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7 Expert Instagram Marketing Tips For E-Commerce Businesses

Instagram is not just a photo-sharing social platform but a robust social marketing tool targeted by brands and ecommerce stores of all niches. Having more than 1 billion active monthly users, Instagram offers ecommerce stores to gain smooth easy traction and engagement with their target audience.

Some statistics confirm why Instagram stays high on the priority list of social marketers.

  • Approximately, 80% of Instagram users follow one or more business pages on the platform.
  • Around 20% of this 1 billion Instagram users visit a business profile regularly.
  • A whopping 60% of Instagram users confirms discovering at least one new product or service through this platform.
  • A whopping 30% of Instagram users admitted to having purchased products after discovering it through Instagram.
  • A vast majority of Instagram posts, around 65% of them feature products.

So, the influence and impact of Instagram are pretty robust and invincible for ecommerce marketers. Apart from these statistics, the variety of powerful and engaging features also make Instagram a leading marketing platform for the brands and stores.

While every ecommerce store and online brand is after Instagram marketing, not all of them are equally successful. This is precisely why one needs to learn from the time-tested and tried practices and methods that are proved to be effective. Let us explain below some of the expert tips for ecommerce marketing on Instagram.


Being a powerful medium to tell visually gripping narratives, Instagram is a great storytelling social media platform. For effective brand presence, it is extremely important for the brands to stitch together a narrative comprising Instagram images and captions. Instagram is a great medium to sell a lifestyle to the audience without focusing on the particular merchandise. For example, instead of depicting a smart fitness band with the caption, an Instagram story with images and captions can explain how it can benefit in real-life contexts.

To tell Instagram stories more effectively and in a results-driven manner, you can adopt the following strategies.

  • You can utilize the Instagram Stories to create a powerful brand message with user-generated content. User-generated contents showcase your care for the users and how you give them importance as part of your content strategy. It also offers a great social proof for the legacy your brand enjoys.
  • You can use acquire user-generated contents from your audience in a variety of ways that include offering CTA buttons to inspire users sharing the images of the purchases made by them.
  • Through Instagram stories you can create buzz around various events and promote them. By showcasing the images of the venue and glimpses of the coming-up attractions you can create brand awareness and boost participation.
  • You can also use Instagram stories to build credibility around your brand by sharing images related to the brand story, it’s the audience and the evolution it passed through.
  • Finally by broadcasting live right from an event or a real-life situation featuring a loyal user or an influencer you can create quick buzz and respond to your audience in a lively manner.

Having A Search Optimized Instagram Bio:

Targeting your audience needs, telling them about your brand in a clear and concise manner. This first of all needs creating the Instagram profile that can easily be found through search.

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Ideally, a great Instagram bio should work like your business visiting card that can tell users about the brand in a clear and concise manner. An Instagram bio is the first thing that would decide whether your audience is able to resonate with the brand or not. This is why bio plays a crucial role in making the first impression.

By using only a permitted 150 characters and one link, you need to give users the basic and most elementary information like your identity, your location, what you do and other information about the brand. This profile should work as the first impetus for your target audience to follow you.

Let us have a look at some effective tips to optimize an Instagram bio.

  • Select the proper category for your brand
  • Give a company description
  • Use a search-specific popular keyword within the description
  • Use a link to your brand store
  • Optimize the profile with appropriate Call to Action (CTA) buttons
  • To optimize further you can also tag other Instagram business profiles. It can lead users to other profiles associated with the brand through clickable links. It offers a great way to drive traffic from one Instagram account to the other.
  • Adding branded hashtags within the profile is another way to engage visitors with the profile.

Targeting Your Audience:

It is common knowledge that brands will target their respective audience with the objective of business conversion. Two things are important in this respect. Firstly, you need to have a clear idea about your audience and the offers you make to them. Instagram ads, fortunately, allow you to target audience based on their interest just like the Facebook ads. Based on different demographics, interest groups and exclusions Instagram can help your brand reach to the target audience precisely.

In this respect, you must remember that you’re saved and lookalike brand audience is not going to respond to your call for conversion at the first instance. This is why it would be wise to start with a smaller request and thereafter gradually convince the audience through steps. You can use the Thank You page, email, and custom audience segmentation to take the first converts to the next step. Funneling a business proposal through articulated steps and leading to business conversion is the key. For example, for selling product subscriptions, you need to start with the app installed first.

Use Hashtags To The Best Of Your Advantage:

Hashtags having been started as a key tool on Twitter platform gradually made their presence felt across other social platforms. This simple trick of using a # symbol before a word or phrase to turn the same into a clickable topic is already popular. This will easily help users to view all the public posts with that hashtag phrase or word. To help users finding contents they are interested in, the tool can be tremendously effective.

Now, let us have a look at the variety of hashtags one can use in order to drive traction with Instagram contents.

Brand-Specific Hashtags: Hashtags with the mention of the brand names can be an easy way to generate clickable topics related to the brand. You can use them in posts, your Instagram profile or encourage the audience to use them in user-generated contents.

Contest and Event Hashtags: Some hashtags can be created specifically to mention the brand names and events and turn them into buzzing topics. These hashtags are generally used to create buzz around Instagram contests such as photo submission contests. Similarly, event hashtags are used to generate buzz for an upcoming event.

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Popular Hashtags: Some hashtags remain popular for the wider audience and enjoy bigger appeal among the people. These hashtags can be contextually used to draw the attention of audiences from other interest groups to the Instagram profile and certain posts.

Niche Hashtags: Some hashtags are only effective for a particular business niche or audience group. These hashtags offering you exposure to a particular interest group can easily create buzz.

Time-specific Hashtags: Some hashtags can only be created to draw the attention of the audience to some specific seasonal offers, time-specific promotions and merchandise. These hashtags are effective to create buzz around products and offerings in specific periods.

Funny Hashtags: There are also hashtags that refer to certain popular socio-cultural phenomena and topics in public life. They can be funny and amusing to create quick interest in your brand. When used in an innovative manner, these hashtags can really help draw the attention of the wider audience to your brand.

Now that you have a clear idea about using different types of hashtags for Instagram marketing, let us mention here some of the best practices and tested principles of using hashtags.

  • Use a list of brand-specific hashtags on your Instagram profile.
  • Use funny or entertaining hashtags only in the beginning to ensure optimum readability.
  • You can use a learner number of search-friendly hashtags for posts but try to keep the number within 8 to 11 hashtags for most effective output.
  • Use a variety of hashtags instead of using the same in every post. For better targeting, have a list of effective and popular hashtags and use them across posts. This helps to increase your visibility among various audiences.
  • Lastly, give time and effort to explore and create effective hashtags to target your audience more appropriately.


Run Instagram Contests That Really Matter:

Running contests on Instagram is a popular social media strategy to yield great results in quick time. Contests work great to create buzz and generate interest simply because all of us love to win and appear victorious. But utilizing this tool requires having a clear idea of the constraints and rules and lastly how it can be effectively used.

Let us first have a look at the key rules set by Instagram for running contests.

  • First of all, the contest by any means should not imply any affiliation with Instagram.
  • You are not authorized to ask people for tagging in images that they are not a party to.
  • You also need to stay abided by the laws and constraints set by the local authority concerning the eligibility, age and contest prizes.
  • Each contest should accompany a clear mention of the rules of participation.

Instagram allows the ecommerce marketers to run a wide variety of contests as per their business niche and conversion goals. Some of the key types of contests that marketers can run on Instagram include the following.

  • Contest to tag friends in the comments: This allows widening your audience among people who might be interested in your brand.
  • Contest to drive followers: This actually accompanies contests with other objectives and helps driving a follower base.
  • Contest for commenting: By engaging users with a contest for commenting, you can gain traction and engagement with important posts and at the same time can generate valuable audience feedback.
  • Photo contests: This is the most popular type of Instagram contest that allows the brands generating a lot of user-generated visual contents. A lot of images shared to showcase a brand or brand loyalty can actually deliver you a great marketing advantage.
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These days Instagram marketers can also use a variety of contest software to that with little cost can deliver great mileage. Most importantly, such software applications help you create robust and native-looking contest landing pages easily and effortlessly. Such software solutions also make it a lot easier to track the contest participants and their respective entries. This helps to evaluate the contest inputs and judging the winner in an effortless manner. Finally, contest software applications allow marketers to tweak with a lot of customization options as per the specific requirements.

Utilizing Geotags For Targeting Local Audience:

Instagram being a global platform to connect brands and minds with visual contents can help marketers to target audience far and wide. On the other hand, for brands specific to particular regions and cultural affiliations, it is extremely important to target the right audience of the target localities. This is where using geotags for targeting audience locally can play a great role.

You might be surprised why geotagging for a local audience can be so important in the Instagram marketing of ecommerce stores. Well, apart from the so-called brick and mortar stores, even ecommerce stores that do not ship products in all international locations, geotagging can help tremendously to target specific and local audience.

Some value chain stores and ecommerce stores also use geotags to show how their presence is growing across various international locations at a rapid pace. For instance, when opening a new operation in a region where your ecommerce store not used to deliver before, you can use geotags to notify the audience of that country or location.

Running Instagram Ads:

Finally, when you need steady customer acquisition, Instagram ads can come as a great tool. This is particularly effective for all those businesses who have the least idea about your products. Apart from all the available organic methods to reach out to your target audience, by running Instagram ads you can quickly reach a wider audience with your brand message and draw the attention of people whose interest matches your offerings and merchandise.

Instagram ads also help ecommerce brands to stay ahead of the competition in a decisive manner. With the ads carrying the appropriate brand message, you can reach out to your target audience, create loyal fans and followers and boost business conversion. As the competition among brands is getting tougher, creative and engaging ad campaigns across social channels can help your store an edge.


Those times are really gone when Instagram used to be viewed only as a trending photo sharing platform. Over time, it emerged as a great social tool for the marketers of all niches and sizes of businesses. Today, every consumer brand has a presence on Instagram with a great fan-following. Naturally, ecommerce stores need to take their Instagram presence seriously for steady business conversion and brand presence.

Atman RathodAbout the Author:

Atman Rathod is the Co-founder at CMARIX TechnoLabs Pvt. Ltd., a leading web and mobile app development company with 13+ years of experience. He loves to write about technology, startups, entrepreneurship and business. His creative abilities, academic track record and leadership skills made him one of the key industry influencers as well.

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