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If you want to save money, you typically don’t look to Pinterest as a way to help you comparison shop…until now.  Starting today, Pinterest has added a new price alerts feature to its platform in an effort to help consumers save money and businesses drive more sales.

The social network’s new feature alerts users via email when the price of a pin drops and builds on their May release of “rich pins,” which began providing price information about a product you’ve pinned as well as availability, retailer links and other product info.  Pinterest promises it won’t cram your inbox full of price alerts saying in its blog, “we’ll try to keep your inbox clutter-free by grouping these notifications into a single email, but you can always adjust your settings if you need to.

 Price Alerts Pinterest

The recently added features comes as the social media company pushes to remain an integral part of a company’s selling strategy and tries to stay ahead of its competition.  Up until this point, many companies have had trouble finding the value of pins and translating pins into sales.  Because, let’s face it, just because a user is pinning doesn’t mean that they’re buying.

“For consumers, this makes Pinterest even more useful. Consumers are pinning the products they love. To know that Pinterest can notify people when those products become more attainable is a great convenience for consumers,” said Apu Gupta, CEO of Curalate, an image-based marketing company.  “For brands, this makes pins even more valuable. Pins now have even greater opportunities to convert to revenue.”

For small business owners and sellers on e-commerce craft site Etsy, the addition of the price alerts feature is huge.  “With this new feature they have just launched, it will notify the Pinners of my items they liked of mine, to know when it is on sale.,” said Lannie Fellows-Simino, who runs two vintage jewelry shops on Etsy.  “Hopefully, it will be a good tool for additional potential sales.”

Interestingly, the addition of price alerts comes around the same time that Amazon is beginning to roll out their own direct challenger to Pinterest called “Amazon Collections.”   The image-heavy website is more attractive than their current site where users can save, share and discover new products.  Similar to Pinterest, users can browse products that other people have saved and create separate lists called “collections.”

Amazon Collections

As more companies roll out image-centric sites including Wanelo, Polyvore, and now Amazon Collections, Pinterest has an increased stake in keeping businesses and consumers from straying to other sites.  But in the end, dollars will dictate who will come out on top and for Pinterest, adding features like “price alerts” and “rich pins” can only help the company increase click-through rates and drive sales for companies.

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