Pinterest has come a long way over the past few years. Initially known as a social platform because of its user experience and advertising interface, it has evolved into a hybrid search and social platform through its investment in larger, long-term functionalities such as visual search and shopping components. As the platform has evolved, so too have its users’ behaviors.
Today, Pinners use Pinterest when they are actively considering what to do or buy next. Coupled with Pinterest’s commitment to significant enhancements in ad products, audience and measurement capabilities have strengthened the platform’s ability to drive full-funnel performance and efficiencies.
This evolution continues, as today the company announced the launch of Catalogs.
Let’s break down what this means for brand marketers on the platform.
WHY is Pinterest introducing this new feature?
Pinterest describes the Catalog product as a self-serve feed ingestion tool to support Shopping Ads on Pinterest. This product will allow advertisers to own and control the delivery of the product feeds submitted to Pinterest whose content goes to power Shopping Ad results. Additionally, advertisers will now be able to use filters within the Catalogs platform to create and promote specific groups of products.
What is the impact of Catalogs?
This change will allow for better validation and control of updates to the product feed utilized by Pinterest. It will also raise awareness for the relevance and value of the content within the product feed itself. iProspect is excited for this increased interest in product feed utilization as it will lead to further collaborative conversations with Pinterest around campaign management levers supported by the feed, and best practices on product feed optimizations for improving the consumer shopping experience.
For brands who have already taken advantage of the Shopping Ads alpha or beta, and work with iProspect’s Structured Data & Feeds team on the Pinterest feed creation, nothing will change, as data will continue to flow to this product. For any brands who have yet to run on Shopping Ads, this should help lower the barrier to entry around getting a product feed setup for use on Pinterest, a process that iProspect has taken pride in supporting since the inception of the alpha program on Pinterest.
What Does This Really Mean for the Future of Shopping
We anticipate this update to the be the first of many to come in 2019 or dare we say, the year of Shopping! The introduction of this product is the first step in allowing advertisers to interact and have control within the ecosystem of tools offered by successful shopping ad mediums. When we look at the tools laid out by Google Shopping or Amazon, we see Google Merchant Center, Vendor and Seller Central as the foundational resources for getting your content into the Ads. This is the logical first step for Pinterest in the evolution of their Shopping program. We would expect to see the continued announcement of new tools and management levers that further allow advertisers to have more control over the Pinterest shopping experience thereby allowing advertisers to drive better results, and have more control over when and how they get a brand’s product in front of a consumer.
Maddie Adams, Director, Social Media, and Gareth Cleevely, VP, Head of Paid Search, also contributed to this post.