Some may dismiss Pinterest as a place for outfit ideas and motivational memes, but the platform is becoming a powerful online shopping tool. We’ve already established that Pinterest is great for advertising, but it also works great with direct sales conversions.
As a place to encourage infinite scrolling, the power of Pinterest is limitless. If you take the platform seriously and put some love into your business page, you can start selling products on Pinterest in 7 simple steps.
Why should you sell products and services on Pinterest?
Pinterest is more than just a fun way to kill an evening with a glass of wine on your tablet. Launched in 2010, the platform has become quite popular in recent years and its developers have been instrumental in adding more features for brands without taking away from the user experience.
The truth is, Pinterest is the ideal choice for retailers and its sales potential should not be underestimated. Here are just a few of the reasons:
The app is fast approaching half a billion users, and this phenomenal growth is inspiring more and more business owners to join. According to our survey, Pinterest’s marketing effectiveness increased 140% between 2021 and 2022, and many marketers plan to invest much more time and money in Pinterest 2022.
Pinterest is the perfect mix of social media and window shopping. An estimated 47% of users use Pinterest, whether they’re browsing randomly or actively planning a big purchase. most Product purchasing platform. Considering how many people are using the service, that’s a lot of potential customers.
Unlike other social media platforms, Pinterest allows you to sell directly on the platform; you don’t need to send leads elsewhere. Pinterest’s shopping features allow you to create a unique and seamless shopping experience that minimizes the risk of customers dropping out before they pay.
Note that payment via the platform is currently only available to iOS and Android users located in the USA. Brands from other countries can set up Pinterest showcases and direct users to e-commerce stores for payment.
This is cutting edge technology
The renewed interest in Pinterest means there are more people using the app than ever before, and the company is constantly rising to that status by introducing new features.
In 2022 alone, Pinterest launched its Experiment for Home Decor feature, which allows Pinners to test their household items using augmented reality (AR). Using this feature, you can see how a piece of furniture will look in your space:
Pinterest shopping features
Pinterest has been shopper-friendly for many years. In 2013, they introduced Rich Pins, which pulls data from brands’ websites to Pinterest content. In 2015, they added “purchasable pins”, which were renamed Product Pins in 2018.
Yet the app has gone above and beyond for brands during the COVID-19 quarantine. In 2020, they launched the Store tab, which makes it even easier for users to shop while searching the app or browsing a board.
There are currently 5 ways Pinterest users can purchase the app:
- Shop from boards: When a Pinterest user visits a home decor or fashion board, the Shop tab shows products from the Pins they’ve saved. If exactly these products are not available, it will offer products inspired by Pins.
- Shop from Pins: When users browse regular Pins on Pinterest, similar shopping to see related products for both appearance and rooms.
- Shop Without Search: The Store tab is now easily accessible from search results, so if Pinterest users search for “summer clothes”, “apartment ideas” or “home office”, they can easily tap the tab and be fed up with shopping options.
- Shop Style Guides: Pinterest creates its own style guides for popular home decor terms like “living room ideas”, “mid-century”, “contemporary” and more. The goal is to help Pinners find products even if they don’t know exactly what they’re looking for.
- Shop From Brand Pages: Stores that sign up for Pinterest’s free Verified Merchant Program can have a store tab on their profile (like the example below), meaning Pinners are just a click away from the shopping spree:
Sounds pretty good, right? All right, let’s start selling!
How to sell on Pinterest
As we mentioned earlier, there are many different ways to use Pinterest as a retailer.
Whether you’re using it to send #inspo vibes and build awareness, or to sell on the platform, you need to have a solid strategy.
Here’s a comprehensive, step-by-step guide on how to sell on Pinterest.
1. Find the right niche
This is an important part of any brand philosophy, but especially important on Pinterest. Consider your target audience and content strategy before setting up a store. After all, this app is all about curation – it’s key to making sure you’re starting in the right place.
Spend some time on Pinterest to understand the diverse communities and where your brand might fit, whether you’re a summer fashionista or a mid-century modern homeware junkie.
2. Create a business account
To do business from your Pinterest account, you need to make sure you have a business account. No problem, right? A business account differs from a personal account in many ways – it gives you access to features like analytics, ads, and a large business toolbox.
There are two main ways to get a business account. You can convert your personal profile to a business account or sign up for a new business account from scratch by following the instructions here.
Learn more about creating a Pinterest account in our guide to using Pinterest for business.
3. Reinforce your brand
Before moving on to the fun stuff, it’s important to make sure your Pinterest profile aligns with your brand as a whole. This means taking the time and care to make sure everything is in order, from your username and profile photo to your bio and contact information. Pinterest users who come across your brand on the platform should be able to easily identify it if they’ve seen it before.
As mentioned earlier, you can also sign up for the Verified Merchant Program, which is free and adds a blue checkmark to your page (unlike Twitter and Instagram’s verification mark). This will make your brand appear more trustworthy on the platform.
A verified Pinterest account looks like this:
4. Define your aesthetic
Although a truly unique beast, at its core Pinterest is a visual search engine. This means, of course, that you should consider SEO-friendly headlines in your posts, but most importantly, create a strong visual identity.
In Moyens I/O’s Social Trends 2022 report, we looked at how Structube created a series of visually stunning, 1950s-style ads to promote their furniture. On Pinterest, these photos are tagged by room—a savvy marketing move, considering that’s exactly how Pinners shop for home decor items. The result was 2x higher return on ad spend.
Structube’s entire Pinterest account has an aesthetically consistent look and feel:
5. Create a catalog
Before you get to pinning, there’s another very important step in setting up your Pinterest store: creating a catalog. This process requires a spreadsheet with some important information, which is then used to create Product Pins and create a catalog on Pinterest.
The product spreadsheet has seven requirements: a unique ID, title, description, product URL, image URL, price, and availability. Pinterest has put together a sample spreadsheet here.
You also need to host your data somewhere. To post to Pinterest you need to provide a link to your CSV where they can always access it. It can be hosted via an FTP/SFTP server or an HTTP/HTTPS download link, but cannot be password protected. When you post this link to Pinterest, your products will be available as Product Pins.
Pinterest refreshes your data source every 24 hours; so you should be able to add products to the spreadsheet and have them appear automatically on your Pinterest store without much work. The company also says they can handle up to 20 million products per account, so unless you’re running the largest store in the world, you should be able to build a comprehensive list of products.
6. Use Rich Pins
A product spreadsheet is a great way to keep your Pinterest up to date, but there is another way to access the many special features in the app. If you have claimed your website as outlined in step 3, there are many more features at your fingertips.
For example, you can create Rich Pins that use metadata from your site to create standalone pins crafted for search discoverability.
To get Rich Pins, you need to refer to them. Pinterest then analyzes your site’s metadata to make sure it syncs properly. You can find out more about rich Pin types and the setup process here.
Once approved, Rich Pins will be available every time you tap create a new pin.
7. Make marketing moves
You know your brand and you know exactly what you want to do with it. Now is the time to bring your marketing knowledge to Pinterest boards.
Has a celebrity been photographed wearing your clothes? Or has an influencer used one of your home decor items in their pictures? Go on a tagging spree and pin your products. You can also get a lot of distance by tagging your items in Shop the Look posts.
Pinterest also reports that brands that tag details like free shipping or product ratings double the number of checkouts, so it doesn’t hurt to refine your feed with those integral details as well.
While it may sound cliché, definitely the most important technique is to have some fun with it. You want to be a brand with a Pinterest account, not a brand spamming the site with products. Make sure to pin relevant, engaging content that isn’t a product as often as you do product posts. This way, you can interact with the community organically while increasing sales.
Save time managing your Pinterest presence using Moyens I/O. You can create, schedule and post Pins, create new boards, pin to multiple boards at once, and run all your other social media profiles from a single board. Try it for free today.