For years, SMEs have had as little insight about their Instagram posts as the average user. But soon, they’ll be able to see just how well visuals are performing beyond basic likes and views.
Instagram is rolling out a number of new features to help businesses better understand which types of content are resonating with followers. With a new dashboard, businesses, brands and advertisers will be able to crunch impression, reach and engagement numbers, along with when/how users view posts.

Instagram’s goal is to help smaller businesses unlock organic insights, whilst priming them for advertising on the platform. The analytics tool itself is free, for the time being.

Businesses will be able to turn organic posts that are performing well into ads. With the feature, brands can select target audiences or allow Instagram to do the targeting on their behalf.

Instagram is also allowing brands to mark their profiles as businesses. These dedicated profiles will offer an extended description, along with information about how customers can reach out.

Instagram explained: “With a business profile, businesses can now choose how they want their customers to get in touch with them: call, text or email with the tap of a button. Business profiles also unlock access to insights and the ability to promote.”

There are now more than 200,000 businesses using Instagram for promotional purposes. According to Instagram, around half of its user base follow a business on the platform and even more say they’ve learned about products through Instagram.

The app has been steadily adding features for businesses. Earlier this month, it introduced video carousel ads, and a week later began letting retailers target users with ads based on items in their shopping carts.

Some have questioned whether it is actually worth making the switch at present, considering Instagram’s upcoming algorithm changes – the concern being that if you switch to a brand profile, your reach will automatically be limited because the algorithm will judge brand pages differently, whereas if you leave it as is, you may be able to better maintain the status quo.

If you have the option, will you make the switch to a business profile on Instagram? Do you need help building a solid social strategy? 

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