I Say Pinterest is the Second Largest Search Engine in the World

Why Pinterest Search Can Do What Google Can Not

Pinterest Search Does What Google Can’t 

You may not have realized it but I’m hear to tell you that Pinterest is the 2nd largest search engine in the world, that Google doesn’t own. When looked at from a strictly mobile search perspective, this is most certainly the case. Trust me, Pinterest search is a big deal.

Can Pinterest overtake Google when it comes to mobile search?

If you own or operate a business that has local retail locations, Local SEO and mobile search should already be a part of your digital marketing strategy, but it doesn’t stop there.

Today, local businesses and social marketers should shift their marketing focus to a heavy pull strategy using Pinterest mobile search marketing strategies. Why you ask?

According to new research from eMarketer, over two-thirds of Pinners use their mobile devices to look at Pins while they’re physically in stores and shopping. Now imagine if this Pinner sees a selection of beautiful, optimized images of your products and services?

By the end of this read you should have a much better understanding of:

  1. What a focus on Pinterest search and optimization can do for your business.
  2. Why Pinterest plays a major role in a user’s purchase decision.
  3. How Social Search is fast becoming a “thing”.

Related Articles: 
Pinterest Marketing Tips: The Four Stages Brands Need To Know
5 Pinterest Marketing Tips To Reach Your Customers on Mobile
Pinterest Content Marketing For Restaurants: A Beginners Guide

Pinterest Search Plays a Large Part in a User’s Purchase Decision

If we didn’t realize this before, it’s most definitely the time to realize it now. People, primarily women, use Pinterest to help them choose what they are going to purchase to fill whatever need they have at that time.

An extraordinary majority of Pinterest users (80%) use the image-focused platform on a variety of mobile devices throughout the day. For those users that are actually our shopping 45% are using Pinterest to search for inspiration.

Savvy social media marketing companies as well as the platform itself have been focused on mobile strategy and search for some time. If you’ve you’ve ever used Pinterest you know that the search function on the platform is incredibly user friendly and helpful.

Pinterest ensures a seamless quality user experience when it comes to search and now ecommerce. You’ll recall last June, the platform announced their first “Buy Button” which allows users to purchase your product, directly from Pinterest.

Know what other significant update Pinterest rolled out last June. This is a big one. They also launched a keyword-heavy Guided Search.

What is Pinterest Guided Search?

According to Pinterest, Guided Search looks something like this:

It’s made for exploring, whether you know exactly what you want, or you’re just starting to look around. There are more than 750 million boards with 30 billion Pins hand-picked by travellers, foodies, and other Pinners, so the right idea is just a few taps away.

Pinterest Rocks The User’s Search Experience

Ask anyone you know that uses Pinterest about their experience using the platform to search for ideas and inspiration. Ask them if they feel that the info provided in the Pins that appear in Pinterest’s search results pages are helpful to them and how.

You may be surprised with what you hear. My guess it will all be very positive and may have ended with an actual purchase. SearchEngineWatch.com quotes a Pinterest rep saying:

Pinterest Marketing VPDM Digital“When you search on Pinterest, we’ve added additional tiles underneath based on the popularity around that keyword; we’re kind of guiding you down different expansions of that search,” says Sarah Hoople Shere, product marketer at Pinterest.

Doing a search for “backpack,” Hoople Shere points out that “school” and “leather” are suggested tiles with teens and men in mind, respectively. She adds that the platform’s search capabilities aren’t only helpful for consumers, but brands looking to learn more about them.

“We see a lot of searches that aren’t super specific but think one level up, when you’re not sure exactly what product you want but you’re starting to refine,” she says. “We’ve seen brands use our search products for getting consumer insights into how people think about the brand and the types of things they’re looking for. If I search for ‘Nordstrom,’ I could easily see at a glance, the other [related] things people search for.”

The Rise of Social Search

Social search isn’t really a new thing, but it is a thing. Facebook has been trying to get users to search the platform for years. In July 2013, they introduced Facebook Graph Search to all users in the USA.

However, previous to that, social platforms like Facebook weren’t looked at as search engines or to provide any traditional search functionality. People didn’t even think to use the search bar that was presented to them.

These days and looking to the near-term future, every social platform used by a significant number of people will be thought of as having the utility to be used for search.

Pinterest drives qualified traffic to your website


Pinterest Drives Qualified Leads to Your Website

As a digital disrupting marketing agency founder, I fully believe in the power of using Pinterest for search. I’d love to share this secret with you.

I’ve witnessed only up to 30 visits per month on client websites, referenced by Pinterest. While that may sound like a low number, consider that the average time users spent on the client website, after coming from Pinterest, was upwards 05:25. 

VPDM Client referrals from Pinterest

I believe the analytics above show qualified users come from Pinterest. The example shows 30 qualified visitors to our sample client’s website, who spent an average of over 5 minutes looking through 3.5 webpages. 

Our creative and social teams ensure that all images posted on Pinterest are optimized for organic search (Google), Pinterest search, and for the targeted marketing personas using the platform.

Some of the businesses I’ve spoken with who I believe can benefit by using Pinterest marketing, Rich Pins, Buy Buttons, etc., had believed that Pinterest was just a place people went to post food pics (#foodporn) and fashion photos.

Pinterest, like almost every other social media platform, has evolved through the years. You, as a business owner or social media manager , need to understand this evolution and how you can use it to grow your business.

Today, your customers and prospects are using Pinterest in a similar way that they use Google. We found another study by Milward Brown Digital that reported:

  • 93% of U.S. people used Pinterest when planning to make a purchase.
  • 87% had actually completed the purchase as a result of the platform.
  • April 2015, Pinterest searches have increased 30% from same time 2014.

So What Are People Searching For on Pinterest?

From the same study referenced above, we find out that almost 80% of users search Pinterest for Food & Ingredients. Clearly they’re looking for recipes or inspiration for cooking.

A quick look at the rest of chart below shows home decor, fashion, fitness, and health as other top searches on Pinterest.

Pinterest helps users make purchase descisons
Pinterest helps users make purchase decisions
Image Source


The Wrap

So what does this mean? We understand that people are actively using their mobile phones to search Pinterest for inspiration that leads them to making a purchase. Sounds like Pinterest is every digital marketers dream, doesn’t it?

Based on the studies we looked at for this article, it’s obvious that many of your customers and prospects are using Pinterest to curate their vision of their ideal self. This should be an extremely powerful concept for you as a social marketer.

Every business or brand can benefit from meaningful engagement with existing customers and new prospects, Pinterest certainly seems to be the social platform of choice when it comes to your social marketing.

With social search finally becoming a real “thing” now, with users always on their multiple mobile devices every day, many times while shopping, now’s the time to get a Pinterest marketing strategy in place.

VPDM Digital Marketing can help you do just that, today. If Pinterest marketing sounds like something you need to grow your business, contact us today to level-up on your Pinterest marketing and ecommerce.


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