When it comes to showcasing your brand and products, Instagram can an extremely powerful channel, but a lot of marketers simply aren't using the platform to its fullest potential when it comes to driving traffic to their websites.
Given the inability to post links in posts, your opportunities to drive direct traffic from Instagram are limited, which makes it difficult for businesses looking to guide their audiences to their owned sites. On the bright side, Instagram has always allowed users to have one external link in their bio, which makes it a prime location to encourage visitors to click-through to your website.
But rather than simply inserting your website’s homepage URL, you should be harnessing this link to help further your business goals. When you start thinking about using your Instagram profile to drive traffic, you’ll open up so many opportunities to grow your business - and the first place to start is with optimizing your bio link.
Here are three things to consider when strategizing on how to use your link in your Instagram bio:
1. Identify Your Business Goals
Since you’re only allowed one link in your bio, you want to make sure that it will convert, and help you reach your business goals.
The first step to optimizing your Instagram bio link is to think about what you want to achieve when people visit your profile. Do you want to improve sales? Build brand awareness? Grow your newsletter subscribers?
Once you have your goal in mind, you can identify which link will work best - for example, if you’re looking to grow your newsletter subscribers, you should link directly to a landing page where an Instagram follower can join your mailing list.
Check out how The Social School directs its followers to where they can sign up for a monthly workshop or webinar from their bio:
This is an effective way to drive followers to where they want them to go to help them meet their sign up goals.
Don’t run the risk of losing your audience by sending them to your website and praying they find your newsletter sign up form - the more targeted you can be with your link, the better it'll be for your business.
Similarly, double-check that every link you use in your bio works, and goes directly to where you promised your followers it would lead to. Nothing's more frustrating to a user than a broken link - you risk losing not only sales but Instagram followers as well.
2. Optimize Your Instagram Link in Bio
While your Instagram bio link is only a small part of what makes up your profile, it can be mighty if you optimize it.
Today, there are tools like Linkin.bio by Later which enable you to add links or tag products in Instagram posts to turn your feed into a clickable, optimized landing page.
That means that with Linkin.bio, each of your Instagram posts can lead your audience to specific pages on your website. By building this connection between Instagram and your branded website, you can help your audience to quickly and easily find the products or information they’re looking for while scrolling through your Instagram feed.
Once it’s set up, all you have to do is remind and guide your followers to click the link in your bio - a simple call-to-action from your posts’ captions and Instagram Stories often works well.
Lifestyle and news publication Well + Good has implemented an Instagram strategy to promote multiple articles per day from their profile. By optimizing the link in their Instagram bio with Linkin.bio, their Instagram traffic increased 179% year over year.
Instagram is, of course, developing its own tools for promoting items within images, and even videos, with its Shopping Tags recently expanded to Instagram Stories content, and it's coming Checkout option to facilitate in-stream buying.
These functions are still some time away from being rolled out to all users, however, so alternative means like Linkin.bio may provide a viable alternative for many businesses.
3. Focus on Your Instagram Bio and Post Content
Regardless of what your goal is, you want to make sure your bio copy is working hard to drive your followers to click that link.
Spending some time reviewing your bio copy will really pay off - one thing to think about when writing your bio is that although you only have 150 characters to play with, you should always include a strong call-to-action in your final line. This content will sit directly above the link in your bio, and you’ll want to direct your follower to click that link.
Social strategists are getting more creative on how to draw attention to that link - emojis have become a popular way to draw the eye down to the link, but some, like Huff Post, are using special characters, icons and alternative fonts to really make their bio stand out.
Similarly, as you plan your Instagram content for the future, think about integrating calls-to-action within your post captions and Instagram Stories text. You want to make sure you can seamlessly direct your followers to your bio to find out more.
A simple message at the end of your caption can make a real difference in driving traffic to your website and improving sales. Check out how WeWork uses emojis and a simple call-to-action to direct their followers to where they can get more info:
Whatever you choose, make sure your font, emoji use, and call-to-action message match your company’s branding, aesthetic, and tone of voice.
When it comes to driving traffic to your website, the link in your Instagram bio can be a real game changer, and it really doesn’t take a lot of time, budget, or effort to optimize your linking strategy to convert your Instagram followers into website visitor and customers.
An optimized Instagram bio link is often the missing key in transforming your Instagram profile into a powerful traffic driver for your business. So if you’re looking for a quick win to improve your website views, and boost sales, it’s time to update the link in your bio.