Neglecting Instagram Store to promote your products online is like a farmer saying no to the better quality seeds. Moreover being an early adopter in 2021-22 will give you a much better opportunity to build your own brand among millions of people and your target audience.
If we see the stats, there are above 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram. Making it a huge pool of potential audiences that already exploring and engaging with brands all over the world.
Social media is changing the way we shop and its peak are the Instagram Shop and Facebook Shop.
Feels like just a few years ago, we discovered how social media can be leveraged to boost eCommerce conversions. And with such high traction, we are all ready to set the products directly on the platform.
Again, in a recent report, it was seen that more than 30% of the users would like to complete the purchase within FB, Pinterest, Instagram, or Twitter?
It didn’t take long for Facebook to realize this, and in 2020 it came up with the shopping feature with both of its most popular apps – Facebook Shop and Instagram Store.
In August 2020, Instagram Live Shopping also got launched in the US and got a great deal of engagement instantly.
Hence proving the future of online stores will probably rely on your ability to be an active part of the social media world. And to help you advance your steps, this article will help you learn – How To Start An Instagram Store In 6 Easy Steps? But just before that, let’s just clear some smoke around it.
What is an Instagram Shop?
Instagram Shop is a feature developed for online sellers that enables you to create a captivating storefront and integrates a product catalogue directly within your Instagram business profile. This way your potential customers can easily look for products and buy them through the shopping feature.
In addition to all this Instagram Shopping is also making marketing your product a breeze. With already trendy features of the platform like stories, reels, highlights, posts, the carousel you don’t have to “master a skill” to get started.
When the user is attracted to your products, they can simply tap on the product tag seen on the post or the product sticker in a story. All you need to do is to include the following things on your product page:
- Name of your product
- A captivating product image
- Product description
- Product price
- Link to view the product on your native website
- Related products
(At present, this feature is currently only available in the US. The internal checkout is only available to US customers and a select number of businesses.)
Benefits Of Using Instagram Shop
Doesn’t matter if you’re a small eCommerce business owner or a huge business enterprise, Instagram is filled with hungry, potential audiences. The Instagram store is a blessing that not only helps in growing online sales but build a strong relationship between the customers and the brand.
There are a lot of benefits you can get by setting up an Instagram store for your eCommerce business:
1. Enables Customers to enjoy shopping without leaving the app
As mentioned above, more than 30% of people want to complete their purchases without leaving social media apps. Plus, 70% of the shoppers search for products on Instagram and FB.
Your ‘Instagram addicted’ buyers do not need to leave the app now as they can explore the products, add them to their carts, complete the payment process, and finalize the purchase – All within the app.
The Instagram Shopping feature is a great way to beat the eCommerce competition. If you can keep your buyers engaged only within the app, then they’ll have no reason to leave the app and switch between the shopping websites on the browser.
This directly satisfies their needs that ultimately bring more traffic and sales to your online shop.
2. Market Products Directly
Marketing is a non-negotiable part of running an online business. This gives your business a chance to reach your potential market and stand out from the rest of your competition.
For most brands, Instagram is the best place to connect with shoppers. With that being said, creating a storefront on the platform enables your brand to market directly to customers through various organic content AKA B2C marketing.
Exceptional product photo editing techniques and attractive offers are just the master strategies to capture the customers’ attention.
However, there is a dark side too to using Instagram for promoting your products – You can’t add clickable links in your stories or your posts. You only get to put only one clickable link in your bio.
Of course, you can put a new link every time you post something new. But, what about your previous posts?
Unfortunately, these unfriendly features of Instagram disappoint a lot of marketers. So, what do you do then?
Enter the world of the Instagram store.
Instagram Shopping allows you to seamlessly integrate all your Instagram content with your Instagram store – Woo-hoo!
Now you can tailor your product promotions into your Stories and Posts and avoid the pain of beseeching your followers to visit your bio.
As Instagram has said – ‘Once a business has a product catalogue integrated into their account, tagging a product is as easy as tagging someone in a post.’
3. Improved brand visibility and goodwill
How many brands can you think of who are using Instagram Shopping to promote their products? Despite the high demand for fulfilling the shopping needs without leaving the social media platforms, a lot of business owners are not leveraging Instagram Storefor eCommerce growth.
By being a first mover and providing consumers with an exceptional Instagram Shopping experience, you can improve your brand awareness and goodwill.
If you’re doing something unique, then people are gonna talk about you, and Instagram Store just lets you do that.
If they see a brand that’s allowing its users to shop using Instagram Store, it’s definitely going to improve your brand visibility and authenticity. This will not increase online sales from your current followers, but you might even see a hike in the number of new followers.
4. Opportunity to engage the most potential audience
Although Facebook has more users, it can’t beat Instagram when it comes to user engagement.
Instagram is much more popular among users as compared to FB which makes it the best place to build strong connections. People are there to post, share stories, chat, create videos, promote products, and go live.
It has so much to pull up your dopamine that you just can’t resist such an engaging social app that has its own world with its very own community.
This quality of Instagram along with its latest feature – Instagram Shopping – can really give you a better chance at gaining a lot of potential audiences who are capable of improving your conversions, stay loyal, and bring more customers with them.
5. Boost Conversion Rates
In the end, it all comes down to how all such benefits are leading your sales to improve. If you’re using Instagram Shop for eCommerce growth, then it won’t be incorrect to estimate that you can see a great improvement in your conversion rates.
The unique experience, brand awareness, better engagement, and strong opportunity are all the ingredients that can help you create a perfect recipe for higher sales and conversions. You can also read How to use Instagram Reels Marketing for your eCommerce Business.
What Are The Features of Instagram Store?
1. Shopping feed posts
Instagram feed posts are one of the best features of Instagram Store. It allows businesses to post an image and tag up to 5 products within that image.
Each product allows users to explore more about each product, along with an alternate photo, description, pricing, and link.
Though this is a simple way to drive more conversions using the platform, it is one of the most effective as product marketing is carefully integrated alongside organic content.
2. Carousel posts
Another great way to make your feed shoppable is by using Instagram Carousel posts. Similar to regular Carousel posts, a shoppable one includes steam of images that can then hold up to twenty tagged products with the photos.
Using such posts, you can release a seasonal lookbook or introduce customers to a wide range of products all at once.
3. Stories with tagged products
These 24-hours stories hold the immense potential of engaging and driving major traffic. To make your Stories more enticing, all you need to do is add product stickers to the post and wait for the magic to happen.
Tagged products on Stories are a fantastic way to notify the shoppers of the new products that they can see on your profile page to push sales.
4. New AR filters with tagged products
Augmented Reality is in itself a popular, engaging, and enticing feature that the brands are after to boost online sales. To add the cherry on the top of the Instagram Store ‘cake’, the platform released a brand new AR shopping feature. The recent tool is just as alluring as it sounds. It will enable shoppers to try on the products digitally before making a purchase.
However, this feature is currently undergoing beta testing, it won’t be long when the tool will allow brands to create a personalized experience for each product.
How to Start an Instagram Shop for Your eCommerce Business?
Step 1. Meet the Eligibility Requirements
Before you can jump right into starting your Instagram Store, there are a few eligibility criteria that you must be fit for. These are as follows:
● You must be dealing with eligible, physical goods.
● Your business must comply with the Instagram Commerce policies
● Your business must be located in a country that can access this feature
Once you pass these criteria, make sure that you have the updated version of the app and have an Instagram business account. Thankfully, it isn’t hard to create a business account on Instagram.
You can either create a new business account with another email Id or simply go to the settings of your current profile and switch your account to business.
Most people prefer a separate account so that they can keep their personal and professional profiles in harmony.
With an Instagram business account, you get access to other business tools like Action buttons, Insights, and ads.
Step 2. Link your profile to your Facebook business page
Now that you have your Instagram business account, it is necessary to link it with your Facebook business page.
To do this, Go to Account settings → Linked accounts → Link your Facebook business account.
Step 3. Add Product Catalog to your FB shop
Be mindful that Instagram Store fetches product information from Facebook Shop. So, now that both your Instagram and FB business accounts are linked, it’s time you create a Facebook Shop and sync a product catalogue to it.
The products will automatically be promoted on Facebook too. If you don’t know how to create a Facebook Shop using your FB b business account, then I’d highly recommend you to read How to sell on Facebook Shop?
This will guide through each step.
Step 4. Wait for your account to be approved
Once you have your Facebook Shop linked to your Instagram account, Instagram will automatically review your account before enabling you to create an Instagram store. This review process can take a few days or longer (as per Instagram)
If your account has been approved, Instagram will share a notification.
Step 5. Add FB Shop to your Instagram
Once you get the approval, click ‘Get Started’ on the notification. If not, go to your Instagram Business account settings → Hit ‘Shopping’.
Now, simply select the Facebook Shop that you wish to integrate.
Congratulations! You’ve just created an Instagram Store.
Step 6. Start to tag your products in your Instagram Posts & Stories
Now when you’re all set up, you can start tagging your products in Instagram Posts and Stories.
Tagging is a lot easier than the whole process you just followed. You can tag the products just as you tag people.
When you tag products, your posts will include the shopping bag icon and shopping tags in your posts for featured products.
★You are required to create at least one Instagram Store post to activate your ‘Instagram Shopping’ tab on your profile.
★When you’ll hit ‘Get Started’, it’ll give you 2 different options. You can either create a pure Instagram Store integrated with Facebook Shop OR, you may choose to integrate your product catalogue from other selling channels like Shopify or BigCommerce if you have any.
★You’ll be asked to fill up the shipping details. Facebook is very particular about its delivery and customer service. Therefore, be sure that you put the days honestly within which you’ll be able to ship your products. The best would be between 3 to 7 days.
7 Best Tips to Promote Your Instagram Store
1. Leverage #hashtags
If you really want to gain engagement and build your Instagram Store, you’ll have to master the art of using hashtags.
The maximum number of hashtags that you can use is 30. Now if you’re struggling to understand how many you should be using, I’d say – as many as the length of your post.
If you’re posting a video then I’d rather recommend that you use more than 20. However, you must use the most targeted and popular ones. They can help you appear in the Search and Explore tab, which has an exclusive ‘Shop’ section. It is used by more than 50% of users each month.
2. Optimize your Business Profile
Just as you optimize your website pages, it’s necessary to optimize your Instagram Store profile too. This means that you need to invest much effort and time in creating a beautifully designed, user-friendly, and understandable Instagram feed as you’d be doing with your website.
Make sure that you include the following things:
- Profile photo/logo
- Well-written bio
- Link to your Shop
3. Nail the Caption
Captions are a crucial part of any Instagram post. It can either make or break your post. Your caption holds the potential to engage buyers as you can make them relate with you. A captivating image with a bland caption can deteriorate your whole post.
Apart from this, captions can serve as powerful CTAs – Though, don’t start pitching in every post. Just be sure that it’s influencing them in one way or the other,
4. Use the Product sticker feature
To tag products in your Stories to promote Instagram Store, simply use ‘Product stickers’. The app lets you choose from 4 different sticker styles:
- Sticker with the product name in rainbow
- Name in grey
- Translucent text
- Shopping bag icon
You can tag your products in both new as well as existing products. Hence, to make the most of your Instagram Store features, it’s worth utilizing your older posts. However, you can’t edit Stories that have been published. This is a very powerful Instagram growth tactic to grow your business.
5. Build a Shoppable feed
Instagram Store for eCommerce allows brands to tag products that are available for sale and enables users to purchase them directly within the app.
If you’re integrated with Shopify, you can use its Shoppable Instagram Galleries plugin that allows customers to add products directly from images on your feeds.
6. Run Instagram Shopping Ads
If you’re aware of social media capabilities, you must already be running Instagram and Facebook ads.
Now, Instagram has also come up with the option to run organic shopping posts as ads. Shoppers who hit on these ads will be taken to a product description page on Instagram and can proceed to purchase from your mobile shop.
To set up Instagram Shopping Ads, follow these steps:
- Open your FB Ads Manager → Click ‘+Create’ and choose an aim from – reach, brand awareness, link clicks, conversions, or post engagement.
- Pick the audience that you wish to target
- Click ‘Edit placements’ and select ‘Instagram Feed’. This will make sure that you only run the ads there.
- At the item of an ad set customization and choose ‘Use Existing Post’
- Choose the Shopping content that you’d like to run as an ad for your Instagram Store for your eCommerce.
- Fill in the information and press Continue
7. Partner with influencers
Influencers are a great deal in today’s marketing world. The best part of partnering with influencers is that you don’t need to put any effort into getting people to notice you.
They already have a huge number of followers that easily become your viewers whenever those influencers influence them towards your brand.
I’d suggest that you read the complete guide on How Influencer Marketing Improves eCommerce Business Growth to understand the concept in a much better and useful way.
Instagram Store is a fantastic feature that allows shoppers to complete the purchase without leaving the app. If you’re looking to expand and improve your eCommerce sales, then leveraging this Instagram Store feature is a must.
With this article, you can conclude how effective and easy it is to use Instagram Store growth. You may follow the tips to ensure that you make the most of your Instagram Store to increase online sales and gain more goodwill.
While we have covered almost everything here, let us address the importance of product image editing in your sales process. To engage your audience your product images will play a crucial role. Get a free product image editing trial from PixelPhant, by clicking on the “Get Started” button below.
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