Google Debuts Style Ideas To Augment Fashion Searchs

Perhaps making Pinterest nervous, Google continues to roll out features that compete directly with the pin-based social network.    

The latest example is “Style Ideas,” which is designed to complement fashion product searches by surfacing related grids of “lifestyle” images and outfits.

For example, if someone’s searching for a classic Coach purse, the new feature will do its best to find images of such bags in fashion editorials, in the hands of style influencers and other related pics.    

“With style ideas, you can see real-life options of what bag and jeans look stellar with those red high heels you’ve been eyeing,” Julie Enthoven, associate product manager at Google, notes in a new blog post. “Or if running gear is more your speed, no sweat -- workout ensemble ideas are just a tap away.”

The feature also presents an expanded carousel for “similar items” while searching for apparel products.

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Despite Google’s efforts, Pinterest is still growing. This year, the network will grow 9.2% to 69 million US users, according to a recent eMarketer forecast.

Worldwide, Pinterest grew to more than 150 million users -- up from around 100 million about a year ago -- according to figures released late last year.

Ben Silbermann, co-founder and CEO at Pinterest, recently said he was most excited about the diversity of the platform’s community. Over half of people on Pinterest -- and 75% of new signups -- are from outside the United States, he said.

Moreover, 40% of consumers joining Pinterest are men, which represents a 70% increase year-over-year. Investors continue to watch for signs that Pinterest is preparing to go public. Fueling their interest, the company recently brought on Todd Morgenfeld -- formerly VP of finance at Twitter -- as its first chief financial officer.

This week, “Style ideas” is launching in the Google app for Android and the mobile web.

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