Here is one of what I hope will be a regular series: sharing Pinterest tips that I have picked up along the way. You can check out my Pinterest profile here – Mum’s the Boss Blog

Today I want to talk about tracking your progress – how do you measure your success on Pinterest? hint – it’s not the first figure that jumps out at you

Please be a sweetie and pin this

When you look at somebody’s Pinterest profile, there is one number that jumps out at you, the monthly unique viewers, which shows up directly beneath the account name.

When you see this figure on a Pinterest profile, do you judge that pinner? Do you compare yourself to them with respect or scorn? And are you actively trying to raise your unique viewers too, or looking for Pinterest tips to increase viewers?

Pinterest tips - how to measure progress

At the time of writing this, my monthly unique viewers is showing 3.1 million, which looks like a huge amount, and compared to the 1,405 viewers which I had when I first started actively using Pinterest in May last year, it certainly is a big improvement and I look like a mega success.

I have seen many Pinterest gurus boasting about their monthly unique viewers and offering to show you how to get your figure up into the stratosphere too, and I could definitely do the same for you, if that’s what you want. I could rest on my laurels, bask in my success and sell you a course like so many others do.

But is monthly unique viewers really the figure you should be tracking on Pinterest, and if not, then what is the best way to measure success?

What is monthly unique viewers anyway?

Monthly unique viewers is the total number of times that a pin that you have posted on Pinterest appears on somebody’s screen during the month. 

Notice that this includes all the pins that you post, whether they link to your own site or whether you repin them from elsewhere. And secondly, this just shows the number of times the pin appears on a screen, not the number of times that people actually stop scrolling to interact with it.

So if you have Tailwind, and you are posting 50 pins a day, so 1500 pins a month, and you have 1,000 followers, you would kind of hope that your monthly viewers might be up close to a million at least, whether your pins are any good or not. That’s easy enough to do. But it doesn’t mean very much.

In your Pinterest analytics (under People you reach) you will see a figure for monthly engaged users. These are people who liked, clicked on or repinned your posts in the month. This figure will be a lot lower and possibly a bit more useful as a guide to whether your pins are resonating with people. 

I also like to look at the engaged users as a percentage of the monthly unique users, ie what percentage of my pin impressions are actually attracting folks and getting people to pay attention.  

Keeping track of that and watching how it fluctuates is good for measuring the quality of your pins.

So what is the best way to measure Pinterest success?

At the end of the day, monthly unique viewers is a great vanity figure to have but it tells you nothing about whether Pinterest is working for you. The purpose in using Pinterest if you are a blogger or a business is to get people from Pinterest to come to your site and read your posts, and possibly sign up to your mailing list, or buy whatever you are selling.

Monthly unique visitors will tell you nothing about any of this.
Let’s take a look at my monthly unique figures plotted over the last year.

You can see my first burst of enthusiasm, using Tailwind and repinning the posts that did the best on Pinterest. May was fabulous, June better still and July was phenomenal. In the summer holidays though, the viewers went away – my niche is mums so they were probably off social media and enjoying the summer with their kids) but they surged back strongly in September.

So far so good.

Then towards the end of October and into November, despite my best efforts, the monthly viewers just faded. I was doing the same as before and I tried to chase them with my best efforts but nothing really happened.

I even contacted Pinterest to see if I had unknowingly violated some spam rules, but they said no, it was just normal fluctuations in activity, and maybe I just needed some new and interesting content.

The viewers faded back to a level that was higher than I had before, but they wouldnt come back. In December I gave up a bit as I had other stuff to focus on, being a mum and all….

I picked the blog, Tailwind and Pinterest back up again in January, and it seems like everybodyl else came back too – a great big surge in monthly uniques, which has already broken my best record from last year…

So you would think I’d be delighted, and in a way, I am. I love a number sitting out there in public that makes me look like a Pinterest superstar.

But let’s take a look at the number of page views that my site had from Pinterest over the same period. I got this figure from Google analytics, by taking the total number of sessions that were generated from Pinterest and multiplying them by the total number of pages per session.

For the first few months it shows pretty much the same trend as the monthly unique viewers graph (although of course the number of pageviews on my site is substantially less than 2 million!)

But look at January. The monthly unique users has skyrocketed and yet the number of visitors to my site has barely changed. What has gone wrong

The answer is, nothing has gone wrong with my system. The monthly unique visitors on Pinterest has surged because I shared some very attractive pins from popular accounts, which have then been reshared, clicked and repinned many many times. This is a good tactic and part of a good Pinterest strategy, but it’s nowhere near all of it.

In January I didn’t write any new pin-worthy blog posts, mainly because I was up to my neck in tax returns, and I also had a couple of review posts that I needed to do, which are good for me because I receive nice products to review, but I know that they are not really what my Pinterest followers like.

So in January, my strategy was to send some of my old faithful pins round again on Pinterest (thanks Tailwind for making this so easy) and I tentatively pinned all of the new posts too, without taking too much time over this. But these things didn’t go viral and I didn’t really expect them to.

So my monthly unique users figure in January/February is a happy accident.  The page views to my site have stabilised at a level I’m happy with for now, and I’m well set to put a strategy in place for the rest of this year.

In the next few weeks, I will be spending time interacting with and growing my Pinterest followers, looking at and repinning amazing posts to see what is going viral out there, joining group boards and interacting with the members and planning some  kick-ass posts and offers of my own, which I hope will hit the spot when I pin them.

I’m going to be looking particularly at the pages per session number on Google analytics, and also at the length of sessions coming to my blog from Pinterest. Because I don’t just want Pinterest users to click through to my blog, I want them to really read what I have there and then click through to other pages and read those too.

look particularly at the pages per session number on Google analytics, and also at the length of sessions coming to my blog from Pinterest.

Getting those two metrics to increase will be my prime measurement of success on Pinterest this year.

I’ll try to keep monthly unique viewers up too, just because it makes me happy that my account looks amazing on Pinterest. But I won’t allow that random figure to influence my strategy going forward, and I accept that if it does wobble that isn’t always my fault.

Would you like me to take a look at your Pinterest account and point you in the right direction for growing your blog? Please take a look at my new Pinterest Virtual Assistant service page as to what I could do for you, or click the button below to set up a 30-minute free chat with me

And look out for some more Pinterest tips from me soon.

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