February 24, 2017
Today, one of the biggest challenges marketers face is finding the right social media channel for their companies.
With dozens of options to choose from, finding the one that resonates with your audience and drives results can be tough.
And it’s only made worse by the fact that modern wisdom seems to tell us we should be everywhere, all at once.
Fortunately, this isn’t true. To be successful, you’ve got to find the handful of social sites that appeal to your users and provide the right platform for your content.
And if you’re an eCommerce site, there’s a good possibility that one of those platforms is Pinterest.
A powerful, highly visual site with more than 150 million active monthly users, Pinterest is a promising channel for anyone looking to sell anything online.
Here’s what you need to know about why you should be using Pinterest to support your eCommerce efforts, and how to do it successfully.
5 Leading Reasons Why eCommerce Marketers Need Pinterest
There are dozens of reasons Pinterest supports eCommerce so well, but one of the primary factors is that it removes several steps of the buying cycle.
Neil Patel points out that, on a more traditional platform such as Facebook, a customer would have to discover your brand, get to know you, consider your products, and then make a purchase.
Not so on Pinterest.
Thanks to Rich Pins, which provide additional detail about products, recipes, articles and more, customers can find your brand on Pinterest, see a product and buy it on the spot. This is a major boon for marketers, and it makes the Pinterest platform ideal for making sales.
Beyond that, here are a few of the biggest factors drawing eCommerce brands to Pinterest:
1. Pinterest’s Average Orders Size is Double Facebook’s
If you didn’t know better, it would seem like Facebook was King of the Hill when it came to social media marketing. And while it’s true that Facebook can be an amazingly useful platform for many things, Pinterest grinds it into the dust when it comes to average order size. In fact, Pinterest’s average order size is double that of Facebook’s.
This means that marketers who position themselves correctly on Pinterest stand to make more sales and bigger sales, a fact that’s appealing enough to drive any eCommerce site owner out of his or her mind with anticipation.
2. Pinterest is the Foundation of Customers’ Purchasing Decisions
When people use Pinterest, they aren’t just pinning things mindlessly. Say you have a bride who’s using Pinterest to plan a wedding, for example. That bride wants to wear a headpiece on her big day, so she heads to Pinterest to check out some options. As she pins them to her “Wedding” board, she’s not just looking. She’s deciding what to purchase when she’s ready.
According to a Millward Brown study that evaluated customer purchasing behavior on Pinterest, 93 percent of customers plan purchases on Pinterest, and 87 percent use Pinterest to decide on their purchases. This is called “the power of future intent.”
This bride is using Pinterest to plan her ideal wedding, even if it’s eight months from now. This also means she’s highly likely to purchase some of the things she’s pinned over the course of the next several months. In a world where marketers are trying to move away from disruptive, intrusive, irrelevant advertising, and more toward relevant, engaging, helpful material, the “power of future intent” is an incredibly attractive concept.
3. The Most Common Purchases on Pinterest Offer Lots of Potential
While it might seem like a platform as productive and promising as Pinterest would have to be constrained to a niche, this isn’t altogether true. In fact, Racked.com reports that the most common purchases on Pinterest fall into the following five (very broad) categories:
· Ingredients and food;
· Home decorations and décor;
· Accessories and Clothing;
· Beauty and hair;
· Fitness and health.
As you can see, these “most-loved” categories are broad enough to apply to marketers in virtually any industry, and there’s lots of potential there to exploit.
4. Pinterest Can Earn You New Customers
According to Help Scout, the probability of selling to a new customer is five to 20 percent, while the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60 to 70 percent. Pinterest, however, might be the one platform that turns this on its head. When the platform first launched its ‘Buyable Pins’ feature in June of 2015, it noticed that 90 percent of the people making purchases from brands on the platform were new customers, not old converts.
This is an unprecedented sales rate, and it just goes to show that Pinterest can help eCommerce marketers get their products in front of fresh, new customers, not just those who were going to buy, anyway.
5. Pinterest Fits Perfectly Into the Mobile Revolution
In a world where marketers of all types and focuses are hustling to keep up with a Web that’s shifting the majority of its attention to mobile users, Pinterest is a dream come true. In 2014, 75 percent of all Pinterest’s traffic was from mobile apps. Today, more than 80 percent of all Pinterest’s traffic comes from mobile devices.
Plus, because buyable pins are targeted for users on mobile devices, this means that your presence on the platform could spell massive sales for your brand.
How to Use Pinterest to Bolster Your eCommerce Marketing
If you’re interested in using Pinterest to boost your eCommerce marketing, you’re on the verge of something great. Here are the steps you need to take:
1. Integrate With the Needed Commerce Platforms to Create Buyable Pins
The first step is to ensure you’re using the needed commerce platforms to support buyable pins. Pinterest accepts the following commerce platforms:
This first step is also the most difficult. If you’re already using a commerce platform, but it’s not one of the ones on this list, you might consider switching to one Pinterest will support. That’s not always an attractive option, though — a switching cost is involved. Do some research before you take the leap to ensure that you’ll be able to recoup any costs you spend by switching and making sales on the new platform.
If you don’t want to switch, you can either wait until Pinterest adds more commerce platforms in the future, or use Promoted Pins, which offer many of the same benefits and don’t require integration with a business platform.
If you are using one of these platforms, or if you decide to switch over to one, you need to connect the commerce platform to your Pinterest account, and you’re ready to go.
2. Define Your Pinterest Audience
If you’re going to use Pinterest to accelerate your eCommerce, you need to know who you’re trying to reach. If you’ve been using a business account for a while, head to your Pinterest analytics dashboard to figure out who your Pinterest audience is and what they’re looking at. This simple step will help you decide who to target on Pinterest and how best to reach them.
3. Expand Your Pinterest Marketing to Other Features
While Buyable Pins will be your best friends, Pinterest has dozens of other features to offer, as well. For best results, create new Pinterest boards, optimize each, use Promoted Pins, and build relationships with other relevant Pinners. These are all simple steps, but they work together to make your Pinterest marketing efforts markedly more useful and relevant.
4. Fill Your Site With Clean, High-Resolution Images
Remember “the power of future intent?” One of the best ways to be sure that people buy your pins when it’s time to make a purchasing decision is to make them as attractive as possible. This means populating your pins with quality, high-resolution images. This way, people who pin them will be seeing the best of the best for each of your products.
5. Make Your Descriptions Well-Written
According to Marketing Land, “Your site should automatically pull a well-written and concise description, which features a few relevant hashtags and key product data.” If you’re having trouble penning your product descriptions, consider hiring a trained writer or content team to create and optimize them for you.
Pinterest: The eCommerce Company’s Secret Weapon
While Pinterest is often overlooked when it comes to hot social platforms to be on, it stands out as one of the single most valuable and relevant options for anyone looking to build a consistent and productive eCommerce presence on the Web.
By offering a higher average sales amount, and providing a series of helpful tools that allow marketers to remove several steps from the buyer’s journey, Pinterest stands out as one of the most valuable platforms for powering eCommerce marketing.
Julia McCoy is the founder of Express Writers, a serial content marketer, and bestselling author. A dedicated self-starter since an early age, by age 13, she'd written a 200-page book and taught herself Internet marketing. At 19, Julia dropped out of college and a nursing degree to follow her passion, teach herself online writing, and start her agency. Within two years, Express Writers grew by 400 percent, and today, Julia’s agency serves more than 5,000 clients. Julia is a bestselling author, the creator of The Practical Content Strategy Certification Course, host of the Write Podcast and Twitter Chat #ContentWritingChat. She just published her second bestseller, Practical Content Strategy & Marketing, November 2017.