With its stunning visuals and easy-to-use platform, it’s no wonder why Instagram is the fastest growing social media app with over 300 million users. When it comes to generating website traffic, Instagram is the perfect solution.
Want to start using Instagram for your business or blog, but aren’t really sure how to go about it? Check out these 6 easy ways to use Instagram to increase your website traffic:
1. Brand consistently across all social media accounts
Brand consistency is essential when it comes to building your business and its website. Why? Because it adds strength to your brand if people are able to recognize it right away. Use the same photo (such as your logo) as your profile picture on all of your social media accounts.
If you have a personal brand, rather than a company brand, consider using an image that is clear and consistent with the message you wish to convey. Headshots, a picture you have taken, an example of your work, or a behind-the-scenes photo – the possibilities go on and on.
2. Pick a username that matches your business name
It’s great to get creative with your branding, but it’s important to use a username similar to your business name to make it easy for people to find you in search results. You may certainly like “WemakethebestcoffeeEVER”, but that really won’t do much for your business. It would be confusing to some people, and it would not stand out in search results as being YOUR business.
Your username should match the username associated with your other social media profiles and branded website. Use the company name (or your name, if you are your own personal brand) for the name. Make sure to include the URL to your website, along with a 150-character bio. You want to get your message across, but not seem too stiff and serious. If you have branded hashtags, this is a great place to include them.
3. Get creative with captions
The captions for your uploaded content should tell a story that engages your audience, and compels them to find out more by clicking through to your website. Get creative with your captions, since they allow you to really give some insight into your image, make it relevant to your followers, and (hopefully) make your followers smile or become interested in what you have to offer. Plus, it’s the best way to tie things back to your business, since you can always include a URL at the end. Learn how to incorporate emjois for added emphasis and to give your captions a more personal touch.
4. Connect with other users
Just like blogging builds a business’ customer-brand relationships, so does engaging with followers on social media. Since consumers are far more likely to go with a brand they know and trust, you want to engage with other users as much as possible.
There are numerous ways to interact with other Instagram users. Options include everything from tagging other accounts, to sending private messages. Interacting with others will build your brand, increase your audience reach and, boost your website traffic:
Instagram allows you to add tags before you share your content. You just tap the Tag People option, tap on the photo to add a tag, and then type in the user’s name. Once you have tagged other accounts in your content, other users are then able to tap on that photo or video to see who was tagged. This increases audience reach and builds brand-to-brand relationships with others in your industry and/or niche.
This is similar to mentioning on Twitter, and is a great way to generate website traffic and increase your brand’s reach. Type in the @ symbol, followed by the first letter of the user’s name. This will bring up a list of people to choose from, but you can also just type in the name on your own. You can do this to give a “shoutout” to another company, customer, or brand, or to reply to someone’s comment.
Like the content of others:
Liking other users’ content is a super simple way to connect with other businesses and consumers. Just double-tap the image, or tap the heart button under the post. The user will get a notification that you have done this, and they are likely to check out your profile and return the favor. If you have listed the URL to your website on your profile, this will generate more traffic to your site.
Leaving comment is also a great way to connect with others. Just type in a comment, hit Send, and you’re good to go! Leave something thoughtful, helpful, or long, and this will ensure your comment and username stands out among the rest.
Share across social media:
One of the best ways to increase your audience reach, while still connecting with others on Instagram, is to connect your profile to your other social media accounts. For example, if you share an Instagram post on Twitter, you can add tags and hashtags to increase your reach and connect with other brands. Not only does this build relationships, but it makes your brand seem more approachable and “in touch” with the popular technology being used by today’s consumers. This is especially important to do if your demographic is in the 18-year-old to 34-year-old range.
5. Develop a unique aesthetic for your brand
Your Instagram is basically a visual portfolio for your brand. How would you describe your business? Before you post a picture, think about whether or not that photo is consistent with your branding. It’s even better if you are able to upload pictures that contain your brand’s colors on a regular basis.
Take a look at the Instagram profiles for large companies, like Starbucks. The branding is consistent, their logo is prominently displayed, and they keep up with the fun-loving, carefree attitude that really sells their product. Whether you have a day full of paperwork, or one that just revolves around Netflix and relaxation, their brand gives the impression that buying one of their delicious drinks will perk up your mood.
Instagram is a visual-based platform, so you will need to plan out a consistent, recognizable brand aesthetic. Choose the best filter (or several filters) to use for the majority of your photos. By going with the same look each time, you will establish a recognizable visual identity that will stand out to your followers. The more your brand stands out, the more traffic will be driven to your website.
You will also need to figure out what type of content you want your photos to focus on. A fashion retailer would obviously want to upload pictures of clothes, a café would upload pictures of their coffee or food, and a tattoo shop would upload pictures of their artists’ work. But, what happens if your content is not so obvious?
Think about what you have to offer your customers and/or clients, and find a way to incorporate that into your branding and visual aesthetic. Come up with consistent posting schedules, but stick to only posting 1 to 3 times per day. Be sure to include the name of your business or URL in all of your photos and captions!
6. Use hashtags
It may seem like hashtags are only used by beauty bloggers or twenty-something-year-olds trying to get more “likes” on their selfie. However, if you’re trying to use your Instagram for your business, then using hashtags is an absolute must.
Hashtags originated on Twitter, and have spread to every other social media channel. The hashtag density on Instagram is actually far greater than that of Twitter, because the success of marketing on Instagram depends heavily on effective use of hashtags.
These hashtags organize and catalog the content that is being shared, which furthers the process of people finding content and contributors. For example, a coffee company may post an image of a fancy latte in San Diego, and then use the hashtags “#latte” and “#SanDiego” when they upload the image to Instagram.
By doing this, that image is then cataloged to allow it to be found by users searching for images of lattes and San Diego. This is how users discover new content, new contributors, and new websites – like yours. Once they find this image, they may decide to share it on their own Instagram or other social media platform, and may add some other tags to it. This would further expand the audience reach of that post and, ultimately, increase your website traffic.
As a rule of thumb, include a caption with every bit of content you upload to Instagram, and include hashtags. While Instagram allows you to include up to 30, it’s best to stick to somewhere between five and twelve. In fact, statistics show Instagram posts with 11 or more hashtags have a higher rate of interaction than those with fewer hashtags.
Putting It All Together
Instagram is an incredibly important social network for business owners and bloggers alike. Not only is this visual app great for retailers, restaurants, and agencies, but it’s also great for individuals building a reputation and personal brand. It fits in well with every type of business, and proves to be a great way to generate more website traffic.
In fact, since Instagram is so popular these days, brands without an Instagram presence risk being ignored, thought of as irrelevant, or considered outdated. This is especially true among the younger generation of consumers, a demographic that shouldn’t be ignored.
With so many people using Instagram, it’s important to go through the above list of tips for building an Instagram account that will give you the website traffic generation you’re looking for. Implement these tips, and watch your business boost!
What are YOUR favorite Instagram tips? Have you tried anything in particular that has really stood out as a great way to generate more website traffic? Let us know in the comments below!