An Introduction to Pinterest

An Introduction to Pinterest—from a customer point of view

Written by Emily Moser

Pinterest is the number two social media site in use today in generating sales behind Facebook. With over 100 million active members, one thing that sets Pinterest apart from other social media platforms is that the users are purchase oriented.  Due to the search and discovery nature of Pinterest, it is a great tool for users to save content and recall at a later time or be forwarded to outside websites for additional information, products or services. With the main user of Pinterest being married women in their 30s with children, most of these users are the primary shoppers in their families.

How does Pinterest work? When a user creates an account, they’ll be able to select friends, people, and boards they’d like to follow.  From this selection, the pins available in the news feed will primarily be organic, mainly seeing what their friends have shared or “pinned.” Users can search pre-established categories or use the search bar to perform a specific search for ideas, products or services and results will come up based on that keyword search, similar to a search engine.

For example, if I search “popular hair styles” I’ll be routed to results based on that keyword search. Along with the original search Pinterest will offer broader search options such as “popular hairstyles for women,” “popular hair styles 2016,” etc. for me to choose to see more relevant content.

Using Pinterest on a Desktop

Another function that gives the user more options, on a desktop computer, after a search is completed, users can select to view all pins, your (the user) pins, buyable pins, people, and boards. This gives an advantage to the user to specify what they’re in the market for. If I was interested in the search “popular hair styles” and selected buyable pins, various hair products are readily available for me to view, click-through and purchase.

As I previously said Pinterest users are purchase oriented. As women being the primary shoppers of the household, it’s important to be able to connect with them on multiple levels in various areas of their life.

When I was pregnant, I searched online for a crib. In my search, I viewed many websites including,, and In order to keep my finds safe and be able to recall them at a later time, I used the pin it button on my computer, a downloadable extension to use on any website or the Pinterest social media button already on the website. These buttons, link the information on the web page I’m viewing and save the information as a pin, to my selected board on my account. When the time came for me to make my purchase, I returned to Pinterest, clicked on my link which referred me to the website where I was able to complete my transaction.

Using Pinterest as a consumer is a convenient way for me to search for ideas, products, and services to make my life easier. In addition to being able to view and shop products and ideas on Pinterest, I can also like, comment and share pins with other users.  My next blog will go over the business opportunities that Pinterest offers and how you can use the services to better your business and achieve your goals.

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