Step-by – Guide on How to Sell on Instagram

If you are able to stand out in the crowd, Instagram can be a powerful tool for selling products or services. These tips will help you sell on Instagram.

Did you know that Instagram currently has more than one billion users per month? Yes, billion. Instagram is now a global marketplace. In the U.S., 37% of adults use Instagram.

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Instagram is an ideal place for businesses selling products to showcase their products because it’s a visual platform.

It is true that using Instagram to help customers remember you as a social media agency, and why they love your clients, is an important part of your Instagram marketing. You are missing an opportunity to increase your sales if you don’t go beyond that.

If you don’t have a clickable link, how do you get people to purchase from you? Although you can link to your store in the bio, most people won’t want to look through your entire catalog.

There are many ways to open an Instagram shop or sell on it.

Install Instagram Shopping Locally

If you are eligible, Instagram Shopping is the best place to begin.

An Instagram Shop gives you a prominent View Shop in your profile, and allows you to tag products in various content. @otrio.stationery, for example, has a Shop that allows customers to browse, save, or buy items directly from its e-commerce store.

instagram shop example

You must have the following:

Sell physical goods. Services are currently not supported. You should have an Instagram business account, rather than a personal one. Link your Instagram account to your Facebook page.

These requirements are met and you can open an Instagram shop.

Navigate to your profile in the Instagram app. Tap the menu at the upper right and choose Settings. Tap Business, then tap the Set Up Instagram Shopping button at the bottom.

set up instagram shopping

Install Instagram Shopping with Facebook Catalog Manager

Now you will need to either connect your Instagram account with an existing catalog or create a brand new one.

Facebook Catalog Manager is the best way to accomplish this.

add catalog in instagram shop

Catalog Manager is an option within Business Manager that lets you create a shop on Facebook.

Although the feature is quite simple, there are many options.

Click the blue Add a Catalog link and select the type of catalog that you wish to create. You may want to create an e-commerce catalogue.

catalog type for instagram shop

Next, choose the best way to upload your inventory. Uploading items manually is a good option if you have a small catalog.

upload catalog for your instagram shop

Images must be at least 500×500 pixels if you want to add them.

Also, you will need to include:

If you use them internally, a description. A link to your direct page where people can buy the product.

Shopify and Big Commerce allow you to set up Instagram shopping

Are you using Shopify or BigCommerce to sell online on your website? This will make the whole process much simpler as you can connect directly to your sales platform.

Connect a partner platform when creating a catalog. Next, choose the third-party platform that you will use for ecommerce. Follow the prompts for complete catalog setup.

connect platform for instagram shopping

Whatever method you choose (Facebook Commerce Manager or Shopify), once you have everything connected, you can start making shoppable post.

You can also use an alternative sales platform

There may be other reasons you want to use Instagram for something other than shoppable posts.

Do you sell outside the areas supported by Instagram?

You can also use paid services like Soldsie and CommentSold. These services allow people to buy directly from comments on Instagram as well as Facebook. Plans start at $49/month and include a transaction fee of up to 5.9%.

This option is for those who can’t use Instagram natively.

How to Sell on Instagram

1. Stay connected to brand

Instagram stands out from its sister social media networks by being a visual, real-time network. This means you must use an attractive image to sell your product.

You should take the time to ensure that the photo is perfect. If you are not creating stories, choose a square photo.

If you want your Instagram to be great, align it with your branding.

Guidelines for branding should include:Fonts and how they are used.Color numbers that you use for your brand.Guidelines on images when you use them. Where can you get images if you don’t have the images yourself.

It shows when your brand is strong.

Take @writechofficial_ as an example. The content is consistent visually and follows clear guidelines.

instagram profile example

2. Plan Instagram feed posts

You’ll be able to plan content easier once you have established the branding for your clients Instagram accounts.

Keep in mind: Content should have a purpose and a final goal.

Let’s start by creating feed posts that are sales-focused.

Are you promoting a great sale? Perhaps you have a new product to announce. Perhaps your client has just updated their online shop.

It doesn’t matter what, make the big news clear in the image and not just in the caption.

Instagram is a visual platform, so make sure you grab prospects’ attention with captivating images. In the caption, add more information such as sale dates and product info.

You don’t have to promote products in every post. You don’t have to promote products in every post. Instead, consider other ways that your client can add value.

You might make a how to post that guides your followers through the use of a new product feature. Agorapulse can help you identify the most popular social media posts for your clients so that you can create more of it.

agorapulse instagram content report

Carousel posts are great for helping clients launch new products or creating helpful guides. A single post can contain up to 10 images, which will give your clients more depth.

You have plenty of room to be creative with spots that can hold up to 10 images. You can detail every step in a tutorial, or highlight the best features of one product.

example of instagram shopping

The @togetherwithkx carousel above uses a text overlay for a large announcement about holiday shopping dates. Additional images highlight holiday products in the shop of the stationery brand.

Agorapulse allows you to schedule Instagram content

Agorapulse makes it easy to schedule single images and carousel posts. You can create a feed post using the composer, which allows you to upload an image and write a caption. Next, schedule Instagram content for the right time for your client.

agorapulse composer for instagram selling

When you publish a carousel with multiple images, you will receive a notification via the Agorapulse mobile application. Follow the prompts and tap the notification to publish manually.

Design Instagram content via Agorapulse

Do you batch design content? Agorapulse’s Canva integration allows you to create and modify Instagram designs without having to leave the composer.

canva integration with agorapulse

Agorapulse allows you to organize client content

Agorapulse’s Asset Library can be a great tool for organizing client content in advance. You can create separate folders for clients in the Library tab. These folders can be organized by campaign, social channel, theme or theme. You can use Agorapulse to pull images from your asset library. This speeds up the scheduling process.

agorapulse asset library

3. To increase reach, use hashtags

You can’t expect clients to reach the highest level of your content without hashtags.

Use hashtags on Instagram to expand your reach, connect with more customers and ultimately sell more products.

Hashtag Help: The Complete Guide to Instagram Hashtags

What hashtags should be used to promote your clients’ posts on social media? A mix of niche, industry, and branded hashtags is best in most cases. You can use Instagram search to brainstorm new hashtags for your industry, location, or viral keywords.

A third-party tool can provide more detailed insights and popularity metrics for hashtags.

Agorapulse allows you to monitor which hashtags work best for your clients. To see a summary listing all interactions generated by your hashtags, open the Reports tab.

agorapulse hashtag report

Next, go to the list view. Sort by Average Interactions to see the top performers. You can reuse the most popular hashtags as you plan more content to ensure maximum exposure for your clients.

You want to make it easier to add hashtags to your feed posts. You can create hashtag groups in the Composer tab so that you can reuse high performing hashtag lists with just one click.

4. Tag shoppable posts

Once you have set up Instagram Shopping, customers will be able to browse the products of your clients by clicking on the Shop button within their profile. You don’t need to wait for your followers to find the Shop button. Make your feed posts shoppable instead.

A shopping bag icon appears in the lower left corner when you tag products in a post. At the bottom, a Visit Shop banner is displayed. Followers can tap individual products and start shopping immediately. To see a wider selection of products, they can tap the Visit Shop banner or the Shopping Bag icon.

Your clients can offer checkout via Instagram so that followers can buy instantly from the app. The app will prompt your followers to visit the website of your clients if they offer checkout via an e-commerce site. In either case, selling on Instagram is easy with the shoppable feature.

The @poiandhun above, for example, features a shoppable item. You can view additional photos and read a description by clicking on the shopping link. Then, tap on the shop button to go directly to the stationery brand’s site.

5. In your bio, link to a landing site

What if your clients don’t have Instagram Shopping? What if your clients want to sell from different angles? A shopping link can be added to the client’s Instagram bio. Instead of linking to the homepage of your clients, create an Instagram-friendly landing site where customers can browse and shop.

To create a mobile-friendly landing site, you can use an app such as Linktree or Lnk that is free. You could create separate links for each product in a small shop. You could also link to specials or collections for a larger inventory.

@stationery_island, for example, used Linktree in order to create a landing page that featured links to its online store and Amazon stores around the world.

control social media chaos with agorapulse

6. Use user-generated content to repurpose

It’s a smart idea to add user-generated content (UGC) to your client’s branded content. UGC is a great way to build trust and social proof. This can help you sell on Instagram.

You can tag products to make UGC shoppable, just like brand feed posts. The @washigang post below repurposes UGC, and links to the stationery brand’s shop.

Use the Agorapulse Listening tab to source UGC for clients’ brands. You can set up listening searches to find relevant hashtagged posts for clients’ brands hashtags.

7. Work with influencers

Repurposing UGC can be a cost-effective and effective way to share authentic content. If you don’t have enough UGC to share with your clients, then influencer partnerships might be a better option.

Clients can request influencers to spotlight certain products or create creative guidelines. While influencer partnerships are more expensive, they often result in better-quality content.

Insta makes it easy to include the Paid Partnership tag in content. This tag allows influencer content to be automatically posted in both the creator’s and sponsoring brands’ feeds.

For example, @themonsterofstationery post above uses the Paid Partnership tag to highlight content sponsored by @writechofficial_. The post is not shoppable but users can click through to the brand account and click on the link in the bio to begin shopping.

8. Launch with Instagram Drops

Are you looking to generate buzz for your clients prior to their next major product launch? You can create buzz for your clients by creating a content strategy plan that covers the weeks, months and days leading up the launch.

Drops is a smart way to reach clients and maximize limited-edition runs. With this feature, brands can launch limited-edition products using Instagram’s shopping tools. You only need an Instagram Shop with Instagram Shop Checkout enabled.

Drops are displayed in an additional tab of Instagram’s shopping portal. This tab highlights recent and upcoming launches. To get reminders about Drops, users can tap the upcoming Drops or tap recent Drops. This will allow them to shop immediately. Drops require Instagram Checkout so customers can shop and browse seamlessly.

The @origins Drop features a limited-edition skincare range. You can also see the reminders that others have set, which can be a form of social proof that can increase interest.

9. Host Live Shopping Events

Are you looking to sell Instagram on Instagram in other ways? Live Shopping events are great for making authentic content, driving discovery and sales. These events are great for showing prospects how to use features or working with other creators.

Live Shopping, like Drops, requires that you have an Instagram Shop with InstagramCheckout enabled. To allow them time to process, you must also add the products to your shop at least three days before they are due.

Once you are ready to go live on Instagram, tap the plus symbol in the upper left corner of your profile and choose Live. To tag the products that you wish to be featured in the Live Shopping event, tap the shopping bag icon.

The event will allow viewers to tap to buy and shop instantly.

Like Drops, Live Shopping Events have their own tab on Instagram’s shopping portal. This can allow them to reach more people than your current clients. Your clients can also see them in their Instagram grid, so that they can be accessed by all of their followers even after the event is over.

To highlight its holiday sale, @cocokind held an Instagram Live Shopping Event. Viewers can click the View Products link at bottom of screen to view the featured bundle as well as other products in the shop.

10. Instagram Reels: Sell With Us

Are you looking to make short videos that are dynamic and sell more than long video posts or live streams? Make Instagram reels shoppable and add product tags before publishing.

The @papersutekka Reel shows, for example, how the brand packs popular products. To view featured products, viewers can click the View Products link at the lower right. To purchase individual products, they can click on the Continue Shopping banner at bottom of screen.

11. Instagram Stories: Sell

Stories are still an excellent option for selling on Instagram, even though they disappear after 24 hours. Because of their authenticity, Instagram Stories are a great way to connect with customers, and to sell more authentically.

Create content with Canva to schedule Stories. Upload your Story to Agorapulse. Then toggle the Send To Mobile switch. To ensure that you receive a notification at the correct time, schedule it for publication.

Add interactive stickers to your Agorapulse notification. Next, publish your Story at the right time.

Instagram Stories: Add link stickers

Add a link sticker in your Story to help customers navigate to the e-commerce site of your client. Tap the link sticker to open the sticker tray and enter the URL.

instagram link stickers

The domain will be displayed on the sticker by default. You can change the text on the sticker by adding a call-to-action (CTA), such as “Save 50%!” or to “Get Free Shipping!”

The @berootedco Story includes a link sticker which directs users to the stationery brand’s site. Followers can shop the Black Friday sale with the sticker and text overlay.

Shop Instagram Stories

Stories, like Live Shopping and Reels, support shoppable content. Add shopping stickers to your Stories to make them shoppable. Followers can tap on the product sticker to go to your Shop by tapping it in their Story.

The @paperluxeshop Story below features a multi-frame tour of the stationary brand’s physical shop. To browse the products in the Instagram Shop, customers can double-tap the Tap to view Product popup.

Save Instagram Story Highlights

Technically, your Stories don’t need to disappear after 24 hours. You can instead add them to your highlights albums. These albums will appear on the profile. You can make more sales by organizing highlights of clients strategically.

It is possible to create different highlights for different product types and collections. @papelitoslindos, for example, has highlights albums that highlight the Catrina Set of stationery and the creation process.

12. Manage sales-related engagement

You may have to nurture customers in some cases until they make a purchase. This could mean responding to DMs or comments from clients’ Stories and Reels. Agorapulse can help you manage engagement in any way.

Agorapulse automatically collects comments, DMs, and can be customized to add automation so you don’t forget anything. You might want to save engagements from people who are ready to buy. This can be done by creating an automated rule that uses terms customers commonly use, such as “buy” and “cost”.

Agorapulse makes it easy for you to track the customers of your clients. You can create labels to identify different stages in the customer journey, such as cold prospect, warm leads, and returning customer. This will give you more context to respond to customer engagements in Agorapulse.

13. Advertise

You can now use Instagram ads to view sponsored posts in your newsfeed. Seeing the competition is one of the best ways to learn how to sell Instagram.

Which posts get the most likes and positive comments? Which posts share the same traits?

14. Your larger sales funnel should be able to incorporate your Instagram sales.

Your Instagram sales aren’t secret. Not at all! Cross-promote your Instagram sales whenever possible. Let your followers know if you are on Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.

Send an email to your email list to let them know that you are promoting a segment of people who use Instagram the most. You will increase your chances of people participating in your promotion. Plus, you may also gain more Instagram followers.

Think about how shoppable posts relate to other marketing efforts. You might suggest to clients that they offer discounts codes to visitors to their websites who visit them via Instagram. Your clients will be able to sell to customers interested on multiple channels.

In conclusion

You now know how to sell Instagram. This will give you all the tools to help your clients set up shops, promote their products and track their results. This can help you make sales and help clients establish long-lasting relationships with their customers.

Get Agorapulse for free! It will help you plan, track, measure, and manage all your social media efforts.