Learn how to set up a virtual store on Instagram and use the platform to advertise your e-commerce on one of the most used social networks!

More than just a social network focused on leisure and fun, Instagram has become a marketing tool for companies, thus emerging the concept of virtual store on Instagram .

With 1 billion active users per month, worldwide, and greater engagement than Twitter, this platform allows any business to strengthen its brand and create relationships with its followers.

Only in Canada are 64 million active people in this social network . The country is in 3rd place in the world ranking of users on Instagram, second only to the United States, with its 121 million profiles, and to India, with 71 million.

For all these reasons, even though it is essential to develop native tools that allow you to promote your products effectively, Instagram serves as one of the main Marketing strategies for e-commerce, regardless of the business segment.

Continue reading the article and find out what a store is on Instagram, see 7 steps to publicize your virtual store on this social network and achieve great results, in addition to tips on what not to do.

Understand what is an online store on Instagram

store on Instagram is a possibility offered by the social network so that its users with a business profile can sell their products on the network using a store window and directing the prospect to make purchases online.

With a focus on visual content, Instagram is an excellent option for displaying products from a virtual store , expanding sales channels to the public. The good news is that you can have your showcase within the platform itself, engaging your audience and making conversions without the user having to leave the social network. 

Thus, it is possible to make posts with the link to your store on Instagram . See below how to enter the platform and publicize your products there! Spoiler: it ‘s super easy!

How to set up a store on Instagram?

If you liked the idea of ​​having a store on Instagram, complementing the results of your virtual store, you must have a registration on the social network. see the main steps you should follow.

  1. Register on the social network – to have a store first you need to register with a business profile or convert your personal business profile.
  2. Choose a good name – ideally, that name refers to your brand, after all, if the customer clicks “buy now”, he will be directed to your e-commerce.
  3. Think about your audience – it is important to adapt the language when using Instagram, as in this social network the images need to transmit messages. Even so, it is not worth a beautiful scene if it is not consistent for those who buy your products. Develop your strategies according to your audience.
  4. Keep an eye on the competition – this step is fundamental for two reasons: you don’t do more of the same and you can anticipate trends, surprising the market.
  5. Stand out – everyone is chatting through images on Instagram. And if you resell a product it is possible that you will find identical photos published by more than one store. Make authentic productions that showcase your products.
  6. Offer product-related content – you must have at least 9 posts in the store for the purchase guide to become active. In addition, the production of content helps your future customers to perceive different perspectives on the product and increase engagement with your brand.
  7. Focus on visual production – remember that the goal of the Instagram store is to close the sale. Create beautiful images, with good resolution, focus and that have the product has evidence.

10 steps to publicize your virtual store on Instagram and achieve great results

1. Promote your products in a creative way

Product photos have always been essential for online shopping, and platforms like Instagram take this to another level. Consumers find detailed images of products as valuable as technical information or even the opinion of other buyers.

Therefore, share the images of your goods in a way that they attract attention and have personality. 

What is the focus of the message? Show that the company sells makeup brushes, of various types and with a modern and elegant design. The photo conveys exactly that message to us. 

Have professional quality

Make sure that your images reflect all the professionalism of your brand. This means having high quality photos, even if they are taken with a cell phone camera.

Avoid images with low resolution, without adequate light and bad or distorted angles. All of this makes you lose points with your followers, since it transmits a lack of care in the presentation of the product, which will be reflected in the entire sales and after-sales process. 

Use Instagram’s own editing apps and filters to enhance your photos. There are several applications on the market and many are free. I try Vsco and A Color Story. 

2. Include hashtags

Hashtags group your posts into communities linked by a keyword. This is an important feature to increase the life of your posts and make them easier to find.

Look for popular hashtags and trends, but not something too generic like #Fashion, which has been used 146 million times. If you do, your photo is in danger of being lost in a sea of ​​content.

You can also create a hashtag for your online store . In this way, you will create a community of fans of your e-commerce within Instagram.

3. Post photos that capture your brand’s culture 

Nobody enters Instagram thinking about shopping, this is a consequence. Therefore, you need to focus on adding value to your brand and products.

A good tip is to post photos that refer to your company’s lifestyle, as well as messages that are empathetic.

Use scenarios that can inspire, simple as they are, and also use real people to get your followers to view your products in context. Brands like Nike use this concept in 60% of their posts .

Another company that does this with mastery is Dove , which sells the message of female self-esteem. More than selling soaps, creams and shampoos, the brand works with the emotional side of women.

In other words, the presentation should not only be about your products, but also about the culture and style that surround them. This strengthens the image of your brand and creates good feelings related to it.

4. Use the Stories tool

One of Instagram’s strengths is in stories! With videos of up to 15 seconds, that are on the air for 24 hours, you can launch a product, tell and show how a certain idea was created, make polls with your followers, answer questions and much more!

Stories are currently the most effective way to be close to your consumer . In addition, if you have more than 10,000 followers, this tool allows direct links to be shared there, taking the person to the page you want to convert.

Use this facility without fear. Make small tests and feel the results knowing who matters most to you: your customer.

5. Make exclusive promotions and offers for followers

Use the feed and stories so that your followers earn bonuses and have access to special offers and discount coupons.

About 41% of Instagram users follow or would follow a brand to take advantage of perks and gifts.

Use this as a way to gain real followers, since many profiles are being penalized, by Instagram itself, for using robots as a way to obtain growth and engagement – all fake, of course.

A hint? Collaborate with brands in your segment (as long as they are not direct competitors) and similar segments. Create, together, a campaign where people can make friends, follow profiles and thus participate in a sweepstakes.

6. Share the content of your followers on your profile

Including the content of your followers, who marked your @, in your own feed and stories brings good feelings, which are automatically associated with your brand.

In addition to generating rapport and empathy, users feel honored when the company they like sees them. We all want to be seen in some way, so no mention is made for nothing, keep that in mind.

In the end, you create one more way to talk about your brand for free, making your products go viral through the voice of who matters most: your consumers.

7. Make captions that promote interaction

Your photos may look good, but without an effective caption, you will not reach their full potential for engagement.

Play with your followers, ask them what they think about a certain topic, ask them to tell their stories. Again, remember that people like to be heard.

8. Enjoy the dynamics of the Reels tool

Reels, a video tool similar to TikTok , arrived in Canada in the second half of 2020 and is already a success among Instagram users. 

With a duration of 15 seconds, small productions can be made with fun filters, music and voiceovers. In addition to brands, personalities – even politicians – have taken advantage of the idea to create interaction and approximation through the production of content with more authenticity.

That is, even if your audience is mature, there are ways to strategize at Reels. Use it to answer customer questions in a fun way, show new products through quick clips and affix it there. Enjoy creativity!

Reels is very easy to use and all editing is done by him. Ah, a curiosity: before it was released to the whole world, the tool was tested in the Brazilian market. What power, huh?

9. Tell stories on IGTV

IGTV, on the other hand, is a way of telling longer stories, without the cuts of the stories. Want to advertise a 5-minute campaign? Publish on IGTV. Do you want to have a conversation with your customers, telling them about your store’s differentials? Use and abuse IGTV.

In addition to FEED, there is the IGTV tab, where users can find videos on their profile. To make it more organized, there is the possibility of inserting a cover for it, making it even easier to identify by theme / subject.

10. What about lives? Worth it?

2020 was definitely the time of lives on Instagram. With so many of them happening, the question arises: is it still worth investing in the idea?

OK! However, stay tuned to the topic, so that your customers do not enter the broadcasts without any differential. The tip is to tell some news through live exchanges, make light promotions or show the backstage of any campaign. 

The duration time is 1 hour, but there are profiles that are authorized for transmissions of up to 4 hours. Enjoy in moderation!

Discover the biggest mistakes in Instagram campaigns

In addition to being essential to plan what to do to be successful with your actions in this social network, it is important to know what not to do . Check out what to avoid in your Instagram strategies below:

  • images with a lot of text – it is important to be aware of the visual content, words and even phrases should serve as something that adds and does not pollute your photos;
  • Post a lot during the day (in the feed) or stay out of the networks for a long time . Be present on the social network at least once a day and, outside the intense period of campaigns, opt for a maximum of 4 new posts in the feed. In addition to the frequency being important, the content presented must be relevant and consistent;
  • few hashtags . Yes, they must be small, simple, impactful and relevant to your audience. But the more hashtags you use, the better.
  • Do not interact with followers. The great success of social networks is the exchange between the sides, so do not leave your customer with no return, even if he left “only” an emoji in the photo. Keep an eye on the direct as well. Many sales can take place there.
  • Do not take advantage of the tools available in addition to the feed. As we counted above, making many posts in the feed is not so beneficial, since it can tire the user if his business does not have what to disclose with such frequency there. But, you can use stories every day, in addition to producing content on Reels and IGTV, for example.  

Learn why Instagram can generate great results for your e-commerce

Like a virtual store, Instagram has a focus on images (be they static or even short videos). This is the main selling mechanism: presenting the potential customer with all the details of the solutions you offer, products or services . With a large number of active users, in addition to promoting your e-commerce and generating traffic, you can still sell using the platform itself.

Did you see how a store on Instagram can help you promote your online store and attract new customers? In addition, as we explained, this social network has ways to sell your product within its platform . The important thing is to create strategies to attract and engage your audience, highlighting your products and services.

Is that you? Do you already use the virtual store on Instagram in your business ? Do you want to start promoting your e-commerce on this platform? Tell us your experience in the comments!