Coffee mug on saucer beside person using a laptop and text overlay "Why You Should Not Delete Pins on Pinterest".

Should You Delete Pins on Pinterest?

Earlier in 2015, a post circulated about how deleting your older pins on Pinterest, those with little to no repins, could actually boost your follower numbers. It went nuts and sent many Pinterest users on a mission to delete as many pins as possible to boost their follower numbers. As a result, I was sent many emails asking me if I thought it was a good strategy. With the new year, people got back into searching out the best strategies for Pinterest and the deleting pins question ended up in my inbox, again. So let me share my answer, the same answer I give everyone.

First, my main core belief for business for Pinterest users is to build your brand using healthy pin habits — good time spent managing, pinning useful pins, and creating images that encourage clicks to your website. My hope and desire for every business user is that you would be able to unlock the keys to your audience and deliver to them more of what you love, in turn, having them fall in love with you, your brand, and your community.

That being said, all Pinterest strategies that I present to my community have to filter through that core belief. Is deleting pins a business builder that will boost your business and build your community? No. Has it proven to increase traffic to your website and boost product sales? No.

For those two reasons, I’m out! (Shark Tank, anyone?) It’s not worth my time as a business owner if the strategy has not been proven to accomplish those two goals. (And by proven, I mean more than one account.) In addition, Pinterest has never said they endorse the strategy.

If you delete a pin too soon you run the risk of losing out on sudden search traffic. It can take time for your pin to circulate into the system due to Smart Feed. We’ve seen plenty of pins with 1-2 repins within 24 hours completely take off 7 days later into 25-50 repins. Why miss out on that?

Edited to add: Arabah Joy shared this in the comments below: Thank you. Just thank you. I had a dead pin from 18 months ago (with no likes or repins) go crazy last month and send me over 100K visits in a few weeks time. If I had listened to the delete pins argument, I would have missed it.

Um…who doesn’t want 100k visits??

The only time I endorse deleting pins is if it’s time sensitive, i.e. you ran a sale, or if the link is dead and the pin won’t go to the correct location. That’s it!

Take a deep breath business pinners, you can leave those pins there and it won’t hurt you. Instead, focus on pinning with the Pinterest momentum. Pin the best of what pinners already love and you’ll be rewarded with clicks and repins. Or spend your time on promoting a pin or monetizing your traffic with ads so you can make more money! Your time is better spent elsewhere.

Happy pinning and not deleting!


  1. I’m completely with you on this one. If you’re pinning it, it’s because you think it’s of value to your followers. Just because it didn’t take off in a week or two, you think it’s not? Focus on creating and pinning great content and stop with the tactics, already!

  2. Thank you. Just thank you. I had a dead pin from 18 months ago (with no likes or repins) go crazy last month and send me over 100K visits in a few weeks time. If I had listened to the delete pins argument, I would have missed it.

    1. That is just amazing!!! I’m going to include this in the post so people don’t miss it. Great example.

  3. Do you think this applies as well to group boards when others post things that aren’t relevant to the board? This is where I have heard others talk about deleting pins, for the health of the relevancy of the board.

    I haven’t found time to do this, so I would love to know if your ‘do not delete’ fits in this category as well!

  4. I was an early adopter of Pinterest long before I became a blogger. I have tons of pins, but a small following (since I was just using it personally, I didn’t feel the need to actively seek out new followers). I’m now focusing on growing my following and refining my account – I don’t want to start an entirely new account just for my blog. I have boards that are poorly curated and an organizational mess. These boards contain nothing that would link back to my site. Would you recommend deleting these boards and/or pins from those boards with the goal of a more organized set of boards?

  5. I agree. I only pin things I’m interested in, so why would I want to delete them? I did go through and delete a few recently that were related to sweepstakes, but instead of deleting I took the time to update the copy in some of them to be more “search” friendly, and I made a list of the posts where I need to improve my pinnable (is that a word?) images. That was much better time spent in my opinion.

      1. Hey! I’ve always been a fan of deleting pins, even after the aggregate pin count appeared. I do believe that Pinterest penalizes you a bit when you do things that they don’t like, but I also believe that it benefits your virality and engagement scores. I think that the penalties for deleting are pins not getting recommended, getting less followers, etc. So it probably ends up balancing out in the end anyway. That being said, I am actually just curious on your thoughts deleting pins regarding the fact that there is a lifetime limit of pins on an account. It’s 200,000 at the moment. Pinterest of course just happily suggests to create a new account when your pins reach the max of 200k (create a new account with 0 followers… yeah right, Pinterest…). Depending on how much you pin, especially when you belong to quite a few group boards, your days may be numbered. I was just curious what your thoughts were on this!

        1. That’s a good question, I’m not a fan of tons of pins per day because I think it can water down the quality. So if you’re pinning less I don’t think there is that worry of hitting the limit.

          However, if you are pinning multiple times per day, then deleting might be the best option so you don’t get locked out.

          I did hear that the limit was raised to 300K but haven’t seen that in writing.

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