If you thought you were the only one setting a daily time limit for Instagram, think again. More than 400 MM people are swiping through their Instagram stories alone—easily doubling Snapchat’s 191 million. And of those getting their daily fix of the gram, 8 out of 10 users are following at least one business account.

Layla Amjadi, Instagram’s Product Manager says, “People consistently cite that one of their favorite things to do on Instagram is to shop”. As users find different ways to shop, Instagram continues to make it easier for consumers to make purchases in the app.

From product awareness, purchasing holiday must-haves, and identifying user insights—here’s how businesses are tapping into their customer base this holiday season.

Shopping in Stories

Instagram shopping in stories

ICYMI, Instagram first began testing Shopping in Stories earlier this year. Shoppers on Instagram are savvy and the window of alluring your audience’s thumb is short. With one-third of the most-watched Stories coming from a business, users can quickly tap on a product to learn more.

Shopping Collections

Instagram shopping collections

Shopping Collections is a great way for users to save and purchase those must-have products! Scrolling through their Feed or Story, simply tapping a product tag allows users to save to their Shopping Collection. Think Pinterest boards. Ideal for users crafting their holiday wish list and because users can revisit their saved items directly from their profile, it’s the gift that keeps giving.

Now that you know and ❤️ the organic collections experience—monetize this for your holiday campaigns. Facebook’s new ‘Instant Experience’ ad unit is seamless to use. Featuring a curated collection of products that lead the viewer from curious to converted.

Shopping in Feed Videos

Instagram shopping in Feed Videos

You’ve just created a must-see behind the scenes video of your latest winter clothing collection. Or your influencer content involves a video of how they use your product. Insta’s got you. Users can now shop through videos by tapping on the shopping icon, similar to an image post.

Side note: Did you know by 2019, video content will be the driving factor behind 85% of search traffic?

Shop on Business Profiles

Instagram shopping on business profiles

An opportunity for business profiles to showcase their shoppable posts in one place. While Instagram is currently testing a redesign of the Shopping tab, brands can display product info within their profile including the post feature image, description, and price.

Create an Emotional Connection

While Instagram has been busy creating e-commerce opportunities, they haven’t neglected their ability to pull on our heartstrings with storytelling.

Depending on your objective, it’s always fun to interact organically with your audience. It’s also a great way to gain insight into your creative and what resonates best. Does your messaging evoke conversation? Is your customer interested in what you have to say? Here are two ways Instagram is adding a layer of emotional connection is through the emoji slider and the FAQ feature.

Instagram: Emoji Slider

01. The emoji slider

Similar to the poll feature, you can now offer a level of reaction via emoji. The feature not only offers an interactive component for your audience it provides you with further customer insight.

Instagram: faqs

02. Frequently asked questions

The more you know about your audience, the more likely you are to connect with them. Try asking your audience what they like or what they want to see more of? Furthermore, a great way to have added content, by responding to their questions and then adding them into your Insta highlights.

The holidays are the busiest and most crucial time of year for businesses, but there are simple ways to sleigh. Prospect for new customers who are looking for holiday inspiration—fill Instagram Stories and Feeds with sugar-plum-sweet creative.

And don’t forget that 80 percent of IG users follow a brand by choice. If that’s you, tell a fun and engaging brand story through your organic profile. Contact one of our campaign experts to learn how you can make the most of your holiday budget.