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5 Ways to Boost Sales on Instagram

Increase Instagram sales

In June 2020 Instagram hit one billion monthly users – that is almost an eighth of the world’s population and we are not seeing any signs of plateauing.

Many marketers would probably agree with me saying, in-line with the increase in the number of active users, we have also seen an increase in the amount we are spending to promote products and brands in the photo-sharing app. The competition is high and competitor brands are getting better at marketing on social media.

The percentage of advertisers using Instagram every month is still pretty small so there is an abundance of opportunity to leverage off the platform to sell your awesome products, and I’m going to tell you how to do it right:

Ecommerce Instagram page

Step 1: Convert to a business profile

This step is simple to complete and super important for you to start selling on Instagram. By converting your standard Instagram profile to a business profile, you gain access to a few indispensable selling and reporting options. Make the switch by following these steps:

  1. Open the Instagram app and tap on your account (bottom right of your dashboard).
  2. Now tap on 3 lines in the top right corner of your screen to open the settings menu.
  3. Scroll down and tap on ‘Account’.
  4. Scroll down to “Switch to Professional Account” and follow the prompts.

Congrats! You have converted your profile. You can change back to your personal account by following the same process and tap ‘Switch Back to Personal Account’.

Now that you have made the switch, let’s have a closer look at the features you have available:

Customer Insights

Looking up your followers personal and demographic information in Instagram has been simplified with Instagram Insights, giving you an easy-to-understand summary. You can see 3 examples of the Instagram Insights dashboard here:

Instagram Insights
Instagram Insightes 2
Instagram Insights

You can view your Instagram Insights with ease through the app on your smartphone. You can view metrics like profile visits, website clicks, impressions and reach under the ‘Activity’ tab. Have a look at the ‘Content’ tab to analyse data on content posted, you can see a detailed breakdown of the performance of each post or story, including the profile visits and post engagement.

To understand more about your customers and followers, use the ‘Audience’ tab to track age, gender, and location of your followers. You can even view the days and times that they are most active, which is all important for when we get to the third step of this post.

  • CTA (Call to Action) button – the CTA is a prompt on a post / website that tells the user to take some specified action. You can add your CTA to your profile bio to give customers the option to email or call your business.
  • Story links – you may already know; you can’t add clickable links to your posts. You can add 1 website link in your bio, but not in post text. You can add links to your Instagram stories which gives you the opportunity to direct your followers to various landing pages on your website or blog. Stories have become extremely popular and a powerful way to engage and direct customers to your site.
  • Facebook alignment – connect Netcash Shop to your Facebook Business page and run paid adverts directly from your Netcash control panel. All updates and edits to products will sync across all platforms, including your Facebook Shop.

Step 2: Hashtag research

If you don’t already know how important #hashtags are, you need to pay attention to this. Business owners are frantically trying to stay ahead of the pack and reach more people while keeping costs low. Hashtags are the easiest and most important way to make an impact with organic Instagram posts.

Now that you’ve switched your profile to professional, you can see how many impressions you get on your posts via hashtags and the accounts that you reached that were not following you when they saw your post – new customer acquisition, for free.

It is easy to do “Hashtag research” for your individual posts and for your overall business posts. Search for terms related to your business by heading over to Discover > Search > Tags and search for terms related to your business. When the search results appear, you can see how many posts have used the hashtag. Popular hashtags will have a higher number of posts, so using that hashtag in your post will add your content to the discover que and make your products visible to consumers searching using the same hashtag.

Keyword hashtag research Instagram

You will get the best results by using hashtags relevant to your business with both high and low posting volumes. The reason that this is a good strategy is that the #’s with high post volumes allow you to be included in the popular searches, but the #’s with less posts can still be relevant and using them gives your post a good chance of being seen and appearing in searches to be seen and engaged with by a high-intent crowd.

Define the tone of your messaging from your other platforms and create a social media calendar to plan your content and schedule your posts weeks in advance. You can use popular tools like Hootsuite or Sprout Social to manage your posts and schedule them to go live in peak hours using data from Instagram Insights. Make sure the link in your bio is always up to date and relevant to your promotions and areas of focus and include ‘link in bio” CTAs in your post copy to prompt customers to go to your bio to follow the link.

Step 3: Paid Advertising

Netcash Shop is fully integrated with Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Google, Snapchat, Mail Chimp and international marketplaces like eBay and Amazon. It is simple to connect Netcash Shop to your existing social media platforms, websites, and blogs. You can manage your paid advertising from your Netcash control panel and sell across multiple platforms – all from 1 central control panel, and best of all, any changes you make in the Netcash Shop control panel will sync instantly across all platforms so that prices, product information and images are all consistent and updated wherever you are selling.

Many business owners think that having a smaller budget for paid advertising is a problem. This is not always correct, if you plan your advertising and execute your campaigns correctly, you will get more bang-for-your-buck by running low-budget Instagram campaigns than you would with organic campaigns. That might not make sense if you are thinking that organic posts are free. Yes, organic is free, but Instagram ads done the right way can give you some crazy ROI and you could make your money back with plenty of interest.

Make sure that you are planning your paid Instagram adverts strategically.

You have the option to spread your paid ad campaign across both Facebook and Instagram, or you can edit your placements to appear on Instagram only. You can manage this from your Facebook Ads Manager dashboard or even easier, from your central Netcash Shop control panel.

Paid Adverts Instagram Facebook

Advertising across both platforms has great benefits. You can take advantage of Facebook’s advanced, detailed targeting options, as well as Reach and Brand Awareness campaign types. By doing so, you are unlocking plenty of opportunity for your business by pushing your ads to a much wider, specific, targeted audience. One benefit of using these campaigns is to use the traffic you drive to your platforms for remarketing campaigns.

Step 4: Use Instagram shopping if you’re moving physical products

I love Instagram Shopping. This feature can only be used for brands selling physical products and it is not available for brands selling services. With Instagram Shopping, your organic posts appear as a general post, with a prompt ‘tap to view products’ which displays the product names and prices on your post image. As mentioned earlier in this post, all your products are managed from your Netcash Shop control panel, so any updates to products will be synced across all your platforms, including Instagram Shopping, Facebook Shop, websites, blogs & Google.

When your customer clicks on the tag that pops up, they will be redirected to a product details page to find out more about the product in the product description, as well as view other products that you have synced from Netcash Shop.

All you need to do to use this feature, is make sure you have connected Netcash Shop and Facebook so that your catalogue is available in your Facebook Shop and enable product tagging. To connect Netcash Shop and Facebook Shop, read this post.

And just as you thought it could not get any better, your Instagram shopping posts appear on the Instagram Shopping channel in Instagram Explore to help you reach an even wider audience.

Boost Sales on Instagram

Step 5: Partner with influencers

Influencer marketing might not be right for every brand, but in general when you are selling a product, lifestyle, or service, partnering with the right influencers is a great opportunity for businesses, small to large. Here’s why…

You are putting your product or brand in the hands of an influencer with a large following. The influencer posts about your brand on their feed, in their Instagram stories and even with live IGTV tutorials and video reels.

In short, you are using a credible source with an engaged and specific audience to market your brand instilling trust and educating their followers which can increase the chance of conversions.

My advice when it comes to influencer marketing, request data on the influencer’s audience, do they have high engagement on posts and is their ‘brand’ in line with yours. For example, a Fashion influencer might not be the right fit for your tech products.

In summary, selling on Instagram can be very lucrative. Promote your brand, have a clear and consistent message, and make your page and posts visually appealing. You need to draw the attention of potential customers and get them to buy in to your brand.

Do not be afraid to start with smaller budgets in the beginning while you are finding your feet. These 5 steps are a good starting point for beginners, or improvements for the seasoned seller.

Jade Pottier
Netcash Shop Marketing Guru

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