Instagram is one of the most popular and fastest growing social networks in recent years. For this reason, we focused on the development of new features such as Instagram shopping, marking a real turning point for the aforementioned platform.
Instagram has at least 1 billion active users every month. About 80% of these users follow business accounts and stores that offer products or services. Furthermore, Instagram is also an amazing tool for entrepreneurs and marketing professionals, since through this platform, they can reach millions of sales every year.
This is how Instagram shopping has become one of the most used options by companies to sell their services and products, to provide professionals with a solid and far-reaching platform. Currently, Instagram shopping is used by most countries in the world. This has led to an increase in the number of companies that use it within their business.
For this reason, we have decided to create a detailed guide on how Instagram Shopping works, describing its features and how to use it to sell products or services. In addition to all the requirements that Facebook and Instagram ask in order to activate purchases on this platform.
Instagram Shopping is an Instagram add-on feature that allows users to create their virtual store on their Instagram account. The products that you decide to upload to the store are considered as any generic post, with the particularity that, if you click on it, a window will appear with all the information of the aforementioned product: such as price, description, stock, features, and the purchase button.
This is precisely how Instagram stores become a virtual catalog within your own account. However, there are several ways to create and set up a catalog, using a button capable of redirecting the user to an external store. Another very interesting feature of Instagram Shopping is the ability to tag any product within the Facebook Business catalog directly via Instagram.
Instagram Shopping is an extremely important tool for businesses, depending on how it is used. While users shop in stores, businesses open up new sales channels that allow them to showcase their products to the public, providing support via Instagram Direct.
Previously, we talked about Instagram Shopping and its importance for businesses; however, to activation this feature you need certain requirements. Such as:
1) Being able to integrate your products on platforms such as WooCommerce, Shopify, Tiendanube or any other virtual store.
2) Have the latest version of Instagram installed on your device.
3) Have a Facebook page and a Business manager connected to your online store and, in turn, to your Instagram account.
4) Activate your business account on Instagram.
5) Being able to upload products and activate them within the Facebook catalog.
6) It is highly recommended to have at least 10 posts in your feed.
7) Have at least 500 followers (not essential, but the higher your following, the more likely Instagram is to approve your business account).
Once these requirements are met, you can request approval from the platform for Instagram Shopping. However, please note that this does not guarantee that your account will be approved, since it is up to the moderators of the social network to decide. In the event that your account is rejected, Instagram usually always indicates the reason for the refusal and how to resolve the matter, in order to resubmit the request.
By activating the shop on Instagram, you will have a number of advantages over other users, including:
a) Add the amount of products you want, unlimited.
b) Increase the sales and visibility of your products.
c) Improve the user experience on your Instagram profile.
d) Directly advertise the products or services you wish to offer.
e) Improve communication between seller and customer.
f) Manage the digital inventory and the link with the external online store.
g) Generate statistics and obtain relevant data about your Instagram shop.
h) Tag products in any post.
To perfectly understand how to get started on Instagram Shopping, you must first of all know how it works. Basically, a user enters your profile featuring a shop on Instagram and sees a post in which you have previously tagged some of the products available in your catalog.
He will then see a pop-up notification and by clicking on it he will see a data sheet with all the information about that particular product, along with a button to access the online store.
Facebook Business setup
Before you can activate the Instagram shop, you need to set up your Facebook business account. For this reason, you must first make sure that your store has been posted on Shopify, Tiendanube, WooCommerce or any other platform, and has the catalog ready to be consulted directly on Facebook, with all the products you offer.
Once this is done, you need to connect your online store to your Facebook account. This will automatically generate a catalog in the data section, always on the Facebook profile. You will then connect to your fan page and Instagram account.
These are the steps to follow:
1) Connect the online store to Facebook Business. To do this, you need to search in the integrations section of your store for the Facebook Business link. In the cases of Shopify or Tiendanube it should look like this.
In the case of Tiendanube you are provided with a button to connect your account with Facebook and this automatically generates the catalog.
The same happens with Shopify: when you have to integrate the store with Facebook, an automatic catalog is created in your account containing all the configured products.
2) Check within the Facebook Business Manager that the catalog has been uploaded correctly. In addition, you should also check whether the fan page has been linked to the catalog and to the Instagram account, or not. Finally, simply add your store’s brand security domain and verify it:
First, you need to go to the data sources in your business manager and verify that the catalog has been entered correctly (it should appear in the third box).
After that, you need to go to the section regarding brand safety and add the domain for Instagram to recognize it later on.
Finally, you need to connect your Instagram account to the Business Manager, and link all accounts together. To do this you must go to the Instagram accounts, add yours, and proceed with the connection.
To connect the accounts, simply access each asset (domain, Instagram account and catalog), click on the button that will appear, for example Add Asset, and link them together.
3) Once everything is configured and verified, you just have to go to Instagram and access Instagram Shopping.
How to activate Instagram Shopping?
First you need to make sure you meet all the requirements to be able to request the activation of Instagram Shopping. If you do not know what the requirements are, we recommend that you read the beginning of this article where we perfectly described all the features and steps.
Once this is done and the requirements are met, you can proceed with the request to activate this feature, as follows:
1) First, go to your Instagram profile from the phone app and click on Set up.
2) Next, click on Shop.
3) Click immediately on Set up purchases on Instagram.
4) Then a new window will open called Open your shop on Instagram. Click there.
5) It will ask you to connect your Facebook page, considering that this page must previously be connected to your Instagram account, hence linking your shop to the Facebook page and your fan page.
6) A new window will open where you can check if, by clicking on New catalog, the catalog we have previously created can be added. After, click on Next.
7) Once this is done, you will only need to verify your store’s domain. This is a very important step because, if the store domain is different from the one on Instagram, the request will be canceled. So you have to be sure that both domains are the same.
8) Finally, you need to verify that the previously added data is correct and click Submit for Review. Once this is done, you just have to wait for Instagram to approve your request or not.
There are several ways to link a catalog with products from your store to your personal Facebook Business account. However, depending on how you have built your online store, the way you enter it will also change. Here’s how:
If your store is on Shopify, it will be very easy to connect, as it has its own interface. The configuration will therefore be possible without major drawbacks.
If your store is configured on Tiendanube don’t worry, this platform is similar to Shopify and, from the settings, you can create the link by simply clicking on a button.
If, on the other hand, your shop is developed privately, the way to link the catalog will be done through a CVS file which is automatically updated with the appropriate information. This file will generate a link that you will import to Facebook to add your products to the catalog.
Catalog created on Facebook
Finally, if you don’t have an online store, you can create the catalog directly on the catalog manager in your Facebook Business account.
When you try to enable your Instagram Shopping account, various problems may arise that delay activation. There are two main reasons for this:
Possible catalog errors
One of the possible errors you may encounter while creating the catalog is the domain. This happens when the link to the shop and the domain entered on Instagram are different. Other errors can be those related to the lack of product information or related to special features such as the link to Google AdWords.
For this, you must always make sure that you connect your accounts first and that all products have the necessary information so that they do not generate errors later on.
The request was denied on Instagram Shopping
Another problem that can arise is the rejection by Instagram. If this happens, you must not panic, at all.
You can submit up to 5 possibilities to request authorisation. Instagram informs you in a very precise and detailed way what the account is missing to be activated. If your request has been denied, you simply have to fix the problem and resubmit it.
If it is still not clear how buying and selling on Instagram works, here we will show you how to make a simple purchase or request a product and how to tag it for a subsequent sale.
Tag the products
To tag products, simply create a feed or story publication and then click Tag Products. Finally, choose the catalog from the list.
Selling the products
Selling the products is very simple. When the user reaches one of your posts with a product tag, they will see a small notification in the image. By clicking on it, he will access the product sheet with all the information and a purchase button. The process is very simple:
First we go to the company’s Instagram profile and click on View shop.
This will take us to the company’s Instagram store and we click on the product we are interested in.
Once this is done, we will see the entire data sheet with the product/service information and we can click to view the site and then buy the product.
Callbell is a tool developed to manage chats from different service channels, such as WhatsApp, Telegram, Instagram or Facebook Messenger on a single platform.
Among the main features of this tool there’s the WhatsApp multi-agent chat that allows us to connect all the necessary agents to a single WhatsApp number, via Callbell.
You will also be able to see detailed statistics of all messages, tickets or chats in the various social networks you manage. Moreover, you can have a chat widget to place on your website, manage and keep track of your agents and organize the entire communication process of your company.
How can I use Callbell to boost my Instagram shops
To use Callbell to your advantage and increase your Instagram stores activity, you just need to activate the Instagram channel within your Callbell account. This is undoubtedly a great advantage, since it allows you to manage all the chats that come directly from the Instagram store and from your website.
This is possible thanks to Callbell’s chat widget that you can integrate within your website. When the posts on Instagram generate an interaction or a message, it arrives on Callbell and from there your agents can start the conversation.
The same happens with the website, if the interaction was not generated on Instagram, but your contacts were redirected directly to the website via Instagram. The widget can receive messages from customers asking for products, services, prices or availability.
As you can see, Callbell improves the communication process for your Instagram store business by 100%. Allowing you to improve the efficiency and management of your contacts. If you want to know how Callbell can help you boost your Instagram store activity, just click on this link.
What are the requirements to activate Instagram Shopping?
The requirements to activate Instagram Shopping are:
- Integrate your products with platforms such as WooCommerce, Shopify, Tiendanube or any other virtual online platform or store.
- Have the latest Instagram version installed on your device.
- Own a Facebook page and a Business manager connected to your online store and your Instagram account.
- Activate your business account on Instagram.
- Upload your products and activate them within the Facebook catalog.
- Have at least 10 posts in your feed (highly recommended).
- Have at least 500 followers (not mandatory, but the greater the number of followers, the more likely it is to receive approval from Instagram for the company account).
What are the benefits of activating Instagram Shopping?
By activating Instagram Shopping you will have a series of advantages compared to other users, to name a few: add unlimited products, increase sales and visibility, improve user experience on your Instagram profile, advertise products or services directly from your catalog, implement communication between sellers and customers, administer online inventory and connect with an external online store, create relevant business statistics and data, and tag products in any post.
In addition to these opportunities, another advantage that can be obtained by activating Instagram Shopping is being able to connect it to external platforms to manage messages and customer service with a multi-agent team. This will improve response speed and conversion effectiveness. Callbell is one of the outstanding tools that offer this service.
About the author: Hello! I am Alan and I am the marketing manager at Callbell, the first communication platform designed to help sales and support teams to collaborate and communicate with customers through direct messaging applications such as WhatsApp, Messenger, Telegram and Instagram Direct