How to Use Pinterest to Increase Holiday Sales

Social media is playing a bigger role in consumer shopping habits than ever before.

If you are looking to use social media to increase your holiday sales this year, Pinterest is a great place to start.

Why Pinterest?

Pinterest users approach the site with more of a shopping mentality than on other social sites.

While you may use other networks — like Facebook or Twitter — strictly for engagement purposes, on Pinterest you’re able to connect with consumers at a unique stage of the buying process: the looking and browsing stage.

In fact, 47 percent of US online shoppers say they bought something as a direct result of a Pinterest recommendation. (Quicksprout)

By creating the right Pinterest strategy, you’ll be able to reach holiday shoppers at time when they are looking for the perfect gift and ready to buy.

One of the best ways to use Pinterest to reach holiday shoppers is to create boards with unique gift ideas.

Creating boards with gift ideas will draw attention to your product and services, while also making it easier for your customers to pick out gifts.

To get started, you’ll need to think about the specific people your customers may be shopping for.

Depending on your business, your customers may be shopping for parents, children, friends, co-workers, teachers, etc. Pinterest makes it easy to create boards with gift ideas for all of these different audiences, helping to save your customers time and generate sales for your business.

It can be helpful to think about some of the unique characteristics people might be considering when searching for gift ideas.

For example:

  • Age: People may be shopping for their younger brother, older sister, etc.
  • Interests: What are the different interests that your products could fulfill?
  • Relationship: Your customers may be shopping for a new boyfriend, lifelong friend, etc.
  • Location: People may be shopping for someone who lives far away that they aren’t able to see during the holidays.

You’ll also want to think about the specific challenges they might be facing, and how you can simplify their holiday shopping experience.

This could include:

  • Difficulty finding a gift
  • Uncertainty about the type of gift to give
  • Finding gifts for certain occasions
  • Shopping on a budget
  • Accessibility to your business
  • Finding gifts on time

With all these details in mind, you can create fun and engaging ideas for your holiday boards.

Here are a few examples of how all this information can come together to create the perfect board:

  • Gifts for the Friend Who Has Everything
  • Gifts to Impress Your New Boss
  • 20 Gifts Under $20
  • Last Minute Gift Ideas Your Mom Will Love
  • DIY Gift Ideas
  • Fun Gift Ideas for Your Holiday Party
  • Easy-to-ship Gift Ideas

Once you have a list of ideas for your holiday boards, you can set up some of your favorites right away.

The more work you put into your holiday Pinterest boards now, the less time you’ll have to spend pinning when the peak holiday season finally arrives.

As you create your Pinterest holiday boards, remember that many of the people who interact with your content on Pinterest will be ready to buy. Make sure your board enables these potential customers to take action, whether it’s clicking through to your website or directions on how to shop with you.

As you start to build your holiday boards on Pinterest, there are simple steps you can take to maximize your holiday marketing results.

Here are some actionable steps you can consider:

1. Add a Pin It button to your site

Adding a Pin It button to your site will allow your website visitors to easily pin and save your products to their own Pinterest boards.

Maintaining your business’s Pinterest channel is important but it’s not the only place engagement wih your brand will originate.

Approximately 70 percent of brand engagement on Pinterest is generated by users, not the brands themselves. (Digitas and Curalate)

There’s a good chance people might already be pinning things from your website without you even knowing! Check for yourself by typing into your browser to view anything pinned from your website. (Example:

2. Use Product Pins

Product Pins are a type of Rich Pins that you can set up, which will automatically add important information like real-time pricing, availability, and details on where to buy a gift. One of the best parts of Product Pins is that when someone pins or repins the item from your website, they will receive an email notification if the item goes on sale.

Earlier this year, Pinterest also introduced a Gifts feed to make shopping on Pinterest even easier. Only Product Pins will appear in this feed, so it’s important to set these pins up in time for the holidays.

Pinterst gift pins with frame

3. Promote gift ideas with email

If you’re already using email marketing, you know that finding new and creative ways to promote your products can be a challenge. Promoting your Pinterest boards through email allows you to showcase your products without having to fit all of the details and pricing information into one message.

By linking to your Pinterest gift idea boards in an email, you can increase engagement by encouraging customers to pin their favorites. You can also look for opportunities to segment your email list, and send targeted emails promoting your boards to all of the different audiences you want to reach.

4. Embed boards on your website

Rather than linking to Pinterest from your website or blog, embedding a board with the Pinterest widget builder allows users to engage with your Pinterest content right from your website.

5. Leverage other social networks

Pinterest makes it easy to share your content and extend your reach across other social networks. Be sure to promote your new boards on any other social network you are active on. You can share a link to a board on Facebook, or schedule tweets with information about your different collections of gift ideas.

6. Promote your top pins in-store

Take advantage of any extra foot traffic from Pinterest this holiday season by merging your customers pinning activity with their in-store experience.

Call out the most popular pinned content with an in-store sign on potential gifts. You can use Pinterest Analytics to determine your business’s most popular pins or simply scan your boards for pins that have high engagement.

Pinterset offline pin

Even if your store visitors haven’t engaged with you on Pinterest, calling out popular items will instantly draw attention to that potential gift and may help undecided buyers make a decision or motivate them to check out you Pinterest channel.

Here are some examples of signs you could use in your store:

(You can save these images and use them in your store! Right-click on the image and select “Save As.”)

pinterest instore sign

top pinned on pinterest

Looking for more holiday marketing advice?

Join us for our free online event, Rock the Holidays with a Great Promotion.

During this webinar, we’ll discuss:

  • How to easily create a holiday marketing strategy
  • 5 ways to make your promotion stand out in a crowded inbox
  • How to create offers that drive results
  • How to determine the best times to send and post

See available dates here

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in October 2014 and has been updated for relevancy and accuracy. 

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