Research: Retail brands can see 2x higher returns on Pinterest than other digital channels

Man shopping
Coming early in the shopping journey

The measurement and market intelligence firm's study looked at digital channel performance for five US retail brands, tracked to their online and in-store sales. They ran a multi-touch attribution study to measure performance for paid search, paid social and display advertising. 

Neustar found that because people come to Pinterest to seek inspiration early in their shopping journey, Pinterest has a lasting impact on their final purchase decision.

Getting a clearer picture of results

This process isn’t always immediate, though. Sometimes, people start looking on Pinterest for an idea, and make their final purchase days later. Within Neustar’s study, people often took a week or longer to make a purchase after seeing a brand’s ads on Pinterest.2

This has big implications for measuring Pinterest performance. When Neustar ran a last click model, the model underreported revenue from Pinterest ads by 48%.3 The takeaway? Because people use Pinterest so early in their shopping journey, marketers need to adjust their attribution windows to give people time to make a purchase before declaring a return on ad spend. 

Driving incremental sales

Neustar’s research also showed that Pinterest was the most efficient digital channel for the retail brands in their study. It generated more sales, at less cost. While Pinterest made up only 11% of media spend in the study between the five brands, it generated 18% of their incremental sales and revenue.4 That made Pinterest 2.3x more efficient than social platforms, 1.5x more efficient than paid search and 1.1x more efficient than display.5

Looking at retail's future

These results are possible because people actively use Pinterest during their purchase journey. Throughout 2019, we’ve launched a series of features that make it easier for people to shop for the things they love on Pinterest.

Today, we’re launching the next round of updates for Pinners, like browseable catalogs alongside Pins and personalized shopping ideas in home feeds. These updates will make it easier for people to find your products while they’re discovering new ideas on Pinterest.  

We’re also helping businesses quickly and easily scale their advertising efforts. With Pinterest Catalogs, you can now turn all your products into Pins with a single upload, then run shopping ads to get even more reach.

John Sheldon, Chief Marketing Officer
SmileDirectClub
“Pinterest helps us reach customers early—up to 18 months before they make a purchase. Using a combination of our multi-touch attribution and our media mix modeling, we have been able to prove that it is actually one of the most efficient spends that we have in terms of bringing people to the brand that are incremental and that we would not have had otherwise.”
Key takeaways:
  1. Rethink your reliance on last click attribution. Get more insight into what content is actually driving sales, and when, by using multi-touch attribution or lift test experiments to measure your Pinterest campaigns.
  2. Get your shop on Pinterest. And reach people earlier in their shopping journey. Easily turn all your products into Pins with catalogs. Then promote them using shopping ads to reach even more people shopping on Pinterest.

—Gunnard Johnson, currently saving ideas to Half Dome Hike

 

1Neustar Retail Meta Study, Meta-Analysis Among Five US Retail Brands (Pureplay + Omnichannel), June 2019

2Neustar Retail Meta Study, Meta-Analysis Among Five US Retail Brands (Pureplay + Omnichannel), June 2019

3Neustar Retail Meta Study, Meta-Analysis Among Five US Retail Brands (Pureplay + Omnichannel), June 2019

4Neustar Retail Meta Study, Meta-Analysis Among Five US Retail Brands (Pureplay + Omnichannel), June 2019

5Neustar Retail Meta Study, Meta-Analysis Among Five US Retail Brands (Pureplay + Omnichannel), June 2019