After indicating the guidelines for promoting a local business on Instagram (read here), today I will explain how to enhance a small and medium-sized ecommerce on the social network controlled by Facebook.
In fact, Instagram represents a valid support for all those companies that want to sell their products online.
Through this platform it is possible to show the goods already present in your digital store, launch exclusive offers and propose goods or services to a specific community.
To put everything I listed into action, it is necessary to develop an effective social media marketing strategy that includes the products to show, the features to apply to your strategy and above all the objectives to be achieved in the medium and long term.
Logically, the Instagram profile must be optimized for this type of activity, as this platform does not yet have all the characteristics of a real marketplace where it is possible to make purchases and perform the related economic transactions.
Enhancing an ecommerce on Instagram: optimizing the digital store
First you need to optimize your Instagram profile.
The optimization passes from the conversion of a personal account into a business profile.
The procedure is quite simple. Once registered on Mark Zuckerberg’s social network, you need to access the settings and click on the item “go to a company profile”. In this way our profile will be converted into a company page where telephone number, email and any driving directions will be highlighted.
As regards the telephone number and email, we can enter the data relating to customer service in order to simplify the contact procedure for potential customers.
Customer care is essential for any online sales activity as a good number of customers require detailed information on a particular product before buying it.
On the other hand, with regard to driving directions, we can enter our registered office or possibly the street where our store is located if the company also had a retail store.
Once this is done, we can enter, through our biography, the information relating to the purchasing procedures. Here we can indicate any payment conditions (paypal, postpay, bank transfer) any promotional discounts and above all the delivery conditions. Of course, the url of your e-commerce must also be indicated in the biography in order to allow all our followers to access our online store.
To monitor clicks we can rely on Google Analytics data or customize the url through an ad hoc program (read here) in order to analyze the clicks received on our Instagram profile.
Once this is done, we can finally optimize our gallery which will represent our digital showcase for the occasion.
Valuing an ecommerce on Instagram: how to show corporate products
The products, or possibly the services offered, can be shown in different ways but since I love to work in an orderly and schematic way, I tell you right away that the casual publication is not suitable for an ecommerce as it only generates confusion in who has to search for a particular product.
The best solution is to organize the home in photo albums (a feature recently launched from Instagram) in order to categorize products into specific groups.
For example, if we were a women’s clothing company we could create an album for flat shoes, one for heels, one for bags and so on.
Through this little trick, we will be able to respect one of the basic rules of ecommerce, that is to organize products based on the breadth and depth of the assortment.
By width we mean the various types of product (shoes, bags, etc.), while by depth of assortment we mean the different variants of the same product (red, black shoes, etc.).
So through a fairly schematic publication, we will organize our gallery based on the products or services offered.
If the product is no longer available, or temporarily not in stock, we can archive the photo in such a way as not to show it to potential customers.
Valuing an ecommerce on Instagram: how to take advantage of the shopping functionality of Instagram
In addition to organizing their own digital store, some businesses can also take advantage of the Instagram shopping feature (introduced in Italy in March 2018).
At the moment this function can only be used by accounts that “operate” in the fashion or beauty sectors, and allows the same companies to publish photos of one or more products with relative tags.
The tag must contain: product name, description, price and the link that will refer to the company e-commerce.
By clicking on the link, it will be possible to complete the purchase directly from the company store and not on Mark Zuckerberg’s platform;
Furthermore, by sliding their finger upwards on the display, each user will have the opportunity to view related products and related information, independently deciding to add them to their digital cart.
In short, as it is easy to guess, this is an essential feature for those who want to improve their online business or for those who want to sell on Instagram.
Enhance an ecommerce on Instagram: enter product description and hashtag
To facilitate the search process within the platform, we must also enter the product description and any hashtags.
The product description must be truthful and detailed, as well as contain a simple but engaging call to action.
On the other hand, as regards hashtags, it would be advisable to create an ad hoc one to categorize all the products in the store and at the same time allow users to view the products within their own news feed.
This feature is nothing more than a recent innovation introduced by Instagram, essential to strengthen the link between this social network and the world of ecommerce.
To show products within the Instagram news feed, each user must search for the company hashtag and decide, independently, to follow it.
Having organized our ecommerce on Instagram, we can finally launch our offers through Instagram Stories.
Enhancing an ecommerce on Instagram: launch a promotional offer with Instagram Stories
Instagram Stories is a feature of the social network controlled by Mark Zuckerberg which allows, through the publication of a photo or video, to create a story that will be archived after 24 hours.
To take advantage of this feature, we can create some promotional images, with any discount codes, and promote them through the company account.
Through a link, to be included in the same story, the company can simplify the final purchase process.
In fact, the user will be redirected to the company store where he will be able to select the desired product and conclude the purchase process.
In addition to the link to be published within a specific story, each company can highlight one or more stories or launch a thematic survey.
The choice of highlighting one or more stories can be a winning idea, especially for those who want to launch an exclusive promotion for certain events, such as Black Friday.
Orders for a specific product can also be managed directly on Instagram through private messages.
Here every potential customer can indicate his data and his email address where the purchase order and the relative payment will be forwarded. In short, a new way to sell online.
Instagram does not yet have all the features of a marketplace, but with the right precautions it is possible to transform this platform into a successful ecommerce.
First you need to convert your personal profile into a business account in order to enter all the essential data to sell online.
Once this operation has been completed, we can optimize our home through the criteria of the breadth and depth of the assortment and exploit all the potential of Instagram Stories to promote our products or services.
With the stories it will be possible to highlight certain offers, archive previous ones and above all launch thematic surveys to understand the tastes and habits of their customers.
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