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How to Boost E-Commerce Sales with Instagram

Why Instagram for Ecommerce?

With over 600 million users, and the last 100 million joined in just the past six months, Instagram is one of the biggest and most engaged online communities to date.

The types of users it attracts makes Instagram a successful sales channel. According to a study by Iconosquare, the majority of Instagrammers are online shoppers, with 70% of users have searched for a brand, and 62% follow brands. Because of this, Instagram is an ideal marketing platform for e-commerce.

How to generate sales with Instagram?


Avoid Hard Selling to Appeal to Instagram’s Social Culture

Instagram isn’t a salesy platform. Instagrammers appreciate beautiful, emotion-filled photos. So if you are going to promote your product, you have to be serendipitous. Your brand should adopt Instagram’s culture in order to truly unlock the power of Instagram and drive the desire to purchase. Post lifestyle photos, show behind the scenes pictures to build a personal bond with the target audience and express your culture. Carefully walk the line between wielding your influence and coming off too pushy.


Posting User-Generated Content

If you want to catch the eye of internet shopper, user-generated content is one of the best ways. According to a survey on user-generated photos, 77% of shoppers reported that they’d rather see customer photos than modeling photos when making a purchasing decision.

Therefore, encourage your users to create content for you. Ask them to share pictures showing off the products, then repost their pictures on your Instagram. Remember to ask for their permission first.

Posting user-generated content can portray a relatable brand image filled with real consumers. With this approach, your audience sees how your products look in real life, with real people. And get inspired to buy from you if the pictures intrigue them enough.


Create a Shoppable Instagram gallery

Currently, you can’t include clickable links in a photo caption. So it’s hard for customers to buy from your Instagram. There’s one easy way to solve this: set up a shoppable Instagram gallery. By creating a shoppable Instagram feed, you can add direct links to different product pages where items can be purchased for each of your Instagram posts. You can also place checkout links in image captions. The key benefit of having a shoppable Instagram gallery is that a potential customer would not have to search through your eCommerce store for a product that interested them on Instagram. It shortens the way and time to the checkout process, which reduces the chance of losing a sale or a client.


Optimize the Link in Your Bio

On Instagram, your bio link is the only opportunity to directly lead a click over to your website. So, try to make the most out of it!

If you have a shoppable gallery, connect it to your Instagram account via your bio link. If you don’t have a shoppable gallery, post a link to your homepage, or a page of featured product, and mention the link in the caption of new posts feature that product.


Partner up with Influencers

In a recent Yotpo survey of over 165,000 e-commerce businesses, 83% of Instagram users said they were influenced by a friend’s Instagram post. Imagine the number you would get if an influencer, who has hundreds of thousands or even millions of followers, posting authentic content about your brand on their Instagram. Using influencers garner a similar reach to a celebrity endorsement with a much lower price tag. Moreover, you can ask influencers to share promo codes for your products in their posts. This will increase your sales and bring in targeted customers. In short, partnering up with influencers is an effective way to generate sales. However, not every influencer is right for your business. You should review influencers carefully, choose the one that fits your brand image, loves your products, and have followers that match your target audience. In addition, let your influencers decide on what content to post since they know better how to keep their audiences hooked.


Unlock the Full Potential of Hashtags

Instagram’s marketing challenge is its lack of links. However, it encourages hashtags. This puts even more pressure on hashtag usage. Using it properly, hashtags will help you find your right audience, expand your reach and build your brand and community. At first, gain new followers and larger reach by tapping into some popular hashtags. When you have gained a stable number of followers, use hashtags as a crucial connection between them and your brand.


Use Tools for selling

It might be repeatable at this point, but remember what we said before? Your bio link is the only clickable link on Instagram. Good news for you, while followers can’t click through to product pages, there are additional tools that can improve the click-through rate and increase sales. One tool you can use is Soldsie. This allows your customers to purchase a product without leaving the app. All they need to do is comment ‘sold’ on the image, and they will be sent a mobile-friendly invoice which they can pay for on their mobile device. Another useful tool is Inselly. Sellers can list items from their Instagram feed using the hashtag #inselly, and add product descriptions, prices and other details into their Inselly account. If customers want to buy the products, they just need to comment the hashtag #soldtome under the product’s post. Inselly will then automatically send them a checkout link to complete the transaction.


Now that you have learned how Instagram can generate your sales, it’s time that you implement these techniques. Remember that Instagram’s social nature works long term to improve intangible value such as brand loyalty, lifetime user value, and brand equity. Therefore, it can take a long time before you can see the results. So be patient. Soon, customers will be coming to you, not the other way around.

Have any other great tips about selling on Instagram? Let us know!