Instagram Checkout is now available to all eligible Instagram business and creator accounts in the US, but what about Canadian users?
In short, the answer is no.
Canadian business users still don’t have access to this feature as of the date this blog was posted. But since this feature will likely be released north of the border soon, here’s what Canadians can expect from Instagram Checkout.
What is the difference between Instagram Shopping and Instagram Checkout?
Instagram Shopping gives businesses the opportunity to easily link their shoppable products within Instagram, either in Instagram Stories or Feed. Users can simply tap on the product tags and be led to the brand’s website to view more information and purchase the product. See the example of how we tag products for our client, The Facial Room. Here we have tagged several product suggestions for dry skin within one post, encouraging users to checkout via The Facial Room’s website.
Instagram Checkout is similar, but the major difference with this feature is that everything is done within Instagram. Customers never have to leave Instagram to complete a purchase. The first time a customer checks out, they simply fill out their name, email, shipping and billing information.
See the screenshots below of the Instagram Checkout process.
Image source: Instagram for business
This feature is a great way to easily and quickly convert your Instagram audience into loyal customers.
Should businesses set up Instagram Checkout?
The opportunity to turn a browser into a purchaser with just a few clicks could have a huge impact on your conversion rates. This feature creates an effortless experience for customers by ensuring the purchase process is simple, convenient and most importantly secure!
So, to summarize, the benefits of Instagram Checkout are:
- Allows users to purchase products in just two to three taps without leaving Instagram
- Eliminates checkout form issues and errors that often result in cart abandonment due to user frustration
- Businesses no longer need to worry about maintaining and optimizing a mobile-first webshop (ideal for small businesses that are just starting out with eCommerce)
What are the disadvantages of using Instagram Checkout?
There are a couple of drawbacks to using Instagram Checkout that should be considered:
- Instagram will collect a commission from the merchant on every order that is processed via the app. The current selling fee is 5% per shipment or a flat fee of $0.40 of $8 or less (including PayPal fees).
- Businesses could lose out on valuable customer data. For example, when customers check out on your website, you have the opportunity to collect emails for future marketing purposes. By using Instagram checkout, your business can only access limited customer information.
- Instagram Checkout eliminates website traffic by allowing people to make purchases within the app. This may affect your website’s SEO performance and could reduce product reviews on your website.
Overall, we believe the benefits of using Instagram’s checkout outweigh these negatives. Offering up a great way for small businesses to break into eCommerce and showcase their products to new audiences.
A few tips for driving sales with Instagram Shopping
So whilst Canada still doesn’t have access to Instagram Checkout, let’s make the most of the tools we can use! You can still drive sales through Instagram by following these simple steps:
- Be consistent with your product tagging. If you’re posting three times a week, make sure at least two of these posts include tags to your products that drive customers to your external website.
- Create some excitement with an exclusive product drop on Instagram. A great way to create a little buzz around your products is by launching a product exclusively to your Instagram audience.
- Add product stickers to your Instagram Stories. Don’t overlook this feature – it’s another opportunity to redirect customers to shop on your website.
- Share a sale or promotional code on your products. Running a sale or promotion is an undeniably great way to drive sales.
- Work with an influencer. Consider working with an influencer who can drive their larger audiences to your Instagram or website!
- Create striking photography. Instagram is ultimately a visual platform, so if you want to stop a customer in their tracks, then create visually appealing images that make them want to shop! We can help with this.
As Instagram continues to enhance its eCommerce abilities, shopping via the app is growing in popularity leading us to believe it’s only a matter of time until Instagram checkout is available everywhere. So we encourage you to start building your product catalogues now and familiarize yourself with the Instagram shopping features in order to benefit your business and drive eCommerce sales.
What apps are you using to manage your social media channels? We recommend checking out these nine apps.