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8 Huge Mistakes That Are Hurting Your Sales on Instagram

Instagram is one of the best social media platforms to grow your business online. We previously wrote a full guide teaching you how to grow your home business using Instagram, so this time, we want to highlight some huge mistakes that might be hurting your sales.

After all, selling on Instagram is just as much avoiding pitfalls that prevent you from making serious coin as it is growing your followers. So if you’re ready to sell faster on one of the world’s favorite social media platforms, then keep reading.

Avoid These 8 Selling Mistakes on Instagram

1. Not adding a link in bio

Instagram only gives you one link to put on your profile—so if you’re not using it, you might be missing out.

Your bio link should be the place where people can learn about your business and check out your products. Ideally, your followers are able to place orders right away so there’s less friction between them going from interested buyer to actual paying customer.

(Screenshot from @michnleviplatters on Instagram)

If you don’t already direct your followers to the best place to learn more about your business and your products, you might just be missing out on some easy sales.

2. Not having the right captions

If you’re already posting product photos and marketing material, one of the biggest Instagram mistakes that are seriously hurting your sales is not writing great captions to support your photos.

One huge mistake is not adding a caption at all, but equally true is not writing a clear, compelling caption that makes users want to buy from you.

(Screenshot from @betterkneadsdoughnut on Instagram)

There are a lot of copywriting tricks you can start mastering no matter what stage you’re in with your business, but we enumerate some of the simplest ones here:

  • Keep it simple. Don’t feel the need to use big flowery words to impress customers—it might just turn them away!
  • Put yourself in your customers’ shoes. Ask yourself: if you were a potential customer, what would you want to know about this product or business? And what would make you buy?
  • Inject some personality. Your brand voice is one very important aspect of your business online. If you haven’t yet, take time to flesh out this voice and use it as a time to put some personality into your Instagram captions.

3. Not sharing good product photos

One huge Instagram selling mistake is thinking you need expensive equipment and product photography. 

Take it from us: you don’t need to have a professional camera to take some great product shots. In fact, you probably already have the best piece of equipment to get started—your smartphone!

Even if you don’t have a lot, make the effort to present your products in a beautiful way. Great photos can help potential customers see the best parts of your product, and even help them imagine what it’s like to have those products in their hands.

(Screenshot from @cocopandan.sea on Instagram)

It works like a virtuous cycle. The nicer your product photos, the more likely you make more sales. And the more sales you make, the more capital you have to invest in professional product photography down the road.

4. Using the wrong hashtags

Another big mistake that might be hurting your Instagram sales is using the wrong hashtags.

Because hashtags are such a big part of getting discovered on Instagram, you might just be missing out on new eyeballs that could potentially turn into sales.

The biggest mistake business owners make when choosing hashtags for their posts is using hashtags that don’t really match their business or products. While it’s tempting to use just any kind of hashtag, all because of its popularity, this doesn’t help your business at all. 

Because when you use hashtags that are too generic or unrelated to your business, you either won’t get seen by the right people, or your content never gets noticed at all because of the competition.

To avoid this mistake, make it a point to learn the best practices for finding and using hashtags on Instagram. Take time to search for relevant hashtags in your niche, and track your results as you go.

5. Not adding a CTA

We see this big Instagram mistake that hurts a lot of new business owners: not adding a clear call to action or CTA.

A call to action is exactly what it sounds like: an action you might call followers or viewers of your content to take with your post. 

There are several CTAs that work great for business. These all encourage people to buy from your business or engage with your brand—which can boost your chances of turning them into paying customers. 

Check out some of our favorite CTAs below:

6. Ignoring comments from your community

As you grow your Instagram account and business, you’ll likely get new people or fans of your product engaging with your account.

Potential customers or repeat buyers might leave comments and direct messages. Perhaps they ask questions, or they might just share their excitement about announcements around your business.

So one huge Instagram you have to avoid in this case? Ignoring those comments and direct messages, of course!

When someone in your community takes time to message or comment, mirror that effort by replying. 

For one thing, it shows you value your community enough to answer their queries. But it also might help other curious followers get answers to questions they didn’t ask you themselves.

The effort to respond to comments and direct messages might just be the reason you make more sales, especially when customers see that you go the extra mile.

7. Ghosting your account

We know running a business can be hard. You have to manage orders on top of the expectation to market your products—usually as a one-person show.

And while it is difficult to stay consistent on Instagram (social media isn’t your full-time job, after all!), a big mistake that could seriously be hurting your sales is ghosting your account.

When you don’t post often, or if you leave your account without a single recent upload, potential customers can get the wrong idea.

They might think you’re out of business or that you won’t respond and take their orders. Posting regularly is also the best way to share new promotions, products, and more with your followers.

As a start, give yourself the goal to post at least three times a week on Instagram. This can show you’re an active business, which goes a long way to making some sales.

8. Taking too long to process orders

The final big mistake that many business owners on Instagram make? Taking way too long to process orders.

If there’s a lot of time between a user inquiring about your products and you responding to take their order, that could result in some lost sales.

The shorter you keep your buying cycle, the faster you make sales. And on Instagram specifically, this means ditching clunky methods of taking and managing orders online. 

Yup, we mean it’s time to stop selling in the DMs.

Instead, the best alternative for taking orders in the DMs is to link directly to your online shop, so people can place orders while you sleep. 

With an ecommerce platform like Cococart, customers can see your entire product collection, place orders, and schedule pickup and delivery dates right away. The best part? They can send in their payments using local payment methods, reducing their chances of abandoning an order.

Instagram selling mistakes could be hurting your business. Here's how to avoid them.

Don’t hurt your Instagram sales

If you’re already making the effort to sell on Instagram, it’d be a shame to keep making the big mistakes that are seriously hurting your sales. Heed the advice from this post to make sure you’re making the most of your social media efforts, and start making more sales today.

And when you’re ready to stop slowing down your sales with a beautiful online store that makes it easy to buy right from your Instagram bio, then sign up for a free Cococart shop and launch your store in minutes.

Your Success is Our Success

Cococart is proud to be a company that puts local businesses first. After all, you’re the reason we’re here. We're on a mission to transform independent businesses to accept online orders. If you are ready to  sign up for a free trial simply register your store here, it only takes a couple of minutes.

Keep learning:

The Ultimate Guide to Grow Your Home Business on Instagram

How to Work With Influencers Without a Budget: A Small Business Guide

Make More Money With Less Customers: The Complete Guide

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