How to get the best results when selling on Instagram

May 29, 2024

11 min.

This guide is your compass to navigate Instagram’s commercial waters—from setting up your digital storefront to nurturing your community and sparking sales.

Today, we’ll cover:

What is selling on Instagram?

On Instagram, businesses and people post and advertise products and services to attract clients. They do this by sharing engaging content, such as photos, Reels, or videos with catchy captions and hashtags. Visitors and followers can then look through, show interest by commenting, sending a DM or buying straight away from Instagram. They can either click on tagged items or go to the seller's website.

Selling on Instagram has become one of the most effective ways to boost sales and grow businesses of all sizes around the world.

Why do businesses love selling on Instagram?

Here’s why Instagram is the place to be for modern sellers:

  1. Massive audience: Instagram boasts over a billion active users. The sheer volume of potential customers available at your fingertips surpasses any foot traffic you could expect in a traditional retail setting.
  2. Daily engagement: Users spend an average of 30 minutes per day on Instagram. That’s half an hour every day when you could be connecting with customers and showcasing your products.
  3. Cost-effective: Say goodbye to hefty rental fees. Instagram allows you to set up shop at no cost, and with its targeted advertising options, you can reach your ideal customer without breaking the bank.
  4. Built for Interaction: Instagram thrives on engagement. It’s designed for sharing and networking, making it the perfect blend of personal selling and wide-reaching marketing. Posts, direct messages, and tags create a dynamic environment for building relationships with customers.

Case studies of selling on Instagram

Business showcase their products or services as they integrate shopping experiences directly into their Instagram feed.

Here are a few case studies that highlight the success of businesses using Instagram.

Example 01: Nike’s Instagram arena

Image: Nike’s Instagram Shop

Nike’s Instagram, with a massive 306 million followers, is not just a page but a digital arena where every post is a strategic move to win over its audience. Their strategy focuses on:

  • Engagement: Creating a community space for interaction and deeper brand connection.
  • Visual Storytelling: Crafting images and videos that narrate stories, resonating with followers’ aspirations.
  • Influencer Collaborations: Partnering with sports and cultural icons for campaigns that embody the spirit of sport and Nike’s ethos.
  • Strategic Content: Diversifying content to inspire action and embody the ‘Just Do It’s spirit.
  • Cultural Impact: Establishing Nike’s Instagram as a symbol of motivation and athletic excellence, inviting followers to be part of a greater journey.

Nike’s Instagram triumphs as a digital storyteller and community builder, turning every engagement into a step toward collective victory.

Example 02: Victoria’s Secret

Image: Victoria’s Secret Instagram shop

Victoria’s Secret captivates 76 million followers on Instagram, showcasing a world where fashion meets empowerment. Their page is a curated celebration of beauty, engaging followers with:

  • Striking Visuals: Posts that blend style and comfort, inviting followers into Victoria’s Secret’s luxurious world.
  • Authentic Influencers: Collaborations that resonate with the brand’s values, deepening audience connections.
  • Narrative Content: Storytelling that sells dreams and lifestyles, fostering a sense of community.
  • Cultural Dialogue: Advocacy for inclusivity and self-love, positioning their shop as a source of inspiration.

Victoria’s Secret’s Instagram is more than a shop; it’s a community where every post is part of a larger story of style and self-expression.

Example 03: Zara’s influencer symphony, a marketing masterpiece

Image: Zara Instagram Shop

Zara’s Instagram presence, with a following of 61.6 million, is a masterclass in style and influence, particularly resonating with the 18-35 demographic through:

  • Hashtags and Visuals: A strategic mix of art and analytics, using hashtags to weave a narrative that captivates the fashion-conscious and tech-savvy.
  • Influencer Partnerships: Collaborations with influencers like @pau_eche, whose aesthetic aligns with Zara’s chic image, integrating the brand into the daily lives of her followers.
  • Strategic Alignment: Carefully selecting influencers whose followers embody Zara’s target market, ensuring the brand’s message reaches the right audience.

Zara’s approach to Instagram marketing showcases their prowess not just as a brand, but as a conductor of modern commerce’s influencer marketing symphony.

Example 04: Adidas: Pioneering the pace in Instagram Shopping

Image: Adidas Instagram Shop

Adidas, with its 34.4 million followers, is a frontrunner in the Instagram shopping scene, blending athletic legacy with modern flair. Their Instagram Shop exemplifies their focused strategy, showcasing top footwear to engage and inspire.

Simplicity Meets Excellence: Adidas’s Instagram Shop is streamlined, featuring standout products that represent the brand’s commitment to performance and style, emphasizing quality over quantity.

Strategic Influencer Collaborations: Adidas enhances visibility and sales through influencer marketing, using hashtags like #endplasticwaste to underscore their dedication to sustainability.

Engagement Through Authenticity: Adidas’s influencer partnerships foster genuine connections, aligning with influencers who embody the brand’s values, making each promotion feel personal and authentic.

Driving Sales with a Purpose: Utilizing Instagram features like Checkout, Adidas has seen a surge in online sales, indicating their prowess in creating a seamless shopping experience that also fosters brand loyalty.

In the Instagram arena, Adidas’s shop is more than a retail space—it’s a hub where followers connect with a brand that represents a movement, a culture, and a community.

Example 05: Sephora’s Instagram Elegance, a palette of Influence and style

Image: Sephora Instagram Shop

Sephora’s Instagram, with 22.2 million followers, is a digital beauty haven, merging influencer partnerships and immersive experiences to captivate beauty lovers globally. Their approach:

  • A Canvas of Creativity: Sephora’s Instagram Shop is a curated space that invites exploration into the vast world of beauty.
  • Influencer Alchemy: Collaborating with a range of influencers, Sephora crafts an authentic narrative that resonates, especially with Gen Z through innovative augmented reality ads.
  • Strategic Storytelling: Each post on Sephora’s Instagram weaves a story of beauty, encouraging followers to embrace their identity through their products.
  • Engagement Beyond Aesthetics: Sephora’s Instagram Shop goes beyond looks, offering a seamless in-app purchasing experience, and enhancing customer engagement.

Sephora’s Instagram presence is more than just a shop; it’s a journey into aesthetics, helping followers discover products that reflect their individuality and style.

How to sell on Instagram: Step-by-step tutorial

Instagram makes things simple. It’s like setting up a lemonade stand in your front yard; you decide you want to do it, and before you know it, you’re open for business.

That’s how Instagram works for businesses too. A few selections here, a couple of clicks there, and voilà – your online store is all set, inviting customers to browse and buy.

Before starting

Before diving into the vibrant world of Instagram sales, it’s essential to lay the groundwork for a successful venture. Instagram simplifies the process of setting up a business presence, allowing you to transition from a few initial taps to a dynamic e-commerce channel swiftly.

Here’s how to ensure you’re ready to sell on Instagram.

Verify your eligibility

To begin, confirm that Instagram permits you to sell on its platform. Here are the key eligibility criteria you need to meet:

  1. Adherence to Instagram’s commerce policies is non-negotiable. Make sure your business complies with their guidelines to maintain a professional and trustworthy presence.
  2. Instagram requires that the items you wish to sell are tangible goods that customers can also find on your official website. This creates a cohesive shopping experience across platforms.
  3. Instagram must be able to confirm that you are the legitimate representative of the domain you’re promoting. This step is crucial for establishing authenticity and trust with your audience.

If you are new, Instagram DMs allow you to sell products even without a website. Simply prompt customers to message you for details and handle transactions via DMs, using payment methods like PayPal for a personal and direct selling experience.

  1. Ensure that you’re operating in a region where Instagram Shopping is accessible. Instagram’s shopping features are rolling out globally, but it’s important to verify availability in your specific market.
  2. If you haven’t already, switch to a business account on Instagram. It’s straightforward, and we’ll guide you through the process.

By meeting these prerequisites, you’ll be well on your way to leveraging Instagram’s powerful selling tools. Stay tuned as we explore the next steps to transform your Instagram profile into a thriving e-commerce hub.

Create a business account

Embarking on your Instagram business journey is both free and full of potential. A business account unlocks the ability to craft shoppable posts, incorporate links into Stories, place ads, and gain valuable insights through an analytics dashboard.

Here’s how to transform your regular account into a business powerhouse.

  1. First, tap the hamburger icon on your profile.
  2. Scroll down to ‘Account Type and Tools’.
  3. Choose ‘Switch to Professional Account’.
  4. Select the business category that best describes your brand from the lists.
  5. Finally, Hit ‘OK’ and then ‘Done’.

Image: Transform your regular account into an Instagram business account: Step-by-step

And just like that, you’re ready to take on the world of Instagram commerce.

For those new to Instagram, begin your adventure here, and set sail towards new business horizons.

Build your Instagram shop

Creating your Instagram shop is akin to stocking shelves in a brick-and-mortar store; you need a catalogue brimming with products ready for customers to discover. Here’s how to populate your Instagram shop’s catalogue.

Image: Thetinytassel Instagram shop

Pull from an existing Facebook catalogue: If you’re already running a shop on Facebook, you’re in luck. Navigate to the Catalogue Manager, select Settings, then Business Assets, choose Instagram, and finally, Add Instagram Account. Your Facebook catalogue will now be integrated with your Instagram shop.

Connect to your E-commerce website: For those with an established online store, such as Shopify or BigCommerce, you can sync your existing catalogue directly to Instagram. This seamless connection ensures that your Instagram shop reflects the products on your website.

Create a new catalogue: Starting from scratch? No problem. Use Facebook’s Commerce Manager to build a new catalogue from the ground up. This tool will guide you through the process, helping you to curate a selection of products tailored for Instagram shoppers.

Once your catalogue is ready, it’s time to set up shop:

  1. Go to your account settings.
  2. Click on Set up Instagram Shopping.
  3. Choose a checkout option.
  4. Select your sales channels (Facebook, Instagram, or both).
  5. Review your shop to ensure everything is in order.

With these steps, your Instagram shop will be ready to enchant customers with a visually appealing and convenient shopping experience.

Create shoppable posts

Tagging isn’t just for friends anymore. With your new business account on Instagram, you can tag products in your posts, transforming your feed into a virtual storefront.

Each product tag displays the name and price, creating a seamless shopping experience. When viewers tap on a tag, they’re directed straight to your Instagram shop or your external online store—the choice is yours.

Shoppable posts blend naturally into the Instagram feed, distinguished only by a subtle shopping bag icon. This integration ensures that your commercial content doesn’t disrupt the visual flow that Instagram users love.

Crafting your post:

  1. Choose an image featuring your product(s), just as you would for a regular post.
  2. Write an engaging caption and sprinkle in some relevant hashtags.
  3. In the post editor, select ‘Tag Products’. Position the tag on the product in the photo and link it to the corresponding item in your catalogue.
  4. Once you’re satisfied, tap ‘Share’. Your shoppable post is now live, inviting potential customers to explore and purchase

Add Instagram checkout

Instagram Checkout streamlines the shopping journey, offering a frictionless path from discovery to purchase. This feature allows customers to buy products directly within the app, eliminating the need to navigate to an external website.

The Seamless Experience:

  1. Select the product: Customers tap on the product tag in your post to see more details.
  2. Hit ‘Checkout on Instagram’: A simple tap on the checkout button initiates the buying process.
  3. Enter payment information: Shoppers securely add their payment information directly in the app.
  4. Confirm the purchase: With all details in place, a final confirmation seals the deal.

The advantage:

This in-app purchasing capability not only simplifies the buying process but also keeps the customer engaged with your brand without any distractions. It’s a win-win for both the seller and the buyer, ensuring a smooth transaction with fewer steps and greater satisfaction.

By integrating Instagram Checkout into your business strategy, you’re offering an effortless and modern shopping experience that meets the expectations of today’s consumers.

Image: Instagram Shop checkout

How Kommo helps with selling on Instagram

Firstly, Kommo is an official Instagram CRM for marketing, support and sales. Secondly, Kommo is the world's first Instagram CRM. 🌎

Kommo offers a free Native Instagram DM API integration with many different features designed to help you sell on Instagram.

With Kommo’s Instagram DM API, for example, you can add an unlimited number of Instagram business accounts and manage all chats - including those started from stories or comments - in one place.

Plus, you can create ice breakers, quick replies, and website widgets to ensure a seamless omnichannel experience for your instagram visitors. 🥳

Generating Instagram leads

Kommo offers various tactics to encouarage your Instagram visitors to text you first.

Ways to generate leads on Instagram with Kommo

These tactics are:

  1. Chat links & QR codes
  2. Instagram Widget
  3. Click to Instagram Direct
  4. Generate leads from comments
  5. Instagram Story Mentions

Now let’s go through them one by one.

1. Adding an Instagram chat button to your website

Another way Kommo can help you with selling on Instagram and generating leads on instagram is by adding the Instagram chat button to your website.

This eye-catching button will display on every page of your website, informing your website visitors of your Instagram and other messaging apps. This way you visitors can DM easily you and even follow you.

Adding an Instagram chat button on your website (& mobile)

2. Instagram Story mentions

Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. Instagram Business Account
  2. Facebook Business Page

📌 Please note: Your Instagram Business account needs to be connected to a Facebook Business account before you can start.

Once you are ready, go to your Kommo account, and find Settings > Integrations > Instagram.

Connect it using your Facebook account, and you can start selling on Instagram!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you ready to explore the potentiality of selling on Instagram?

As we wrap up this comprehensive guide, it’s time to ask yourself: Are you ready to tap into the vast potential of selling on Instagram? With its enormous audience of eager and interactive users, Instagram stands as an ideal marketplace for your products.

To truly harness the power of Instagram for sales, keep these key strategies in mind. Utilize all that Instagram has to offer, from In-feed posts to Reels and Stories. Blend promotional material with informative and entertaining posts to keep your audience captivated.

Partner with influencers to amplify your reach. Invest in Instagram ads as targeted ads can help you reach a broader audience. Share content created by your users to build trust and authenticity. Use relevant hashtags to increase the visibility of your posts.

As a marketing solution, Kommo is a messenger-based sales CRM that works with Instagram.

To explore all the capabilities of Kommo and understand how the platform can help increase your business revenue, click here and try a 2-week free trial period -- no credit card required.

🤓Book a free demo session

👩‍💻Log in to your Kommo account

💬Chat with us here on the website or within your account

🤝Find a partner to do it for you so that you can relax

🎥Visit our YouTube Channel

Embarking on your Instagram business adventure promises not just growth but also an opportunity to connect with customers in a meaningful way.

So, go ahead, set up your shop, tag your products, and watch your business flourish in this dynamic social commerce landscape.

Happy selling!

Sayed Mohammad Mohiuddin

Always trying to grasp new endeavors. A biker and traveler by passion and a mathematician by academics. A content marketer and digital marketing strategist by the job.

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