Pin­ter­est touts 200M ‘Pin­ners’

Shift to mo­bile pays

USA TODAY US Edition - - MONEY - Jon Swartz

Pin­ter­est’s shift SAN FRAN­CIS CO to mo­bile is pay­ing off.

The vis­ual-discovery tool — don’t call it a so­cial net­work — grew 38% from a year ago to more than 200 mil­lion mem­bers as an in­creas­ingly pop­u­lar mo­bile plat­form to search for food, style, home and beauty.

“As the smart­phone has be­come a con­sumer’s com­pan­ion, we have en­hanced our search and or­ga­ni­za­tional tools on mo­bile,” Ben Sil­ber­mann, Pin­ter­est co­founder and CEO, ex­clu­sively told USA TO­DAY on Wed­nes­day. And grow, it has.

Nearly 85% of searches on Pin­ter­est were via mo­bile de­vices, lead­ing to monthly mo­bile search growth of more than 45% from a year ago, ac­cord­ing to Pin­ter­est. By com­par­i­son, the com­pany’s over­all user growth was 40%.

The San Fran­cisco-based startup — founded in the mid­west in 2010 by Sil­ber­mann, Evan Sharp and Paul Scia­rra — says it crossed the 200 mil­lion mark 21⁄ times faster than it took to reach 100 mil­lion so-called Pin­ners — through mo­bile and break­neck growth in Western Europe (France, Eng­land, Ger­many), Latin Amer­ica (Brazil) and Asia (Ja­pan). Its cus­tomer base is also ex­pand­ing be­yond its typ­i­cal use — food, dec­o­rat­ing the home, wed­ding plan­ning — to au­to­mo­tive and en­ter­tain­ment, Sil­ber­mann says.

This year, it has added bet­ter vis­ual discovery tools:

uA search and Lens cam­era search are more promi­nently dis- played on Pin­ter­est apps.

uA deeper push into the food space, help­ing Pin­ners more eas­ily find recipes based on diet, cook time and in­gre­di­ents.

uIt shed the Like but­ton on Pins

uIn­te­grated its vis­ual search tech­nol­ogy into the Sam­sung Galaxy S8.

Sil­ber­mann ex­pects the “grad­ual tran­si­tion” to mo­bile to con­tinue over the next 12 months, but de­clined to project how many more peo­ple will join Pin­ter­est. (By com­par­i­son, Face­book says it has 2 bil­lion monthly ac­tive users and 1.3 bil­lion for Mes­sen­ger. Twit­ter has 328 mil­lion monthly ac­tive users, ac­cord­ing to mar­ket re­searcher Om­ni­core.)

He said Pin­ners are 39% more likely to be ac­tive re­tail shop­pers — and when they do, they spend 29% more than peo­ple who don’t use the Pin­ter­est app.

PIN­TER­EST, FOR USA TO­DAY

PIN­TER­EST, FOR USA TO­DAY

CEO Ben Sil­ber­mann ex­pects the “grad­ual tran­si­tion” to mo­bile to con­tinue over the next year.

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