Pinterest is known to be a curation tool, enabling people to collect inspirational images and content. But the platform has been evolving into an e-commerce machine, matching users with merchants. This week, Pinterest launched a slew of new offerings to inspire, inform, and drive purchasing capabilities. The new offerings are : Lens, Shop the Look, and Instant Ideas.
The visual search tool, dubbed Lens, allows users to search by using the phone’s camera. Take a picture of your favorite chair and Pinterest will show various chairs from multiple brands. It’s an image search API that matches real-world objects with similar-looking images found on Pinterest. Think Shazam for products.
Why it’s hot: This is yet another validation of the growth consumers using mobile to search/communicate with images instead of traditional text/typing. This will become more common, driving mobile technology developers to integrate the image search APIs (EX: Amazon Rekognition, driving facial imaging capability).
Shop the Look allows Pinners to tap a blue icon and see similar products that they can purchase via Buyable Pins on Pinterest. Brands like CB2, Macy’s, Target, Neiman Marcus and Wayfair are already on board with more brands in queue.
Why it’s hot: By generating demand for products that are similar, we’re going to see a growth of smaller companies and entrepreneurs entering the market to compete with larger, established brands by offering similar products at lower cost. It’s a good thing for our economy – proliferation of perfect substitution effect.
Instant Ideas, showcases images on the user’s home page that are relevant to their likes, similar to Amazon’s recommendation engine based on your past browsing/purchasing decisions.
Why it’s hot: Through Instant Ideas, both consumers and professionals alike will be able to increase their reach of content and go deeper within a specific vertical. (Pinterest is known to be a favorite tool amongst designers – interior, fashion, industrial, etc.)
Here are additional stats on Pinterest :
- With more than 100 million daily users, 85% are female.
- Nearly 75% of Pinterest users have purchased something on the platform.
- Majority of the users – roughly 60% – are in the U.S.
- Average user stays on the platform for 15 mins at a time and Saturday afternoon/evenings are the best time to post.