Everything Your E-Commerce Brand Needs to Know About Instagram

Fascinating Instagram Facts to Build Brand Presence and Grow Your Prospective Customer Base

We all know Instagram has become a major game changer for consumers and businesses globally. As Facebook refocuses on connecting people with content from family and friends, Instagram has become “the new home for brands,” where engagement is high, followers are brand-loyal, and real business goals can be achieved. Below are a few interesting facts your e-commerce brand needs to know in order to advantage of the platforms’ exploding popularity as an ad channel.

Instagram at a glance

The platform has more than 1 billion active monthly users.

More than 500 million people use Instagram daily.

400 million people use Instagram Stories daily.

Instagram has 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook.

An average user spends 53 minutes on Instagram daily.

50.7% of Instagram users worldwide are female, while 49.3% are male.

61% of Instagram users are 18 to 34 years old.

Instagram for business

More than 200 million Instagram users visit at least one business profile daily.

75% of users reportedly visited a website or made a purchase after seeing an Instagram ad

60% of people say they’ve discovered a new product on Instagram

50% of Instagram users follow at least one business

Top brands post 4.9 times per week on Instagram

Wednesdays are the most expensive days to run Instagram Ads.


Advertising Dos and Dont’s

DO tag people in your posts

Tagging can be useful if you partner with other businesses or influencers and want to get more brand exposure through reposting or mentioning. In fact, posts that mention users see up to 56% more engagement that posts that don’t. You can use up to 30 tags on a post, but 9 is ideal.

DO tag locations in your posts

Selecting the right Instagram location for your content can play a pivotal role in helping you extend your reach. Instagram has slowly made their location feature more and more powerful and now posts with a location tag have 79% higher engagement than post without.

DO use photos with faces

People like people and a study conducted at Georgia Tech confirmed this statement is true for Instagram posts as well. They analyzed 1.1 million randomly-selected Instagram photos with faces detection software and found that those with faces receive 38% more likes.

DO feature products

Research from Gartner L2 found that Instagram users clearly enjoy seeing photos of products, with 65% of top-performing brand posts featuring a product of some kind. However, this doesn’t mean you should consistently post tons of product photos. It’s best to use to 80/20 rule which means roughly 20% of your content should be promotional and 80% should provide value for your audience as educational or entertainment.

DON’T forget your hashtags

Did you know that posts with at least one hashtag get 12.6% more engagement than those without? Hashtags are key to securing more exposure—without them, only your followers will see what you post. You can use up to 30 tags on a post, but 5–10 is ideal—including your brand name. It’s also better to post hashtags in the first comment of your post, rather than the caption, so the text looks neat and clutter-free.

DON’T underestimate the power of a great caption

Instagram’s algorithm tends to boost posts that receive the most likes or comments—so when it comes to prospects seeing your posts, a good caption could make all the difference. Captions can be as long as 2,200 characters and should entice users with relevant and valuable information that complements the visuals. You should also use CTAs in your captions to drive engagement—particularly those with action- focused language like “Use,” “Start,” and “Get,” for example.

DON’T post at random times

Thanks to Sprout Social’s decision to round up all the studies they could find on when to share content, marketers can now use their findings to figure out the best times to post to maximize engagement.


Elevate Your Brand From The Competition With Interactive and Engaging Experiences

Augmented reality (AR) is technology that overlays digital information like images, sound, and text onto your view of the real world, creating an interactive experience. Early adopters have firmly established AR’s potential. Not only as a marketing channel but as a brand differentiator. It allows a new level of convenience, speed and can leave a lasting brand impression. Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, has said that AR will one day be as important in our everyday lives as “eating three meals a day.” The question is, how can your marketing strategy effectively capture an audience’s attention once AR has become commonplace?

But beware… Developing AR for the sake of having the “latest” technology will fail. Using AR to make your brand appear innovative can be viewed as forced. And, if AR is the overall marketing campaign, you’re doing it very wrong.

In augmented reality marketing, the AR element must:

Provide a meaningful and branded interaction

Play an authentic role in the communications

Be a gateway to a new reality of brand engagement

There needs to be substance to the experience, beyond just focusing on the technology factor. To understand how to best integrate AR with your brand, think about how your audience will actually interact with it. You will need to go beyond the initial wow factor and create something functional.  The augmented content must in some way enhance the physical world it is being superimposed into.


Let’s take a look at AR Benefits:

Helps Customers Visualize the Product

From virtually trying on clothes to placing furniture, AR showcases products in a personalized environment. In 2015, Home Depot released their Project Color app, which uses patent technology to show users what paint color will look like in their home. The AR technology takes into account lighting, objects, and shadows in the room, so you can see how that yellow shade will look in real life. In 2017, Home Depot took it a step further — now, you can also use their app to check out how objects like patio furniture, faucets, and other products look in your home.


Attracts Customers to Your Store

Retailers have made in-store navigation easier and quicker for shoppers with a little help from AR. One example of such technology being put to use is in Lowe’s stores. The brand’s In-Store Navigation app (powered by Google Tango) uses AR technology to create a mobile experience that guides shoppers through the store. Shoppers create a shopping list, and the app identifies the quickest route possible to check off all the items.

Increases Customer Engagement

One study found that AR apps generate nearly twice the level of engagement from customers.

AMC Theatres, understanding their audience is most interested in upcoming movie trailers when they’re at the movies, incorporated AR technology into their AMC app. When a user sees a movie poster in a theatre, they can open the AMC app on their phone, scan the poster, and receive relevant information, including a cast list and a trailer. If they’re interested in the movie after scanning, they can also purchase a ticket immediately, within the app.


Increases Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty

Fifty percent of customers say they’re more likely to shop with a brand that offers AR, MR, or AI. Sephora introduced a “Sephora Virtual Artist” iOS app that allowed customers to experiment with makeup products, finding the right tones and shades that complemented their own face. Sephora’s use of augmented reality isn’t just helpful for users — it also drives sales by appealing to Sephora’s more tech-savvy consumers and encouraging those consumers to become brand ambassadors by recording and sharing their augmented reality experiences online.


Boots Purchase Willingness

Forty percent of people would pay more for a product or service they could experience through AR. In their flagship store in Moscow, Topshop took a common shopping annoyance, long fitting room lines, and turned it into a genius marketing tool: a virtual fitting room. The AR Door used augmented reality to overlay Topshop dresses onto customers wishing to try them on. The AR Door was able to garner interest in Topshop’s new dress collection, converting window-shoppers into buyers.


Attracts a Wider Audience

For the 51% of Americans who prefer online shopping, AR brings the store to users who aren’t near a physical location.

Think about stadium seats, augmented reality enables you to both visualize and interact with a space — two critical functions when choosing how much you’re willing to pay for a seat. For Super Bowl LII, StubHub introduced an AR feature on their mobile app that allowed ticket buyers to see a virtual 3D model of the U.S. Bank Stadium, as well as nearby parking garages and concession stands. This enabled potential buyers to visualize their full experience before purchasing and minimized the risk of paying for a subpar seat.