Pinterest is generally thought of as a visual social network, but the company has been trying to shed that image. It wants people to think of its product as being about the users themselves rather than the user's friends. While there is certainly a social element, and the content is coming from other people - often people you're following - Pinterest really is about finding stuff you're personally interested in. Even the name "Pinterest" utilizes this concept.
Search is very key to finding things you're interested in, and Pinterest has made tremendous strides over the years in this area. Last year it released Guided Search, which was a complete overhaul of the search experience, enabling users to search for keywords with helpful add-on keyword suggestions "guiding" them down the right path until they find what they're looking for.
It works very well, and Bing is even copying the approach with its image search.
Now Pinterest is rolling out what it calls "a streamlined search experience" across platforms.
"Since launching Guided Search last year, an increasing number of people are searching for creative ideas on Pinterest (searches up 30%), and today we’re launching 5 improvements to make Pinterest search even smarter," a spokesperson for Pinterest tells WebProNews.
The first one is a new typeahead experience in search. As the company explains, before when users searched, results were segmented behind filters. With the new update, they'll see faster typeahead results, pinners and boards as soon as they start typing.
There are also new filters. There's a new button to refine searches by pins, pinners, boards, and your own pins, which should make it much easier to find what you're looking for.
They've also added autocorrect so it will start showing what it thinks you're looking for if you spell something wrong. According to the spokesperson, about 12% of searches on Pinterest have spelling errors.
"Early results show that over twice as many people are finding more boards and Pinners to follow in the new search experience, and Pinners are more than 50% more likely to repin or click through a Pin when their search is corrected with the new autocorrect," they tell WebProNews.
4. Trending Searches
When the user first taps on the search feature, they'll be presented with a new Trending Searches feature along with their recent searches. This provides a look at daily trends on Pinterest.
5. Verified Accounts
Finally, search will now display indication of verified accounts. A check mark will be displayed next to verified results.
Pinterest is always working on ways to make it easier for users to discover pins. Last month, the company showed off some experiments it's been working on with object recognition and real-time related pin recommendations.
It's also been working on something called Flashlight, which lets users click a button at the top of the screen, crop any part of an image, and in real time, get search results on the right side.
You can see it demonstrated here:
According to the presenter, that’s just the tip of the iceberg of the kinds of things they're working on.
As you're probably aware, Pinterest recently announced Buyable Pins, which will let uses buy items right from Pinterest.
Between that and the still young Promoted Pin ads, it's as important as ever to Pinterest and advertisers that users have good search and discovery features. Luckily, it should also help for organic referrals. Pinterest is the second leading driver of social media traffic to websites.
Images via Pinterest