Using Instagram to sell more on Shopify
Shopify provides a great platform for setting up an ecommerce website but the next challenge is getting the attention of your target buyers and turning them into loyal customers.
To rise to this challenge, it’s incredibly important to go beyond simply selling products by trying to build a deeper connection with your customers. One of the ways you can do this is by using social media to get meaningful engagement from your target customers.
To do this well, you need to be strategic about which social media site you use. Each site from Facebook to Pinterest has its own benefits but Instagram is generally considered to provide some of the best engagement for many brands. According to a study by the Think Tank L2, Instagram drives 25% more engagement than any other social platform, including Facebook and Pinterest.
As a Shopify seller, you can incorporate a number of features onto your site to leverage the benefits Instagram offers and get more sales. Here’s how you can get started:
Build your Instagram following
Of course, the first thing you need to do is work out if your target audience is on Instagram. With more than 600 million Instagram users, there’s a good chance they use the site.
Then you need to spend time on building a decent number of followers. Here are a few ways you can do this:
- Start by posting good quality pictures, since Instagram is all about engaging images. They don’t have to be perfect. In fact, it’s better if they don’t look too staged.
- Use relevant hashtags with words people are actually using in their searches but don’t go too broad. Look for niche hashtags that will help you home in on your target buyers.
- Use an analytics tool like Iconosquare to work out how to optimise your efforts by posting at the time your audience is most active. You can even find out what filters and posting frequency is best.
- Engage with users by following them and commenting on their posts, or liking them. Don’t spam them though. Make sure you are being genuine.
- Run a competition. They are a great way to increase brand awareness and drive engagement.
Use Instagram for business
It’s worth getting an Instagram account specifically for business. This will allow you to target ads you place on the site by location, demographics and interests, so you can focus on reaching people who are more likely to buy from you. You can also use analytics to measure how your account is performing.
There are now 15 million business accounts on Instagram and they are producing some pretty compelling results.
Mary Beech, EVP and Chief Marketing Officer of Kate Spade New York recently said: “Traditionally, our customer had turned to Instagram for inspiration, and we’re seeing that she’s reacting positively to the new shopping experience, which allows her to seamlessly tap and shop the product – going from inspiration to information to purchase in just a few steps….”
Integrate Instagram and Shopify
Once your Instagram account is up and running, you can integrate it with your Shopify site and truly begin to take your business to the next level.
You can buy a number of plug-ins from Shopify’s app store to help you do this.
One of the most useful features you can try is shoppable feeds which take Instagram users directly to your online shop. Plug-ins like Elf allow you to create shoppable Instagram feeds with inspirational content that presents your products in an appealing format to entice users to buy from you. You can also add tags like “sale” and “new” to products you post on Instagram.
Shoppable galleries are another feature worth trying. You can get creative with lifestyle shots to show your products in the best possible light. You can easily embed these galleries onto your Shopify website using an app like Showcase.
Featuring user generated content (UGC) in your shoppable galleries is a powerful way to present your products because it provides social proof to potential new customers. You can encourage existing customers to share pictures of themselves with your products using hashtags and your @ handle. You can then place the UGC alongside product pages.
You can also embed your Instagram feed directly onto your Shopify site using an app like Insta-Feed. You can use it to show real life images of your products and encourage more people to follow you on Instagram.
So, if you’re selling on Shopify and want to make your shop stand out from your competitors’ why not start experimenting with Instagram? It could be just what you need to elevate your brand.
Andy has been part of the Khaos Control Solutions team since 2006, starting out as a Product Trainer and graduating to leading the training team in his first year. By 2008 Andy was a member of the Senior Management Team as Operations Manager and has gained a wide-ranging knowledge of Khaos Control and the people behind it by time spent managing...