Shopping Feature Coming Soon to Instagram

Marketers of Business-to-Consumer (B2C) brands will already be aware of the importance of optimising social media posts for mobile devices- but Instagram’s latest feature could change the game altogether.

In fact, mobile devices have revolutionised the way that people shop. You browse products while waiting to be seated for dinner, make purchases during your commute to and from work and compare prices online when you’re at a shop to see what the better deal is. In fact, more than 84% of smartphone users browse, research or compare products via a web browser or mobile app. While browsing and discovery are easy on mobile, finding more information about the specific products you see isn’t always as simple.

While it’s not currently available to all business (it’s being tested by a select few in the U.S.) the Shopping Feature essentially allows you to tag shoppable products in a post. From there, every tagged item leads to a product detail view where potential buyers can learn more.

Excited about the prospect of trying out the feature? Here are four ways you could use Instagram Shopping to sell more products. Never will you have to say “Click the link in our bio to learn more!” again.

Make your content more discoverable

Shopping on Instagram starts with discovery. Nobody can buy from you if they don’t know you exist.

Here are some tips on how to get your brand and products in front of potential customers.

Use hashtags

Hashtags are one of the most common ways people search for content on Instagram and studies suggest that posts with at least one hashtag generate more engagement than those without. Indeed, using the right hashtags can expose your brand to relevant audiences. So, how do you know which hashtags to use?

Check out what hashtags your competitors are using. Maybe you’ll discover new hashtags to add to your collection. Or you might decide you don’t want to compete for the same audience, in which case you can search for other hashtags to use.

Use hashtags that influential people in your industry are using. These people are already well-established with your target audience, so why not learn from the best?

Consider related hashtags. Browse through posts containing a hashtag you’re already having success with. Do you see a trend of any other common hashtags that could be included in future posts?

Use location stickers

The locations stickers available for Instagram Stories will help you show up in more searches, making it easier for potential followers to find you. They also might land you in Instagram’s “larger story” for that location, a curated selection of stories tagged with that specific location sticker.

Create a consistent shopping experience

Shopping on Instagram will still redirect the user to leave the app in order to complete a purchase.

Going from one interface to another can get confusing. When the user experience is smooth and intuitive, it increases the likelihood of a positive experience and ultimately a purchase.

You can do this by matching your Instagram account to the look and feel of your landing page. If your Instagram account doesn’t match your landing page, for example, you risk confusing a shopper who might think that they’ve clicked onto the wrong page.

Promote Instagram Shopping posts in your Stories

Giving users a behind-the-scenes look at your product can help build anticipation around it. Use your Instagram Story to film the creative process behind your product, or offer a demonstration of how it works. You can even host a Q&A by asking viewers to send in questions beforehand. At the end of your video, make sure to add a Call to Action that points users towards your latest post so that they can purchase with Instagram Shopping.

Focus on driving quality engagement

The Instagram algorithm favours posts that gain more likes and comments, with comments weighing more heavily than likes. That’s because comments take more effort from the user. To get your Instagram Shopping content seen by as many as your followers as possible, use compelling captions that inspire readers to interact with your post. Try asking questions to your followers, ask them to share thoughts or experiences, or request that they tag a friend.

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