Pinterest Blocking Amazon Affiliate Links?

The other day Nathan Smith from Zynali Marketing Solutions commented on my “When Pinterest Met Affiliate Marketing” webinar post about how Pinterest was starting to strip the tags out of Amazon affiliate links. Shawn Collins tested it out and verified it. However, he was able to go in and edit the link properly. Today Shawn reported that all of his Amazon links on Pinterest are now going to the “spam page” notification below.

Pinterest Amazon Spam

Clicking through other people’s links, it looks like Pinterest is temporarily blocking all Amazon links as spam. Interestingly, I used PrettyLinks to build a redirect for an Amazon link using my www.tricia.me domain. Pinterest still recognized the final destination (Amazon) domain as “spam” and killed the link. Although it’s possible that it is just a glitch, this raises some big flags for affiliate marketers using Pinterest.

  • Pinterest can at any time block any domain and render everything that you have pinned from that domain useless. Be careful how much time you spend pinning links to other sites because in one flip of a switch they can all go dead.
  • Pinterest is clearly watching for too many pins from one source. Don’t get your own domain flagged for spam for having too many spammy pins.
  • Use redirects for all affiliate links. You can always direct the links to another domain from the back end if the end domain does get blocked. You’ll just need to find the same product through a different merchant.
  • Although this will probably get switched back because Amazon needs to place nice with Pinterest, it is likely that Pinterest will continue to strip out the affiliate links. Pinterest is onto affiliate markets and can very easily strip our coding from naked links. It would not be hard for them to do a search and replace of our affiliate codes for any network and substitute them with their own if they want.

There isn’t any reason that we all can’t participate in Pinterest in different ways to boost our traffic and our revenue. But Pinterest is not going to allow affiliate marketers to ruin their site (and should not!). Are you an affiliate, merchant, or OPM using Pinterest to build your business? How far should Pinterest go to protect itself from us?

Take a Look at Some Similar Posts:

Thanks for reading! I am a lawyer, blogger, affiliate marketer, and consultant most known in the industry for my cashback site, SunshineRewards.com. You can reach me on Twitter @sunshinetricia.
VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
Rating: 5.0/5 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Pinterest Blocking Amazon Affiliate Links?, 5.0 out of 5 based on 2 ratings

Comments

  1. Jim says

    Are all you people saying that a “spammer” is someone who uses Pinterest to sell products with his affiliate link?
    The audacity of Pinterest to mess with any affiliate link for any reason.
    And what about link cyphers?

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  2. says

    Hi there, I log on to your new stuff regularly. Your story-telling
    style is awesome, keep up the good work!

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: -3 (from 3 votes)
  3. Engy says

    my website has reported as a spam and blocked from pinterest.com , but it is a big website store i sell digital products on it, i tried to contact pinterest support but no benefits, pinterest.com has defaming my website, what can i do now to unblocked my website at pinterest.com?

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 5.0/5 (2 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
  4. says

    There’s definately a great deal to learn about this subject. I love all the points you have made.
    Monserrate has written about…MonserrateMy Profile

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: -4 (from 4 votes)
  5. says

    We have been successful posting to Pinterest and generating business even though we are a moving company.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: -1 (from 1 vote)
  6. says

    Seems like i’m late to the game. Just thought I had a brilliant idea until I googled it.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)
  7. says

    Not impressed. For the reason that they are making money from it. If I want to buy something I see then that’s a bonus to be taken to that site. Far more people would join if they shared their very large cake.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  8. says

    Thanks for the article! I was looking for information about this, since I thought I could pin a link or two from stuff I wrote about…but I guess in the end, I agree. It is nicer to drive the traffic to my blog, then (maybe) convert the click. In the end, even if they don’t go to amazon, they may still become a follower and long time reader! :D
    Ex has written about…Bluegrass Festival!My Profile

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 2.0/5 (1 vote cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  9. says

    Looks like they also started to block affiliate links from Commission Junction. Well it was just a matter of time before Pinterest stopped the affiliate stuff. Links back to a marketers regular money site seems to still work OK. But as mentioned in the article, pinning needs to be random. A few links from pins from other sites mixed in with a money site seems to work OK.
    Art has written about…Franck Thilliez’s Syndrome EMy Profile

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  10. says

    I recently pinned some photos from my photography website {outside of my personal blog} and found later today that I was being blocked! After reading this, I see why now. So frustrating. I pinned maybe ten images. And now I cannot do anything on pinterest. I did notice that some of my pins from other non spam or affiliate related sources are also being marked as spam. So frustrating! Perhaps I need to be moving some of my most important pins somewhere else!

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      I was recently blocked from commenting. I contacted them via email, and the block was removed. They never replied, but I’m certain that it was only removed because I contacted them. They have an automated program that blocks people that make several comments that are similar.
      I likely received the block for thanking people for pinning items from my sites. How intrusive, hey?
      I would suggest going to https://support.pinterest.com/home and submit a ticket. Best wishes!
      Nathan has written about…27 Tips For Using Pinterest For BusinessMy Profile

      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 1.0/5 (1 vote cast)
      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • Tricia says

      Interesting! So what is happening? Are they just pulling out the affiliate subid from the links during the redirect process?

      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
        • says

          The funny thing is, I can create new .php links to the same destination page, and they work. I also notice that direct links from GAN won’t work either. It’s not that they are stripped, when you save them they are reverted back to the previously saved link. I’m going to do some further investigation and report back. Code word: Tiny Spoon
          Nathan has written about…26 Tips For Using Pinterest For BusinessMy Profile

          VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
          Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
          VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
          Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  11. says

    As an admin for the fastest growing classifieds qwikad I can tell you that stripping links can backfire. At one point we went nuts and blocked 80% of affiliate links. Guess what? We lost visitors just like that because not only the returning posters quit coming, they also told other affiliates that qwikad was blocking links. Common sense. As a matter of fact, affiliates can be the source of a social media website’s growth. I am just guessing but it is just a matter of time before pinterest allows those links back. Notice: craigslist doesn’t block links, although they could. I am sure they know something pinterest is still to learn about.
    MrKloster has written about…Price Drop Auctions!My Profile

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 5.0/5 (2 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
  12. jacqulyn says

    Too bad they are blocking it. Many would have benefited from it

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  13. K.T. Yort says

    I have all my links going to my own amazon product review sites. I agree with your comment on the last blog that I would rather have control over the sales pitch and such then direct link to amazon. Besides I feel like that way there is no question about inappropriate links or worrying about getting blocked or shut down. If you do pinterest right it can be very good for a long time.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
  14. Troy says

    So it’s okay for Pinterest to make money from our pins using affiliate links, but not us?

    Come on. You can’t have your cake, eat it and stay thin.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)
    • says

      I do think that they allow affiliate links at pinterest. but do not think that they stri pout others. Howver if you do not put an affiliate link in then they will add their own

      Roger

      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  15. says

    How much of the link stripping is to do with Pinterest’s own interest (no pun intended) the individual states taxing of Amazon associates? I am a big Pinterset fan since photography is my hobby but would be very upset if they succumbed to corporate greed.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  16. gdo says

    god damn spammers

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: +1 (from 3 votes)
    • Jim says

      Must you be such a low life as to use the Lords’ name in vain?
      What’s wrong with the moderator of this site to not delete such profanity?

      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 1.0/5 (1 vote cast)
      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: -5 (from 7 votes)
  17. says

    My pins are all still fine. I would really like to see what the defining factor is here, specifically whether or not it is just bad camouflage.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      You have working, direct affiliate links from pins?

      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  18. says

    Thank you for the opening sentence mention. I have to read your blog, simply for the fact that my hands are in your header. ;)
    The links that I build with php redirects are working, and the affiliate code is intact. I like the fact that Pinterest doesn’t want their pool to be peed in. The bottom line, as with anything else, is that if you are creating and pinning quality content, you have nothing to worry about.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      Nate, this redirect link is one that you edit the pin and put it back in after it’s created? Or it doesn’t get stripped in the first place?

      Either way, it’s a matter of time before that same trick gets exploited by the spammers to put an Amazon affiliate link in there and then Pinterest squashes that too.

      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  19. says

    The links to Amazon are working again from my old pins, and the affiliate ID is still stripped.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      I just noticed that they were up a bit ago. Interestingly when you do a search for pins from Amazon, some of the spammers just jump right out at you. You can tell exactly what their bots are pulling and posting. How hard can it be for Pinterest to figure out the people who are truly spamming the system and the people who are integrating some linking into their boards more naturally?

      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
      • says

        Why put in that effort and further encourage the bad players to figure out how to not get blocked?

        What benefit is it to Pinterest to allow anyone put affiliate links on there?

        VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
        Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
        VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
        Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
        • says

          I’m willing to include quality, unique content with pins if I can use affiliate links.

          VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
          Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
          VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
          Rating: -1 (from 1 vote)
          • says

            You’re acceptable collateral damage. Blame the spammers who ruin it for us.

            VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
            Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
            VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
            Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
            • says

              I have nothing but scorn and contempt for those spammers of all stripes, and wish them the very worst.

              VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
              Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
              VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
              Rating: -1 (from 1 vote)
  20. says

    Will be interesting to see if they go back to using Skimlinks after this. It really seemed like they were bullied into pulling it in the first place and what good is a cool site like Pinterest if the creator can’t find a way to be profitable as well.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      They’re funded to the tune of $27.5M They don’t need to make money at all right now, never mind in a way that acts as a lightning rod like dropping in their own affiliate links on their users’ content (regardless of the fact that they have every right to do so and there shouldn’t be anything wrong with it.)

      I don’t think they’ll put Skimlinks back in, or any affiliate solution. They’ll find a bigger and better way to do so by leveraging the trend and intent data they are gathering on and from their users.

      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  21. says

    I wonder if this would have happened if that guy that was making $2000 a day posting Amazon links to Pinterest would have kept his mouth shut.

    When I post stuff to Pinterest it nearly always is something from one of my sites. Sending the traffic direct to the merchant creates too many opportunities for something bad to happen. At least if the Pinterest traffic is going to my site I still have some control

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      That’s exactly how I feel. It’s an extra click to the conversion, but I have more control.

      And I was wondering the same thing about that spammer guy!!

      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
      • says

        You knew either Pinterest or Amazon would do something about that spammer. It wasn’t good for either of them.

        VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
        Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
        VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
        Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  22. says

    Good info.

    But no surprise. It was only a matter of time.

    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
    VA:F [1.9.18_1163]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      Thanks, Scott. I think you predicted all of this since the day we found out we could pin affiliate links!

      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
    • says

      I’m anxious to see how long it takes before the links come back up. I have to think the regular Amazon links will be reactivated. But it does seem they are really against the affiliate links.

      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
      VN:F [1.9.18_1163]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)