Pinterest is a virtual pinboard where users can pin images and videos of things that interest them. Users can organize pins by boards, and categorize them in topics ranging from architecture to weddings. The most popular pins include photos of crafts, fashion, food, inspirational quotes and puppies.
A new report from the researcher shows Pinterest got 21.5 million visits during the week ending Jan. 28, a nearly 30-fold increase over a comparable week in July. Not surprisingly, the site skews female with a 60/40 ration of women to men visitors.
As VentureBeat reported just five months ago, in November 2011, Pinterest had occupied the number seven spot on Experian’s list of top visited social networking sites, eclipsed by Facebook, Twitter, Tagged, LinkedIn, MySpace, and myYearbook.
However, the time has passed and the social network’s been hitting huge milestones at a fast clip. Earlier this year, reports claimed that the site hit 10 million monthly unique U.S. visitors faster than any other site in the history of the web.
And Pinterest is still gaining its popularity. About a month later, its traffic rose 52 percent, from 11.7 million unique visitors in January to 17.8 million in February.
The research, tracked on visits rather than unique visitors, is based on web traffic and doesn’t factor in visits from mobile sites. According to Experian’s calculations, Foursquare only got 2.9 million visits in March and Instagram got 10.2 million.
However, ComScore, which ranks sites by uniques rather than total visits, didn’t not include Pinterest in its list of the top 50 web properties in February.
According to Mashable, LinkedIn made number 27 with 36 million visitors. ComScore listed Pinterest as its number three “top-gaining” properties, however, with 17.8 million total visitors that month. ComScore’s March figures were not available at press time.
Among the well-known users of the site is Mitt Romney who is trailing President Barack Obama among women, according to recent polls. Ann Romney is reported to be one of the first associated with a campaign to start pinning. Her first official pin occurred on Feb. 21.
Romney’s wife is the campaign’s “secret weapon,” thrust often into the public to make her husband seem more relatable. Ann currently has almost 5,000 followers following pins of relatable recipes, casual photos and holiday crafts.
President Obama’s reelection campaign, “Obama for America” joined Pinterest in February in order to catch voters’ attention. The campaign started pinning March 27. The pins lean more toward advocacy than Ann Romney’s, Ashburn points out in Thursday’s Daily Download, reports PBS.
One more poll showed that the majority of those who use the third most popular network are women. Elizabeth Fraser likes to look at photos of dogs on Pinterest.
“Those of us who don’t really have kids often will feel like our pets are our children,” she explained, “and I think it’s really cute when people have them on Pinterest.”
Fraser also revealed that she likes Pinterest for its easy interface. She can keep pictures of things she sees on Pinterest or anywhere else on the Internet.
“Sometimes I’ll just pull this up and show it to my husband and say ‘what do you think we should have for dinner’ and he can pick something,” the woman said.
One more Pinterest user, novelist Rebecca Coleman joined the site when she realized it could be used as a marketing tool. She set up a Pinterest page to promote her latest book “The Kingdom of Childhood.”
“As soon as the page went up, the next day I saw an increase in my sales online,” Coleman says. “I was selling a lot more copies right away because of it.”
Pinterest sends her emails when people “pin” her book. “It really is great for publicity,” notes Coleman, “because my friends have pinned the image of my book on their pages, and so it spreads the word very similarly to word of mouth, except in a visual way that can reach a lot of people.”