Pinterest’s getting bigger and more international.
The platform said today it reached 150 million monthly active users, with more than half of them outside of the U.S.
This marks a 50 percent year-over-year growth, with 75 percent of new sign-ups coming from outside the U.S. and 40 percent of global sign-ups coming from men.
The visual search engine bills itself as a catalogue of ideas rather than a social media platform. In a blog post, chief executive officer and cofounder Ben Silbermann said, “As a Pinner once said to me, ‘Pinterest is for yourself, not your selfies’ — I love that. Pinterest is more of a personal tool than a social one. People don’t come to see what their friends are doing….Instead, they come to Pinterest to find ideas to try, figure out which ones they love, and learn a little bit about themselves in the process.”
Male Pinners have grown 70 percent compared to the year before, and the number of Pins saved by men is growing at 80 percent year-over-year. Men tend to search for technology and gadgets, apparel, travel, photography and art and design, tattoos, funny pictures and recipes.
Pinterest has also been working toward its capabilities as a shopping platform. It shares that 75 percent of the content on the platform originated on a business’ web site, as more than one million businesses are on Pinterest and it has “tens of thousands” of advertisers. There are about 8.3 million fashion Pins added daily. After introducing Buyable Pins to its app more than a year ago, there are more than 10 million products buyable on Pinterest, including more than 25,000 merchants such as Boomingdale’s, Wayfair, Neiman Marcus, Macy’s and Nordstrom.
With more users comes more data, which means it is increasingly able to personalize the 10 billion or more recommendations it makes daily. It also estimates that users have jumped on the visual search capabilities, which lets users search within any Pin’s image using the objects, colors and patterns seen in the queries to get visually similar recommendations. In the summer, Pinterest introduced automatic object detection; it estimates that every month, users perform as many as 150 million visual searches.
Pinterest has begun testing a tool called camera search that would allow users to upload an image and then search, and shop, similar-looking items.
As Pinterest is being watched in anticipation of an initial public offering, it is expected to emphasize its commerce and advertising capabilities. Pinterest president Tim Kendall nodded to this recently when he pointed to research that showed 55 percent of people come to Pinterest to shop, compared with about 12 percent of users who turn to social networks to shop.
Although Pinterest is not a social network, it is often compared to them. To that end, it’s estimated that Twitter has approximately 313 million monthly active users, Snapchat — which is rumored to be gearing up for an IPO — has approximately 150 million daily active users, Instagram has 500 million monthly active users and Facebook has 1.71 billion.