What is Pinterest and how to use it

01 September 2015 ( 19 May 2016 )

Learn more about the popular online pinboard site Pinterest with our simple guide that explains how it works, how to get started and how to 'pin'.



What is Pinterest?

Quite simply, Pinterest is an online pinboard – a platform for saving and sharing pictures and videos. Just like the way a real pinboard or scrapbook is filled with pictures, ideas and notes for a particular interest, hobby or project, Pinterest operates on the same principle – but online.

Why use Pinterest?

With so much information and images on the internet, Pinterest is a great way for saving all those online pictures, videos and articles that interest you.

And it’s the perfect tool if you have a particular hobby or project as you can create your own ‘board’ that’s dedicated to your interest on Pinterest.

For instance, say you’re planning to redecorate your kitchen and you see lots of pictures of kitchens on the internet that you like. You can ‘pin’ (i.e. save) all these kitchen images to your specially created board on kitchen redecoration and refer to it whenever you want.

However the main attraction of Pinterest is that it also allows you to follow ‘pins’ created by other users. You can browse Pinterest and see what other users have pinned, and then ‘repin’ their ideas to your board.

With more than 176 million people using Pinterest, there is plenty of ‘pins’ and inspiration to search and follow – no matter what your interest!

Related: What is Instagram?

Getting started with your own pinboards

To get started on Pinterest, you first need to register. Go to pinterest.com and sign up. You can add a picture and profile if you wish.

Once registered, you will see your user name displayed in the top right hand corner. Hover over it and a drop-down menu appears.

Click “Boards” and you will see a row of blank boards, ready for you to fill in.

Enter a name for a board, click “Create Board”, and you’re ready to start pinning.

Select a Category and you can begin uploading pictures, either from your computer or by adding pins from the internet.

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How to pin images from the internet

You will first need to install the “Pin it” button in your web browser. All you need to do is to drag the “Pin It” button to your browser’s bookmarks bar – see Pinterest’s Help section if unsure. You then simply click the ‘Pin It’ button on your bookmarks bar when you see an image you’d like to pin.

Many websites themselves already include the “Pin it” button on their pictures or articles. Often, the ‘Pin it’ button is placed next to other social media buttons such as ‘Facebook’ or ‘Twitter’. Or if you hover over an image, the ‘Pin it’ button will appear. Again, all you need to do is click and the relevant image or article will be saved to your Pinterest board.

You can use Pinterest on all your devices – mobile, tablet and computer. For your mobile and tablet, simply download the Pinterest app to use while you’re on the go. 

To get you started, have a look at the Pinterest boards for Saga Magazine and Saga Holidays...

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.