern of a lot of bloggers.
Even big bloggers, those with blogs seeing hundreds of thousands of page views a month have been temporarily flagged and shut down on Pinterest (mistakenly) for spamming on at least one occasion.
It’s all a part of Pinterest’s ‘transition’ process.
The so-called “Pinterest Experts” are all flapping about what you should and shouldn’t do; pin more, no…pin less. Use group boards, no…DON’T use group boards. You should be using Tailwind…wait…maybe don’t use Tailwind so much.
It’s a total cluster****.
No one has any clue what they’re talking about (or they’re pretending they don’t), but the answer is really simple. Apparently no one else wants to tell you that.
The web as we know (and knew) it is changing. Pinterest is changing right along with it, and I can’t say it’s for the better. It’s being tailored for companies with lots of money, and we li’l old bloggers very soon won’t be able to compete.
In order to understand what’s going on with Pinterest and all the changes they’re making, we’re going to have to roll back the clock to something like 2012, maybe 2013, when Facebook pages were the big thing for blogs and businesses, big and small alike.
At the time, I had another blog, and had created a Facebook page for it that had just over 2000 ‘likes’ or ‘fans’. It was awesome. That was back in the day, when the words “organic reach” weren’t cuss words. You could create a blog post, then post it to your Facebook page, and your ‘fans’ could easily access it, share it, like it, whatever.
Those were good times.
Then one day, I wrote what I thought was a particularly fantastic post, and as I usually did, I loaded it to the blog’s Facebook page.
What would normally happen, was that I could see how many of the blog’s ‘fans’ the post was reaching, and the post would start to rack up ‘likes’ and comments…real interaction! But not this day. This day was different. Honestly speaking, I’ve gotta tell ya’ that I’ve never heard crickets chirp that loud before.
My post reached something ridiculous like 6 people out of a potential 2000+, and as far as ‘likes’ went….nothing. And comments? Nada.
I was perplexed. And I was angry. That’s why I refuse to mess with Facebook now.
I started researching what could be happening to my page, tried all sorts of random (thinking back) ‘solutions’ from so-called “experts”, but nothing I did made any difference.
Then, one day shortly afterward, underneath our posts appeared a little button that said “Boost Post”.
Can you see where this is heading?
At that point, none of our posts to Facebook pages garnered any kind of reach or attention, unless they were ‘boosted’.
Then Facebook bought Instagram, and the same thing started happening there; accounts started getting “shadow banned”, their posts reaching a drastically reduced number of their followers. Users started getting fewer and fewer ‘likes’ and comments to their posts.
It was happening all over again.
Are you still with me?
Now, if you’re familiar with Pinterest, in the last few weeks, we’ve been inundated with issues like whole accounts being mistakenly flagged for spamming, pins that produce a ‘spam’ notice when clicked, analytics that go to “0” one day then into the hundreds or thousands the next. Pins that go nowhere when clicked.
You get the picture.
Take a look at the screen shot below, at the Pinterest Analytics for this blog. What supposedly happened to this account (in the column on the right) on July 20 and 21st; 0 views.
It’s logically impossible to ‘organically’ drop to 0 views from 180,000+ overnight. Especially when the account has in excess of 500+ pins floating around in the “Pintersphere”.
This newest ‘change’ with Pinterest isn’t rocket science. And it’s not new as far as “social media” platforms go.
They’re taking a page out of the Facebook “Pay to Play” Playbook.
Pinterest isn’t so much ‘tinkering’ with the system, as they’re ‘transitioning’ it in much the same way that Facebook did years ago, from “load your posts, grow your following and they will see” to “bring your following, and we’ll make you pay us so they can see your work.”.
They followed up with those same tactics on Instagram.
Welcome Pinterest to the Arena.
IT’S “PAY TO PLAY” TIME FOR ALL ON PINTEREST
As recently as a week ago (late July), my own blog was getting 1500–2000 page views a day, traffic that was largely coming from Pinterest. That number has now dropped to about 200+ a day if I’m lucky.
Pinterest has lately been steady pushing their “promoted pins” feature in our faces, not just on the platform, but also by email. I’m sure that I’m not the only one who’s received at least two of these.
Pinterest doesn’t want us to simply contribute helpful, valuable content by way of a ‘pin’ to our followers and ‘pinners’ at large anymore; nope! In order for those followers to actually be able to interact with those pins, “promoted pins” are no longer optional.
The days of creating a blog, writing and sharing what you love, and making decent money from doing that, those days are done friends.
If you’re starting a small business online, you’re now being made to compete with much bigger entities, with way deeper pockets, and that sucks.
I swear, if I have to watch one more video or read another freaking blog post about how many ‘tweaks’ we should be making to our Pinterest accounts to regain traction, I might scream.
Maybe they’re in denial. I’m a realist. The writing’s on the wall, people.
There’s not even the expectation on the other big platforms anymore, that your content is going to reach anywhere NEAR the number of readers that it used to, unless we pay for it. Facebook, Instagram, and even Twitter are all already doing it. Why is there any question as to what’s actually going on with Pinterest??? Are we that dense? Of COURSE they’re going to jump in!
Yesterday I did a test; I paid to promote just one of my pins. I didn’t pay a lot, I think I only used a $10 budget. But within about 15 minutes of clicking the “promote” button, traffic to that pin was back at levels that it was two weeks prior, with about 80 page views inside of 4 minutes.
And as quickly as the traffic came, the traffic went.
That was to ONE pin.
All that other stuff they’re saying that we should be doing to minimize the fallout from the transition, like optimizing your pins and boards, etc., might have some validity (frankly, in light of the whole ‘pay to play’ thing, it sounds like a whole lot of ‘make work’ to me), but honestly speaking, in an atmosphere where preference is given to those who pay for promotion, I’m seriously doubting that any of that stuff matters anymore. And it definitely won’t matter if you’re NOT paying, because if you’re not paying, no one’s gonna see what you pin. Period. They’ve already shown us that much.
It’s tough to say whether or not we’ll start seeing our Pinterest Analytics drop dramatically, but we’re already seeing that those analytics aren’t correlating with Google analytics.
Pinterest has given us more than a few hints to let us know what’s up. All we had to do was pay attention.
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