Once people are aware of and interested in your brand, getting people to act on that interest and make a purchase is all about eliminating obstacles. You want the shopping experience to be as easy and seamless as possible. In the past, this was especially difficult when marketing on Instagram. Previously, the only ways to direct traffic from a post to your website was either through a link in your bio or through the Stories “Swipe Up” feature (reserved only for users with over 10,000 followers). Both of these options left quite a bit to be desired in terms of user experience.

 With the introduction of shoppable posts, Instagram is embracing the e-commerce side of its platform and allowing users to take every step of their purchasing journey—from discovery to checkout—directly from the app—though eliminating the unnecessary steps between discovering a cool product and placing an order. Using these posts, you’ll be able to transform your Instagram into a digital storefront that users can browse and shop.

How It Works

Each shoppable post has a small shopping bag icon in the bottom left-hand corner of the picture. When a user taps on the image, a pop-up “product tag” displays the featured item’s (or items’) name and price. Tapping on this tag brings the user to a product description page on Instagram. From there, they can go to your website, save the product, or continue to browse your products on Instagram. Some brands even have access to in-app checkout, although this feature is still limited to select businesses.

You can tag up to five products per image or video and up to twenty products per carousel. In stories, you can add products to your videos and images by using a “product sticker.”

Requirements for Instagram Shoppable Posts

Before you can set up your Instagram digital storefront, you’ll need to first check that you meet all of IG’s eligibility requirements:

  1. You must be located in one of the Instagram’s list of eligible countries.
  2. Your products must be considered physical objects and comply with Instagram’s commerce policies.
  3. You must have the latest version of the Instagram app on iOS or Android.
  4. You must have an Instagram Business account
  5. Your Business account must be connected to a Facebook catalog via your FB Page.

Provided that you meet these 5 simple requirements, you’ll be all set to connect a catalog and start selling on Instagram.

How to Set Up Your Catalog and Create Your First Post

Connecting your Catalog

Before you can create your first shoppable post, you have to first connect a catalog of products to your Instagram account, and there are 2 ways you can go about this—either through Facebook’s Catalog Manager, which you can use to connect an existing FB catalog or create a new one, or through one of Facebook’s e-commerce partners:

Option 1: Use the Catalog Manager.

Using the Catalog manager, you can either create a catalog from scratch or connect a Facebook catalog to your IG account. Keep in mind that to use product tags and stickers, you’ll need to create an e-commerce catalog from the list of options.

Option 2: Use a Facebook Partner (i.e. WooCommerce or Shopify).

If you have a BigCommerce or Shopify account, you can connect it to your Instagram account by submitting it for review. You can do this by going to your profile’s settings. Just tap Business, and tap Shopping on Instagram. Then follow the steps to submit your account for review. While the process usually takes only a few days, it sometimes it can take longer. Before you get started, just make sure that the Facebook account connected to your account on BigCommerce or Shopify is the same one connected to your Instagram account.

Using Product Tags and Stickers

Tagging a product in a post or IG Story is as easy as tagging a friend. 

To add a shoppable tag to a post, you’ll simply start by uploading a photo as you would normally. Then, in the next step (where you normally add captions and locations), you’ll see the option to tag a product. Just begin typing the product name, and select it from the drop-down list. After that, you’re good to go! You can add product tags to both new and old posts.

Making your Stories shoppable is a bit different as it uses “stickers,” not tags. However, the basic principle is the same. After uploading your photo or video, you’ll select the product sticker from the product tray and select the product you want to feature. From there, you can move the sticker around and change the text color by tapping the sticker.

Source: https://michaelswilder.com/

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