Written by Holly Phillips

May 19, 2022

While Instagram was once solely a place for posting in-the-moment photos, it’s now a crucial platform where brands can market their products and services. 

By utilizing Instagram’s Shopify integration, businesses can showcase products that users can purchase in just a few clicks within the app — instead of exiting the platform to visit your website or online store. 

This article will explore why your Shopify store should be on Instagram, how to start selling, and tips for promoting your products.

Why your Shopify store should be on Instagram

Though Instagram has secured its place as one of the most popular social media platforms, it’s understandable to be hesitant about adding another profile to your list. After all, the more accounts you create, the more time you need to spend maintaining them. 

Rest assured that creating an Instagram account for your business is well worth the effort. That said, here are a few reasons why you should put your Shopify store on Instagram:

Instagram has a broad reach 

According to Statista, Instagram had 2 billion monthly active users at the end of 2021. It’s highly probable that your customers are among those 2 billion users, and Instagram gives you a free opportunity to reach them. 

Instagram makes shopping easy

Instagram makes it easy for users to research products and services before purchasing, one reason why as many as 81% of shoppers do so. 

Instagram’s “shoppable posts” have a clickable shopping bag icon that displays additional information about the product along with a “View Products” button that takes users to a Shopify store. Such posts make the shopping process smooth and seamless for users and act almost like a digital product catalog for businesses.

Access to enhanced product marketing

Instagram’s Shopping features—such as shopping tags (product tagging) and Instagram shops—allow businesses to generate sales for their Shopify stores via the Instagram app. 

Brands can also improve customer relationships with special offers and discounts.

Now that you’re aware of why you should set up an Instagram account for your business, let’s dive into the details of how to do so. 

How to set up Instagram Shopping for your Shopify store

Here’s how to start selling your products on Shopify via Instagram Shopping:

Step 1: Set up Facebook channel in your Shopify store

Start by setting up a Facebook channel that will enable you to add your Shopify products. Use it to tag all the products on your Instagram feed and Stories.

Step 2: Create an Instagram business profile

Next, set up an Instagram business profile. If you already have a personal Instagram account and want to switch to a business account, you can do so from the settings menu. 

Learn more about Instagram business accounts.

Unfortunately, you cannot use the Instagram Shopping feature unless you have a business account. In addition to a business account, the Instagram merchant policy requirements state you must:

  • Link the account to a Facebook page containing a catalog of your products
  • Sell only products (not services)

Furthermore, the Instagram Shopping feature has to be available in your region.

If your business meets all these requirements, you can apply for a review on Instagram. To do this:

  • Go to the Settings menu
  • Then go to the Business tab
  • Click on Sign Up for Instagram Shopping
  • Follow all the necessary instructions and click Submit

Once you get approval (which may take two to three days), you will notice the Shopping option when checking the Settings menu.

Step 3: Turn on Instagram Shopify and put your products up for sale

Next, turn on the Shopping feature to tag products in images you post (creating a shoppable post). This is how Instagram users will be able to start placing orders.  

Turn on the Shopping feature tag:

  • Click on Profile Settings
  • Click Shopping in the drop-down menu
  • Hit Continue
  • Link your Facebook channel to your Instagram business profile

Step 4: Add products to your Instagram posts

Ready to add products to your posts and create a shoppable Instagram feed? Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Use high-quality images and high-resolution videos that will catch your audience’s attention (think of your feed as a product catalog or a store window). 
  • Upload your product images with creative and engaging captions that will convince people to take action. 
  • Tag your products to their respective Shopify links—you can tag up to five different products per image or video.
  • Ensure that the image name you use on Instagram is the same one you used on your Facebook channel. 

Once you share your images, you are ready to take orders.

Step 5: Create Instagram Stories

Once you have Instagram Shopping, you can also sell products via Instagram Stories. Remember: anything with a product tag = shoppable. Create Instagram Stories featuring your Shopify products to provide some information about them.

An Instagram Story is an excellent way to capture the attention of potential customers outside of your feed posts. While Instagram Stories are only visible for 24 hours, you can choose to save them as Highlights on your Instagram page indefinitely.

Read more about how to set up an Instagram shop

Now that you can sell your products on Instagram, let’s look at some ways you can  generate sales for them!

How to promote Shopify products on Instagram

Here are a few tips for promoting your Shopify products on Instagram:

Be authentic (while sticking to your brand)

You must be unique, creative, and authentic to stand a chance of succeeding at Instagram marketing—don’t be tempted to pass other’s ideas off as your own. 

Write catchy product descriptions

Customers can form assumptions about your brand within seconds of seeing your Instagram feed posts, Stories, videos, or even your account page. To deliver the best possible impression, ensure all details align and encourage customers to interact with your brand, including the product descriptions. 

Optimize your account

Optimize your account by choosing an appropriate username for your brand, using a good profile picture, and including a complete bio on your profile page. 

Post when users are most active 

There are no hard and fast rules for the best posting times (though some evidence indicates there are general “better” times), so just aim to post when most of your followers are active on the platform. You can use Instagram Analytics to determine when your target audience is most engaged.

Appeal to customers’ imagination

Make it easy for users to visualize what their lives will be like when they use your products. Instead of focusing on specific product features, highlight the benefits your customers will get from using them. 

Pick a theme

Using your brand colors or a theme for your Instagram profile page makes your account more pleasing to the eye. Additionally, a visually appealing profile and Instagram feed make an excellent first impression on users while communicating your brand’s identity.

Learn how to build a superior Instagram aesthetic for your brand.

Leverage user-generated content

If customers post about your product, share positive publicity via an Instagram post or Story! You can also share feedback or reviews from your customers as part of your content, which gives potential customers an outside perspective

Offer discounts and promo codes

Attract new customers and retain current ones by offering exclusive deals. People are more likely to purchase from stores where they get discount offers — who doesn’t love a sale?

Promoting your Shopify store on Instagram offers tremendous benefits for your brand. Follow our tips, stay consistent, and enjoy the results. 

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The contents of this blog were independently prepared and are for informational purposes only. The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ManyChat or any other party. Individual results may vary.