Inside: Want to bring traffic on autopilot to your Etsy shop? Check out this guide to using Pinterest group boards to increase your chances of getting found.

The most efficient way to grow your following and get more saves on your pins, especially when you’re just starting out is to use group boards. By using group boards on Pinterest you essentially leverage other people’s audience to grow your own and to drive traffic to your shop.

Pinterest group boards are the secret sauce to growing your Pinterest account and my favourite way to bring organic traffic to my shop without doing much.

What is a group board?

In a nutshell, someone owns the board and invites other people to join and pin to it. When someone pins, the followers of the group owner can see those pins only and not your own followers.

The benefit?

They allow you to make your content visible for new people.

So let’s say that you have 160 followers and you join a group board who has 10,000 followers, your pins will be shared with 10,000 different users everytime you add a pin to that board. You gain traction a lot faster as now, more people will pin and repin your content.

When I started blogging group boards were the only source of traffic that helped drive over 22,000 views to my website.

Yes, just by pinning my content there.

How to find group boards to join

So now that we established what is a group board, how do you find one?

Well, you know a group board by the small circle in the left bottom corner of the board. This signifies that it’s a group board because there’s more than one pinner in the circle.

Let’s take an example.

This group board has over 28,000 followers and only 8 contributors. When I add a pin to this board it has the potential to be seen by those followers and repined thousands of times.

When you have little to no audience leveraging some traffic from other established bloggers is the best way to get noticed.

When you want to find group boards to join there are a couple of approaches you can try.

1.Type a keyword in the search

To find a relevant group board start typing in search a relevant keyword making sure you sort it out by boards. To find the group boards look for the multiple photos in the small icon and then you can request to join. (more about how to request that below)

Can you spot which ones aren’t group boards below?

2. Check out your favourite pinners

Search for people in your niche, who are established and are already doing a good job. Look for brands or other Etsy sellers like you who are active on Pinterest, click on their profile and scroll down their list of boards. Chances are that they might already be part of some group board and you can request to join them.

Now, I must warn you a lot of these group boards will not be open for contributors so it will take some research and digging around before you’ll find a few but this time and effort is so worth it.

Another thing would be to make sure the board is perfectly relevant to what you want to pin.

Just because a board has lots of followers doesn’t necessarily make it a good fit. A lot of group boards have lots of duplicated, broken links and low repins can be time wasters.

Finding great boards takes time and research.

Selecting the best group boards

I know that it will be tempting to go crazy and want to join as many as possible but in my experience, at most, you want to have 7 or less fantastic boards.

Joining too many will be difficult to keep track and it will look quite spammy and desperate.

You want to be strategic about this and select the few that will bring you some real results.

When you come across a group board that you like and feel that it can be a good fit for you, you’ll want to monitor it for a day or two. What you’re looking for?

Activity.

You want to make sure that the contributors are active because you want to be part of a board that’s getting engagement and repins.

A good way to monitor this activity is by taking a screensaver of the top pins and see where they are down the page when you check next. The more people pin to that board the more you can pin too. (Some boards will have different rules and sometimes a daily pin limit. Make sure you are following those rules or you might end up getting kicked out.)

Requesting to join

Group boards have different ways to request an invite and become a contributor. Most of them will have the instructions in the board description. Look for direction and for their prefered method of contact.

Following these instructions gives you the best chance to be accepted. When a board owner asks you to email your request there are a couple of things to include.

 When sending your email you’ll want to keep it short and sweet and make sure you include the pieces of information mentioned in the template above as those are crucial. 

Nobody will have time to read exactly what you do and what you are passionate about and definitely don’t include a short bio about you. People skim your email and will click on your profile and if it flies and they are open for contributors you’ll be in.

In my experience about half of my requests are accepted and if you don’t hear back in a few days consider it ignored. There are many reasons why you aren’t accepted some of them being:

  • your account is too young – they might be looking for more established pinners
  • your content is not a good fit for their board – don’t take it personally
  • their cat was surfing the internet, came your email your email and deleted it, on purpose

The truth is you’ll never know, don’t waste any time giving it though and move onto the next best fit for your content.

Boards exclusively for Etsy sellers

There is some confusion going on for the Etsy seller whether is a good idea to use boards exclusive with Etsy products.

I want to give you my full and honest opinion about them. I did try them and have been part of about 5-6 for some time.

Results?

Some repins, yes, and some traffic but I moved away from some and found more results with a more niche group board dedicated for planner and printables (in my case).

Let me explain.

The truth about this boards is that often there are thousands of contributors, sometimes more contributors that followers resulting in everybody just pinning their own things to the boards and not repinning between each other.

This is not the case for all but if you follow my suggestion about monitoring it for a couple of days before requesting to join might make it a safer bet.

Here are some  general Etsy boards that accept contributors (at the time when this article was written)

Do you have any other group boards that you joined an have good results with? Share them in the comments below so we can all learn from each other.

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