In an effort to make its pins (images) more useful and actionable Pinterest is introducing more information into selected categories of pins: movies, products and recipes. These new “rich pins” provide additional background and information, depending on the category.
After looking for some time this evening, I was unable to find any rich pins “in the wild.” However, you can see what it looks like in a screenshot provided by the company (below). The additional information beneath the image is what’s new.
In the case of food/recipes, ingredients and cooking times are provided. Product pins will show pricing, product availability and where to buy the item. Movie pins will offer ratings, as well as cast and crew information. Each of the three screens below represents one of the new rich-pin categories.
Pinterest is launching this program with a wide range of partners, most of which are major publishers, retailers and brands. They include Anthropologie, eBay, Home Depot, Nordstrom, Sephora, Target, WalMart, Bon Appetit, Epicurious, Real Simple, Whole Foods Market, Netflix and Rotten Tomatoes.
Arguably, there’s a much tighter connection between content and activity on Pinterest and purchase behavior than there is on a site like Facebook. There’s existing data that argues Pinterest does influence its users’ buying behavior. However, retailers and brands, in particular, are still exploring how to best utilize Pinterest and its community.
I was immediately struck by the idea that the new rich pins are Pinterest’s version of “Rich Snippets,” offering a way to get more content in front of users so they can decide whether to drill down or click through. And, this supplemental content (enhanced information on pins) is delivered or updated in very close to real time. Ultimately the rich pins are intended to motivate users to click through to the underlying information sources.
The company simultaneously announced two SDKs to enable developers to add the Pin-It button to their mobile apps (iOS and Android).
In its blog post announcing the new offerings, Pinterest said that rich pins “…is just the beginning and we hope to make all pins more useful in the coming months.” Pinterest isn’t making any money off these enhanced pins, but over time, it certainly could. Indeed, these enhanced pins could potentially evolve into ads. But Pinterest has many ad opportunities.
I would imagine that the number of “rich pin” categories will quickly expand. In addition, eventually, Pinterest will probably find a way to more directly integrate transactions as well. It’s a natural.