How Instagram Shopping Can Benefit Small Business

eCommerce has expanded over the years and has expanded to power social media eCommerce on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Facebook supports Facebook for Business apps. Instagram has come up with an Instagram shopping feature for its users. Both platforms offer several options to leverage social media for advertising, marketing, and establishing a social media shopfront.

A white label web developer can be employed to make the social media eCommerce process more efficient and scalable for businesses. White label web design services provide ready-to-use and fully functional websites that businesses large or small can use to establish their brand, products, and their social media shopfronts. Among the social media networks that have utilized such websites are businesses with shopfronts on Instagram for eCommerce marketing, advertising, and product showcases.

Instagram for eCommerce

Instagram has been in the social media platform market for about a decade. It is one of the most widely-used and influential platforms available today. As of April 2020, Instagram ranks 6th in the worldwide list of social networks with the highest number of global users, estimated at 1 billion.

In the US, about 35-37% of Instagram users are adults. It is the 2nd most preferred social media app by teenagers. Worldwide, the US, India, Brazil, Indonesia, and Russia are the top 5 countries with the highest Instagram audience size. Globally, 25 to 34-year-old users hold the largest percentage of Instagram user demographics, followed by 18 to 24-year-old adult users.

This user demographics is what most online businesses target as potential consumers and, with the right tools and methods, can reach through social media metrics.

Instagram Global Age Group Stats
Source: Statista

White Label Web Development and Instagram

eCommerce developer jobs have increased in demand due to the shift towards including social media marketing and retail. White label web developer, bespoke software developers, and Instagram developer jobs are only some of the eCommerce developer jobs that have gained popularity due to the increased demand. What stands out the most among these is the white-label, web developer.

White label web development can elevate your Instagram shopfront and alleviate the burden of managing and monitoring your eCommerce platform. White label developers build a complete platform that is ready to be used by the market. This enables businesses to utilize a fully-functional website without the high cost of custom-made websites.

White label software applications for social media platforms, like Instagram for shopping, provide an efficient and scalable means for businesses and digital marketing agencies to satisfy customer needs, and enhance the Instagram Shopping experience. With white label software, you have:

  • Reduced operational costs.
  • More time to refine and market products and services.
  • Access to an SEO-ready platform.
  • Tools and organic methods for building brand growth, community loyalty, and engagement. 
  • Mechanisms to filter and focus your target customer base.
  • Monitoring and analysis tools for multiple social media accounts.

There are several options for acquiring the website you need. One is to hire an individual or freelance white label web developer already in the market. Another is to partner with an IT development service provider that will hire and manage the white label web development team for you. With the latter option, you can focus on building your brand and products on Instagram and have the service provider handle the development team.

Why Shop on Instagram?

Because of its widespread reach and usage, numerous brands are utilizing the platform for their marketing. 83% of Instagram users also take to Instagram for product research and discovery, and see brands with strong Instagram profile presence as popular, creative, and have a community-building initiative.

Instagram Shopping Feature
Source: Adweek

With the addition of Instagram for Shopping, businesses – both small and large – can establish a “mobile storefront” and social media presence to highlight products and services on Instagram. Instagram Shopping feature provides a more streamlined and complete shopping experience of users.

  1. See the product in your timeline. 
  2. Tap for more information. 
  3. Then Shop by going to the business website.

Users can also like and share products and services from the business platform. Instagram Shopping enables shoppers to save and bookmark products into collections that they can later revisit.

Benefits of Instagram Shopping

With the increasing interest in using Instagram for product marketing and white label web development to support such business initiatives, what are the benefits of Instagram Shopping?

1. Gain Positive Impressions And Goodwill With Potential Customers

Large brands have leveraged Instagram as a marketing and advertising platform. Users look on favorably to businesses with verified and engaging social media platforms, especially on Instagram. On Instagram, you are able to organically build your follower and consumer base with user-generated content and a realistic portrayal of products. You can naturally build goodwill and relationships with a large user pool and potential consumer audience.

2. Direct Marketing And Product Promotions

With Instagram Shopping ads, the app enables businesses to better incorporate your store and products with your Instagram content. Instagram Shopping enables businesses to integrate product promotions into your posts and Instagram stories ads and make it easier for your followers to view and visit your shop and products. The platform makes products more accessible, integrated, and relatable to viewers and potential customers.

3. Provide Users A Platform For Product Discovery And Feedback

Instagram Shopping provides you with tools to better streamline product and business-centric content for optimum visibility, interest, and consumer engagement. Using shoppable tags, trendy hashtags, and easy-access product info, users are able to discover products easier and provide feedback.

4. Instagram Presence Drives Consumer Action

Instagram Shopping makes the shopping experience for its users easy and accessible. When products are easily searched, users are able to peruse product details, provide feedback, and make real-time purchases. The more users view products, provide feedback, and make purchases, your products become more visible and accessible to other users.

5. Enhance Consumer Engagement

Instagram has always been a great social media platform to engage with your target audience and build rapport with your customers. Instagram Shopping provides your business with more tools to be able to better draw in and communicate with potential customers. Through ads, product tags, comments and feedback, reposts, and streamlined content you can reach more users and initiate interest and dialog.

6. Strengthen Customer Relationships

Being a social media platform, your followers and customers have the means to provide direct feedback to you through your posts. The more your customers engage with your posts, either like it or comment on it, the better opportunity you have to converse with your customers and followers. Exchange of feedback, business transparency, and responsiveness to consumer feedback or inquiries builds rapport and trust between you, your consumers, and your potential customers.

7. Drives Marketing Strategy And Creativity

Because Instagram is such a hot marketing platform, businesses are encouraged to step up and be more creative and innovative with social media marketing strategies. Instagram Shopping enables businesses to leverage visual marketing to attract and engage consumers, leading them to complete purchases. Businesses are also able to leverage Influencer Marketing that permeates Instagram, to enhance brand awareness, product exposure, and target audience.

Businesses like Net-a-porter, Chloe, H&M, M.Gemi, and MAC Cosmetics have already set up Instagram Shopping experience for several of their products and services highlighted on their Instagram profiles.

How to Set up Instagram Shopping for Your Business

To gain the experience and benefits of Instagram shopping, you need to first set up Instagram shopping for your business. It is easy to set up an Instagram shopping account.

Set up Instagram Shopping for Your Business
Source: mediakix.com

1. Ensure That You Are Eligible For Instagram Shopping

The merchant agreement and commerce policies provide the details on the partnership and agreed on platform usage rules and regulations. To qualify your business need to, at least:

  1. Host or have a business that is located in the listed supported markets.
  2. Sell physical products.
  3. Need to comply with the aforementioned commerce policies. 
  4. Need to be linked with a Facebook Page.    

2. Create or Convert To An Instagram Business Account

Aside from having a Facebook Page for your business, you also need to ensure that your Instagram account is a business account. If you do not yet have an account, you can register your new account as a business account. You can easily convert your existing profile to a business account.

3. Link Your Profile To A Facebook Catalog

Have your Instagram business account linked to a Facebook Catalog profile. The Facebook Page and Catalog will provide the shopping necessities for your customers. The Facebook Catalog page can be configured and maintained through the Catalog Manager or Business Manager app on Facebook. You can also use third-party applications such as BigCommerce platforms or Shopify to manage your catalog.  

4. Register to Instagram Shopping

After linking your business account to your Facebook Catalog, you can then proceed to Instagram and sign up for the Shopping app.

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Click on Business.
  3. Then, click on Shopping.
  4. Click Continue.
  5. Select the product catalog to link to your business account.
  6. Click Done.

If you cannot see or access Shopping, your business account may still be in-review or is not yet approved for use with Instagram Shopping.

5. Create A Shopping Story

With your Instagram business account setup and linked to your catalog, you can now start creating Instagram posts and stories with product tags and stickers. The process of creating Instagram posts is the same. With the addition of the ‘Tag Products’ tool, you can now add items from your selected catalog to your posts. Up to 5 products can be showcased in an image or video, while you can use up to 20 products on multiple image posts.  

6. Review Your Shopping Insight

You can also view the statistics for your posts and stories. Instagram Insight provides you with the performance metrics of your posts and products. This feature can also provide you with a perspective on the preferences of your customers and improve your product catalog and posting.

7. Promote Through Instagram Shopping

  • Showcase diverse products in a post to increase user engagement. Do not overcrowd your posts.
  • Utilize different formats and Instagram features – images, carousels, Instagram stories, even Instagram Lives.
  • Be consistent in the images, font, and text colors you use in your posts.
  • Optimize your use of hashtags to increase exposure and chances of appearing in the Search & Explore tab.
  • Maximize the use of Product stickers.
  • Create and run organic shopping ads.

Creating and starting your Instagram shop is easy and manageable. But what comes next – maintenance, performance monitoring, consumer engagement, and search optimization – is a lot for a single person or a business to manage. What better way to efficiently accomplish these tasks than to have a website or web application that could do all these for you.

Expand Your Reach With Instagram Shopping

In a highly competitive and crowded online retail market and industry, you need all the advantages and tools to get ahead, or even just to be noticed. With social media thrown into the mix, you need to be creative, innovative, modern, and accessible to the large pool of potential consumers on these social media platforms. Large established brands are not indifferent to this trend and have made their own move to leverage this trend in marketing and eCommerce.

Leveraging Instagram for eCommerce and working to set up Instagram shopping platforms, is a way for you to get your foot on the race. This approach may not be easy to maintain, but that is the part where white label web development services can help you. One of the most cost-effective and efficient ways for you to enhance the Instagram shopping experience for your customers is partnering with an IT service provider to manage a white label web development team to build you a fully-functional and ready-to-use website.

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