Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat get all the buzz in the social media investing world. But Pinterest has sharply outperformed them all in 2020.
Pinterest stock is up nearly 125% this year, easily outpacing Facebook's more than 25% gain and the 40% and 60% jumps for Twitter and Snap.
And several analysts think the image-sharing site has even more upside, thanks to Apple's new look.
Apple's recent iOS 14 release includes a folder-heavy update that makes it easier to customize iPhone home screens. As a result, there have been several reports about Pinterest downloads hitting records on the App Store in recent weeks, along with people tweeting screengrabs of their new home screens and citing Pinterest posts as an inspiration.
"More users are coming on board following iOS 14," said DJ Kang, CEO of ValueChampion, an investing research website. "That's attractive to advertisers."
Kang noted the uptick in Pinterest downloads since Apple released iOS 14, adding that sustained interest in the social media firm could help boost its monetization rates internationally. Currently, the average revenue per Pinterest user in the US is more than three times that of revenue for international users.
Pinterest's new Story Pins feature, which lets creators post a mix of photos, video, audio and text, could help the company attract more users, Kang added -- particularly Gen Z consumers who have flocked to Snapchat, Facebook-owned Instagram and embattled video app TikTok.
Still, Pinterest may also need to prove to Wall Street that it can be consistently profitable for the long haul. The company has lost money in its past two quarters after eking out a profit in the fourth quarter of 2019.
There is hope that Pinterest may be finally turning a corner, though.
Analysts are currently forecasting that Pinterest will post a small profit for 2020 and that earnings will surge in 2021. And 20 of the 28 analysts who follow Pinterest have raised their price target on the stock since the company reported second quarter results in late July.
Pinterest might also be benefiting from the fact that it's still relatively small compared to the likes of Facebook and other tech and social media behemoths like YouTube owner Google.
While most Big Tech firms have come under intense scrutiny from Washington and antitrust authorities around the globe, Pinterest -- with just 96 million monthly active users in the US and 321 million internationally -- could continue to fly under the regulatory radar.