Pinterest is a fantastic traffic tool for bloggers. Pins that go viral on Pinterest have the opportunity to bring in thousands of pageviews every month to a single blog post!

Certain types of images tend to perform better on Pinterest – notably, long (or tall) images with multiple photos and text overlays tend to do great. Many bloggers take the time to create these long pins and save them in their post content (often with Tasty Pins‘ hidden image functionality!) so that their readers have the option to save these images to Pinterest.

But what if an image isn’t great for Pinterest? What if it’s horizontal, small, or unrelated to the page at hand? Should you do anything about that?

Why You Should Tell Pinterest to Not Save Specific Images

The Problem with Multiple Images

Most websites have more than one image on the page, which means that readers have many options for images to save to Pinterest if they use a multi-select tool, such as the Pinterest browser extension or a multi-select button on the page.

Viewers aren’t always necessarily concerned with the virality of content on Pinterest – they just want to save the web page for later. For instance, if they liked a recipe enough to save it to Pinterest, that means all they need is a basic image to jog their memory next time they want to go back to that recipe. They don’t need the Pinterest-optimized image (the long pin, in many cases) to convince them of the recipe’s worth.

This brings up an issue – the people who are saving the content from your page to Pinterest might not be saving the long-pin that is going to be performing the best. Some of them might save that image, but others might not.

In addition, some images on a page have nothing to do with the actual post content. For instance, a sidebar banner for an affiliate product might have value to the website owner, but wouldn’t be a great image to save to Pinterest because it doesn’t actually communicate anything about that page.

The Solution for Multiple Images

The best thing to do is to give the reader very few, optimized choices for saving to Pinterest. If each image option is optimized for Pinterest, then the reader will have only one choice – to save an optimized image.

This doesn’t mean that all images should be prevented; instead, it means that all images that are allowed in the Pinterest selection tools should be somewhat good for saving to Pinterest. Not every pins has to be a long pin, but every pin should be a decent pin.

So how do you go about giving readers fewer options? There are two ways, and they work hand-in-hand with each other.

  1. NoPin any images on the page that aren’t related to the content or aren’t good for Pinterest
  2. Force pinning of a a single Pinterest-perfect image for all the in-content images

Let’s take a look at each.

NoPin: Telling Pinterest to Not Save an Image

When you “nopin” an image, you’re saying to Pinterest, “Don’t show the Pin hover button on this image, and don’t show it as an option in any multi-select.” Someone could theoretically download the image, then upload it directly to Pinterest…. but that doesn’t really ever happen in real life.

This is a good option for images that are unrelated to the content (eg. images in the sidebar for “related posts” or the like), or images that are related to the content but aren’t a good fit for Pinterest.

If you aren’t forcing an image to save to Pinterest whenever any image in the content is Pinned, then you can use “nopin” to disable pinning for images that aren’t great for Pinterest (eg. process shots, lifestyle shots that aren’t directly related to the content, etc).

However, if you are forcing a Pinterest-prefect image to save to Pinterest, then you don’t want to nopin that image. More on that in this article.

In summary, good candidates for the data-pin-nopin attribute include:

  • Images in the sidebar or footer
    • Profile images
    • Related posts images
    • Logos
    • Popular posts images
    • Etc
  • Images in the content that don’t have a “forced pin” and that aren’t a great fit for Pinterest
  • Image in the content that simply aren’t related to the main topic of the page (debatable whether these should actually be in the content, though!)

How to NoPin images

To tell Pinterest to not save a specific image, you need to add a special nopin attribute to the image tag. The attribute is data-pin-nopin="true". Here’s how that would look in an image tag:

<img src="example.com/myimage.jpg" data-pin-nopin="true" />

This attribute can be added to your image tags in two ways:

  1. Viewing the text version of a WordPress post and adding it manually
  2. Clicking the “Disable Pinning” checkbox in Tasty Pins

Adding the NoPin Attribute Manually

To add the NoPin attribute manually, open up a post in the WordPress dashboard and click “Text”. Find the image tags in the source, and type the nopin attribute in to the image tag:

The data-pin-nopin attribute added to an image tag inside a WordPress post

Adding the NoPin Attribute with Tasty Pins

Tasty Pins includes a “Disable Pinning” checkbox for each image added to a post or page. Checking the box automatically adds the nopin attribute to the image, no code required!

the Disable Pinning checkbox inside Tasty Pins

This only works on images in the content, so if you use plugins that add images to your sidebar or footer then you’ll need to reach out to the developer to add the data-pin-nopin attribute to the image HTML.

Forcing a Pinterest-perfect image to save to Pinterest

The alternative and compliment to “nopin”-ing images is forcing an alternative Pinterest-perfect image to save to Pinterest instead of the one they selected.

When an image is “force-pinned”, that means that someone clicks the hover button on an image and Pinterest actually saves a different image that you’ve determined to be a better choice for Pinterest.

This is usually done for in-content images. If you are force-pinning an image, you don’t want to add the nopin attribute to that image as well.

Read this article to learn more about force-pinning images in the content.

In conclusion: the Benefits of Adding NoPin Attributes to Images

Adding the NoPin attribute to images in your posts gives readers more high-quality choices for images to save to Pinterest. The NoPin attribute is great for images that exist on the page, but that aren’t related to the main content of the page, such as “related posts” images and profile pictures.

However, adding the NoPin attribute to your images isn’t always the best choice. If you want to force another image to save to Pinterest instead, then force-pinning might be a better solution for that particular image.

However you’re going about limiting the image choices, only allowing saving of images that are intended for Pinterest or that have value on Pinterest (eg. a vertical image can have value, even if it isn’t created just for Pinterest) means that your readers save images that are more likely to get repinned on Pinterest. More repins on Pinterest results in more traffic for your website, and that’s always a good thing!