Instagram is more than just a visual social media network. As you work on building an Instagram following if you focus on making sure those followers are also your target customers, you will soon find it can be used to generate more sales in your store.
After all, there are more than 800 million active monthly users, and more than 300 million of them log on every day. When you consider that Instagram has much higher engagement rates compared to other social platforms, there’s really no reason you shouldn’t be trying to leverage Instagram for more sales.
1. Make Your Instagram Shoppable with Third-Party Tools
Before Instagram introduced their own tools to make your profile shoppable, there were third-party tools that do the same thing. You may find these tools are easier to use, and you may want to use them in combination with Instagram’s features. This can be helpful if you want to make affiliate commissions from products you don’t actually sell yourself.
Tools like Like2Buy allow you to curate products to make your images shoppable. When a follower clicks it, they are taken to your Like2Buy shop where they can find products, read stories, and more. You can use it on your Instagram videos, too.
You can use a tool like Postcart to make your entire Instagram feed into a fully shoppable website. Or, something like Inselly, which is an Instagram Marketplace designed to help you discover the best of the best of what’s for sale on Instagram.
2. Use the Link in Your Bio to Link to Your Shop or Landing Page
You’ve only got space for one link on your profile - and that’s in your bio. If you use that space to link to your store or landing page, you can use your image description space to direct people to click the link in your bio.
It’s always good to have a call to action that tells your followers what you want them to do anyway - so kill two birds with one stone. You can also tag the location of each image with a call to action to see the link in your profile to shop all colors/options.
3. Tag Your Products
Instagram now has shopping features that make it super easy to highlight your products in your photos. You can tag individual products in your posts and your stories. All you have to do is link your inventory or ecommerce platform to your account, and then you’ll be able to tag your products in your posts.
You must connect your business profile to a Facebook catalog - either through the Business Manager, directly on your Facebook Business Page, or through BigCommerce or Shopify. If you use another ecommerce platform besides those two giants, you’ll have to rely on manual connections to your inventory.
4. Use Shopping Stickers in Your Stories
This is one of Instagram’s newest features. Now, thanks to shoppable stickers you can use in your Instagram stories, you can quickly and easily tag your products in stories, just like you can with your posts. Though brands have long been using stories to get their audience to “swipe up to shop” they no longer have that as the only option.
Once you use stickers to tag your products in your stories, followers can watch your story and tap on each sticker to learn more about the product, and hopefully, decide to buy it, all without having to the leave the Instagram platform.
This feature is great because there’s not currently a way for businesses with fewer than 10,000 followers to drive traffic to their products from Instagram Stories because you can’t add links to the stories. Using shopping stickers allows those with smaller followings to bypass this issue.
If you’ve already linked your inventory or ecommerce platform to your Instagram account, you’ll be able to use shopping stickers just like you would tag your products in regular posts. If not, you’ll have to link the two to be able to take advantage of this feature.
5. Create Instagram Exclusive Contests and Discounts
Nearly half (41%) of Instagrammers follow brands solely for giveaways and other perks, and 70% of Instagrammers have entered a contest at least once. Create eye-catching graphics with text overlays with a tool like Canva or PicMonkey to advertise contests and discounts that are exclusive to your Instagram audience.
That’s not to say you can’t run concurrent promos on other networks - just make sure they’re different from the ones you offer on Instagram. This way, you can tell which promos are getting you the most sales. Chances are, you’ll find you get the best results from Instagram compared to other platforms.
6. Use Retargeting Tools to Re-Engage Prospects
Once someone leaves Instagram and goes to your website, if you’re using a conversion pixel, you’ll be able to reach out to the people who visit certain pages on your website.
For instance, if someone visits a product page but doesn’t finish the checkout process, retargeting allows you to engage them again on Instagram, Facebook, or other websites to remind them to come back and take a look at your product again. This is a good way to get people who are serious about buying, but somehow get distracted and never finish checkout. It’s also a good way to give those who are nervous about shopping with you additional exposure to your brand so they learn you’re credible.
Using any or all of these tactics will certainly help you make money from Instagram. As long as you focus on creating high-quality visuals related to what your audience wants, you’ll be able to succeed.