How to Sell on Instagram Without a Website in 2023?
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How to Sell on Instagram Without a Website in 2024

06 June 2023 27 March ~ 7 min read 4986 views
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Claspo Blog How to Sell on Instagram Without a Website in 2024

How to sell on Instagram without a website? This query frequently arises for companies that have solidified their business ideas, manufactured initial product batches, want to unveil their brand to the public, and aim to go online but have yet to launch their primary communication channel. If you fall into this category, you are in the right space. 

In this article, you’ll learn whether you can sell on Instagram without a website, what steps you should take, and why substituting a website with a social media account forever is not prudent.

Can You Sell on Instagram Without a Website?

Instagram does not require retailers to have a website. So, if your website is still at the concept or development stage, you can build your e-commerce brand, study interest in your products, and develop a customer base in this mega-popular app. 

But before delving into how to set up an Instagram shop without a website, it is essential to remember that your social media account can’t replace a website.

1. Limited Options for Non-Site Owners

Instagram limits business opportunities for retailers without websites. If you read how to set up an Instagram shop without a website, you will find this is only possible with a business domain. Yes, you can still create a business account to sell your products (read below), but having an Instagram shop brings your company to a professional level via:

  • Product collections. Combining and showcasing your products by themes allows shoppers to find the desired items faster and more conveniently.
  • Shoppable posts. Adding product tags to photos and videos in your account enables shoppers to click on them and quickly proceed to explore and purchase.
  • Checkout. Setting up this page directly in the app simplifies the ordering process for both you and shoppers.

The Instagram Shop feature can bring retailers about a 42% increase in sales. So, if you sell on Instagram without a website on an ongoing basis, you can’t create one and, therefore, deprive yourself of a large share of the profit.

2. Credibility

Companies with ONLY a social media page are less trusted by 84% of shoppers. And there is logic behind it. Building a website requires more time, effort, and investment than creating an Instagram account. Therefore, a brand with a website is less likely to be a fly-by-night business or a scam. So, if you want to position yourself as a reliable store and have a long-term development strategy, think about a website. 

3. Visibility for Search Engines

Search engines are still the preferred way to find information for 86% of consumers, far ahead of social media and Chat GPT. If they have a problem or need a product or service, they will look for a solution on Google rather than Instagram.

By having a website, you can arm yourself with a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy and help more people find you through keywords and search engine queries. In contrast, selling on Instagram without a website limits your audience reach to Instagram users only, which can complicate your long-term growth.

4. In-Store Customer Journey

With only an Instagram account, you cannot influence shoppers' in-store behavior and provide them with a worthy personalized experience. In contrast, with a website, this is possible simply by using widgets.

Claspo allows you to create widgets for any marketing purpose, fit them harmoniously into the customer journey on the website, and successfully move visitors along your sales funnel:

  • Collect contact information to generate leads. Our subscription widgets are more visible and appealing than the link to the form in the Instagram bio. With Claspo, you can show it only to new visitors and stop displaying it to those who have already subscribed.
  • Prevent shoppers from leaving your online store. Your widget with a last-minute offer can appear once a shopper moves their cursor away to exit the site. It allows you to at least keep them on the page and, at most, motivate them to buy. Meanwhile, Instagram lacks this kind of trigger.
  • Boost sales globally. You can show personalized widgets to visitors from selected countries, regions, and cities. Also, configure the widget's language to dynamically change based on the shoppers’ browser language or the language selected on the website. This way, you reach an international audience, improve the customer experience, and increase the likelihood of a purchase. In contrast, Instagram allows you to geotag your posts, but they are still visible to all shoppers and available in the original language, which lacks the personalization shoppers expect.

This is just a tiny part of Claspo's superpowers aimed at improving your sales, customer relationships, and other KPIs. The best thing is that creating widgets in Claspo can be done without technical skills or even basic design knowledge. Therefore, once your website is ready, you can reinforce it with our widgets on the same day! And website creation can be simple and affordable if you choose a suitable CMS.

Explore Claspo’s advanced toolkit with a lifetime free plan

How to Sell on Instagram Without a Website: Step-by-Step Guide

How_to_Sell_on_Instagram_Without_а_Website_Step-by-Step_Guide

As you see above, the question of how to set up an Instagram shop without a website disappears since this sales tool requires a website from retailers. However, you can still start your business or move it online while your main online sales point is being developed.

1. Create a Business Account

If you want to sell on Instagram without a website, start by creating a business account, which will give you access to numerous handy features, including:

  • Add clickable links to your account with your email address or phone number to connect subscribers to you quickly.
  • Promote posts and launch paid advertising in the feeds of your followers and other Instagram users.
  • Get valuable insights about your audience, their interaction with your account, and the effectiveness of published content.

Setting up a business account to sell on Instagram without a website takes a few clicks:

  • Go to "Settings and privacy"
  • Choose "Account type and tools"
  • Click "Add new business account"
  • Indicate the desired business category
  • Enter the required details
  • Confirm and save the changes

2. Select a Way to Accept Orders

When choosing how to sell things on Instagram without a website, you are limited to two options - accept orders in person or use the order form.

Take Orders in Person

In this scenario, you invite shoppers to direct messages to place an order, clarify details, and pay. But as your business grows, it will become increasingly difficult for you to process requests from all shoppers, leading to long response times and possible loss of customers. This is another reason to create a website. With a separate checkout page, the customer can quickly complete the purchase without unnecessary delays and your help, which improves their experience and saves their time.

Provide an Order Form

You can create such a form using online order management software and allow Instagram users to place an order, choose a delivery method, and pay independently, saving you time. However, you can only put a link to the finished order form in your Instagram bio (read below). As a result, shoppers need to stop browsing your profile, remember all the products they want to buy, go to the Instagram bio, and follow the link to the order form. This is still a time-consuming and not very convenient process.

A website makes things easier. The shopper can view your products, add the ones they like to the cart, and proceed to the checkout page only when they have filled the cart with everything they need.

Claspo widgets on a website can lead shoppers to the checkout even faster. For example, a widget on the homepage could show your discounts and redirect them to relevant product pages. When the shopper has spent enough time on the page to study the details and features, your next widget with a countdown timer can remind them that the offer is time-limited and invite them to the checkout page via a clickable button.

See Claspo’s numerous templates for any business goal

3. Fill out Your Instagram Bio

Since your Instagram bio is at the top of the business account, this is your chance to catch the potential buyer's attention from the first seconds and show them that they have come to the right place. Its length is limited to only 150 characters, which can be spent on:

A good practice is to add keywords related to your products or services that will allow your audience to stumble upon your account while searching.

Another component is a link to any external resource. Remember, you can place ONLY one clickable link and ONLY in the bio. Therefore, if you choose to accept orders through the form in the previous step, your link limit is exhausted. But if not, you can link your email capture form or other communication channel here. When your website is ready, be sure to provide a link to it in your bio to drive more traffic and show your followers that product discovery and ordering are now more accessible.

In a perfect scenario, you need to add a call to action to draw attention to the link and motivate shoppers to follow it. But given the 150-character limit, you will likely have to choose between effective CTAs and other essentials for buyers.

4. Prepare Your Account for Shoppers

If you sell on Instagram without a website, your account is the main (and only) selling point. Therefore, ensure it is as convenient, helpful, and informative as possible to encourage shoppers to make purchasing decisions.

Instagram Highlights

You can't sort your product range by category in special product catalogs if you don't have a website. But! You can use Instagram highlights to create albums dedicated to each category or product. These highlights are stored between your Instagram bio and your posts. So shoppers can quickly find them on your profile without having to scroll.

First Posts

When creating your account to sell on Instagram without a website, fill it with several posts. Above all, Instagram is about visual content, so high-quality and varied images are of great importance. Besides, you can add business-related hashtags and location-specific geotags to these posts.

When choosing content for your first posts, consider ideas such as:

  • Photos of your products (the most obvious)
  • Photos or videos of your product being used in everyday life
  • Behind-the-scenes footage of your products being produced
  • A short video about your brand, its history, and values
  • Educational content on how to use the product for maximum benefit
  • A step-by-step guide on how to place an order in your business account

After adding your first posts, you can pin some of them to the top of your page to provide shoppers with quick access to them. You can choose posts with critical information (like how to place an order) or evergreen content (like production insights, which work well if you position yourself as a sustainable or cruelty-free brand).

Contact Buttons

Selling on Instagram without a website, you must constantly be in touch to promptly resolve problems and questions of potential buyers. Clickable contact buttons provide an additional opportunity to reach you and your support team via email, phone, or instant messenger. Setting up these buttons is easy:

  • Click “Edit Profile”
  • Select “Public business information”
  • Select "Contact Options"
  • Enter the required contact information
  • Save the information provided
  • Select “Profile display” in “Public business information”

5. Post Regularly & Engage Your Audience

The standard answer to how to sell on Instagram without a website is to update your feed regularly. This way,  you remind the audience about yourself and cultivate their interest in your brand.

How Often to Post on Instagram?

On average, business accounts post 1-2 posts per day. But in this case, consistency is more important than quantity. It’s better to post once every 3-4 days than to make 5 posts in one day and abandon your feed for a week. To maintain consistency, prepare a content plan for at least a month and implement it manually or using automatic posting tools.

What to Post on Instagram?

  • Feed posts. 41.7% of businesses fill their feed with photos, while 38.2% prefer videos.
  • Stories. More than 60% of business accounts use stories in their strategy, which is unsurprising because about 500 million users actively watch them.
  • Reels. This type of content demonstrates 22% more interaction than regular videos in the feed, and 60% of users admit that reels helped them discover new products.
  • Carousel. Carousel posts are actively used by more than 60% of brands and have 3 times higher engagement rates than other feed posts.

If the carousel shows promising results for your business while selling on Instagram without a website, you can use a similar tool on your website. Claspo allows you to create a slider widget and display unlimited images as a slideshow. It is an excellent opportunity to show off your bestsellers, discuss your loyalty program, or provide a step-by-step guide to using a product.

Slider_anim

How to Boost Your Instagram Strategy?

  • Use hashtags. 66% of businesses use hashtags to reach and attract an audience, and more than 130 million users willingly use shopping-related hashtags for searches.

The primary rule is to maintain a balance between popular and product-related hashtags. The former gives you greater reach, while the latter brings you a more interested audience. To choose hashtags for your posts, you can study those used in your industry and your competitors. To save time, you can also turn to Chat GPT for help.

  • Add geotags. It is a great practice if your business has offline sales points in certain cities or countries. This way, you help local shoppers find and learn about you faster. In particular, posts with geotags show 79% more audience engagement.
  • Arm yourself with user-generated content. If you sell on Instagram without a website, you cannot create a separate page with testimonials and reviews of your products. At the same time, your potential customers need to know the emotions and impressions of those who have already tried your brand to decide to buy. Therefore, displaying user-generated content in your feed is an excellent solution because it has a 70% better engagement rate than brand-generated posts.

6. Promote Your Business Account

In fact, by applying all the tips from the previous step, you are already promoting your business. But the following two methods will be excellent additions if you are ready to allocate a specific budget for your promotion.

Influencer Marketing

Instagram is considered the most popular platform for promoting businesses through influencers. The statistics speak for themselves: about 500,000 influencers are active on Instagram, 55.4% of users follow at least one, and 69% say that influencers bring them an interested and ready-to-buy audience.

Therefore, one of the secrets of how to sell on Instagram without a website is to enlist the support of an influencer who will introduce your brand and products to their audience and thus bring potential buyers to your business account. When choosing this method of promotion, remember two basic rules:

  1. Contact influencers only after studying your audience through Instagram analytics tools. Knowing their demographics and interests lets you choose an influencer whose audience matches yours and whose content appeals to your potential buyers. Only in this case will your investment in influencer marketing pay off.
  2. If you are a start-up business that sells on Instagram without a website, do not strive to cooperate with celebrities with an audience of millions. It is better to choose micro-influencers (approximately 5,000-40,000 followers). Many of them create sales-oriented content without breaking the bank. You can invest the money you save to develop and promote your website and improve your online presence and audience reach.

Instagram Ads

Regardless of whether you sell on Instagram without a website or with it, advertising on Instagram can bring a broader target audience reach and, as a result, increase your sales. To run it:

  • Connect your Instagram business account with your Facebook page to access Instagram Ads Manager.
  • Select a pre-prepared post you want to promote (your offer, unique selling proposition, etc.).
  • Specify the goal of the ad. It could be increased brand awareness, improved engagement, or motivation to perform a targeted action (visit your business account, contact you, etc.).
  • Select the desired ad format. According to statistics, video ads have a higher level of engagement than image ads, and ads in stories show a higher completion rate (the number of people who completed your goal) than ads in the feed.
  • Specify the audience for your ad. You can select the "Automatic" option, and then Instagram will show ads to users with characteristics similar to your followers. Alternatively, choose the "Create your own" option, where you fill out the profile (that is, the main characteristics) of the audience yourself.
  • Determine the budget and duration of the advertisement. After an initial analysis of the results, you can evaluate its effectiveness, make adjustments, and decide whether to extend or terminate it.

7. Use Analytics to Improve Your Strategy

In-app analytics provides valuable insights about your business account's performance and thus gives you prompts on how to sell on Instagram without a website further. By studying this data, you can understand your followers' typical portrait and engagement level and determine what content (messages, format) resonates best with them. It gives you a data-driven foundation for adjusting and enhancing your content strategy.

When you are a proud website owner and want to improve its efficiency with Claspo, you can also track widget performance in real-time. Moreover, by choosing Claspo, you can A/B test your widgets and determine which ones bring the best results and why. It will allow you to optimize your website strategy and turn as many visitors as possible into customers.

Opt for a free lifetime plan & try out Claspo’s sales-boosting toolkit

Why Sell Products on Instagram?

Having received a comprehensive answer to the question "Can you sell on Instagram without a website?", it's time to figure out why to do this. 

Given the limited selling options for companies without websites, you might think that creating an account before launching your primary communication channel doesn't make sense. But that's not true. Instagram can still lay the foundation for your business and help you build valuable assets before your website is ready.

Ensure Online Visibility

53% of consumers search for information through social media. Yes, this percentage is still lower than that of search engines, but you should pay attention to it. Using the right hashtags and geotags can help the audience find your business online even before launching an SEO strategy on your website.

Present Your Brand to the Public

62.3% of Instagram users research brands and their products, and 90% follow at least one business account. Therefore, by filling your profile with informative and valuable content, you can introduce your target audience to your company and interest them in your products.

Discover Sales Opportunities

44% of users shop on Instagram regularly. Some buy immediately after finding the desired product, while others collect information for future purchases. Both scenarios are good for you. If you manage to interest your account visitors, catchy posts and targeted advertising will sooner or later help lead them to a purchase. Instagram users are open to shopping, and your task is to motivate them to buy from you.

Build Long-Term Relationships

2 out of 3 consumers say Instagram helps them develop meaningful relationships with companies. Thus, if you focus on regular posting and quality customer service in your business account, you can build a client base and loyalty to your brand. Once your website is ready, loyal customers will be eager to click through to get more information and, of course, make purchases.

Summing up the topic "Do you need a website to sell on Instagram?" it is essential to add that these platforms are not substitutes. Rather, they perfectly complement each other. Since customers prefer to interact with a brand through several touchpoints, using multiple communication channels will enhance your business results. In particular, the omnichannel strategy increases customer lifetime value by 3.4% and improves customer retention by 91%.

Instagram + Website: Grow with Claspo

Selling on Instagram without a website is possible and even necessary to start promoting your brand, building a community of followers, and driving first sales before launching your website. And once this happens, Claspo will help you support your omnichannel strategy.

With Claspo, you can create a widget that invites website visitors to follow you on Instagram and quickly redirects them to your business account via a clickable button. This way, you will continue to grow your Instagram community and develop your social media strategy even after you have a website.

Stretching_Time

But that's not all! With Claspo, you can also display personalized widgets for those users who came to your site from Instagram. For example, your website has just launched, and you want to motivate followers to place orders there. Offer them a discount on their first purchase and invite them to your website through a link in the Instagram bio to complete it. When they get to the site, the Claspo widget can greet them with a message like: "Exclusive deal for the Instagram community!", provide a discount promo code, and redirect them to the checkout page. 

Result? You maintain a consistent and personalized customer experience across channels, stimulate and simplify sales through your website, and gradually train the Instagram audience to use your main online asset.

While your website is in the "coming soon" stage, you can create a free Claspo account, explore our extensive template library, and choose widgets to enhance your online strategy.

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