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The online marketing space is fast changing; hence, social media platforms such as Instagram are now the go-to for shoppers to buy products. Businesses are now setting up accounts to sell on Instagram, and so should you.

In this post, we will give a detailed guide on how to sell on Instagram, including setting up your Instagram shop and selling on Instagram for free.

Why Sell on Instagram?

Setting up an Instagram shop and selling on it can be very vital for your business; it can boost your sales and expand your audience reach. But there are more reasons why you should set up an Instagram shop today. To begin:

  • Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms, with about 1.35 billion monthly active users. That’s the number of possible users who can see your products if you set up an Instagram shop.
  • Curating your brand story is easier when you are on Instagram, as it is a platform where you can easily interact with your customer base through comments and possibly build a community around your brand
  • A well curated Instagram account gives shoppers the opportunity to learn more about your brand and what you sell through your feed, reels and story.
  • 70% of shoppers research products on Instagram before purchasing, therefore setting up a business account exposes your brand to audiences in your niche, thereby driving traffic to your page and website. This can be through targeted ads and hashtags,

How Do Instagram Shops work?

Instagram Shop is a feature of the Instagram app that allows you to link your product catalog to your Instagram profile. It’s a feature that lets you promote your products to Instagram users directly through posts, stories, and a specific shop tab on your profile.

  • The product tagging feature on Instagram is used to tag products on posts by shop owners and influencers. This is called shoppable posts. It can be done in the Instagram feed or in the Stories feature.
  • Shoppers who come across your page and view the products can click on the tags which will take them to the shopfront to purchase the items
  • Customers who want to buy things can do so directly on Instagram without leaving the app. Keep in mind that the checkout feature is presently only available to users in the United States. For customers outside the United States, there is a ‘view on website’ button that can be used to make a purchase.

Instagram Shop Features

  • Shop-This is a customizable storefront that lets people shop directly on business profiles.
  • Collections-A set of products that businesses can curate for their shop to help customers find the products they love. This is also known as a product catalog
  • Product detail page-A product focused page that showcases relevant information about an item, such as pricing and product descriptions. These details are pulled from your product catalog
  • Shopping tags-Tags that feature products from your catalog that can direct customers to purchase products from your website or in the app.
  • Shop in explore-A tab in Explore lets people browse tagged shoppable content from brands and creators.
  • Ads with product tags-Businesses can create new ads with product tags or boost existing shopping posts in Ads Manager and the Instagram app, to increase the reach of their shoppable content. These ads drive.

For businesses that use Instagram checkout, you can also use:

  • Product launches-A way for businesses to announce their product launches on Instagram, where people can preview details and set reminders to purchase as soon as it’s available.
  • Live shopping-Businesses and creators can tag products when they go live on Instagram. Live shopping allows businesses to share products with their audience and drive reviews, conversions, link clicks and post engagement.

How to Start Selling on Instagram

#1. Determine Your Niche

Every business venture starts with choosing a niche to focus on and specializes in. It is easier to build a following when your page is known for something in particular. Determining your niche gives you a clear target audience from the start.

Once you know what your niche is, you can use hashtags that are related to it to reach a wider audience and get more customers.

#2. Convert to Instagram Business Profile:

To have an advantage on Instagram, you should convert your account into a business account. This is because having a business profile gives you more features and tools than a standard Instagram account. These tools and features help you understand your audience better and also be able to track page growth and analytics.

Some business profile features

  • Instagram Insights
  • CTA Buttons
  • Story links
  • Facebook alignments

#3. Set Up Your Instagram Shop

After converting your page to a business page, the next thing to do is to set up your Instagram Shop. You can choose to create a shop for both Instagram and Facebook or only one of those platforms.

#4. Create a Product Catalog

Making a catalog of your products for your Instagram shop is an important part of selling on Instagram. It helps you showcase your products and make them easily accessible to potential customers. 

A well-made product catalog can be used to give your customers a fun shopping experience and help you promote your products more effectively.

A product catalog can also tell you a lot about how customers use your shop, which can help you improve its performance and make more sales. With the right tools, creating a product catalog for your Instagram shop can be simple and straightforward.

#5. Promote Your Products

After creating your Instagram shop and putting up your product catalog, the next thing you should focus on is promoting your products. One of the best ways to promote your products on Instagram is to work with influencers who have a lot of followers. 

Another way to promote your products on Instagram is by using targeted ads. You can pay Instagram to advertise your product, and you’ll be sure that your ads will reach your target audience.

You can also promote your products on Instagram by engaging regularly with your followers. By engaging with their comments and messages, you can build trust and loyalty between them and the brand, which can boost product sales.

#6. Monitor Sales Performance Via Instagram Analytics

Knowing the performance of the products you put up on your Instagram shop is very important. And one of the tools that you can use to monitor the performance is Instagram analytics. 

Instagram analytics is a tool that can tell you how well your products are selling, who is buying them, and where they are being sold. Also, it helps you understand your customers’ behavior and how they engage with your brand. 

Also, the tool lets you see customer trends and make changes to your products based on the information you have. This data can help your brand make informed decisions on items, prices, and marketing strategies.

Can I Sell On My Instagram Account?

The short answer to that is yes. 

Check Instagram’s commerce eligibility standards to know if you meet the requirements to run an Instagram shop. If you meet the requirements, you can go ahead and set up your Instagram shop.

To set up your Instagram shop, you’ll need to convert your account to a business profile and create your product catalog. You can also link your shop to Shopify or any other e-commerce site that Instagram supports. This will create a seamless shopping experience for your customers.

How Much Does It Cost to Sell Instagram?

If you are wondering if you can sell on Instagram for free, the answer is yes. There’s no payment to be made before setting up your Instagram shop, but keep in mind that to sell on Instagram, you need to have an online store that you will link your IG shop to.

You can set up your online store using one of several ecommerce platforms, which may cost you money.

Also, to get better results on your Instagram shop, you might need to pay for ads and other features that will boost your brand’s visibility and sales.

How Many Followers Do You Need to Have to Sell on Instagram?

Having a large number of followers on Instagram can be a bonus when selling on the platform, but it’s not a requirement. You don’t have to worry about followers when setting up your Instagram shop, as there is no required number of followers to start selling on the platform.

There’s only one feature on Instagram Shop that requires a minimum of 10k followers or a verified account, and that is the “Swipe Up” story feature, which lets you add links to your stories that your audience can go to by swiping up.

How to Get Approved to Sell on Instagram

There are several requirements you need to meet before Instagram approves your page for business. According to Instagram’s Commerce Eligibility Requirement, they are;

#1. Compliance with Instagram Policies

Before you set up your Instagram shop, read Instagram’s Terms of Service and Community Guidelines thoroughly and follow the guides they put out for business accounts.

#2. Represent Your Business and Your Domain

Your professional Instagram account needs to list products that can be bought right away from your website. Your account must represent the store or website associated with the domain provided. Instagram may ask you to go through their domain verification process to prove that you own your domain.

This means that you’ll need an authentic website before you can sell on Instagram

#3. Be Located in a Supported Market

Not all markets are supported, therefore, If you want to sell on Instagram, you have to be in one of the markets it supports.

#4. Demonstrate Trustworthiness

To be approved to sell on Instagram, your account and brand must show that they can be trusted, such as by having a real, well-known presence.  

This show of trustworthiness may include maintaining a sufficient follower base. Additionally, you might have to comb through your follower list to remove any suspicious-looking accounts and bots.

#5. Provide Accurate Information and Follow Best Practices

When listing your products, ensure that the provided product information is not misleading.

Your policies on refunds and returns must be clear and easy to find on your website or Instagram.

How to Sell on Instagram Without a Website

Instagram’s standards for commerce eligibility require you to have a website domain as one of the foundational things you need to have to be able to sell things on Instagram. Nevertheless, you can still sell on Instagram if you do not have a website. There are some downsides to it, but it’s workable. 

You can create an order form and add the link to your bio. Your customer will click on the link to complete their order and make payment. Also, you can ask your customer to connect via WhatsApp to place orders or communicate with  them directly on DM to take their order.

How to Sell on Instagram with Shopify

It is quite easy to sell on Instagram with Spotify. Instagram Shopping allows you to move your Shopify store’s product catalog to your Instagram business page. This integration can help you reach new customers and get back in touch with old ones. Linking your Shopify store to your Instagram shop will also make shopping easier for your Instagram followers.

  • Create a Facebook channel in your shopify store that will allow you to add your Shopify products to your Instagram.
  • Create an Instagram business profile. This is necessary as you can’t use the Instagram shopping feature without a business profile. Also, you can convert your personal account into a business profile or open a new one
  • Turn on the shopping feature on your Instagram which will enable you to create shoppable posts because your Instagram audience engages with the shoppable posts to make purchases.
  • When you are done linking your shopify to instagram, you should start adding products to your Instagram posts and create a shoppable feed. Also, ensure to add the appropriate links to your products.


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