Google Hurt Pinterest’s Growth in 2018 by Deindexing Keyword Landing Pages

Pinterest’s recent IPO filing contains details about the site’s growth being hurt in 2018 due to a Google update.

Google deindexed Pinterest’s keyword landing pages in the first quarter of 2018, which impacted search traffic and user growth throughout the rest of the year.

Further, Pinterest says it may not be able to recover from the damage caused by Google’s actions.

It’s not known why Google deindexed Pinterest’s landing pages as the exact details were not revealed.

Here’s what is stated in Pinterest’s IPO filing regarding Google’s actions:

“… in the first quarter of 2018, Google de-indexed our keyword landing pages, which negatively impacted traffic and user growth in the quarters that followed. Our ability to appeal these actions is limited, and we may not be able to revise our search engine optimization (“SEO”) strategies to recover the loss in traffic or user growth resulting from such actions.”

Pinterest’s IPO filing also contains a general warning to investors that parts of its business are dependent on search traffic.

To that end, the ability to maintain and increase the number of users directed to the service from search engines is out of Pinterest’s control.

“Search engines, such as Google, may modify their search algorithms and policies or enforce those policies in ways that are detrimental to us, that we are not able to predict or without prior notice. When that occurs, we expect to experience declines or de-indexing in the organic search ranking of certain Pinterest search results, leading to a decrease in traffic to our service, new user signups and existing user retention and engagement.”

Pinterest goes on to say that it has already experienced declines in traffic and user growth as a result of Google’s updates, and expects to see further fluctuations in the future.

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