Are you trying to sell products through your Instagram channel but you’ve been struggling? Maybe you get some sales but you’re not getting enough to meet your goals. Or you’re not getting enough to make the hard work actually worth it. Well, if that’s the case then you should be taking a closer look at ways you can actually upgrade your sales. That means putting a little more work but in the right way.

Browsing products on Instagram

1. Increase & Improve Your Use of Hashtags

One of the only ways you’re going to be seen on Instagram is through the use of hashtags, but if you’ve been just putting up everything you can think of you’re not doing it right. Instead, you need to focus your hashtags on the type of product you’re posting about or the type of person who would be interested in it. For example:

  • Sell shoes with hashtags like #sneakerhead and #streetstyle. These are terms that appeal to the people who may be interested in your shoes.
  • Sell dishes with hashtags like #resinhearts and #oceandecor. These terms show what your product looks like and helps it appeal to people who want a specific look.
  • Also, look for trending hashtags related to your product that you can use to maximize your reach.
  • Create your own hashtag to define your followers or people who buy from you. Research shows that being defined actually increases the likelihood that someone will connect with your brand and make a purchase from you.

Hashtags, and specifically the right hashtags, can increase engagement and new views.

2. Utilize Videos

If you can include a video in your post you’ll actually increase your engagement by up to 38% over just a standard image. That increase in engagement will also lead to an increase in conversion and sales, though the stats aren’t in on that just yet.

Include a video on your post that shows how someone can use your product or what it looks like from different angles (this is especially important for items like clothing or furniture).

3. Just Be Real

The most important thing you can do in your posts is to be real. People are more likely to purchase an item from someone that they feel a connection to or that they like. If you can create a connection to your viewers through your images as well as the content you post with it, you’ll increase the number who buy.

A few ways to really make yourself seem real include:

  • Using real people in images instead of models
  • Highlighting individuality
  • Showing off your ‘weirdness/’quirks
  • Just be honest

People want to see you as a person, rather than as a perfect robot; be real and be yourself and you’ll attract more followers even before you attract the sales.

Man wearing Nike sitting on a basketball hoop

4. Show How Your Products Fit Into Their Life

Don’t just show great pictures of your products, show how those products will fit into the real life of the real people who will use them. Selling a party dress? Show a real person at a party in that dress. Selling a dog toy? Show a real person playing with their dog with that toy.

People want to see how the product will work for them and not just a model on their screen or a product sitting on a table. Put it in a real situation and tell a story with that image and the post. In fact, create the post in a way that paints a picture for your reader. They should be able to picture themselves in that situation where they need that product.

5. Get Users to ‘Talk’ For You

Along the lines of creating content and images that are real is letting your users create that content. If your users are sharing images to you or on your page or sending them in you may be able to use those images for your own marketing. Choose the high-quality ones and repost images of your products in action, with the comments your users leave.

When people can see that real people are actually using your products, and without being paid or supported by you, they’re more likely to think again about making a purchase themselves.

6. Post the Highest Quality Images

When you’re trying to sell a product you need to make sure that the people who are seeing your post can actually get a good view of what the product is. They should be able to see the shape of it, the pattern, the texture and so on.

The better the quality of the picture the more likely someone is to stop and take a closer look. They’re also more likely to be interested in the product or decide to purchase it if they can see everything about it from your image. Images should:

  • Be clear
  • Highlight the person wearing/using them (if a person is in the photo)
  • Have adequate lighting
  • Show the best angle of the product
  • Show multiple angles of the product

Instagram shopping tag

7. Use Shopping Tags

Create tags that link the products in your image to actual products or sale through Shopify. This makes it even easier for potential buyers to purchase a product because they don’t have to scour through your post to see where it’s from. They also don’t have to do any research.

The tags that you have should lead immediately to the product that you’re selling in that post, not to your entire shop. If someone has to sort through the whole shop to find the item they want they’re more likely to leave instead or get frustrated

Overall, there are a number of steps that you can follow to create a strong presence on Instagram and to make sure that your posts are getting the kind of attention that they deserve. Before you know it, your shopping posts could be some of those that over 130 million users are clicking on each month.

8. Run creative story ads

Instagram story ads are a brilliant way to interpret your customers in a good way when your product fits in through the story feed, especially if they actively looking for products like yours.

What I like about the story ads is how personal it can get, you can inspire your customers to take action with one swipe up they can see your offer and buy your products within seconds all inside of Instagram without even leaving it. Isn’t that great!

Ads can be tricky, and if done wrongly, you end up losing dollars with low ROI. If you are starting with Ads for Instagram, start with this beginner guide to advertising on Instagram.

9. Outreach to relevant influencers with a high engagement rate

Instagram is all about reach and engagement; in the end, you want your customers to interact, engage, share, comment, and tell their friends how awesome your products are; that the real power of social media.

Some Influencers have massive followers, but what the engagement percentage? An account with 1 million followers is considered a powerful one, but what if the engagement rate is below 0.1%? Don’t be surprised; many accounts are like that.

An influencer with 100k but with an engagement of 10% is way better than a 1 Million follower and no engagement. Remember, the reason why you outreaching to work with influencers is their ability to introduce your products to their active audience.