Pinterest Playbook to Drive eCommerce Revenue

Some of the most successful companies gained their loyal customer base directly through social media marketing. The standard and proven platforms for social media marketing are Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. With millions of users combined, they carry enormous potential for business growth, both organically and via ads.

Yet Pinterest is one social media platform that’s often overlooked by eCommerce brands. In case you haven’t had a chance to try it out, Pinterest is a free social media channel that allows users to ‘pin’ their favorite links and images on digital boards for later inspiration or shopping. It is designed to hold ideas in a mood-board format, and users are encouraged to create as many boards as they need.


Sources: Oh Joy! and Bonnie Tsang

One distinguishing feature of Pinterest as a social medium is that users see only what they want to see. Their custom-prepared dashboard displays a curated collection of pins they might like based on what they search for and save in their own accounts. Thus, Pinterest’s primary purpose is to hold information of interest to the users, rather than facilitate its exchange and distribution. Coincidentally, this format also facilitates active purchasing behavior between eCommerce brands and the consumers who are planning their shopping agendas.

Why is Pinterest so important?

According to Pinterest, there are currently over 250 million active users with 100 billion pins linking to products ready for purchase.  Pinterest drives more referral traffic to eCommerce sites than any other social media platform out there. In fact, Shopify named Pinterest as the #2 traffic referral source to its site. It also reported that 93% of its users go to Pinterest to specifically plan their shopping, while more than 40% of them hold substantial purchasing power with a reported income of $100K+.

sprout social pinterest user demographics

Source: Sprout Social

That’s pretty impressive, right? However, with this amount of content circulating on the platform, it’s easy for some important pins to get lost. For this reason, Pinterest hosts a robust advertising platform which can significantly increase pin visibility and referral traffic to a shopping site. It works so well that nearly half of pinners make a purchase after seeing a promoted pin, and 61% of users say they find new brands thanks to the ads they see, according to Pinterest.

What are some success stories around Pinterest Advertising?

With the power of promoting your business on Pinterest no longer held secret, companies are embracing it full-heartedly. We are particularly impressed with how brands like IKEA, and even ABC Network have achieved their marketing goals and multiplied their revenue.

And, here are some more inspiring success stories: 




How do you run a successful Pinterest Campaign?

1. Start with the keyword research

Pinterest has a robust keyword search tool that allows brands to figure out what users are searching for. So prior to starting your campaign, we recommend searching for a few items you want to promote. For instance, if you are a home and office goods brand, searching for “office decor” yields the following results:


Office Decor search Pinterest

By simply observing the search results, you can see the top ideas for which users are searching for. So as you begin writing descriptions for your pins, make sure to mention these keywords to get the most visibility with your target audience.

2. Follow your brand design and aesthetic when optimizing your profile

Pinterest is a visual platform and heavily relies on images. Use this to your advantage - create a unified brand aesthetic on Pinterest that will be pleasing and recognizable by your unique audience. Here a solid example from Anthropologie:

anthropologie pinterest board

Source: Anthropologie

3. Start running ads

Once you feel your profile is ready to be seen by Pinterest’s 250 million users, start playing around with ads. Pinterest and Shopify write about effective Pinterest advertising strategies on their own blogs, but here are some notes to remember as you begin your campaign: 

  • Set SMART goals first - specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timebound.
  • Select your objectives - some examples are brand awareness, traffic, clicks, purchases, video awareness, app downloads, etc.
  • Select your audience - demographics, preferences, hobbies, behavior and so much more!
  • Write an SEO-friendly description for your pin and select an attention-grabbing image.
  • Play around with pin formats - did you know Buyable pins create a seamless shopping experience and helped FlyAwayBluJay get 20% more conversions?
  • Track the stats - pay attention to your analytics and insights at all times.
4. Analyze your results

In order to see if Pinterest advertising is a good investment for your brand, it’s important to know how well you are achieving your goals (does this sound familiar from our other posts?)! To do so, keep your eye on your Pinterest Advertising Insights along with your website analytics. Some important metrics to compare before and after are:

  • Number of impressions
  • Number of saves
  • Number of clicks
  • Click-through-rates (clicking on the actual link, not just the pin)
  • Average cost per ___ (click, impression, share, save, etc.)
  • Total ad spend

Pinterest is often underestimated by brands as a social media platform, which is why including it in your marketing strategy can put you a step ahead of your competitors. To make the most of Pinterest and its enormous selling power, remember to study your audience, maintain consistency with your boards and pins, and stay current on the best practices of the platform.

Good luck!

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