Pinterest, the pinboard site that saw exponential growth earlier this year, is no longer an invite-only network.
The company announced in a blog post Wednesday evening that interested users would no longer need an invite to join the network, and will let users sign up for the service using their Facebook or Twitter log-in information. You can also use your e-mail address to create an account.
There haven’t been many complaints that Pinterest was difficult to get on to, but the news is good for anyone who just couldn’t find an invite.
“We’re really excited to have the capacity to offer Pinterest to more people and if you’re a Pinner with friends who’ve been waiting on the sidelines, we hope you’ll let them know,” the blog post read.
Pinterest growth has slowed and stabilized since it burst on to the scene, TechCrunch reported, but still has a nearly 16 percent growth rate. The site’s referral traffic is still very impressive and a Shareaholic study cited in the report predicts Pinterest will be a bigger referrer than Yahoo by August.
All that traffic isn’t necessarily translating into purchases, however. According to data from the analytics firm Jirafe, Pinterest drives traffic, not revenue. The company has a fairly low conversion rate — of site visitors to customers — especially when compared to Twitter, Google or Facebook.
That said, Pinterest has plenty of space left to grow and come into its own. The idea of having a personal board where users can display products they like or are interested in has some clear appeal. As Pinterest expands — and it has, recently moving from a cozy warehouse space in Palo Alto to a office in San Francisco — it will have the opportunity to build out more partnerships with companies. That, it’s surely hoping, will help the service overcome concerns about copyright issues and become as a stronger tool for finding neat new products.
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