Last month, Pinterest debuted what might be a shopper’s ultimate dream: Buyable Pins. Gone are the days of clicking on the pin of something you’d like to buy and hoping it takes you to a website where you can purchase it. Soon, with the click of a pin, buyers will have immediate access to purchasing the exact items they see on their Pinterest feeds.
Sellers small and large will be able to place a small blue “Buy It” button on the items they choose to post to Pinterest. Once clicked, consumers will be brought to a simple checkout process, which works even better on a mobile device than on a desktop computer.
However, unless you're a partnering brand giant like Kate Spade or Neiman Marcus, you'll only be able to use Buyable Pins on Shopify or Demandware commerce platforms in the U.S. If your business is currently using one of these platforms and is considering adding Buyable Pins to its digital footprint, weigh the following pros and cons before jumping on the wait list:
- Drives traffic with an additional channel. Even without Buyable Pins, 87 percent of Pinterest’s users are already purchasing items they find on the site. Your e-commerce site will likely see new customers arriving from Pinterest, and, of course, the more people who see your brand or product, the better.
- Provides easy access for consumers. With more exposure, both you and your customers win. The easy, almost “one click” purchase page from Pinterest will give your customers one of the fastest ways to buy their favorite items — or save them for later on a Pinterest board. (In fact, half of Pinterest-driven purchases are made within one week of pinning, even without Buyable Pins.) Furthermore, your customers will appreciate your effort to become a top player in the mobile commerce field.
- Holds option to provide unique bundle of services. Tie separate discount codes or special offers to Buyable Pins, which will keep those customers already using mobile coming back.
- Pins are singular. Your existing and potential customers can only purchase one item at a time on Pinterest. This may lead to missed cross-sell and upsell opportunities.
- Lacks brand identity. Without its familiar stomping grounds of a website, your product could lack brand identity and seem more like a commodity. Pinterest allows for one picture per pin, so narrowing down your product images may be tricky and not as dynamic as several pictures, interactive videos, customer reviews and whatever else your website might offer instantly with each product.
- Loses overall value of product. On the endlessly scrolling homepage of Pinterest, your product can get lost in the sea of other buyable products. A well-curated pin may catch a Pinterest user’s eye, but the price point is what will seal the deal. If another company sells the same item as your company, but at a lower price, that will inevitably lead to a lost sale.
These pros and cons are only skimming the surface of the many options to consider when deciding to add Buyable Pins, or even the latest “Buy” button purchases on Google, to your e-commerce front.
Take the time necessary to discuss these added features with your team, and if you decide to begin using this new marketing vehicle, be sure to go in wholeheartedly and take advantage of all benefits (and stay wary of the cons) your decision offers.
Neal Kaiser is the founder and CEO of convergent solutions provider Upshot Commerce.