7 Profitable Instagram Ideas for Small Businesses

Social media can be a valuable tool for small businesses. Often bringing a more limited budget to the table, small businesses can be at a disadvantage vs. their larger, more deep-pocketed counterparts.

One social media platform that can help set your small business apart and help you stand out, even against bigger competitors, is Instagram. Throughout this article, we will look at how you can leverage the power of Instagram to affordably promote your small business.

What is Instagram?

Launched in 2010, last year Instagram celebrated 10 years of existence – 10 years that saw significant growth and an acquisition by Facebook. If you’ve used Instagram since its launch, then you know how far the app has come.

From being a platform where you could just post a picture along with a tagline to now being a platform where businesses promote, influencers influence, and money is made all around, Instagram has certainly come a long way.

Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms which is used by billions of users every day. If you’re still worried about the profitability and reach of Instagram, then here are a few real life statistics that highlight Instagram’s success and the success you can find by using the platform:

1.  Instagram is estimated to have more than 1 billion users worldwide in 2021.

2.  71% of the billion users that are active on Instagram are under the age of 35.

3.  People spend as much time on Facebook as they do on Instagram. Average user time is 53 minutes.

4.  More than 71% of business users use Instagram for business purposes.

5. More than 80% of businesses consider Instagram to be one of the most important engagement metrics.

6. Over 500 million Instagram users make use of stories everyday. Instagram stories are a feature that allows the user to upload stories in the platform for 24 hours after which they disappear.

7. More than 70% of Instagrammers decide to buy a product or service after they’ve seen an advertisement about it on Facebook and Instagram.

8. When compared to Facebook, Instagram can generate more than 4x times the interactions.

Why should you open an Instagram business account?

To really use Instagram properly for your small business, you’ll need to set up a business account. If you fail to do this, you’ll miss out on a number of important features that will help you leverage the platform to make your business grow.

There are many benefits to starting your own business account on Instagram. Let’s take a look.

Business account marketing benefits

Content which you publish on Instagram can be monetized and studied to reach maximum growth. Instagram statistics are dynamic and they keep changing constantly. Here are a few statistics to study when you want to use Instagram for your business purpose.

Paid advertising– When advertising on Instagram, you can advertise a post or video and decide how long you want to run a campaign for. You can run your campaigns for 5 days or for a month depending on your budget per post. As advertisers you should know what your goal is and where you want the traffic to reach. If your main focus is on profile visits, then select that. The next step would be to select your target audience. Keep this as accurate as possible; identify your key age group, then the area you want to focus on.

Insights – Insights are an inbuilt feature of Instagram that lets you study your pages followers and audience. Here are a few of the useful pieces info you can uncover using the insights tool.

1. Audience – This is where you can develop a deeper understanding of who follows your page. This can help you determine whether you’re reaching the right audience. Here are a few things you can check out here, based on users’ demographics: gender, age range, location, and most active time by time of day and day of the week.

2. Activity – Under this tab, you can look at things like the number of profile visits, how many visitors clicked on your bio link, the number of times users clicked your email, and a few other actions. This will allow you to see if your visitors are buying into the CTAs on your Instagram profile and taking the desired actions.

3. Content– This is a great place to gain an understanding of how your individual posts are performing. The insights here allow you to go back 2 years to compare a pretty lengthy review of content. You can analyze the performance of your posts by looking at things like profile visits, likes, engagement, follows, saves, impressions, and other stats.

How do Instagram Stories work?

If you use Instagram, you know how fun stories are. Instagram stories are visible for 24 hours after which they disappear forever. Stories are generally used to share thoughts, events, and content which you’ve liked and much more. You can use this platform to share content about your products, customers who’ve loved your products, your customers’ feedback, and a ton more. With stories, the possibilities are endless.

Social media is constantly evolving. What works today may not work tomorrow. In order for your business to be lucrative and effective, you’ll have to make use of all the resources which are available to you. Running a business and making money on Instagram is possible and in this article we’ll give you some profitable Instagram business ideas for you to consider and work on!

What types of business thrive on Instagram?

1. Social Commerce Sellers – If you already have a well established business then you can just start selling your product/service on Instagram by creating a business account/page. You can then add your product pictures online and ask interested buyers to DM (direct message) you on Instagram where you can start a conversation.

2. Food Lovers – If you are a foodie who loves exploring food in/around your city/country, you once you receive a considerable amount of followers you can become a food critic. Food critics on Instagram are bloggers who visit various restaurants and give an honest review of their menu and dishes. Many restaurants want to invite food bloggers for their menu tastings as it increases their restaurant’s visibility.

3. DIY Experts – Are you someone who loves creating art? DIY, or do it yourself, is the method of building, repairing or modifying things by yourself without any professional help. If you are into making candles, soaps, etc. you could use this platform to share some tips or life hacks with your followers. As you gain popularity, you can start collaborating with various brands and sponsors on various projects that enhance your visibility.

4. Graphic Design – If you are a graphic designer you can use Instagram as a platform to showcase your designs. When other people see your creativity they may resonate with your style of working and may potentially hire you to work for their brand on project/projects.

5. Animators – Animators are no longer just associated with cartoons. They’ve evolved so much in terms of the graphics and stories. It’s a whole new world of animators out there. Similar to graphic designing, you can use this platform to showcase your talent. You can use images or videos and promote yourself and then collaborate with brands who resonate with your style of working.

6. Fitness Coach – These days people are no longer going out on their usual walks/runs, to the gym or conducting other regular workouts. More and more people want to work out from home due to the pandemic. If you are a fitness coach, you can make instructional videos on YouTube and Instagram and use them to promote yourself. YouTubers have a serious potential of earning a lot of money when they use their skills right. You could then use Instagram as a platform and become an influencer.

7. Real Estate – Real Estate is a multi million dollar industry. You can use this platform to promote pictures and details of a property and then promote it. Interested buyers could DM or direct message you on Instagram to get the conversation started.

In Conclusion –

Social media tools are becoming more and more popular each day. It is a very powerful tool which should be treated with respect and made the most use of. There are many other industries or businesses you can start online, you just have to find the right one that suits you.

Pritam Nagrale
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2 thoughts on “7 Profitable Instagram Ideas for Small Businesses”

  1. All are great arguments for IG Business accounts, Pritam. I deleted the app for a break but plan to return eventually. Like any site, giving ourselves a pull back here and there recharges us for the long haul.


    • It’s definitely good to step back and refresh sometimes, Ryan. I have an IG account, but I definitely don’t use it to the fullest potential. I’m gradually working on a strategy to more effectively leverage that space.


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