June 15, 2023

Everything you NEED to know about Investing in Pinterest Ads

Thinking about dipping your toes into Pinterest Ads? You’re not alone. With well over 2 million businesses advertising on Pinterest, advertising on the space that built for inspiration is quickly becoming a marketers best bet. 

With a massive audience base that’s primed for buying (nearly 85% of weekly Pinners make purchases based on Pins), Pinterest marketing needs to be a part of any marketers advertising portfolio. 

However, before throwing a good chunk of your ad budget into the Pinterest pool, you’ll want to make sure you know exactly what to expect as an advertiser on Pinterest.  

Understanding Pinterest as a Platform

Pinterest is not technically social media. It’s a discovery search engine. What exactly does that mean for you as an advertiser? You can’t approach Pinterest as you would Facebook or Instagram when looking to advertise. 

You’ll need to get a strong handle on:

  • How the platform operates (it’s a search engine…so get your SEO hat on)
  • Audience intent on the platform (Pinners are PLANNERS)
  • How to create assets for your ad campaigns that actually convert on Pinterest
  • Why views are so important

Your Pinterest audience goes to Pinterest for three core reasons: to be inspired, to plan their next event or to buy. 

Our focus as advertisers, then, is to capture our audience on Pinterest  at various stages throughout  the customer journey. 

Pinterest ad campaign objectives offer an array of opportunities to target audiences in a way that effectively meets them throughout this journey. 

This will ensure that we turn those views into clicks and long-term sales versus the one and done scenario. 

Why Advertisers Choose Pinterest As Part of their Marketing Strategy: 

With a huge audience primed for buying (Pinterest users are 7x more likely to say that Pinterest is the most influential platform) advertisers are quickly recognizing the extensive marketing potential of the platform. 

Here are a few key reasons why Pinterest should be a part of any brand’s marketing strategy: 

High Intent Audience: As a popular platform,(Pinterest has the 3rd highest most visits in comparison to other social media spaces), Pinterest users are actively searching for inspiration, ideas, and products. This means that they are more likely to engage with and purchase products they discover on the platform. As a result, advertising on Pinterest can result in high conversion rates and a strong return on investment (ROI).

Visual Platform: Pinterest is a visual platform that allows businesses to showcase their products and services in a visually appealing way. This makes it a great platform for brands in industries like fashion, beauty, home decor, and food, where visuals are especially important.

Targeting Options: Pinterest offers a wide range of targeting options that allow businesses to reach their ideal audience. Advertisers can target users based on demographics, interests, keywords, and even specific actions taken on the platform.

Cost-Effective: Pinterest advertising can be cost-effective, especially compared to other platforms like Facebook and Google. The cost per click (CPC) on Pinterest is often lower, and the platform has a higher organic reach than other social media platforms.

Longevity: Pins on Pinterest have a longer lifespan than posts on other social media platforms. A pin can continue to drive traffic and sales to your website for months or even years after it is posted. This means that Pinterest advertising can have a longer-lasting impact on your business than other forms of digital advertising.

Knowing how to successfully market on Pinterest and understanding those expectations as a marketer on the platform is key to a successful marketing campaign. 

“Advertising on Pinterest is like running ads on a bus that only goes to the mall. Everyone on board is ready to shop. You just need to get your brand in front of them” Hootsuite

This is where Sunlight Digital comes in. If Pinterest advertising has your head spinning, we’re here to simplify the process so that you can confidently invest in Pinterest without any of the confusion. 

Below we dive into other key aspects and expectations when advertising on Pinterest. 

Understanding Why Views Are Important in Pinterest Advertising 

Having the right expectations as an advertiser on Pinterest will determine your overall success.  Understanding the significance of a view is one of the key areas marketers need to grasp as they move toward advertising on Pinterest. 

A view on a platform like Instagram and Facebook may not be as valuable because with interruption marketing, people aren’t actively looking for what you are putting in front of them at the time they see it.  But with Pinterest being a visual search engine, people are actively searching for or looking to discovery products and services that help them accomplish what they are planning for.  This means a view is much more valuable on Pinterest than on any other platform.

A view represent the initial impression your content makes, much like a billboard on a highway or a magazine cover in the grocery store. These glances cannot be monetized, but they still hold a crucial place in any marketing strategy. 

The difference to note, is that Views on Pinterest are intent based.  Pinterest is the go-to platform for discovering new ideas and brands. Millions of users flock to Pinterest to seek solutions and inspiration, making it the primary place where products, services, and brands are first viewed. Even though these views might be short and sweet, the discovery intent allows you to create a lasting impact on your target audience. So unlike when you see a billboard where you may have no need or intent  for a personal injury lawer, seeing a Pinterest ad will relate to what a Pinner is wanting to discover.

‘On Pinterest, ad views play a critical role in the purchase journey. ‘In fact, our research shows that up to 95% of conversions captured by the Pinterest tag are based on views’

Pinterest, 2022

By understanding Pinner behavior, you can understand why Pinterest conversions happen because of a view.  Pinners are planners and researchers.  

They are searching to discover and because of this are more likely to see a pin and then jump over to google or to the website directly in order to do their research.  

They want to see if there is value in saving that pin as part of their discovery and planning or passing it by.  This type of behavior is not accounted for in most attribution models, but it is normal behavior on Pinterest.

If you don’t understand Pinner behavior, the power of a view, and that Pinterest has a significantly higher view through conversion rate than other platforms, you may determine that Pinterest isn’t a profitable platform because you cannot measure the success of your marketing efforts through last click attribution. 

What the…GOOGLE? The Last Click Debate And What Marketers NEED to Know

Understanding last click, attribution and conversion time are important factors when advertising on Pinterest. 

Measuring ROI on Pinterest will look differently than other platforms. Simply put, using third-party site analytics such as Google or last click solutions,won’t get brands an accutare read on performance on Pinterest. 

The issue with last click analytics is that they only give credit to the very last platform that drove the final action before a purchase was made. 

Often times, Pinners are on mobile devices and conversions that occur are credited to direct and search in Last Click instead of Pinterest. 

When advertisers only rely on last click analytics, they miss out on all the other steps of the marketing journey that actually impact results. 

‘Pinners often prefer to convert on their own mobile browsers so conversion visibility is lost in LTA. This often means that direct and search get credit in Last Click when Pinterest was the last influence’


To truly understand the broader impact of your Pinterest marketing success, you’ll need these measurement strategies that reach beyond last click and are far more valuable: 

  • Select a longer attribution window
  • Use Pinterest tools to see cross platform metrics
  • Record each and every view 

Tracking ROI may feel complicated but that’s also why there’s the experts at Sunlight Digital. We simplify data tracking and measurement on platforms like Pinterest so our clients don’t have to.  

Pinterest ads not only effective, but they prove to play a significant role in massively growing brand awareness as well as driving leads and consistent sales. 

Knowing how to utilize Pinterest in a way that is most profitable for your brand’s growth is where Sunlight Digital’s specialized ad strategy comes into play. 

Timing is Everything: Demystifying Conversion Time on Pinterest

Purchase decisions take time. Thankfully your Pinterest audience already has high intent and, with Pinterest ads, you’ll meet them easily at each stage of the purchase journey. This includes increasing brand awareness and garnishing leads in the process. 

Below is a breakdown of average conversion times based on the actions your audience takes on Pinterest. Note these timeframes and their significance in data tracking to establish a successful Pinterest campaign. 

Conversion Times: 

We uncovered how Pinterest ad marketing differs form other platforms and the significance of not relying on Last Click to determine success. 

This is why attribution windows and other metric tracking is important. 

Below, we outline the types of actions taken on Pinterest Ads as well as the length of time these actions take before conversion. 

  • Click Based Conversions: Average of 22 days to convert after click
  • Engagment Based Conversion: 8 days 
  • View Based Conversions: 17 days 

‘75% of US Pinterest conversions happen more than a week after ad exposure. So keep those attribution windows open when evaluating ad performance on the platform.’


Why the View Metric Matters on Pinterest: 

On Pinterest, the view metric, is significant for marketers simply because 98% of checkouts aren’t based on clicks. Rather they have more to do with engagement and views.

The average time to convert on pinterest is shortest post-view. In fact, according to Pinterest, last view accounts.  accounts for over 8K more add to carts and over 7K more in purchases. That’s the power of how views contribute to the conversion funnel. 

Planning Starts Early: So Should Your Campaign Strategy

PInners are planners. They plan months and months and months in advance. 

This presents a unique opportunity for marketers to connect with potential customers and build brand awareness well in advance of the their purchase decision especially when it’s related to the holiday season.  

This also means marketers need to be ready to catch those planners early. 

A successful Pinterest holiday campaign strategy should incorporate a range of tactics to drive engagement, traffic, and sales during the holiday season. 

Below are a few quick tips for planning your holiday campaign strategy: 

Recognize the Long Sales Cycle: 

By starting their holiday planning early, users can spread out their shopping and avoid the stress of last-minute purchases.  Start by targeting different audiences as they move through the customer journey during the holiday season. 

Start with an awareness or consideration campaign to bring engagement to your products for the holiday and branch into conversion campaigns and catalog sales campaigns to target buyers as  the move from planning to deciding to buying. 

Research & Target Holiday-Related Keywords:

Use keywords related to the holiday season in your ad targeting to ensure your ads appear to users who are searching for holiday-related content.

Visual Inspiration: 

Pinterest is a highly visual platform, making it an ideal place for users to search for holiday inspiration and ideas.  By providing visually appealing content that resonates with users, businesses can establish themselves as a go-to source for holiday planning.

By leveraging the platform's visual nature, search capabilities, and advertising options, businesses can maximize their holiday season success and achieve their goals.

What Marketers Need to Avoid When Advertising on Pinterest 

When advertising on Pinterest, there are certain things that you should avoid doing in order to ensure that your campaigns are successful. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. Don't use low-quality images: Pinterest is a visual platform, so it's important to use high-quality images that are visually appealing and attention-grabbing. Avoid using low-resolution images or images that are pixelated, as this can turn off potential customers.

  1. Don't overcomplicate your messaging: Keep your messaging simple and clear. Avoid using jargon or complicated language that may be confusing to your audience.

  1. Don’t use too many or too few creatives. Depending on your ad strategy, 2-4 creatives is recommended in any one ad group. 

  1. Don't use clickbait: Avoid using clickbait tactics to lure users to click on your pins. Your content should be honest and transparent, and your pins should accurately reflect the content on your website.

  1. Don't forget about mobile users: Many Pinterest users access the platform from their mobile devices, so it's important to optimize your pins for mobile. Make sure your images and messaging are easily readable on smaller screens.

  1. Don't ignore on platform analytics: Use analytics to track the performance of your campaigns and make data-driven decisions. Ignoring analytics can lead to missed opportunities and wasted ad spend.

Getting Started With Pinterest Advertising

Pinterest is highly effective platform for businesses to reach their target audience, drive traffic to their website, and increase sales. 

With its highly engaged user base, visual platform, and robust targeting options, Pinterest offers advertisers the opportunity to reach potential customers at various stages of the buyer's journey. 

It’s also important to have realistic expectations and to understand that success on Pinterest requires a thoughtful approach, including high-quality images, clear messaging, and regular monitoring of analytics. With the right strategy in place, businesses can leverage the power of Pinterest to increase brand awareness, drive sales, and achieve their marketing goals. 

Want real direction on successful Pinterest marketing? 

Schedule in your consult call with Sunlight Digital right here and let us help you leverage the power of Pinterest marketing for your brand today. 

Set yourself up for success with your Pinterest Marketing with our 3 Pillars Masterclass.