Many marketers think of Instagram as only a window gallery for their products or services, leaving sales to Facebook or AdWords. Due to Instagram not allowing clickable hyperlinks in comments or the post description, it’s an easy assumption to make, though a wrong one.
Savvy marketers have figured out how to make Instagram a profitable platform for growing their business. In this article, we’ll share proven tactics for making Instagram shoppable.
Overall Advice: Make it Easy to Buy
A rule of selling anything on Instagram (and life in general) is to make it as easy as possible for people to buy. On Instagram, no one will type a 25 character URL from a post description into their browser. To sell on Instagram, you have to work within the boundaries of Instagram.
Additionally, make sure your store is responsive and optimized for mobile. There’s nothing more frustrating for the user than being committed to buying but facing roadblocks via an outdated website.
Organic Instagram Sales Tactics
Link in Bio (bonus: include coupon)
When you share a photo of an item that’s in your store, change your profile link to direct people to that specific item while also mentioning that people can purchase the time via tapping the link in your profile.
Brands can create unique hashtags for their shoppable photos as well as use hashtags to grow their audience of potential customers.
When adding hashtags to your posts, make sure they are specific enough to your brand to attract relevant users. For example, the hashtag #beautiful might get a watch brand vanity likes but not the kind of relevant audience that the hashtag #watchlover would.
Purchasing from a phone isn’t always easy. To make it easy for people to purchase from Instagram, some brands link to a custom landing page in their bio that asks for the user’s email address and Instagram handle.
After submitting their info, the brand will send an email with how people can purchase the featured item.
Use Social Proof
Everyone is influenced by what their peers are doing. When you get great user-generated content, request permission to use the photo. Instead of using a photo of an employee or model, share the user-generated photo with a description such as “@User is looking good in her new sunglasses. Get your own pair via the link in our profile.”
Paid Instagram Sales Tactics
Instead of linking from Instagram to your brand’s website, you can create a shoppable Instagram experience with services such as Like2Buy which create a shoppable page of your Instagram images.
Comment to Buy
There are now apps that allow users to link their Instagram handles with an e-commerce platform. Once linked, users simply have to comment on a photo with “Sold” to purchase the item. Soldsie is a popular platform for integrating e-commerce and Instagram.
Sponsored and Dark Posts
Instagram is leveraging the power of Facebook’s advertising platform. Similar to boosting a post on Facebook, brands can now give a bump to organic posts on Instagram as well as run paid dark posts.
There are few better ways to show off a variety of products than with an interactive carousel ad on Facebook or Instagram. Brands can use carousel ads to tell a story, highlight product features or show off different styles.
Shop ‘Til Your Thumb Stops
Although it requires some experimenting and learning, it’s definitely possible to make Instagram a revenue generator.