Shopping for Instagram first released to select countries last year, allowing users to shop their favorite brands right from within the Instagram feed without having to leave the app.
Instagram has now released the seamless shopping feature for Stories — the fastest growing segment on the platform that now doubles Snapchat in terms of active users.
Here’s a quick look at what Shopping for Instagram Stories is and what it means for advertisers on the platform.
“With one billion monthly active users, and the expectation that Stories will eventually overtake the newsfeed in popularity, shopping directly from Instagram Stories could drive a significant amount of traffic to retailers that get it right.”
-Paul Fairbrother, Facebook Ad Specialist at AdEspresso
What is Instagram Shopping?
Instagram Shopping is a feature that allows businesses to seamlessly sell products featured within their images with just the tap of a button.
Before Shopping, getting followers to a specific product in your store wasn’t easy. Businesses had to come up with clever workarounds or use third-party software.
That’s because Instagram doesn’t allow links in photo captions.
That all changed in 2017.
Instagram has evolved into a platform that offers unparalleled brand awareness and engagement with a massive audience of 1 billion.
Instagram is a natural fit for branding and product discovery because of its photo and video-centric focus.
According to a study by Yotpo,
“72% of customers said seeing Instagram photos of a product increases their chances of buying, and 38% of customers said they frequently purchase products they find on Instagram.”
Shopping on Instagram Stories — What’s the Big Deal?
Shopping for Stories presents an enormous opportunity for brands to leverage their content to drive lower funnel purchases on Instagram. Previously, this was very difficult to do because of link restrictions.
Stories are growing insanely fast
Stories — images and videos that act as media-rich status updates — are starting to overtake the regular newsfeed.
The number of users using Stories has increased to 400m — from 250m only a year ago.
Originating with Snapchat, the Stories are now pivotal for the growth of Instagram, Facebook, and even WhatsApp.
Chris Cox, Chief Product Officer of Facebook (which owns Instagram), stated at this year’s F8 conference:
“The increase in the stories format are on a path to surpass feeds as the primary way people share with their friends sometime next year.”
More opportunities for brands to drive store traffic and sales
Not only does featuring your products on stories drive product discovery — it now also drives sales.
Followers that engage with Stories can tap on a product within an image and complete a checkout — within seconds.
“Shopping tags will become a real game changer for larger brands once properly integrated with Ads Manager — something Instagram is already testing with native posts. Until then, smaller brands have the advantage to build their product offering in Stories while the feature is new and the competition is low.“
Want to learn more about Instagram Shopping? Check out our post New Instagram Payments: Can Shoppers Purchase Items In-App?