Remember when your customers walked out your brand outlet with bags full of clothes, accessories or other goodies? That image of them with their hands full of shopping bags and a broad smile on their face made for the perfect Instagram post/story for both you and them! After all, who doesn’t love a happy customer?! You’d also get messages and inquiries from people about the stuff they’d got and soon enough, you’d have more people visiting your store and buying some of those goodies for themselves.
Well, all that seems like a thing of the distant past in the current scenario, doesn’t it? The COVID pandemic has certainly made many people reconsider their priorities. Several have also remodeled their budgets and thus, shopping has taken a bit of a backseat for now. But we think it doesn’t HAVE to be that way. Sure, things have changed in a major way; but does it have to dampen your customer’s shopping spirit too? Not necessarily. Because while Instagram has always been a great medium to advertise and generate awareness for your brand, now you can also convert it into your consumer’s own personal shopping destination and enable them to buy their favorite items again. Say hello to Instagram Shopping!
IS INSTAGRAM A VIABLE SHOPPING DESTINATION?
The data certainly says so! 60% of the people using Instagram say that they use the medium to find and discover new products. 200 million+ users visit at least one brand’s business profile daily through the course of their browsing. Also, 1/3rd of the most viewed stories on Instagram are from businesses and various brands. With such overwhelming data, and considering the current COVID pandemic and the norms of social distancing, Instagram serves as an excellent platform to advertise and sell your product/service.
WHAT IS INSTAGRAM SHOPPING?
Simply put, Instagram Shopping enables a brand to set up shop on Instagram and lets users buy its product/services by simply tapping on the photos/videos posted by the brand on its feed and in its stories. By turning on the Shopping Feature in the app, people can learn more about your product by simply tapping on the product sticker in your post or story. Once redirected, they will learn more about the product’s price, how it looks, and a short description of it. They can then be redirected to your brand’s website to complete the purchase or you may choose to use Facebook’s Checkout option to make a direct sale.
HOW TO GET STARTED?
Excited about beginning your journey? Let us guide you on how to get started. To be eligible for Instagram Shopping, certain guidelines must be met by your brand. They are as follows-
Is your business located in a Supported Market?
A Supported Market is a location/area which supports the Instagram Shopping feature. To see if your location is one of them, you may visit here. Also, make sure that your brand account is converted into a Business Account to be applicable for Instagram Shopping. This can be achieved by going to the Profile Settings and changing your existing Creator and/or Personal account into a Business Account.
Does your business sell Physical Goods?
Your products must be some form of physical goods. This is important as you will be tagging your product in the photos and videos that you put. Hence, it is always better when people can see the products that are being tagged. Also, if they click on the Product Sticker in your post or story, they will be shown an image of what your product looks like along with other details about it. Hence, a tangible, physical product is important.
Does your business comply with the Commerce Policies?
Is your FB/Instagram page representative of your business? And is it reliable & trustworthy?
The domain of the products advertised must be well defined. Choose your brand’s domain succinctly and ensure that your Facebook and Instagram pages represent that domain clearly. The products advertised on your pages must be readily available for direct sale from your website or via Checkout on Facebook and Instagram. Do remember to link your Instagram account with your Facebook page for this. Make your brand reliable and trustworthy so that people can engage with it actively. List the prices accurately, show the correct specifications and details about your product and do not mislead your consumers. Ensure concise and quick communication if they have doubts or queries.
SETTING UP YOUR SALES CATALOGUE
Once you have ensured your brand complies with the guidelines, it’s time to set up your product catalogue. You can do this yourself manually. However, if the task seems too daunting or time consuming, you can also use Facebook’s Catalogue Manager or a certified Facebook Partner to help you with it.
ENABLING INSTAGRAM SHOPPING & POSTING CONTENT
Log in to the app, visit your profile’s settings, tap on ‘Business’ and then ‘Instagram Shopping’ to enable the Instagram Shopping feature. Once this is done, you can start posting content about your products and use the Product Stickers to tag them. You can feature up to five products per image or video post, and up to 20 products on multi-image posts. It is always good to develop a creative, engaging feed with a consistent pattern and/or color scheme. Quality, engaging content spurs visitors to buy your products further. It also helps to be quick with responses to your customers’ queries and be as responsive as possible to them.
CHECKING ON YOUR BUSINESS INSIGHTS
Do not forget to check your Business Insights regularly to see how your products are faring, the quality of the performance of your posts and what is and isn’t working for your page. An analysis of these insights also tells you what your customers are seeking more actively and thereby helps you modify your posting and content strategy accordingly.
All set with everything you need to know? Then get ready to meet and sell to your customers on the exciting, new platform that is Instagram Shopping! Happy Selling!
Need more help with Instagram Shopping? Trust our team of professionals to help you set up and manage your brand’s online marketplace and offer effective solutions for a better growth rate. For more details, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.