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Instagram Shop – What Is It And How Can You Use It?

Photograph of the blog post author, Carla Johnson

Carla Johnson

21.12.2021

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Instagram shop is a major opportunity for any brand wanting to sell products through Instagram. It is a huge e-commerce destination. Instagram shopping has features which allows you to sell products to prospective customers. Brands have the opportunity to share their featured products via organic posts, stories and ad campaigns. Also, Instagram shopping makes products discoverable through search and explore and also lets users shop at the moment of finding.

Instagram Shop lets brands create a list of products that for sale and makes them directly accessible via their Instagram profile as well as promotes a load of product discovery opportunities.

Ready to find out more about an Instagram Shop and how to set up Instagram shopping? Here’s everything you need to know:

What Is Instagram Shopping?

Instagram is a social network which emphases visual content and lets users communicate through direct messages, comment on posts, stream live videos, as well as produce Stories. Instagram shop allows for businesses to showcase products and to promote to new customers through Instagram. Brands are able to curate a list of shoppable products which are discoverable by the ‘view shop’ button on their Instagram account.

instagram shop on phone

Not only that, brands who have an Instagram Shop may also be included on the Instagram Shop tab which is a fresh shopping destination available from Instagram’s main navigation menu. Instagram Shopping has driven social media marketing to the next level. Brands can use the Instagram shopping feature to successfully attract customers to their products through all content types such as reels, image, video posts, stories and advertisements.

Instagram shop is an efficient way for users to find shoppable creations through Instagram. There are options to ‘browse shops’, ‘see editors picks’, ‘explore guides’ as well as ‘shop collections.’ Also, Instagram shop lets followers find products which they are going to want to buy as it shows products based on previous engagements and posts/brands they like. When clicking on a recommended product, users will see further images that feature the product, pricing information, more products from the same retailer and how to buy. Access to Instagram checkout allows shoppers to click ‘buy on Instagram’ which lets them buy without exiting Instagram.

How To Set Up Instagram Shopping

Creating an Instagram Shop is simple. Here’s an easy guide to help you start:

Check Your Suitability

To start an Instagram Shop, your business has to meet the following eligibility requirements:

1. The business is located in a supported market

2. The brand has a qualified product

3. The business fulfills Instagram’s merchant agreement and commerce policies

4. The business has a website domain that you anticipate to sell from

Create A Business Or Creator Account

Prior to setting up an Instagram Shop, you have to ensure you have a Business account. 

When your Business account is set up, you can include relevant business information, such as opening hours, business address, phone number and a link to your website.

Link To A Facebook Page

Then, follow these steps to link your Instagram shop to your Facebook account:

1. Go to your Instagram profile

2. Click “Edit profile”.

3. Beneath the “Public business information” section, click “Page”

4. Select the Facebook Page you would like to connect.

5. If you don’t have a Facebook Page, choose “Create a new Facebook Page”.

instagram

Upload Your Product Catalogue

Your Instagram shop has to have a product catalogue, which includes a list of all your products, inventory, and descriptions.

There are couple different ways you can link a product catalogue to your Instagram shop:

1. Catalogue Manager – found within Facebook Business Manager

2. E-commerce Platform (integrate through Shopify or BigCommerce)

Review The Account

Once you have linked a product catalogue to your Instagram shop, you need to submit your account to be reviewed:

1. Go to your Instagram shop profile and click the menu icon

2. Choose “Settings” and sign up for shopping

3. Follow the steps to submit your account for review.

4. In settings visit “Shopping” and check your status.

Account reviews usually take a couple of days. Some businesses may be notified that additional information is necessary to prove ownership of your website domain. If you receive this notification, follow these steps to complete a domain verification process to submit your account for review.

Switch On Instagram Shopping Feature

Once your account is approved, you can switch on the Instagram shopping feature.

1. On your business’s Instagram shop click the menu icon.

2. Choose ‘Settings’.

3. Click ‘Business’ and then click ‘Shopping’.

4. Pick the “product catalogue” that you want to connect to your account.

5. Tap “Done”.

If you can’t find Shopping in your settings, it is likely the account is still being reviewed or needs to be approved for Instagram Shopping. The Instagram Shop appears automatically on your Instagram shopping page. Once your Instagram Shop is agreed, a ‘View Shop’ button will show on your profile. Then, visitors can browse your products, find out more information, and buy.

Is The Instagram Shop Feature Useful To Artists?

Instagram has simplified its commerce eligibility stating who’s permitted to use its Instagram Shopping feature to sell products directly from their profiles. With musicians now being accepted.

Regardless of if you have an ecommerce candle making business, a musician selling merchandise or you’re a food blogger developing your own cookware, any suitable business or creator account that has at least one eligible product can use Instagram shopping to persuade people to visit their website and make a purchase.

Businesses must tag products on Instagram from a single website that they own and sell from, so that people have a consistent and trusted shopping experience. Even musicians have been using Instagram Shopping such as Spanish artist C. Tangana.

The Instagram shopping feature lets people to look for items they love directly from creators, without leaving Instagram. Shopping from creators is available for businesses that use the Checkout feature. It allows companies to work together with Instagram creators and influencers, and they receive commission in exchange for promoting products to their followers.

Product Launches

Using the Instagram shopping feature, brands can promote their new product launches. Instagram users, can create reminders to buy it as soon as it’s available. Brands such as Adidas have announced product launches through Instagram Stories. The timer creates anticipation. When the timer was up, consumers were able tap the timer and proceed to a product detail page.

man on phone

Live Shopping

This Instagram shopping feature lets creators sell products during their Instagram Live stream. You can create a live presentation of your products and convert followers to customers.

Instagram Shop

An in-app shopping place, a marketplace which brings together businesses represent on Instagram. It makes it simpler for shoppers to find products and brands. To see Instagram Shop, people tap on the “Shop” tag in the ‘Explore’ section, this redirects you to a list of ‘Collections,’ ‘Brands,’ and products ‘Suggested for You.’ All recommendations are relevant to your interests and in-app behaviour.

Shopping Tags

Shopping tags are a great feature for Instagram shopping. They emphasise products from the catalogue in posts and stories. Customers can view Shopping Tags in the bottom left-hand corner of the post. This encourages them to see a piece of content as a shoppable one. By clicking on it, followers can read the item name, price, and see a ‘View Products’ button which takes them to more products.

Product Detail Page

The page highlights the important details about a specific item, such as product gallery, sizes available, pricing, product, shipping, and return information. Also included is a listing of similar recommended products. Users and influencers can tag products in their posts and linked to a product detail page, prospective customers will gain as much visual information on a product as possible.

Collections

With think Instagram shopping feature brands can customise their shop from an editorial perspective. Collections can be used to list products into themes to create your Instagram shop and make it easy to navigate. Split into two sections, above the fold are large images which detail text to demonstrate the whole collection. Below, is a small description of the collection. Swiping up means users can find comparable products with every product having a photo, item name and price.

Ads with Product Tags

Instagram shop ads which include product tags can extend your reach. You can also boost your shoppable posts with Facebook’s Ad Manager. These ads encourage customers to checkout on your website or through your Instagram shop checkout (an Instagram shopping feature which is available in U.S.).

Checkout on Instagram

U.S. creators who comply with Instagram shop policies are able to use Checkout to sell products through Instagram. Shoppers can find products without leaving the app by using the Facebook Pay service. Businesses who can’t use Instagram Checkout should connect to alternative shopping tools, such as Shopify and Wix, to allow users to complete purchases outside Instagram.

instagram

Examples Of Great Instagram Shops

Puma

Puma, is a German multinational brand that designs and manufactures athletic and casual footwear, apparel and accessories. Puma is one of the biggest sportswear manufacturers in the world offering products for Football, Basketball, Running, Training and Fitness, Golf, Motorsports and Sportstyle. Using Instagram shopping allows followers to be able to see new product launches and click on posts to take them directly to the product.

Boohoo

Boohoo has a very clear vison to be leaders in the world of fashion e-commerce. They focus on creating an excellent consumer experience. Founded in Manchester by Mahmud Kamani and Carol Kane in 2006, the brand is familiar across the world. The online retailer is a firm favourite amongst teens and young females. Offering affordable clothing to replicate celebrity fashion trends on a budget. The brand is innovative and links some of its products to its Instagram shop so users can get items as soon as they see them uploaded on their grid.  

Make Thread

Make Thread is an eye-catching social marketplace founded by two female entrepreneurs which were running an ‘It’s Nice to be Nice’ campaign during lockdown. The business focuses on making it easier for customers to support independent artists by including their designs online, shoppers can order t-shirts featuring motifs. Celebrities including Georgia Toffolo and Victoria’s Secret model Shanina Shaik have been spotted wearing Make Thread clothing. The brands growing popularity can be appreciated through Instagram and the ability to order items directly from the Instagram shopping feature.

Ray-Ban

Ray-Ban is a popular and successful luxury sunglasses and eyewear business founded in 1936 by Bausch & Lomb. The brand is known for its line of Wayfarer and Aviator sunglasses. Meta teamed up with Ray-Ban to create Ray-Ban Stories the first-generation smart glasses which let you capture, share and listen. Capture and share your adventures in photos and videos, listen to music and take phone calls. They also created a try-on AR experience with Playhybrid which allows users to check out 20 different styles on Instagram. Working closely, they were able to optimise the fit and photorealism of the glasses, helping consumers find the right size and best style. Ahead of the game from a technical perspective you can visit the Ray-Ban Instagram page and consumers are able to buy the glasses which suit them direct through the Instagram shop.

Final Thoughts

In summary, Instagram shopping is a set of features which allows customers to easily shop your brand’s photos and videos from Instagram. Your Instagram shop is a place to sell and share your brand story and people will be able to discover products and browse collections. Using the collections feature you are able to customise your shop by curating product themes, these might include topics such as new arrivals, gifts or even seasonal trends. The Instagram shopping tab is available on Instagram’s home screen and is the place where customers will find new brands, products, editor’s picks which are recommended to them. If you are a creator looking to expand your business and have the ability to use Instagram shopping features then it is highly likely you will see a good return from your posts.

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