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Are you Instagram ready? 5 Top Tips to prepare for business

Need Some Inspiration?

Get your Instagram account ready for business.

Are you Instagram ready? Having a business Instagram account is vital. But are you ready to pursue it? It’s a great way to market to a new audience and get your products seen.

It does what it says on the tin – it’s instant. Instantly visual, it has the ability for great imagery and video content, as well as Live chats and much more. Ideal for a creative business and lots of businesses are favouring Instagram over other social media channels

It’s so easy to set up, or you can even simply switch the settings from your personal account. A business Instagram allows you to read insights into your page and audience, so you can market to them better and see what they respond best to. It also easily links to your Pedddle page, so people can follow you easily.

5 Top Tips to get your business on Insta

Step 1: Links

Links are the most important thing!

Your customers and anyone landing on your Instagram profile needs to be directed where to go. They want to see your website, shop from you, sign up to your mailing list and so on. Insta allows you just one link.

If you have a website, you can link directly to it, but we suggest either creating a specific website page for Instagram links, to direct people to different places, or use Linktree or an App equivalent like Milkshake to create a landing page that points to various places.

This is much more beneficial to your customers than one direct link. You could direct them to specific shop categories, such as ‘Shop Necklaces’ or ‘Shop Earrings’, direct to an Etsy / Folksy page or equivalent, or even sign up to your mailing list or view your Pedddle page. Why not have a featured product for the week or month and link directly to buy that product? You could even change this seasonally – make it super easy for customers to shop.

For Pedddle members we suggest:

  • Including your Pedddle page link
  • Having 3 direct links to different shop categories, i.e. ‘Shop Necklaces’, ‘Shop Earrings’ and ‘Shop Rings’ if you’re a jewellery business
  • Link to your website About Us section
  • Sign up to your mailing list – check out Mailchimp for an easy way to create emails
  • Link to an event page – either Pedddle or your website, so that people know which markets and events they can find you at
  • Link to a recent blog on your website. It’s so important to write blogs for your website! Click here for tips on writing a great website blog.

Step 2: Contact details

Complete the section in ‘edit profile’ called ‘contact options’ – it is essential to give customers easy access to our businesses and let them know who we are and how to get in touch.

You may not want to leave a phone number but an email is a good option.

It also allows you to add another action button. The ‘Eventbrite’ option may be useful – you can add a direct link to your tickets if you have a workshop or event that you want to share.

Step 3: Your Bio

Keep it simple and creative and say specifically what you do. The word count is limited, so be concise.

Emojis are really useful as they can instantly convey what your business / brand theme is about – such as a colour or product type.

You could consider offering something your Instagram bio to draw people in. What about:

  • Free postage if they sign up to your mailing list
  • A 10% discount off their first order with a certain code (e.g. ART10)

    Even if they don’t purchase, this may encourage them to look at your products, and they may return in future or tell a friend. This is a great way to draw them in.

Step 4: Hashtags

There’s constantly contradictory advice on hashtag usage! The latest advice is that you should only use 5 hashtags per post, and include them within the text of your post. Many makers favour posting them in a comment on the post.

Our advice is – trial and error. Vary it, and see what works best for you! The Instagram algorithm is not a ‘one size fits all’ thing – it depends on how many followers you have, how often you post and so on. All we know for sure is that you can use a maximum of 30 hashtags per post, so it’s time to experiment.

Often hashtags that have medium popularity (1000 – 10k users) work best, but there are so many. It’s a good idea to save some or make a list of ones that may come in handy. Here are our tips:

1. Use an app called Preview. It saves all of your recent hashtags, or you can create hashtag groups if using the paid version. Preview also helps see your grid layout, helping you to plan posts in advance.

2. Save hashtags in your notes. Personally we love to store them in our notes and just chop and change useful bits.

3. Check out our blog on ‘best creative hashtags’ (button below) for some ideas.

Step 5: Instagram Stories

Don’t be afraid of utilising Stories! There are so many options for people to easily click through – IG Lives, behind-the-scenes of your work, everyday shots of your business, any work in progress, the trip to the post office with parcels. The real side of your business. Your grid is for the pretty side – to show the finished articles. Stories are for everything else, to keep your potential customers updated.

People love seeing people! It’s ok to show your work space being a mess, to keep them updated and chat to your audience. Small businesses are all about showing what you can do as a solo artist – customers want to see the reality of running a small business, to know where their products come from.

Wondering what to put on your Stories?

Engagement is key – give people something to interact with.

  • Use polls or the emoji slider to get people to interact with your Stories. Think about how to get customers involved, what people might like to choose between – could they help you choose what to make? Could they choose a colour option? Get them thinking about your products and your business.
  • DON’T offer Yes/No questions – no’s are subjective and negative – we all want to hear some positivity! Give them fun options which both mean a big fat YES!
  • Pop in a post office shot or a photo of your parcels or packaging – show off your success
  • Talking videos are great and start chats – but if you’re a little camera shy this can be daunting. If you don’t want to show your face or talk on camera, think about using the ‘ask me a question’ option, and let people get to know you that way.

Your Instagram account is your shop window so it does have to look good. Watch how others do it, research fellow makers and find successful accounts. See what works, what kind of thing your audience interact with, and use it as inspiration.

Click here for further Instagram tips.

Best of luck! You’ve got this.