How to Share Links on Instagram

Navigating the world of Instagram can get a little complicated. But, when you’re trying to grow a brand, it can be even harder. 

If you are searching for methods to get more visitors to your website from Instagram, you’ve come to the right place. This article will guide you through the dos and don’t and some simple tips on how to place links on Instagram so that you can make the most of your Instagram experience to benefit your business.  

1: Place a Link on Your Bio

Placing a link on your Instagram bio is a must. While this may seem obvious to some, many don’t know how to do it. Since your bio is the only area on Instagram where you can place a clickable link, you will want to learn how to do this properly. 

This will be your base link. Although there are many methods of sharing clickable links, those ways focus on a more definitive group of people. Your bio link is aimed at those who go directly to your Instagram profile. 

There are many different theories on how to do this. You can always link directly to a mobile website and call it good. Others prefer to update their bio link more often and guide users to their post content. 

However, there is a slight problem with updating the link more often. It is impossible to handle older posts. For example, if anyone discovers an interesting post from months ago and decides to visit your bio to find more information, they will discover a link that doesn’t pertain to the post that interested them in the first place. 

But, the situation isn’t hopeless. This is where the Instagram stories come in handy. You can share short term links in these stories. And, if the links need to be available for a longer time, the stories can be saved as permanent highlights with clickable links. More on sharing links in stories will be covered later in this article.  

If you are not able to use story links, there is yet another option. One steady bio link can be used to share many different types of subject matter through link services. 

2: Showcase Various Links With a Link Service

Link services were most commonly used when marketers first discovered the usefulness of Instagram. Although the amount of use dropped for a while, they are now used more often and have come back with the improvements of extensive design capabilities and effortless user experience. 

There are varied formats available. The most common link service is very similar to Linktree. Your followers are given a list of clickable buttons. These buttons are strategically placed to guide the user where you want them to go. They can lead to recent blog posts and activities, among other things. 

You should be sure to pick a design and colour theme that goes with the general appearance of your Instagram content so that users don’t surrender their confidence in your brand when they see two things that contrast too much. Never give them a reason to doubt. 

Another option is to select a service that appears more like an original Instagram encounter. In contrast to clicking on text buttons, your users would be given an Instagram type photo grid. If they were to hit the picture of the post that first interested them, the link service would guide them to the applicable page on your website. 

Other providers, such as Later’s Linkin.bio, also provide links for video and photo carousels. They will even sometimes include Shopify integrations. 

It should be noted that photo grids can sometimes be data killers. It may help to see that the link service you select operates on many different mobile devices and that the links all work. 

3: Use IGTV Descriptions to Strategically Place Links

Video is very popular on social networks like Instagram and Facebook. For this reason, there are more link opportunities on IGTV than there are for posts that contain videos. 

Every one of your IGTV posts can have a clickable link in the description. The users need to interact more with these types of posts. To see the details and make the link/links visible, they have to click on the description. So, you want to inform users about the link when you make your video. 

Instagram doesn’t place any prerequisites on using IGTV links. They are available to all types of accounts, no matter if they don’t have 10,000 followers. 

Several things need to be considered before you decide to use IGTV links. Coming up with ideas for videos takes time. Production costs may add up quickly. Is it worth it? Since it could be costly, you should consider if you will make enough money from the IGTV posts to cover these costs and to make a profit. 

If you don’t think you will profit, you may want to consider sticking with other effective link strategies. 

4: Make the Most of Your Instagram Stories

Live links can be added to some Instagram stories. These stories are short-lived, so they can be a wonderful avenue to place links in new posts or to posts that are urgent. Examples of this would be flash sales, giveaways, seasonal events, and promotions that are time-limited. Using them for question and answer sessions is another option. 

You could also use the swipe-up links to save stories in the highlights section of your profile. It will place the story in storage for you in the middle of your bio and photo grid. These highlights can be used as a sort of storage for content such as best-selling products, frequently asked questions, and past posts that can give new followers and idea of what they may not have seen. 

Stories only play for 15 seconds. This doesn’t give users very much time, so make sure your intent is very clear with the time you are given. Here are some tips on how to maximize the limited time:

  • Assert your See More link by utilizing the pen tools and highlighter. 
  • GIFs and stickers are wonderful tools that can help direct users to the link. They can also be used to let people know about any new posts. 
  • You could get creative and take a picture, or even a video, of someone on your team pointing to the link. This would attract more attention. 

Be warned that Instagram curbs story links. If you don’t have more than 10,000 followers or a verified account, you won’t be able to use this feature. 

Instagram seemingly controls story links in this way because they prefer that follower counts be prioritized. 

A high quantity of followers is important for many brands to succeed. But sometimes, it is more beneficial to concentrate on sales. 

If you don’t have access to swipe up links, don’t worry. You can utilize shared posts, strategic screenshots, and good graphics to guide your followers to links in other places. 

And, don’t forget that you can use internal links, too. Stories can be added that link to your posts, IGTV, and profile. This feature is also useful to link to other posts, stories, and even other’s profiles that you may deem important. It is possible to double the number of active links accessible by banding together with another brand or influencer during a promotion. 

5: Make the Most of Links in Instagram Post Captions

Even though clickable links aren’t able to be shared in Instagram photo post captions, the captions are still very useful. They can be used to provide sneak peeks of your subject matter and attract the attention of the users. Another tip is to use them as a way to broaden your scope with creative hashtags. 

Here are some tips to best benefit from post captions for Instagram links. 

Shorten Your Link

There are services available to shorten your links to be more user-friendly. Bitly is a service that could make your links easier to copy and remember. It would also help to tailor your link for your brand and subject matter. But, it does call for more work from users, so consider that. It is best to use it more for top content and links where you are trying to attract a certain type of person. 

Make Sure to Have Clear-cut Instructions 

Make sure your users know if links are being used in your bio or your stories. Be clear. It is always a good idea to post directions to your live links and to add a shortened link so that the users can copy if they want to. In your posts, you could refer to your story if you have a link there. 

Utilize UTM Tags to Gather Info

Another important aspect of the whole process is called attribution. Instagram Insights keeps track of the traffic on your profile. They know how many users check your bio link and how many looks at the story links. But if you prefer to have more accurate data, you can set up UTM tags. 

These UTM tags can be used to keep tabs on how prosperous the individual links are with Google Analytics. Many resources are available on how to set up a UTM. Your work is simplified by many automated UTM services that will do the majority of the hard work. One tool that won’t cost you a dime is called Campaign URL Builder. This resource is from Google Analytics Demos & Tools. It can be used to make campaign URLs with UTM tags. 

This simple outline can help you:

  • utm_source=Instagram
  • utm_medium=social
  • utm_campaign=[whatever you would like to share]
  • utm_term=[keywords or user categories for sponsored posts]
  • utm_content=[this tag can be used to contrast conversion rates with other links on Instagram.]

6: Use Shoppable Posts and Stories to Make Links 

Posts used for shopping are a great illustration of highly specific links. One product is linked to a shopping tag link. These tags are the most precisely focused conversion. 

This article has focused on Instagram. But here, Facebook also comes into play. To start using shopping tags, you can begin by making a product catalog on Facebook. When you have a large variety of products (you should include pictures, good descriptions, and the shopping links), you can then begin putting the shopping tags on your Instagram posts. 

Once you do this, your profile should have a Shopping tab, too. It will be near the usual tabs of your profile grid, tagged photos, and individual photos. By hitting this tab, users can access your catalog. 

Even though the Shopping tab features items in a standard photo grid, your users will be able to click to shop. They can choose to save items like they would save a standard post, or they can click to shop right away. 

Instagram provides you some extra help with Instagram Insights. This feature lets you see the interaction on your shopping posts. It can also be used to contrast other shopping posts. This is measured by considering factors like interaction, impressions, or what people have saved from your content. 

However, shopping on Instagram will not increase attribution to product links. You certainly will want to try placing UTM tags to links in your catalog. 

Brands are now adding a feature that allows shoppers to make their purchases directly on Instagram. The trial version of this in-app shopping has become available to more brands. 

When buyers can make their purchases in-app, this gives Instagram a better handle on data. They also could make more money. For these reasons, brands should be prepared for changes to the shopping tag features. 

7: Consider Paid Promotion

If you have an Instagram business profile, it is possible to pay a fee to publicize stories and posts. Clickable links can be added to the captions of these promoted posts. Because you are paying for them, Instagram allows it. 

Make sure you adhere to the rules for ads. The links should pertain to the post and story where they are added. If clicking the link sends people to irrelevant places, it isn’t worth your money. 

You should consider the conversion you want. You may want to publicize a shopping post or teach users more about your brand. Every intent calls for a different design. There should be a nice harmonization with a post design that is attractive and a very discernible call to action. 

8: Use Direct Messaging to Your Advantage

Many brands don’t consider the use of Instagram DMs. Be sure to check for new messages daily. You may have requests, questions, and stories waiting for you. 

Direct messaging can be extremely useful to boost current customer relationships and develop new ones. Interact with them. No one else sees these messages, so it can make your customers feel as though you are personalizing their customer experience and paying attention to them. 

A practical example of utilizing this gem of a feature would be to send a message to new followers to let them know you appreciate their presence and to offer assistance. This could become time-consuming if you gain followers rapidly. 

Thankfully, Instagram offers another feature called quick replies. This is very simple to set up. You will find it if you go to your Settings and click on the Business button. All you have to do is type out whatever message you would like. It is best to select a keyword to be able to search out the needed reply quickly when the time comes. 

Active links can also be included in quick replies, as well as in regular messages. When a customer asks about something specific, you can add the link for what they are asking about. With new followers, you can be sure to begin with an automatic lead-nurturing campaign. 

Direct messaging can be used to get great leads when you question your new followers about their needs. You could also offer something like a discount for newcomers. This could draw more people to respond. 

Pay attention to user stories. You can initiate conversations with them when you react. It can be beneficial to provide tips for them, as well. 

Extra: Use Your Instagram Profile to Place Action Buttons

While some Instagram business profiles don’t have story links, all of them are able to utilize profile action buttons. These buttons can be placed on your profile and can be used for many different things. It will also make more room in your bio. 

The buttons can be used for:

  • E-mail
  • Reserve
  • Call
  • Book
  • Text
  • Directions
  • Start Order

You can also add buttons for several partners with whom Instagram allows integrations. These buttons are links that are associated with a designated action. Some of these partners include Yelp, GrubHub and EventBrite. 

In order to be successful in all of this, you must decide carefully what the goals of your business are and observe your audience. The actions you take with your profile will determine the people it attracts. 

Customize your profile for your audience. If you don’t want to receive their calls, you can certainly delete that option. You want to take advantage of the links, but be sure to use relevant links. 

It should be noted that buttons are only seen in the mobile app. They aren’t visible on the desktop. 

Instagram Creator Profiles

At the beginning of 2019, a new kind of profile was announced by Instagram. They are called creator accounts. Right now, they can be used in beta and only by accounts with a follower count of more than 10,000.

The Call, E-mail, Text, and Directions profile buttons that are accessible to business users are also available to creator accounts. While they are able to make shoppable posts, they can do this solely with an association to the product catalog of a business profile. 

There are also independent inboxes for messages to be used by close friends and fans. You can also access certain insights from your audience. 

While the features abound, others are lacking. API connections for third-party tools are not available, thus scheduling and external analytics are not an option. 

If your preference is to exist as an independent brand, you may want to consider a business profile. 

Conclusion

With all of the features and amazing opportunities that Instagram offers, one could become quite spoiled. The upkeep is minimal, as the platform often does the majority of the work for you. It can be an amazing tool, as it seems to consistently grow in audience usage. But just like most things in life, it also tends to change rapidly. 

Learning how to share links on Instagram hasn’t always been an easy task for marketers. Instagram seems to continually test new methods. Other methods are discarded or diminished. This has made it somewhat difficult to keep up with the Instagram marketing trends. 

Other platforms often make link sharing very simple. The process for E-mail and private websites is normally as easy as placing the link and waiting for others to click on it. Instagram is different.  

It isn’t possible to place one CTA in a single space, so it can be harder to add clickable links. You will have to find a way to construct a connection of links and directions that complement each other. No matter which area of your Instagram networking people visit, conversion should be visible. 

If you place a link in your bio, many users may not realize it’s there without a little help from you. The captions you post, your stories, profile buttons, and ads all help to point them in the right direction. Cross-posting from other networks will also help them. 

It is necessary to know how to properly navigate the world of Instagram. You can learn to use every way possible to your advantage as you direct users to conversion. So many options are at your fingertips just waiting to be used. 

The information provided in this article was up to date as of June 2019. Since Instagram is continuously evolving, you may want to check into additional features that may become available.