If you’re an ecommerce store owner wondering how to sell on Instagram, or you’re just generally interested in how to make money on Instagram, then you’ve come to the right place.
In this guide we will show you:
- The easiest way to make money on Instagram
- Why a website builder is the best way to sell products on Instagram
- How you can start selling on Instagram using Shopify and BigCommerce – Instagram’s only eCommerce partners
But why Instagram?
Well, the social platform currently has over 800 million active users. Not only that, it also drives more engagement than any other social channel. This is largely down to the fact most of our social interactions are linked to visuals.
So if you’re looking to target your audience on social media, Instagram seems like a no-brainer, right?
Right. But if you’re serious about maximising your profits, you’ll need to integrate your account with an ecommerce website. Here’s why:
Instagram now allows you to take your audience directly from browsing on the app, to making a purchase on your website.
Lucky for you, we’ve been there and done it. So we’ll walk you through the process of: setting up on Instagram, choosing a website builder and, most importantly, integrating the two!
If you don’t have an online store yet, you’ll want to check out our helpful guides below:
There are loads of ways to make money through Instagram, but until now, it hasn’t always been that easy.
Businesses would have to fork out money for sponsored posts, get in touch with influencers to promote products, or, at best, sell through their Instagram stories (a feature that’s only available to accounts with 10,000 followers or more!)
Now though, the game has changed and selling on Instagram has never been easier.
After successful trials in the U.S, Instagram has now rolled out its very own Instagram shop which, alongside the States, is available in: United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, France, Germany, Spain, Italy and Brazil.
This game-changing new feature is accessible to anyone and allows you to tag products in images and send users to your site in a matter of clicks! But more about that later…
Firstly, to access Instagram’s shop, you’re going to need an Instagram business account, a Facebook store, and an ecommerce website.
I know this sounds daunting if you don’t have anything in place already but trust us, you’ll be amazed at just how quick and simple it all is.
If you need help getting going on Facebook – check out our useful guide on setting up a Facebook store here.
After that, setting up on Instagram couldn’t be easier.
Here’s how to set up an Instagram business account:
Step 1: Download the Instagram app, open it, and enter your details to sign up.
Step 2: Now you’ve got an account, select Settings – located in the top right-hand corner of the screen – and click Switch to Business Profile.
Step 3: Sync your Facebook store with your new Instagram account to pull over any products you sell on there.
So why do you really need an online store?
A website allows you to create a direct link between your customers on social media, and your store.
Imagine seeing something you really liked in a shop window, only to be told they only sell that product in their other shop a few blocks away. It’s still possible to purchase the product but it sure as heck is frustrating!
It’s important to showcase your products on Instagram, but if you don’t have a linked website where your audience can purchase them from, you’ll lose out on a load of sales!
Not only that, but it’s the only way to use Instagram’s new ecommerce shop.
Here’s how it works:
- Select the image you want to upload from your library.
- Once you’re on the New Post screen, hit Tag Products.
- You can then tap the image – much like you would to tag someone in a post – and select a product from your website.
- It will then appear on your audiences’ feed who can tap the image themselves and the product itself will appear.
- After that, all the consumer has to do is touch Shop Now! They’ll then be redirected to the product on your site where they can buy it.
But what if you don’t have your own website?
Both website builders make getting online a piece of cake.
Don’t know what a website builder is?
Put simply, a website builder, also known as an online store or ecommerce platform, is an online programme that allows you to create a website with little to no technical knowhow!
All the hard stuff’s taken care of so all you need to do is focus on uploading your products and making the site look exactly like you want it to.
Both Shopify and BigCommerce integrate seamlessly with Facebook and Instagram, and allow you to pull all your cross-channel marketing together into one central hub.
Here at Website Builder Expert, we recently surveyed 1,881 individuals and found that 87% of people who aren’t online want a business website so it’s important you don’t get left behind!
Shopify is one of the best and fastest growing ecommerce builders in the market today. It has:
- Over 500,000 active stores online which have helped their customers process over $40 billion in sales.
- Sleek and stylish designs that make your store look great.
- Hundreds of Apps to help improve and expand your store’s functionality store (you can add more as your business grows and requires new features!)
- 24/7 help and support.
As we said before, Shopify is one of only two platforms that integrate with the Instagrame store. If you want more info about starting up a Shopify store – click here.
So, once you’ve got a Shopify store, you just need to connect the Instagram sales channel in Shopify to start selling.
To add the Instagram sales channel, follow these easy steps:
- From your Shopify admin, click the + button by the Sales channels heading.
2. On the Add sales channel dialog, click Instagram to learn more about the sales channel.
3. Click Add sales channel.
4. Log into your Facebook account page to authenticate your Instagram account in the sales channel.
After that you’re all set!
With Shopify allowing users to track sales via Instagram, and Instagram making the transition from their social platform to your Shopify site seamless, it seems like a match made in heaven.
Don’t just take our word for it though – hear what Instagram themselves have to say on the matter:
“Discovery is at the heart of the Instagram experience. Together with Shopify, we are enabling new ways to turn discovery into exploration, allowing Instagrammers to find new things from brands they love and businesses to find opportunities to build relationships with these valuable customers.”
Shopify also offers a 14-day free trial, so you can get started without spending any of your own, hard-earned money. Click the button below to get started on Shopify.
BigCommerce is also a very reputable ecommerce website builder, helping you build your own online store without having to touch code at all. It has:
- Helped merchants process over $9 billion in sales.
- A comprehensive set of tools to help your store.
- Leverages different social channels to help you grow your sales (Instagram is just one!).
- You can add more advanced tools through their App store (just like Shopify).
To integrate with the Instagram store, complete the following steps:
- From BigCommerce admin, select Channel Manager
2. From there, choose Instagram
3. Log into your Facebook account page to authenticate your Instagram account
Once you’ve then gained approval, you’re good to go!
Here’s what BigCommerce themselves have had to say about the integration:
“In March, BigCommerce merchants were among the first to gain access to Instagram’s new product tagging capabilities — built specifically for ecommerce brands — which significantly enhance product discovery on the platform.”
Like Shopify, BigCommerce offers a free trial period, so you can try it and see if it’s the right builder for you. Hit the button below to get started.
Overall, both Shopify and BigCommerce offer a similar service for Instagram integration.
So, let’s dig a little deeper and really find what’s best for you.
Shopify’s themes are better designed as they have a larger ecosystem of designers, with a theme collection 2 times larger than BigCommerce.
Shopify also offers you over 1,400 apps. They have a much larger app store to help you build your business and, as your store grows, they have more tools to scale with your business with.
On top of that, Shopify has 4 times more paying customers than BigCommerce but in fairness, Shopify did start before BigCommerce.
BigCommerce offers you over 250 apps – a lot less than Shopify. It’s important to note, though, that BigCommerce does have more “out of the box” tools.
By “out of the box” we mean helpful and practical tools. These include integration with email newsletter tools, unlimited product variation (e.g. different colors and sizes of clothes), plus shipping and tax configurations.
With all that in mid, it’s no surprise that Shopify is growing their paying customer base at a faster rate than BigCommerce.
This is not to say that BigCommerce can’t do a great job in helping you build your online store. As mentioned, it’s apps are all helpful and easy to use. Shopify have the larger customer pool but bigger isn’t always better!
Our suggestion is to try both – take up their free trial periods to see which one works better for you. Spend a few hours playing around with both builders and experience them for yourself. Both are the top tier e-commerce builders in the market, and there are good reasons why they’re at the top.
While most social platforms tend to have a sell-by date, Instagram isn’t slowing down anytime soon. The userbase is growing, interaction is growing and Instagram keeps on innovating.
A lot has changed with Instagram over the past few years and, for selling, it’s a virtual gold-mine..
The latest addition of the Instagram shop, which allows sellers to integrate with online stores is by far the most exciting and will revolutionise how you can make money through social media.
Instagram has already proved its worth as a selling platform. It sits second for AOV (average order value) at $65 amongst its social competitors.
By integrating your ecommerce site with Instagram’s new shop, you’ll have a fantastic opportunity to make money on Instagram.
With more and more people opting to shop online over the high-street, shopping on social media is the next big online trend, and one your competitors may not be doing yet!
So what are you waiting for? Saddle up and hop on that Instagram bandwagon!
What’s the easiest way to sell on Instagram?
There’s a few different ways to sell on Instagram but the easiest by far is through the new Instagram shop. Just set up an online store with Shopify or BigCommerce, follow the steps in this article and you’re good to go!
How do you increase your conversions from Instagram ecommerce?
To increase your conversions, you’ll need to grow your Instagram following. This can be done through promoting Instagram posts. If you don’t have the budget for this, simply engaging more with your Instagram community can go a long way.
Try liking and sharing accounts that showcase your products and run competitions asking your audience to hashtag your brand and tag your account in their photos.
The more eyes on your account, the more likely you are to increase your following. And the more people following you, the bigger audience you have to promote your products to.
Do Instagram take a cut of your sales?
No! Instagram won’t take any money off you from the transaction process. You can also track sales that come directly through Instagram.
Having this knowledge will give you a good basis to decide on how much to invest in Instagram. If you’re seeing handsome returns from the platform, it may be worth investing in to get your posts sponsored, or reaching out to influencers to help plug your products!
Will my Facebook store and Instagram work together?
If you put new products on your Facebook store, they will automatically sync with your Instagram shop. This is great not only for continuity, but also for cross-channel marketing.
If users see your product while scrolling through Facebook, and then again when looking at Instagram, it’s more likely to push them into a buying action should they not have been totally convinced the first time around.