Pinterest now third most popular social network in the US, beats Google+ [Updated]

pinterest is blowing up with cries of copyright infringement pinning cPinterest has come from almost nowhere to being one of the most talked about new social networks, and in a very short space of time. However, just because something is being discussed, doesn’t mean its pulling in a huge amount of traffic. Is Pinterest more than just the social network of the moment?

If it is just a flash in the social pan, then it’s doing extremely well, as according to new research from Experian, Pinterest is now the third most visited social networking site in the US, after seeing a 50-percent increase in traffic between January and February 2012.

This is a marked increase on its top ten position in December last year, and puts it behind the behemoths of Facebook and Twitter, but in front of Tumblr, LinkedIn and crucially, Google+.

Pinterest Experian GraphExperian’s graph shows just how dramatic an increase in visitors Pinterest has seen, as it barely registers before late July 2011, then exploding to see more than 20 million by the end of January 2012.

Pinterest is winning in terms of referrals to other sites too, sending 1.05-percent of its visitors elsewhere, which trumps Google’s 0.91-percent and Twitter’s 0.82-percent. Facebook and StumbleUpon are the only two to beat Pinterest’s referral figures.

It’s this figure that has got brands, companies, sites and marketers so excited about Pinterest, as it’s a fantastic way to advertise, promote and engage with customers.

None of this is good news for Google+, but there’s one final statistic that’s perhaps even more of a concern. The average time spent on Google+ is between 3 and 6 minutes, while the average time spent of Pinterest is said to be more than an hour and even as much as an hour and a half.

But social media is a fickle beast, and what’s popular today may not be popular tomorrow, and it would be a brave soul to bet against Google+ winning in the long-term.

UPDATE: Experian has backed up its claims that Pinterest has become the third most popular social network in the US, by supplying Venturebeat.com with the figures it used to make this statement.

Experian Pinterest Traffic
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