Instagram might not seem like an obvious social media choice when it comes to driving back traffic to your website, but the popular social network can not only help with that, but also with bringing a more human and approachable aspect to your brand.
Photos are extremely popular on social networks – they usually drive the most engagement on some of the most popular websites, such as Facebook and Twitter and so the success of photo based social networks such as Pinterest and Instagram comes as no surprise. But while Instagram can bring in lots of engagement and new fans, can it also bring more traffic to your website?
There are many common misconceptions surrounding the popular social sharing app – like the fact that only certain types of brands and businesses can use it, or that service based businesses have no place on Instagram. However, Instagram offers several different benefits to all types of business: increasing engagement and traffic, helping with building better relationships with audiences and helping build the hype surrounding new product launches or events.
Before you start using Instagram for driving traffic, one important aspect to consider is to make sure you have a mobile-friendly website. Since people use Instagram on their phones and tablets, they will mostly want to visit your website via those devices, so it’s highly important to make sure you offer them the best experience possible.
But how exactly do you use Instagram to drive traffic? Here are a few easy tips:
1. Share photos from your blog posts
Whenever posting a new article on your blog, you should already have a great picture ready to attach to it. While on Instagram you can’t share your blog posts like you normally would on other social networks, here you can at least share the image used for your blog posts. Try to create compelling, original pictures, at least one for each of your blog posts, and then share them on Instagram with the link to your blog post included in the photo description and a call to action that will convince people to go to your website and read your blog post. The more compelling your images, the better your chances of driving more traffic.
2. Watermark your photos
By watermarking each of your photos, you can rest assured that everyone who can see them will know exactly who posted them, and will help you raise awareness of your business. Make sure to add both your company name and your website’s URL – if people like your images, you increase your chances of getting more traffic back to your website.
3. Add hashtags
One of the best things about Instagram is that just about anyone can attract lots of views to their updates, with just one simple trick – great hashtags. On Instagram, hashtags are probably even more important than on Twitter – if you’ve used Instagram before, you’ve probably noticed how most pictures descriptions contain several hashtags, and in many cases no other description. That’s because that’s how most pictures are discovered – by looking up various hashtags.
So in order to attract more people to your own pictures, and therefore drive more traffic, it’s important to include the right hashtags in your descriptions.
One way to start is to use some of the most popular hashtags on Instagram. Check out the TagsForLikes website and phone app for lists of the most popular hashtags in any given category – when you find some appropriate tags for your image, you can simply copy and paste them and add as many as you like. The more hashtags you add, the better your chances of getting your images discovered by more people.
It’s also useful to study your target audience to find out what types of hashtags they use most often, and then include them in your pictures. This assures that you reach a more targeted audience, which in turn can lead to more traffic and engagement.
There are various other tools that can help you find the best tags for your business. For example, you can use Statigr.am to perform searches for different hashtags and topics to see how popular they are on Instagram. Another useful tool is Webstagram, which allows you to browse through popular tags, among other things.
However, make sure not to overdo it when tagging your photos – although Instagram allows for 30 different tags per photo, adding that many can be a bit of a turn off for most people. Try to keep it at around 10 tags per photo, 15 at the most.
Just like with all other social networks, engagement is very important on Instagram. The more you engage with other users by liking their photos, following them and leaving comments, the more they will engage with you in return; which, in turn, will lead to more followers and therefore more traffic.
5. Pique your audiences’ curiosity
Instagram can be used to offer sneak peaks and previews that will entice people to visit your website. For example, you can take pictures of a new product you are developing and direct people to your website for more details about it and about it’s release date. Or, you can post pictures of your store, or of the preparations for an upcoming event – but make sure you also post a link to the relevant page of your website. This will not only help you get more traffic, but will also show your human side, and will help pique the curiosity of your audience regarding your products, services or upcoming events.
Instagram have also recently announced that they are introducing advertising to the popular social sharing site. This could help lead to lots of traffic and increased engagement for brands in the future – at the moment, Instagram decided to start off with some of the most popular brands on Instagram, but we will surely see more and more businesses using this new feature.
Being successful on Instagram can be very easy. At the end of the day, it’s important to engage constantly with other users and to share beautiful and captivating photos – photos that will not only get noticed by people, but will also determine them to act and visit your website for more. When using Instagram however it’s important to remember that it shouldn’t be just about getting results; your end goal should be to get closer to your audience and to show your human side.