Instagram can be a powerful tool for small businesses when it comes to digital marketing. The highly visual and immersive nature of the app can easily attract prospective customers, however, difficulties may arise when it comes to getting this engaged audience to connect to your website to finalize conversions. Instagram, in particular, has significant limitations when it comes to sharing third-party links, sometimes making it difficult for small business owners to master the most effective methods of driving traffic back to their websites.
Linking Through Your Instagram Bio
The most obvious way to link to your website via Instagram is through your Instagram bio. While other social platforms may allow linking within individual posts, Instagram limits businesses to showcasing one singular link in their bios, limiting the amount of outbound traffic from the app. Using the link in your bio is simple and easy to change at any time.
Additionally, unlike some other link-sharing methods, URL tracking is possible and easy to set up through your bio link. This URL tracking is an important element in enhancing your website analytics to better understand results and improve future decision-making. While this method only allows one link at a time, sometimes that is all a small business needs. As your business profile grows, Instagram expands the possibilities of link sharing to better accommodate your needs.
Using Instagram Shoppable Product Tags
After Instagram became a more established platform for advertising, new eCommerce abilities were introduced to increase conversions. These new conversion-based features include shoppable product tags designed to bridge the gap between people browsing on Instagram and making sales. Business owners do not need to meet any size or growth requirements to use this feature, all that is needed is a linked Shopify and Facebook business account.
Once set up, this feature can be used in any main-feed photo or story series to easily link your audience to more information on the specific products as well as an option to purchase. After running this feature over time, it’s easy to look back at analytics and learn what methods worked best. While this is an excellent feature to take advantage of, it’s crucial to remember the importance of balance in your feed. Overusing shoppable product tags can do more harm than good if your audience isn’t ready for a sale.
Taking Advantage of Instagram Swipe Ups
Another fantastic method of third party linking is through Instagram Story Swipe-Ups. Unfortunately, Instagram only allows businesses with 10,000 followers or more to use swipe-ups, making that level of following an important benchmark for small businesses on the app. However, once your business meets the minimum following requirement, this is often the best method for posting quick links. Once a story with swipe-ups has been posted, businesses can add this story to their highlights to keep the link permanently active on their profile. Additionally, Instagram analytics can be tracked to evaluate which stories receive the most swipe ups and engagement, making it an excellent way to keep track of what content your audience is interested in.
Adding a “Linktree” to Instagram
Another common method of linking to your website via Instagram is using third party linking apps such as Linktree. If you’re unfamiliar, Linktree essentially creates a link to more links. This is done by providing a singular landing page containing multiple links plugged in by the user. This allows business owners to bypass the “one link rule” by placing this “Linktree” in their bio. For example, if your business wanted to feature your website link in addition to an event link and a blog link all at once, this could be done using Linktree in your bio.
Unfortunately, third party linking sites are not as reliable as you would hope, leaving potential for your links to be marked as spam or disabled at any time. Another disadvantage of using Linktree is the lack of concise analytics and division of website traffic. Because Linktrees stem from a third-party landing page, this can make things complicated in Google Analytics and any traffic goes uncounted towards your SEO efforts.
Creating A Custom Landing Page for Instagram
Finally, a fantastic method of expanding your linking opportunities is through creating your own custom landing page for Instagram. While this method is more of an investment upfront, it undoubtedly offers the best results long term. Similar to the idea of third party linking services like Linktree, your business can create its own simple, user-friendly landing page built to showcase a variety of links.
Not only does creating your own Instagram landing page create the opportunity for simultaneous multiple links, it is also more secure than third-party services, reducing the possibility of being marked as spam. Unlike Linktree, all SEO efforts are maintained through a custom landing page and analytics can be implemented seamlessly. Additionally, customization is possible to create consistent branding with the rest of your Instagram and main website.
In conclusion, despite Instagram’s challenging “one link rule,” there are many options for small business owners to link within the app. Depending on the size, budget, and needs of your business, there are several options that allow you to share necessary content with your audience.
92% of all Instagram users say they’ve made a purchase, clicked to the website, or followed a brand after discovering them on the platform.
If your business is looking to improve its presence on Instagram, KWSM is ready to help. Our team works as an extension of your brand to carefully craft content marketing strategies aimed at getting real results.
CLICK HERE to schedule a complimentary 30-minute social media audit.