Marketing 3 min read

Pinterest: Why the Catalog of Ideas Wants to own the Discovery of Ideas

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Integrating three new discovery tools into its visual search engine, Pinterest will make its “catalog of ideas” even more efficient while at the same time generating more ad dollars.

Founded in 2010, Pinterest has been ranked 31st on CNBC‘s 2017 Disruptor 50. Now valued at $11 billion USD, Pinterest expects $500 million USD revenue in 2017– up from $300 million USD from last year.

To reinforce its self-proclaimed status as the “World’s Catalog of Ideas” Pinterest is centering its monetization strategy around the research and the visual discovery of different content.

The e-Commerce “Catalog of Ideas”

Counting anywhere between 150 and 175 million active users per month–with most joining in the last two years–Pinterest’s community is changing.

Right now, 70% of Pinterest users are female, but the ratio is shifting now that e-Commerce is tied into the app. When the app began the user base was almost 90% female.

With 2 million users saving “Shopping Pins” on boards every day, and up to 55% of all “pinners” using the app to shop and plan purchases, Pinterest seems destined to be a shopping catalog where billions of images serve as an entry point for “discovery” and then, ultimately, a purchase.

2 Million Pinterest users save shopping pins every day.Click To Tweet

In 2015, Pinterest created its Visual Search division and started investing heavily in computer vision technologies, with the aim to build a commercial visual search system.

Pinterest’s Visual Discovery Tools

Recently, Pinterest introduced three new visual search tools to facilitate access to billions of ideas for its users while simplifying the purchase of related products.

The three tools introduced by Pinterest’s Visual Search team are:

1. Lens:

Not to be confused with Google’s Lens, Pinterest’s Lens is a tool that allows the user to search for ideas through their smartphone camera.

The user could take pictures of any real-life object and the app, thanks to image recognition technology, sifts through Pinterest’s catalog to suggest “similar pins” and recommend similar objects.

2. Instant Ideas:

Pinterest provides 10 billion recommendations every day, and with Instant Ideas, it has launched a new search and inspiration solution. The app allows the user to look for ideas similar to what they see. By clicking on the white circle at the bottom right of the Pin, the app suggests ideas related to what the user finds interesting in their home feed.

3. Shop the Look:

Combining Pinterest’s computer vision technology and human curation, Shop the Look is an app (compatible with iOS and Android) that’s more focused on e-Commerce.

Shop the Look simplifies shopping by enabling users to purchase objects they see inside Pins without having to leave the app.

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Zayan Guedim

Trilingual poet, investigative journalist, and novelist. Zed loves tackling the big existential questions and all-things quantum.

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