April 22, 2014, 3:50 PM

How mobile technology makes Pinterest better

The image-heavy social network gets 75% of its traffic from mobile devices. Pinterest has learned it must offer different features on mobile devices versus PCs, says head of operations Don Faul.

Lead Photo

Pinterests designs differently for smartphones and tablets.

When Pinterest upgraded its mobile offerings in August 2012, its staff had a pool on how many weeks or months it would take for mobile traffic to exceed that from personal computers. In fact, mobile shot ahead the same day Pinterest introduced its first Android and iPad apps and upgraded its iPhone app.

Today, 75% of Pinterest’s traffic comes from smartphones and tablets, and Pinterest has learned a great deal about how to deliver content suited to those devices in the past two years, Don Faul, head of operations at Pinterest, said today in a presentation to the Source14 conference organized by mobile app analytics vendor Flurry Inc.

One of the things Pinterest learned is that it must design differently for each device, as consumers use them differently. An avid cook, he gave an example from his own experience: He might search Pinterest from his work PC to find a recipe to cook that night, use the Pinterest mobile app in the store to get a list of items he needs for the recipe, and then use his iPad in the kitchen to follow the recipe as he cooks the dish.

“It’s about understanding how our community is using Pinterest, where they are, what they’re doing and the respective capabilities of each device,” Faul said.

Pinterest also learned that it had to make it easier for partners to integrate Pinterest in their mobile apps, and to keep in mind that there is less room on the screen of a smartphone than a PC. To make it easier to build Pinterest into apps of retailers and other companies, Pinterest introduced a mobile software development kit last year.

Online retailer Poshmark Inc., which enables consumers to shop apparel that other consumers offer for sale, is one retailer that used the new tools to make it easier for its mobile app users to share items on Pinterest. The results: consumers are pinning three times more items from Poshmark to Pinterest, the retailer is getting three times as many impressions on the social network and referral traffic from Pinterest shot up 2.5 times, Faul said.

Upscale department store chain Nordstrom Inc., No. 24 in Internet Retailer’s 2014 Top 500 Guide, is another retailer that’s working closely with Pinterest, Faul said. He says now a woman who pins a pair of shoes she likes to a Pinterest board can get an alert, even months later, if Nordstrom puts those shoes on sale. “We hear from Nordstrom they have a lot of customers who walk in and pull out their phone and ask, ‘Where are these shoes?’”

That kind of experience may explain why consumers who visit Pinterest via mobile devices come back more often and report higher satisfaction. Faul said mobile Pinterest users visit the social network twice as often as those who only visit via computers and that those mobile users are 60% more likely to say they would recommend Pinterest to a friend.

comments powered by Disqus

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

From IR Blogs

FPO

Michelle Pacynski / E-Commerce

What it takes to create the ULTAmate online shopping experience

The ULTA beauty brand has gone through an e-commerce revolution in recent years, says one ...

FPO

Bill Siwicki / Mobile Commerce

Should I PIN my hopes on Apple Pay?

I was excited for Apple Pay. And I still am. But boy did I ever ...

Advertisement