Sometimes I get on Instagram just to check what’s new and available at online stores and home businesses. I can’t help it… I am a recovering online shopaholic after all 😉 Other times I come across some profiles (mainly home businesses) that make one – or many – of these mistakes listed below, and I lose interest… They’ve basically lost a potential customer before even trying. So if you have some kind of business that you use Instagram for, here are some things you should keep in mind. And if you aren’t into business but have a love for online shopping, you probably came across these mistakes before.
Mistake #1: Private Accounts
Private accounts should not be for those running a business. Your products/services need to be easily accessed or viewed, and shared. Also, by having a private account, you’re immediately limiting the reach of your target audience.
If your business is for everyone, your profile should be made public. Why? So people, like me, who stumble across profiles and home businesses all the time, are given the chance to become customers of yours without having to first cross a hurdle (Requesting a follow).
Noteworthy mention: If the nature of your business is such that your audience is strictly a certain sex, age group or other demographic, and the sharing of product/service images are sensitive/not meant for everyone, then it should be noted on your profile so visitors are aware of this.
Mistake #2: Unclear Images
Instagram is driven by visual content. Images sell. That’s why low quality images are just not on. Your audience is going to wonder what exactly are they looking at, or is denied the chance to truly appreciate your product, and be convinced to buy it.
Get clearer images, either from your supplier, or take the images yourself. From more than one angle. If you aren’t good with this, or don’t have a camera, request help from someone who does. Then, when you’re buzzing with orders and sales, invest in a camera and do it yourself! 🙂
Mistake #3: Price-less
The cost of your products/services is not only a concern for price-sensitive shoppers – it’s something that is absolutely necessary and important to everyone. People can very easily lose interest if they don’t see a price of the product (it’s happened to me countless times). Don’t be fooled into thinking “If they seriously want my product/service, they will message for the price.” We lead fast-paced lives. Information such as this must be made readily available.
Attach a price! Every. Single. Time.
Mistake #4: Not Responding to Comments/Questions
Someone who’s interested in your offering has taken the time to ask you a question, honour them and their time by replying. If you show concern/respect for potential customers, they are more likely to become actual customers (and perhaps frequent ones too).
Just reply where appropriate. Fortunately, not all comments are questions and won’t always require a response.
Mistake #5: Not Responding to DMs
Dare I say, this is rude. I’ve personally experienced a well-established home business promise me a response about a product query and didn’t get back to me… ever. More than once. This isn’t usually the conduct of successful entrepreneurs. For obvious reasons.
Respond. And if time is the issue for you, make a note of it and make the time to reply to all your DMs. Even if it’s a silly question or a question with an obvious answer, you have direct communication with a potential customer – use it well by responding appropriately and timeously.
Do remember, with mistakes #4 and #5, choosing to make a purchase from one store over the other can very well come down to the emotional journey itself. If a potential customer is satisfied with the service received from you thus far, they will come back and choose you. This holds true for both the online and traditional shopping route.
Promoting a business or even conducting one using Insta alone is a great idea as visual content drives business online. I look forward to getting to see and support more home businesses and local online stores! 🙂