Pinterest Updates Visual Search Feature with New ‘Shop’ Tab

Users can now shop the products they pin directly from Pinterest's mobile app.

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Need to Know 

  • Pinterest has upgraded its Lens feature to allow users to shop directly from the app.
  • The new “Shop” tab reveals clickable product links that take users directly to the retailer’s checkout page, streamlining the ability to go from picture to purchase.
  • The upgrade is the latest in many recent tech innovations from the popular search platform aimed at making the e-comm experience more seamless.

Analysis

In its latest digital initiative, Pinterest is launching a new Shop feature that allows users to purchase products directly from the Pins they love. 

The photo-first search platform has added a “Shop” tab to its Lens camera search results in its mobile app. When consumers click the tab, results will show matching in-stock merchandise similar to what’s seen in the photo.  

Originally designed to simply search and discover outfit and home decor inspiration, for example, Pinterest will now allow users to seek that inspiration and purchase what they see without leaving the app. And by using Lens feature in the mobile app, a user could essentially be out at a coffee shop, spot a pair of shoes on a stranger, take a photo of them, upload it to Pinterest, and purchase the shoes—all before finishing their americano. 

Here’s how it works: In the mobile app, users click the camera in the search bar, then using the Lens visual search feature, snap or upload a photo. Lens will reveal a list of products online that look similar — and now, users will see a “Shop” tab that reveals shoppable Pins that take them directly to a retailer’s checkout page. 

“It’s harder to browse the aisles of your favorite stores these days, but with Lens, you can browse the online catalogs of retailers to discover new products you’ll love,” Pinterest shared in a press release, referencing the challenges both shoppers and retailers are facing amid the pandemic. 

The Shop upgrade is one of many tech innovations made lately by the search-and-discover platform. 

In partnership with beauty giant Sephora, Pinterest launched an augmented reality “Try On” feature, allowing users to virtually try out new lipstick shades before purchasing. 

Pinterest has also incorporated the visual search feature by partnering with grocery chain Albertsons, allowing users to photograph a product’s tag and then be taken directly to a recipe on Pinterest. Thanks to the partnership, Albertsons’ initial campaign saw an increase in some item’s sales by over 500%.

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