What is Pinterest? Should I be using Pinterest?

Pinterest logoWhat is Pinterest? What is PINTEREST? I’ve been asked this 15 times today already (almost).

Pinterest the next big thing?

There was a time a few years ago when there was a new big social-media thing every day, and everyone in the industry or friendship group pretended they knew what it was about “Yeah i know that site, it’s really cool, i’m on it all the time.” We would all lie.

Last year the real big thing was the photo sharing site and award winning app Instagram, but this year it is Pinterest – Another photo sharing site that is getting rave reviews in the US, and reassuringly it is not owned by Google, yet. Nor does it have a light blue logo – which is nice.

what is pinterest

So What is Pinterest?

Well we all love photos. Words are so boring to look at in our busy lives. Pinterest taps into our creative and visual minds by offering an online notice board to share images. Once you’ve gained access to the site you’ll be able to ‘pin’ photos you’ve found on the internet or uploaded to the board based on categories, keywords and site groupings. These photos can be anything from cute cats, hilarious one-liners, to holiday homes and valentine gift ideas.

It’s semi-controlled anarchy.

You can search the separate pin boards by category, which are grouped by interest with the usual groupings of technology, travel, humour etc etc. Then as with Facebook you can like a photo or comment on it.

You can also search groupings by sites that have been pinned. For example if you are looking for a holiday cottage, you could search Tripadvisor’s pages or for look at all the Tumblir sites. This brings me on to the benefits of SEO. Users who pin a photo actually get a direct link to the site where they found the photo. This therefore maybe abused by spammers in the future.

There are however Pinterest guidelines of etiquette, if photos are too obviously pushing a product or a service, then they are removed.

funny images pinterest


Here’s what Pinterest say about themselves:

“Our goal is to connect everyone in the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting. We think that a favorite book, toy, or recipe can reveal a common link between two people. With millions of new pins added every week, Pinterest is connecting people all over the world based on shared tastes and interests.”


What are Pinterest’s site stats?

This new photo sharing platform has grown by 4,000% in 6 months and according to Comscore, Pinterest’s unique monthly visitors are already over 11 million, making it the fastest standalone website to surpass the 10 million mark in the US. (This is debated and argued by Formspring over at Techcrunch)

However Pinterest started in 2006 but redesigned and re-launched their offering two years ago, so these stats are slightly debatable, but ether way they have had a massive growth in the last 6 months and have a very engaged and loyal following. This is highlighted in the chart below which was taken from techcrunch and Comscore data. (Nice watermark from Techcrunch)

pinterest site stats

So Why should I use Pinterest?

It is actually really addictive. New photos are being pinned every second. There is so much on there that it actually hurts the brain a bit. I want to search images, then i want to search the people who put them up and so on. But who knows, this maelstrom of information could be its long term downfall or indeed its success.

The the main issue for me is that it is so massive. Being American there is also an obvious leaning to that country’s culture, for example all the sport photos are predominantly basketball etc. But that’s a minor gripe.

The site is so beautifully and seamless put together that, I may not go there every day, but when I do it is a much more gratifying way to search images than Google images.