Should You Switch to an Instagram Business Account? Pros and Cons
If you already have a Instagram personal account and have been thinking about using it to promote your business, you may have wondered whether it’s worth changing it into a business account instead.
Each type of account has distinct features, and the kind that will work best for you depends on how you intend to use it. Below you’ll find the pros and cons of switching to an Instagram business account.
Instagram offers business profiles a powerful built-in analytics tool. Instagram Insights can tell you how your content and profile is performing, who your audience is, and many other valuable metrics.
These data points help you see what’s working well for your profile and what’s working less well, so you can hone your strategy to better meet your goals. Learn more about Instagram Insights and how they can help you with your Instagram marketing strategy in this post: What Exactly Do Your Instagram Insights Mean?
Promoted posts and advertising
Business accounts can pay to promote high-performing posts or advertise on followers’ feeds. The former is a great way to increase engagement and exposure, while the latter can help drive traffic to your site and increase sales.
Customers can shop in-app
In 2019, Instagram introduced an in-app checkout feature that allows customers to purchase items without ever leaving the app. There’s also a “Shop” tab on the Instagram Explore page where users can browse items for sale from their favorite brands.
Accounts need to meet certain criteria, have a connected Facebook page with a product catalog, and get approval before activating Instagram Shopping — but it’s definitely worth a try. You lose customers with every additional step in the checkout process, so this feature helps ensure that more customers complete the purchase.
Swipe-up links in stories
Verified accounts and business accounts with over 10,000 followers can add swipe-up links to their Stories. This is much more effective than asking followers to check the link in your profile, which is the only other way to link to an external site on Instagram. (However, if you can’t get verified and don’t have 10K+ followers, there’s a clever workaround — see our post How to Add Links to Instagram Stories to learn it.)
Instagram bios can only be up to 150 characters long. That’s not much, especially if you want your followers to be able to contact and find you easily. With a business account, you can add contact links: your phone number, email address, and directions to your business. Customers just tap the link to call, email, or find you.
Switching to a business account is free and super easy to do! You can always switch back to a personal account if the business one isn’t working for you.
Social media marketing is all about making personal connections, and the fact that your profile is a business account might be a put-off for some people. They might be less likely to engage with you if they know you’re trying to sell something.
Potential decreased visibility
Social media is first and foremost social. If users’ feeds get flooded with businesses touting their wares, people will get frustrated and spend less time checking out those accounts. Focus on making sure that your content isn’t overly promotional – if your business is creating quality and valuable content, your followers appreciate it and engage with it.
So should you switch?
Overall, for most businesses, having a business account is worth it. If you set aside an Instagram advertising budget, you can overcome the visibility issue with paid promotions. Having a less personal profile may be an issue, but if you’re using your account to promote your business, it’s more honest to be clear about it. There are few things more infuriating than making a new friend online only to discover that all they really wanted was to sell you something.
Still, there may be circumstances in which it’s better to keep your account personal. Only you know which of the advantages and disadvantages listed above are most significant for you.
How to switch to an Instagram Business account
If you decide to switch to an Instagram business account, follow these steps:
- Visit your profile and tap the hamburger menu on the upper right corner.
- Tap “Settings” at the bottom of the menu.
- Tap “Account.”
- Tap “Switch to a Professional Account.”
- Select “Business.”
- Follow the steps to connect your Facebook business page to your account. (You can skip this if you don’t have a Facebook business page, but we recommend creating one if you don’t!)
- Choose your business category and add contact information.
- Tap “Done.”
Remember, you can always switch back to a personal account if you want to. So if you’re still not sure, our recommendation is to make the switch and see how it goes!