Pinterest Introduces Smarter Search with Gender Filter: Good Attempt to Attract Male Users?


Pinterest has launched a new search engine option that allows users to filter returned search results by gender.

The new feature, clearly an attempt by Pinterest to attract more men to use the women-dominated social network, could have a huge effect on the growing male user base of Pinterest.

The new feature, named Guided Search, allows users to customize search results according to the interests of the users. The feature is seen to be mostly aimed at assisting men in navigating the website, helping them avoid looking up posts made by and for women.

Of the website's users, 71 percent are women, according to data by comScore. However, men are the fastest-growing demographic on the website, as the number of male active users doubled within 2013. The ratio between genders, however, is less skewed within emerging markets such as South Korea, India and Japan, where the split between the genders of the users is almost equal.

The dominance of women on Pinterest means that search results will likely lead to posts tailored for the gender.

"Before when you searched Pinterest for 'watches,' your results would include mostly women's timepieces," wrote Pinterest engineer Pei Yin in a blog post that announced the new feature.

"But now, men will see Pins and guides inspired by what other guys have Pinned, and everybody's results should feel a lot closer to what they're looking for," Yin continued.

According to the data of Pinterest, the currently leading search term for male users is a new short haircut, a search term that will be made much more efficient with the implementation of Guided Search.

Users will still be able to choose to adjust search results though, so male users can still search for posts made by female users when they want to, and vice versa.

Yin added that there are still many improvements coming to Pinterest soon, many of which may make the social network a more promising destination for advertisers to place their marketing materials.

Don Faul, the head of operation for Pinterest, previously told the Wall Street Journal that the social network is pushing to boost its profile with advertisers and is thinking of offering additional to them such as the "intent" data of the network's users, which means that things that the users may be looking to purchase.

Data published by the Global Web Index in November of last year saw Pinterest as the second-fastest growing social media network, with an increased membership of 55 percent between the months of June to November of 2014. Active users over that period also rose by 111 percent.

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