These days, there is literally no shortage of social platforms on which to advertise your product and provide customers with easy access to purchase your products. So, it comes as no surprise that marketing has expanded to social media from just good old Facebook to also include Pinterest, LinkedIn, and the now increasingly popular, Instagram.

Touted to replace Facebook especially with the recent privacy breach, Instagram with its 500 million active users each day, is now the leading platform for visual storytelling and has given rise to the popularity of influencer marketing.

The perceived authenticity of someone with celebrity status and credibility recommending a product, beautifully shot, is very appealing to customers everywhere. If you’ve ever used Instagram, you’ve probably seen this marketing strategy at work.

‘Influencers’ that pose in front of aesthetically pleasing backgrounds with perfectly co-ordinated outfits with captions that mention brands or Insta-famous people that cook the perfect meal, decorate the perfect house, or walk the perfect pooch decked out in the latest dog coat in near perfect surroundings. Almost no matter what you’re selling, Instagram feed, Stories, and Live are wonderful platforms for etailers looking to establish their presence…there is no denying the marketing power of Instagram.

The Insta Shoppable feature

This new feature has been a long time coming, Aussie retailers rejoice! After launching in the US last November 2017, Instagram’s new shopping feature has expanded to Australia and seven other countries (Canada, UK, Brazil, Germany, Spain, France and Italy).

This feature is a marketing game-changer. Instagram’s partnership with Shopify is its first major venture in ecommerce. Since links to third-party websites are not allowed in captions, this shopping feature allows influencers, celebrities and eligible businesses to tag products in their posts. Tapping on the tags will take potential buyers to an in-app page with more listed info about the product and business and a “Shop now” option that will redirect them to the online store, making the purchasing experience a breeze.

How to sell using the Insta Shopping feature

If you’re one of the many business owners that recognize the potential of Instagram, make sure you follow the necessary steps to be eligible for Insta’s shopping feature.

  • Download the latest version of Instagram on the App store or Google Play store
  • Change your Insta account into a business profile
  • You must be an admin on a Page and have a product catalog linked to a shop on Facebook
  • Sell physical goods only (read: clothing, shoes, bags, accessories etc. It doesn’t apply to service businesses if you’re wondering)

After making sure all of these things are in order, the next step is the most excruciating part…waiting. It could take a few days or longer, depending on the nature of your business and other details.

When you’ve finally gotten the ‘go signal’ from Insta’s team, you will then be able to tag products.

Tagging products is the easy part

This process is the easiest part. Simply upload an image of your product (while adhering to Instagram’s unspoken rule of arranging it in a visually appealing manner, of course), select Tag Products, then on the image you have to tap where you want the tag to appear. Lastly, select the product you’re tagging from your Facebook catalog that you set up and you’re good to go!

Some brands have noticed more than 1000% increase in traffic to their website via the Instagram shopping feature, some have noted a staggering increase in revenue as well.

When you really think about it, it seems like a significant (but preventable) risk to your business if you don’t have a shoppable Instagram. The risk? You run the risk of losing sales when a potential buyer sees something they like on the platform with no means of being linked back to your website.

If you’re looking to enhance your brand experience for customers, that’s where we come in. Coghlan can take care of your business’ e-commerce back-end so you can focus on growing your business. You can call us on +61 2 9828 0111 (Sydney), +61 3 9240 6300 (Melbourne) or +64 9 263 8855 (Auckland). Or drop us a note via the form below.

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