How Buyable Pins Work on Pinterest

Pinterest is definitely one of the more popular and interesting networks on the social media landscape right now. Its layout is highly visual, and its users are more engaged than the average user on other networks. Plus, Pinterest’s demographics are heavily weighted toward women, so it is much easier to target specific groups than on other networks.

But that’s all basic Pinterest info that you already know.

Here’s what you might not know:

Pinterest isn’t just a great social network and advertising channel anymore, it is also a sales platform.

Here’s everything you need to know about how Buyable Pins work on Pinterest, and how you can take advantage of this fantastic way of selling.

What Are Buyable Pins?

This isn’t exactly new news, as sales through Pinterest, or as they call them, “Buyable Pins,” have been around in some form since mid-2015. In fact, if you’ve spent much time on Pinterest in the last year or so, you’ve probably come across some buyable pins – they show up right on the pin with a bright blue price tag, and an equally blue “Buy it” button.

However, Pinterest has been slow and careful in implementing buyable pins, limiting who has access to them and what platforms they integrate with. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get in on the action.

The Buying Process

One of the reasons buyable pins can be so effective, is because Pinterest’s implementation has thus far been stellar. Buyable pins integrate seamlessly into the searching, browsing and sharing experience that Pinterest users are already familiar with and actively engaging in.

As users make their way through Pinterest, finding interesting pictures, articles, and products that they love, every now and then they may come across one a pin that has a blue price and a buy button attached right to it. They can pin as they would normally, they can click-through, or they can add it to their shopping cart, right then and there, without ever leaving Pinterest.

Yes, it is simple. But the simplicity is where the genius lies. And because Pinterest has chosen their ecommerce partners carefully, they’ve been able to create an easy and seamless shopping experience on their platform without having to get their hands too dirty.

How Does It Work On Mobile?

Perhaps one of the coolest parts about buyable pins from a UX perspective is that the desktop experience and the mobile app integrate seamlessly. Put something in your cart (or “bag” as they call it) on the desktop site, decide to buy it later while you’re on your phone and using the Pinterest app, no problem. This is a great acknowledgment by Pinterest of how its users actually use their service.

The Pinterest Shop

For users really interested in doing some shopping, Pinterest has also set up a curated collection entirely of buyable pins. Pinterest’s editors hand-pick products for this catalogue, and seem to do a good job of drawing from known brands and smaller sellers alike.

Who Can Use Buyable Pins?

As mentioned above, buyable pins have been kept purposely exclusive by Pinterest. To prevent them getting mired in the hairy business of becoming a full blown ecommerce platform in their own right, Pinterest has so far only opened up buyable pins to the very top, most well-regarded and most reliable ecommerce platforms. As of this writing, there are only four of them. They are:

-       Shopify

-       BigCommerce

-       Demandware

-       Magento

However, of those four options, only two are readily available to most small businesses and ecommerce sellers. Magento has an application process to get their Buyable Pins extension, and even you are approved the starting price for the extension is $499.

Demandware, a Salesforce Commerce Cloud product, is only available to active Demandware customers. Demandware doesn’t publish pricing, but both Demandware and Magento are aimed more at big companies that will likely be paying thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars per year for those service.

For small businesses, the options are BigCommerce and Shopify, both of which integrate smoothly with Pinterest and offer the ability to have Buyable Pins. While functionality between BigCommerce and Shopify is similar for buyable pins, it’s worth noting that Shopify had the feature first (another reason why we love Shopify).

Need help navigating your ecommerce options? Contact 10twelve today.