Is it Okay to Change the Link on a Pin at Pinterest if the Website of Which it Originated is Spammy?


Hi Katie-
I was in on your Pinterest #TuneUp yesterday - I'm Annie from Fusion Fitness - I write the blog and do a lot of the social media and marketing. I had a question that I didn't hear an answer to - although you may have touched on it as my kids were in the car with me and I was listening on speaker phone - so could have been distracted a time or two... By the way, thank you for offering a call-in option because it worked perfectly and my daughter served as my note-taker ;0 I liked your shout out to moms in the beginning! Thanks for that. :)

Anyway, I feel pretty comfortable with Pinterest, but here's my question: when I'm repinning something, I usually change the description to fit our brand (I heard you talk about SEO which was helpful and something I didn't know) - but is it okay to change the website link? I've done that on a few pins, for example, even if it's just an inspirational quote for our Inspire board, a lot of those pins lead to random weird websites so I edit the it once I've pinned it to go to our website instead if they click on it. Or - I edit the website source - and assume that's what it does. But not sure if it's looked down upon to do this? When it's a legit source I keep it as is, but those spam-y sources seem wrong to lead our followers to. But I don't want to ruffle feathers or potential followers or those I'm repinning from.

Thanks for your help - I'm loving your site. A lot of helpful info.

Talk to you soon,

It's great that Annie is thinking about her readers, and doesn't want to send them to spammy websites. However, a reader doesn't know that a quote may have originated at a spammy website. And with social bookmarking like Pinterest, a reader wants to know the source of the quote or picture. They want immediate results by clicking on that picture and getting directly to the website of where it resides.

If you are changing the link URL to go to your home page, chances are the quote is not at your home page, unless you put it there. Therefore, the reader might feel duped, like you are the one who posted this quote, and then tricked them into coming to your website.

My suggestion for the best practice in this case depends on the time you want to put in. Either:

  • Leave the original link. At least the reader will get right to the source, and they can have their own reaction to a spammy website.
  • Post the quote on your blog, and change the link to point to the quote on your blog. Here's a little SEO tip: type out the quote on your blog post. That way, you may also attract searches from bigger search engines like Google, Bing or Yahoo to your blog post.
  • If it's a respectable website, leave the link and give that website the credit for posting it first. This will build good digital vibes between you and another online entity.

Great thinking, and great question!

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Please submit any questions to us on this or any small business topic and we may answer it here, or create a #TuneUp about it.