Microsoft on Friday announced a new partnership with social network Pinterest. Bing’s image search has received a new “Pin to Pinterest” feature, letting users pin image results directly from the search engine to their boards.

The company touts the following points for the new integration:

  • Simple and Lightweight: There’s no need to install another bookmarklet in your browser, one click and you’re good to go.
  • Link to Original Content: Bing automatically links and gives proper attribution to the original, high-resolution source, saving you the hassle of tracking it down yourself.
  • Powerful Search Tools: Take advantage of the full breadth of Bing image search tools like sorting and filtering by size, color, layout, and more. You can even do image search within a specific website, for example, see all “summer dresses” on Anthropologie.com.

We did a search exactly like that, and picked a dress. The “Pin it” button shows up in the bottom right-hand corner:

bing pin 730x325 You can now pin Bing image search results to Pinterest

It’s an interesting proposition for Pinterest users eager to explore new content. Microsoft is betting that users will be drawn to its search engine because the feature saves them the hassle of copying and pasting links, letting them share what they find with just a few clicks.

Yet it’s not as bizarre as one might think at first glance. Microsoft claims it is simply responding to user demand:

Last fall, we hosted a group of lifestyle and design bloggers at the Bing headquarters to better understand their search and social media habits. What we discovered is a community that does more than its fair share of image searches, with much of it tied to Pinterest. They shared some of the hassles they face, and that finding efficient ways to hunt down original, high-resolution images and filtering image results were some of their pain points.

We think this might be a bit of an exaggeration, but at the same time Microsoft isn’t likely to dedicate resources to such a feature if users aren’t looking for it. That, or the company is simply looking for more ways to push Bing into social with the hopes of further differentiating itself from Google.

See also – Microsoft’s Bing social sidebar gets more context with Facebook status updates, links, and comments and Facebook and Microsoft’s relationship lives on: Bing will cover everything that Graph Search does not

Top Image credit: Alessandra Favetto