Pinterest for Small Business

MALE SPEAKER: So anywhere from
the discovery inspiration stage to purchase. FEMALE SPEAKER: And so
I know a lot of people might use Pinterest
for personal reasons. Personally, I just cut about
20 inches off of my hair. I have multiple boards
for short, curly hair. But how could somebody plan
to use Pinterest differently as personal, versus business? MALE SPEAKER: I think it
comes down to motivation. For Pinners, they’re looking
to discover cool things to do. And for partners, they want to
be discovered in that moment, so their products and service
can be part of that plan. FEMALE SPEAKER: And we were
checking in with the community. And we know that there are
some misconceptions out there about Pinterest. It started out where people were
like, oh, it’s just for women, or it’s for planning
milestone events, like I’m going to have
a Pinterest wedding. Is this true or false? MALE SPEAKER: If you
think about Pinterest– we have 50 billion
Pins on the site now. They’ve all been
curated by people. Initially, it really took
off with women in the United States, but men is one of our
fastest growing demographics now. I think last year it grew 120%. And we’re also seeing
really, really big growth internationally. I think 45% of our users now
are internationally based. And when I think about the
use case for Pinterest– you mentioned the
big life events. And it is very much
about the future. But the future could be
something as large as a wedding to what you’re
going to do tonight, and maybe what you’ll
cook for your family. FEMALE SPEAKER: My husband
has been actively pinning motorcycle things. He’s obsessed with his Ducatis
So we’ve got Ducati boards. So if I’m a small
business owner and I’m starting out on Pinterest,
what makes a great Pin? How would you put your
products on Pinterest? MALE SPEAKER: And this Is
a super important question. I think there’s three
general categories. First is the image and the
description, and the URL. So starting on the image,
we recommend high quality, high resolution photos. We’ve also seen Pins where
they add multiple photos. And also the general best
practices have a taller Pin. It just seems to perform better. Probably one thing I would add
to that too is to text overlay. It could help be informative
for the user– for the Pinner that sees it and kind of
catch their attention. Next is the description. So you want to have a really
good, long description that summarizes in terms
of context for what this Pin is to the business. But also, not just from
discovery from the Pinner perspective, but for
Pinterest, and how we actually show that pin. We use the description. So that when people
search for things, it will show up either in
the category, home feed, or a search. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK,
so to sum that up, you want to actually
use the tall Pin, because the tall Pins
tend to work better. You want to have one image,
or multiple images associated with the Pin. You want to add text
overlay to the Pin. And then you want to make
sure that, that description associated with the Pin has
a robust amount of text, or keyword searches. MALE SPEAKER:
Absolutely, that’s right. And I think the last
piece is the euro. Every Pin links back
to a specific website, and that’s where you can
leverage that referral traffic from Pinterest. So making sure that, that URL is
actionable is really important. FEMALE SPEAKER:
OK, good feedback. According to our
research– well, it’s actually according
to your research– we were researching some of
the things that you researched. On average, Pinners
spend $50 per order. This is higher than orders that
come from Facebook and Twitter. How can I integrate Pinterest
into my online store, or my brick and mortar store? MALE SPEAKER: Yeah,
that’s a great question. So just a couple things
I’d like to point out. I think 93% of Pinners
are using Pinterest to make purchase decisions. And then we’ve seen that
87% of those Pinners are actually buying. So one part of it– FEMALE SPEAKER: I
want to slow you down. That is a huge number. So 87% of people who
are using Pinterest to search for something
will buy when they find something on Pinterest. MALE SPEAKER:
Yeah, it’s amazing. And I think the
question of integration is how do you
understand that more. So the first thing is we’re
moving into a beta with Pins. And we’re now offering
conversion tracking, so you can actually know when a
sale happened from a Pinterest referral. The next one is we’re working
with companies like Shopify, who allow small businesses
to have online marketplaces. And we’re giving them
kind of a two-way feedback loop where they can
share data on traffic from Pinterest and sales. And lastly, we just
rolled out buyable Pins. We’re super excited about
that– is also in beta. But it’s going to allow
Pinners to purchase directly from an online
marketplace on Pinterest. FEMALE SPEAKER:
So if I’m actually using buyable for somebody,
let’s say, is on their phone, and they see a buyable Pin–
they can actually complete the purchase through the Pin. MALE SPEAKER: That’s right. So 80% of our users are
using Pinterest on mobile. FEMALE SPEAKER: I want
to stop you right here. So this is really interesting. A couple months ago we
actually sat down with Harvey from Shopify, and we
learned how small businesses could use Shopify as
their E-commerce platform. And so now we’re
seeing how Shopify is integrating with social
media through Pinterest. MALE SPEAKER: Absolutely. They’re a big partner with us. And we’ve seen
really great results for small businesses
partnering with them. FEMALE SPEAKER: Fantastic. OK, you talked about
buyable Pins a little bit. Let’s dive in. What is the buyable Pin? MALE SPEAKER: Yeah, and I just
mentioned 80% of our users are using Pinterest mobily. And traditionally, historically
conversion rates and sales happening from online stores
on mobile have been pretty bad. So the idea was to create a
made for mobile frictionless checkout process on Pinterest. And I think the
cool part about this is we’re not planning
on charging the merchant any kind of transaction fee. So we’re pretty excited
about that, yeah. FEMALE SPEAKER: That’s amazing. MALE SPEAKER: It’s going
to be really exciting. We’re in the beta phase. And we have a slick group
of partners testing it out right now. But we do plan on rolling
it out in the near future. FEMALE SPEAKER: This is
fantastic news for anybody who’s looking for a better
mobile E-commerce experience. Because I know, I’ve talked
about this on Hangouts when I go to a site that’s
not mobile optimized, or I can’t complete the order
on the phone– I basically then have to remember. I can be out and
about, and now, I have to remember to
go back to my computer and actually complete
the purchase. And how many people drop off? MALE SPEAKER: A lot. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, so buyable
Pins, remember that guys. And we talk a lot about how
small businesses can actually use the material that
we talk about here and the different platforms,
the different services, and whatnot. I’m wondering in your
travels at Pinterest, can you give us any
examples on what small businesses
have done that’s interesting with Pinterest? MALE SPEAKER: Yeah, definitely. So there’s a couple small
businesses that come to mind. The first one is
Artifact Uprising. So they are a mobile app that
creates custom photo books. And they jumped on
Pinterest, started creating really
great content that really resonated with users. I didn’t think of it as a use
case on Pinterest initially. But they found a way
to get really creative with their Pins, text overlay,
talking about memories, really capturing
that inspirational and saving perspective
of Pinterest. It really took off, really
got great user engagement. They did so well, they
actually recently got purchased by a big photo
app company, [INAUDIBLE]. So, yeah, it was
really interesting. And then, I’d say the
next one is [INAUDIBLE]. She was a graduate student and
was paying a lot, picking up a huge engagement with users
who were liking her content, that was accessories
and jewelry. And she decided, hey,
maybe I should actually start a business behind this. And she did, and they
became very successful. And it was all
based off insights she was getting from Pinterest. And then she eventually
opened up a store in the Pacific Northwest. I think she even wrote a book
about it, so really cool. FEMALE SPEAKER: So she was
using insights from Pinterest to determine what sort of
jewelery she could create. MALE SPEAKER: Absolutely. She saw how much attraction
it was getting on Pinterest. And she’s like, well, If
there’s this many people engaged in this content,
maybe I should just build a business around it. FEMALE SPEAKER: It’s almost
like your crowdsourcing the next great Idea, MALE SPEAKER: That’s right. FEMALE SPEAKER:
That’s fantastic. MALE SPEAKER: That’s definitely
the powers of interest. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, ads. We know everything
online has an ad. But how do ads on
Pinterest work? MALE SPEAKER: So
promoted Pins are like regular Pins, where
you can pay to have a potential customer see them. We have various degree
of targeting options where you can
basically determine which Pinners might see your Pin
in our home feed, categories, and search. And today you can pay either
through a customer engagement, or a click to your website. So it depends, there, on what
your marketing objectives are. So as I mentioned
earlier, we’re beta there, but if you get to, you can sign up
for the wait list. And we’re bringing on businesses
every day– more and more to test the platform. But we’ve seen some really
good results to date. FEMALE SPEAKER: I am
being subject to lots of hair, clearly, on Pinterest. Everybody here makes fun of
my [INAUDIBLE] on Pinterest. OK, so we know that for small
businesses, especially when they try out
something new, there’s always a concern that they’re
going to make a mistake. What are some common mistakes
that people make when they first sign up for Pinterest? MALE SPEAKER: Yeah,
that’s a good question. I think the first thing we see
is this misconception of being like an image upload site. So you can Pin directly
from your website. So if you have great images
on your site, or products– you could just take the
Pin It button browser, and Pin directly onto Pinterest. This is great because when
your Pins are on Pinterest, they’ll obviously create a
flow of traffic back for you. I think the next piece is
just making sure that you have a good actual URL. We talked about mobile
and how important that is as well. if you have
a mobile optimized site, you just want to make sure the
Pin links back to your website. FEMALE SPEAKER: It would be
pretty poor user experience if somebody finds the
Pin, and it doesn’t go where it’s supposed to go. MALE SPEAKER: It’s a
terrible experience, yeah. FEMALE SPEAKER:
Yeah, frustrating. You mentioned before,
analytics and conversion. And I think also
for small businesses who are just starting out,
you need a feedback loop. You need to know– some of our
folks don’t have any free time. So if their spending
any time at all to try out this
new platform, how do they know
Pinterest is working? MALE SPEAKER: So I think for
businesses, like I mentioned, it’s about being discovered. And that happens in
a number of ways. One is a Repin when
people aren’t saving, a Pin that they want to try. Another is a click-through,
where someone actually is clicking on the Pin
back to your website. And then last is
a follower– where people are following
you because they’re interested in your content. And the way you would measure
that is to Pinterest analytics. So in Pinterest analytics,
you can get a read out on how your clips are doing,
how many Repins you’re getting, even insights on your audience. And then you can use that
to figure out what’s working and do more of it. FEMALE SPEAKER: So
there is analytics. Is that free? MALE SPEAKER: That’s
free, absolutely free. FEMALE SPEAKER: And it’s
built right into the platform. MALE SPEAKER: Yep,
the only thing you need to do with analytics
is verify your website and you’ll get analytics,
so that we can tell you what’s happening from
Pinterest to your website. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, I love that. It’s a feedback loop. MALE SPEAKER: It
really is, yeah. A great example was [INAUDIBLE]. She was looking at what was
resonating on Pinterest, and she was actually planning
her products to around that. And we actually see a lot
of businesses do that. FEMALE SPEAKER: And in
many of the Hangouts that we’ve been having, we see
that this feedback loop that drives product integration and
whatnot, that’s what people are primarily using and
benefiting from social media. The more you hear
from your customers, the more you can be making
what they’re looking for. MALE SPEAKER: Absolutely. And it gives you this
ability to test and iterate on different things. So for different Pins
that are really taking off in the engagement
on Pinterest, that’s a signal that you can use to
make your business better. FEMALE SPEAKER:
It always catches me off guard when somebody
who I have never met likes one of my Pins. And it’s a little embarrassing
because a lot of them are here, or Christmas shopping. And it’s like, oh, somebody
I don’t know likes my Pin. MALE SPEAKER: But it’s
cool because a lot of times those people might share
similar interests with you. You’re not connected
to people on how you know them, but actually
what your interests are. FEMALE SPEAKER: And
now I just found somebody else who’s like-minded
in their love of things that I like. But that’s great. It’s now the time
when we were going to take some questions
from the community. I know that we had
a bunch coming in. And the screen is– there we go. I always have a moment of fear
that the screen is locked, and this whole thing
will be for nought. OK, we have a question
from Stephanie. “When will promoted pins
open up to more advertisers?” MALE SPEAKER: So right now,
if you go to, you can sign up
for the wait list. We are bringing on
advertisers every day, so I would encourage
you to do that. I think in terms
of when we’re going to go to general
availability, or just open to the public–
it’s probably going to be sometime in 2016. But we’re really
just testing right now to make sure that
when we roll it out to the broader
group of businesses, that it’s the best it can be. FEMALE SPEAKER:
Okay, that’s great. Roger– hi, Roger. Roger says, “I’m
new to Pinterest. How should I get started? What are my first steps?” MALE SPEAKER: I think the
first step would be signing up a business account, obviously. One thing that we recommend
to businesses to try as well, is to put a Pin
It on their site. So this is really
powerful because it encourages Pinners to Pin from
your website onto Pinterest. So you can actually, as a small
business leverage your existing user base to drive more
flow of traffic back to you. So they go to your website,
they see the Pin It button. They’re encouraged to
Pin on the Pinterest. That Pin gets cycled
through Pinterest and then drives traffic
back to your site. FEMALE SPEAKER: So how do
they get the Pin It button? MALE SPEAKER: So go to our site. You can add a little bit
of code to your site, and it just marks up all your
images with a Pin It button. FEMALE SPEAKER: I
see that everywhere, and it’s so helpful for me. MALE SPEAKER: Yeah, it’s
really, really powerful. FEMALE SPEAKER: So Get the code for the Pin
It button, and then put it on your website. And then the Pin It button
will automatically appear next to all of your images. MALE SPEAKER: That’s right. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, so
that’s the first step. MALE SPEAKER: That’s
the first step. I think the next step is
just creating good Pins. So go to,
Download our creative guide. And I mentioned some of
them around the image and the description, and making
sure that the URL’s good. But review that, and test out
some Pins and see what works. You might find that some Pins
and proxy you have really take off for customers,
and that might be something that you might want to
bring back to your business, and then make changes
based on that. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, so it’s, and you want to download
the creative guide. MALE SPEAKER: That’s right–
best practices again. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, we have
another question from Kaitlin. Hi, Kaitlin. Kaitlin asks, “how do you
recommend businesses leverage video within Pinterest? Do you have any tips on how
to optimize this experience?” This is a great question. MALE SPEAKER: Yeah,
it’s a great question. So I think video pins can
be really powerful to tell a brand’s story, to do
things like do it yourself, or they can do steps
and walk-throughs. But I would think
of a video just like a Pin in terms of what’s
going to resonate with the user and catch your attention. So, obviously, you
want to make sure that the image that
the video’s on is good. But, also, you really want to
care about your description. What Is this? And I think too, if you
translate the description into what the video is probably
about– it’s going to be something that’s informative. And we’ve seen
informative descriptions do very well with Pinners. FEMALE SPEAKER: So basically the
written description associated with the video is going to make
the video more discoverable. And then the video
should be informative, so that you’re actually
going to encourage somebody to commit action. MALE SPEAKER: That’s correct. FEMALE SPEAKER: I actually
had an interesting experience with this renovating my house. And I was doing my back deck,
and we wanted to use papers. And I had no idea
what the process was. And I found a Pin
next to a video. And so once I understood
the whole process, I was actually able to hire
the right person for the job. MALE SPEAKER: That’s amazing. FEMALE SPEAKER: Yeah,
so I saw that in action. MALE SPEAKER: And
it also highlights too how our users
use the Pins to save things they want to try, right? So you were
collecting an image– a video Pin that you were
going to take action on later. So that’s really cool. FEMALE SPEAKER: Matesh, I think
I’m pronouncing that right. If I’m not, I apologize. When will the platform
open worldwide? MALE SPEAKER: So in terms of
just Pinterest in general, we are open to the world. 45% of our monthly active
users are international. In terms of ads. We’re still working on
rolling out, like I said, to the broader United States. And once we do
that, we’ll probably be following suit
internationally pretty soon as well. FEMALE SPEAKER: What
about buyable Pins? Are they available everywhere? MALE SPEAKER: Buyable Pins,
right now, are just US based. And they are just through a
few partners that we have. But when we open it, we’ll
probably do a US rollout, and then move to international
base set as well. FEMALE SPEAKER:
Okay, that’s great. We have a lot of questions. It seems like everybody
in the community wants to learn more about
Pinterest, which is awesome. Robert, hi, Robert. Robert asks,
“should I put a link to my website on every Pin?” MALE SPEAKER: Absolutely. And I would say, take it
a step further– not just a link to your website. If the Pin is a product, or a
service that you’re offering, have it go directly to that. It will really help with the
conversion ready for trying to sell something. The Pin are going from
the Pin to your site, to the right product. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, so instead
of just saying here’s a Pin, and I’m going to put the URL
as the home page of my website. Then you’re asking people
to take that next step. The URL should be exactly
where the Pin is aligned with. MALE SPEAKER: That’s right. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, great. We have another
question from Theresa. Hi, Theresa. “What are the different ways
I can target my customer with promoted Pins?” MALE SPEAKER: So right now we
do it via gender geolocation. you can do [INAUDIBLE] as well. So in addition to that,
we offer the ability to target through terms. So you’ll pick
different keywords, or terms that help you
reach the right audience. And then when we
serve that Pin, we serve it in the home feed
searching categories. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK,
so it’s age, gender, geolocation for targeting. And then the destination
is the home feed– and what was the last one? MALE SPEAKER: Home feed,
search, or categories. FEMALE SPEAKER: Home feed,
search, or categories. MALE SPEAKER: That’s right. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, perfect. Thanks, Theresa. Next question is from Felicia. “Are there certain
types of products that do better on
Pinterest, versus others?” MALE SPEAKER: Yeah,
good question. I think what we found is
we’re continually surprised on what does well on Pinterest. A lot of it is figuring out
ways to create really visually inspiring content. We’ve seen anywhere from banks
leveraging statements on here’s the top 10 ways to
retire rich– fraud, to examples of people doing home
decor in really niche markets, like an Italian chair that
I would never think to buy. But it does really
well on Pinterest. And I think that’s
the power of it. You can really find and
connect with an audience in different niches. And sometimes it would
surprise you what does well. But a lot of it comes
down to the things we mentioned about having a
really good compelling pin with a good description,
and then linking back to the right place. FEMALE SPEAKER: Well,
we’ve observed it, but the taste of the people
on the internet are so varied. And Pinterest is there
at the discovery phase. And so, if anybody is
looking for anything there should be a Pin to
solve for that search. MALE SPEAKER:
That’s what we hope. FEMALE SPEAKER: We have one
more question from Kyle. Hi, Kyle. “How can I use
Pinterest to reach my mostly male target audience?” MALE SPEAKER: That’s
a great question. So I think there are a growing
number of males on the site right now, as I mentioned. It’s the fastest growing
demographic on Pinterest. And I think, depending on
what your product or services, you just have to
find content that would be compelling to males
And that comes through, kind of testing out
and seeing what might resonate with the male user. It’s hard to say
without knowing what the business is related to. But when I use
Pinterest personally, I search for things
that I’m interested in. And if they come up, I
will engage with them, follow that business, click
through on the business. And I think we have a
good male user base now, that you can do that. FEMALE SPEAKER:
I see my husband. So I mentioned the
Ducati example before. But my husband has
also started gardening. In our backyard, we have
these three huge gardening beds right now. And he’s constantly
pinning gardening things. And so that’s not traditionally
male, female, or whatnot. So I think that there’s
just no end to opportunity for what you could be pinning. MALE SPEAKER: That’s right. FEMALE SPEAKER: We have
another question from Peter. Hi, Peter. “Is there a good way to use
Pinterest for a service, like dentistry, for example?” MALE SPEAKER: Yeah, absolutely. I think when you think
about the discovery experience for
people, sometimes they don’t know exactly what they’re
looking for in their area. And our search has
gotten to the point now where we’ve got a search,
we can be really specific about things in different
locations and whatnot. So if you’re offering
services like legal services, dental services,
medical services, it’s going to come down to a
Pin that catches someone’s eye. And if they’re doing
a local search, we can actually serve them that. FEMALE SPEAKER: I
could even think, if I’m a dentist– I assume
that Peter’s a dentist. I could maybe upload a video
Pin with the proper way to teach your kids how
to brush your teeth. And then include
in the description that we are a family dentistry. And the video is
just a value add, but it shows that
you’re going to a place where they care
about your family. MALE SPEAKER: 100%. And I think too, guys
keeping a bright white smile, things like that, That
resonates with users. When they see things,
when they’re informative, and give them
additional information. They get excited about it. They’ll save it, and
they’ll discover you. FEMALE SPEAKER:
That’s fantastic. Oh, wait, we have
another question. Hi, Katie. “Any suggestions for
niche content sites to benefit on Pinterest?” MALE SPEAKER: Yeah, I
think niche content sites are what make Pinterest great. When I look at my home feed, I
don’t see a lot of large brands there. I see a lot of niche content
that I’m personally interested in. So I think it’s just getting
in front of your audience with something that’s
compelling to them that will get them excited about you. And they’re going to
discover you through search, or following other people
that have similar interests. So it’s really
about, at that point, testing out what Pins are going
to resonate with that audience. FEMALE SPEAKER: And what’s
your favorite niche content? MALE SPEAKER: My favorite
niche content on Pinterest is sculpting. FEMALE SPEAKER: Sculpting? MALE SPEAKER: Yeah,
I love to sculpt. And I have gotten into
this little community on sculpting on Pinterest, And
it’s amazing how rich it is. FEMALE SPEAKER: And if
you were, let’s say, a small business owner who owns,
let’s say, a art supply store. That’s something that you
can gravitate towards. MALE SPEAKER: Absolutely. I mean, you could
understand that there’s this really thriving, blossoming
community of sculptors. And you can make Pins
that resonate with them, but also give information
about your store so people can discover you. FEMALE SPEAKER: Well,
that’s all the time we have for the questions
for the community. You did really well. I know that, that
was fast and furious. We do want to ask you
one more question. One of the things
we do is really to encapsulate everything
that we’ve talked about. So if I’m a small
business owner and I want to get started
with Pinterest tomorrow, what are the top three
things I should take away from this Hangout? MALE SPEAKER: Well, I think
I would say first– this is general advice. You obviously want to find,
with your limited time, the thing that’s
going to give you the biggest bang for your buck. I think, with that said, getting
a Pin It button on your site can be that. It leverages your
existing traffic base to Pin from your
site onto Pinterest, which can drive traffic back. That’s one. I think, then, using
analytics to understand how your content’s performing–
to get those insights to do more of what’s working. And I would say the
last piece is just think about the mobile experience. Traditionally,
across the web right now, things are
moving more mobile. And there’s a lot
of great sites, like Shopify, that allow
you to do some really good mobile optimizations. But when you think about
that checkout experience, if you’re selling
things especially, it’s good to consider mobile. FEMALE SPEAKER: OK, so those
three things were Pin It button– which we
talked about– how you get that, mobile experience. MALE SPEAKER: And analytics. FEMALE SPEAKER: And analytics. And everybody heard
that here first. Thank you so much
for being here today. We really appreciate it. MALE SPEAKER: Thank you. FEMALE SPEAKER: And
thank you for watching. Tune in next week when we’re
hosting our last social media month Hangout with Twitter. As always, you can access
all of our content.

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9 thoughts on “Pinterest for Small Business

  1. buyable pin sounded a bit like "bible" pin. For just a wee second, I was confused. This is an exciting advancement for Pinterest, which generates a shocking amount of traffic and interest. Great interview, thanks!

  2. is it amore seal? The text doesn't line up with the voices, so I can't find the pinner you're talking about.
    I would love to see her boards they sound great!! Thank you

  3. I would like to know when Pinterest is going to allow companies outside of the USA to use Buyable Pins?  I feel it is very unfair considering the whole world now uses the platform.

  4. If you need help understanding how to utilize Pinterest for your small business, see how our social media marketing services can help your business grow. Learn more at

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