It’s become easier to run a successful business thanks to social media. Facebook seems okay but Instagram leads the way. One no longer needs to have a physical store but an awesome online presence. Yay!
On the flip side, I get frustrated at how people run their stores. Yes, it’s Instagram, but it has the potential of attracting thousands of customers.
The first and last time I bought a dress from an Instagram store left a bad taste in my mouth. The colors didn’t match, the size was all wrong and they didn’t even take their time to iron the damn thing. The dress was wrinkly argh!!
1. DM for Price
I’m sure you’ll agree with me on this. You see a nice item on sale, you love it, you want it, but you have to ask for the price because it wasn’t indicated. What follows next is a “DM for price.” What do you mean, “DM for price?” Do you know what it would be like if you went to a supermarket and after picking out few items there’s a “ask for price.” That’s exactly what you’re saying. What a turn off. Stop telling people to DM for prices, why the secrecy?
2. Poor quality images
Instagram is more about aesthetic. Poor quality pictures and videos are a no-no. These are not attractive enough to have someone buy from you. If I have to strain or ask to have the item described in detail then you’ve already failed. Poorly taken pictures get passed by more times than anything else.
3. Already sold out? How?
SOLD OUT right after posting baffles me even today. How is an item you posted 3mins ago already sold out? It makes no sense. Was that the only one you had? If several people want an item, have it in plenty. If it’s the only one or maybe two, let people know. Stop wasting their time.
4. Wrong labels
Labeling the sizes wrong is something every customer hates. Calling it medium or small is never the answer. Please get to know the sizes both in UK and US measurements. Take for instance, this guy who bought a healthy green juice online. What he received was about three tablespoons of juice instead.
5. Zero information about a product
Not adding details of an item e.g., material used or its ingredients. I know a picture is worth a thousand words but, how the hell is one supposed to know what fabric the dress or shirt is made of? More information about your products gives potential customers an idea of what to expect. Make videos if possible.
6. Expectation vs Reality
A different item from the picture is where expectation doesn’t meet reality. It’s disappointing when a client buys a product that looks, taste or feels different than the showcased item.
7. Reservation culture
Forgive me for being naive but, I legit thought when it comes to business it’s a first come, first serve basis. Often times I’ve seen people run their stores with a booking system. This involves paying half the amount for a product. The other half is paid on delivery.
This is how one quietly kills their business because after a while, other customers get used to “booked.” This in turn makes them look elsewhere for similar products
8. Late replies
Being active on your Instagram store also involves answering questions from potential buyers. Engagement is everything even if it’s just saying hello.
On the other hand, replying late to questions shows poor communication skills. Try and imagine a customer looking to buy an item in a particular color. You only get to answer him/her a day later. Do you think he/she would still be interested in buying? Hardly.
Now that we’ve cleared that up. Here’s what you should do if you run an Instagram store
Get a website, an online store where potential buyers can browse through your products and services. Having an instagram store is more than just running an account. Your online store will give buyers an idea of what to expect when they buy. Any terms and conditions you may have can also come in handy. Information about your delivery costs and conditions helps buyers decide on a plan.
Or… am just putting it out there, get a Shopify store. It’s easy to set up, has plenty of benefits and costs about 900sh per month to operate.
Lastly, but most importantly, buy your items in bulk unless you’re making them by hand. No excuses this time.
Do you do your shopping online? What’s your experience like?
This lazy panda loves Swahili Pilau and spicy kebab