Any social-savvy business will know how important Pinterest is to their social media strategy when it comes to influencing consumers' purchasing decisions.
While some brick-and-mortar retail stores feel threatened by the rise of e-commerce shopping and social platforms such as Pinterest, a new study by David Sevitt and Alexandra Samuel of Vision Critical revealed that Pinterest is an "especially popular driver" of in-store sales.
Twenty-one per cent of Pinterest users surveyed in Sevitt and Samuel's study, How Pinterest Puts People in Stores, said they had bought an item in-store after pinning, liking or repinning it. More than one-third (36 per cent) of users under 35 said they had done this.
The authors talk about the phenomenon of 'showrooming', where shoppers visit stores to examine merchandise in person before purchasing the items online, and state that instead of feeling threatened by the activity retailers should study their customers' paths to purchase, using the insights gained to sharpen their online marketing efforts.
In a Harvard Business Review article published on July 18, Samuel writes that they were able to uncover patterns in Pinterest use that lean to following best practices for businesses using this social media platform.
Providing additional detail about a product and packing images with information was highlighted as one of the major ways Pinterest influences purchasing.
"Any visitor who comes to your site from a Pinterest link should land on a page with relevant information about the product," Samuel writes.
"Better yet, save them the trip by embedding product information directly in the images on your website and Pinterest boards, either with text or (better still) visual cues about product ingredients or usage."