Pinterest’s Effect Across the Internet

If you haven’t heard, Pinterest, the social media site that lets users create digital bulletin boards from any image, video, or article on the internet, has become insanely popular as of late.

Not only are average internet users enjoying the highly visual social discovery Pinterest offers, but brands are reporting huge traffic increases stemming from the site as well.

How is Pinterest driving traffic?

pinterest logo

When a user “pins” an internet something to one of their Pinterest boards, the pin is linked back to the web location of the original post. This lets users quickly navigate to the source of the post, giving them the opportunity to easily explore the rest of the site. In January, Pinterest drove more referral traffic than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn together.

Site referral traffic increases a lot when a pin goes viral on Pinterest, meaning that it is repinned many times by other users. To increase the likelihood that a pin goes viral on the site it is important that the pin’s image is eye-catching.

Pins must have visually-intriguing images

Pinterest is a visual-based site. Each pin must have some image to accompany it. If the image is bland, boring, or uninteresting, a user will think there is little reason to click on it. Brands, blogs, and other websites wanting to find success on Pinterest are making sure the images they’re pinning are high quality so people want to click on them.

This is definitely a good recommendation for people wanting to give Pinterest a try, too.

Pinterest visually intriguing images

The design of the site, which features an ever-changing, grid-like format, really favors engaging images. Even though comments, number of repins and likes are displayed, my guess is that people pay very little attention to them. Really, it’s fairly obvious; would you rather look at text or an interesting image?

Pinterest’s design

Besides improving the quality of their images and other content to be shared on Pinterest, sites are also imitating the cool grid design. As I briefly touched on, visuals are more intriguing than plain text, even with catchy headlines. To take advantage of this, some blogs and product-based retail sites have revamped their sites with an interface similar to Pinterest’s. I’d assume that this design gets visitors to click on more things for two reasons:

  1. Images are more interesting
  2. More images can be shown on screen at a time

PinterestAt this point, the sites that have adopted this design haven’t incorporated any social functions to create their own little social network. I think, in this case, this is a good thing and social media should be kept to the popular social platforms. However, this doesn’t mean that the ability to Pin, Tweet, and Like couldn’t be incorporated into the grid interface. In fact, this would probably even further the likelihood of social sharing.

Who would have known that a site that started two years ago, and only recently became popular, would have such a far-reaching effect on both how people use the internet, and also how people design for the internet. The effect of Pinterest is a simple example of the power of innovation.

I am a kitchen marketeer over at Cliq Studios, I also follow the latest technology and my articles about Apple, Google and Social Media have been featured far and wide! In my spare time, I cycle a lot!


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{ 7 comments… add one }
  • Danijela August 5, 2012, 9:19 am

    I really like Pinterest, but I am still getting a lot more traffic from Facebook and Twitter than from Pinterest. It seems that is much more suitable for design, cooking or photography blogs, than for those you visit to read something. It seems that the only way to get more visitors there, is to spend more time on photo editing and I don’t have that much of free time. But, I do agree that Pinterest is crazy popular.

  • Caimin Jones June 11, 2012, 6:48 am

    The thing about Pinterest is you’ve got to give the viewer a reason to click back to your site. You need to tease them into wanting more. Otherwise, they’ll just say “cool pic” and move on.

    Of course, that’s easier said than done…

  • Aasma May 18, 2012, 2:26 am

    Pinterest is certainly a great site where you can easily waste your few hours. 😉 But as a marketers point of view, I think Pinterest is not suitable for all kind of businesses.. it’s for you if you’re constantly updating amazing images on your website.

  • Jack Sander May 18, 2012, 1:44 am

    Getting traffic from Pinterest is great, but from my own experience, it doesn’t covert nearly as well as search engine traffic. Bringing traffic from Pinterest is the first step, but it is a lot harder to make them but a service or a product.

  • Rajnish May 17, 2012, 5:08 pm

    Hey Premson, I have also joined Pinterest a while ago and also pinned lots of Good, unique and interesting pictures and got many repines & like but I am not getting visitors more than 2-3 a day, I am unable to understand what is wrong.

  • Kevin Martineau May 17, 2012, 4:28 pm

    I am beginning to get more and more traffic through Pinterest. I got in on it pretty early so I think that may have helped.


  • david May 17, 2012, 2:27 pm

    I think that because we are primarily visual creatures we like pictures more than anything.

    I think I read once that we actually ‘think’ in pictures. Therefore it makes sense that we would have a natural affinity for pictures over text!

    This is a great article in this ‘relatively’ new phenomenon

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