For midlife entrepreneurs starting a small business, Pinterest can be a powerful tool for quickly getting attention, driving traffic to your website, and boosting revenues.

Pinterest is one of the fastest-growing social media networks ever. It’s the third most popular social network in the U.S. in terms of traffic, according to Experian Hitwise. It’s also one of the best social networks for driving social commerce.

For example, the average e-commerce order from a Pinterest user is $179 compared to $80 for Facebook and $69 for Twitter, according to Danny Maloney, the CEO & co-founder of PinLeague, a Pinterest marketing platform for businesses. Maloney, who spoke recently at the Online Marketing Summit in Silicon Valley about how businesses can leverage the free Pinterest network, also says that Pinterest now accounts for over 20 percent of social commerce.

Pinterest users create visual pinboards (photos and videos) of things they discover online or create themselves. You’ll find everything on Pinterest from wedding dresses to tech gadgets to toothbrush holders to crime suspects. (The Washington, D.C. police department is among a handful of metro police departments posting photos of persons of interest on Pinterest.)

Last fall, Pinterest launched free business accounts, too. Small businesses, especially those that sell highly visual products or services (such as landscape design) are flocking to Pinterest.

The following are 12 Pinterest facts and success strategies small businesses should know, in no particular order of importance.

1. Pinterest has about 25 million monthly unique visitors.

Pinterest passed the 10-million-visitors-a-month benchmark in record speed. “I haven’t seen another stand-alone site that has reached 10 million visitors faster,” comScore analyst Andrew Lipsman told The Wall Street Journal in February 2012.

This fall, Pinterest broke into comScore’s Top 50 U.S. Internet properties, ranking number 50 with 25 million monthly unique visitors. By comparison, Facebook ranked number 4 of all U.S. websites with over 150 million monthly unique visitors; LinkedIn ranked 26th with 39.6 million; and Twitter was number 27 with nearly 37 million.