How to use Instagram Story features to Sell

Instagram Story Features that build engagement

Stories are like posts in that in order for the algorithm to share them further you want people to take action on them.

What I mean by that is on an ‘in feed post’ engagement counts as a like, comment, save or send. On an instagram story engagement counts as a reply to your story via a direct message or by interacting with one of the ‘engagement stickers’ listed below.

When it comes to getting engagement depending on how engaged your audience is you will want to start building engagement using the lowest barrier to entry to train them to take action.

I’ve listed them in the order that people are most likely to take action:


Emoji slider

This is a great way of getting people to quickly give their opinion on something, it defaults to the heart eyes but you can change the emoji on view.

Getting someone to simple swipe to say what they think is a great way to understand what your audience thinks so try using it to gather some simple market research on your audience.

And, bonus your stories will be gaining more engagement so the algorithm will share your content further.



Another fairly quick and easy way to quickly gain engagement from your audience is to do a simple poll. You can ask anything from do you prefer Tea/Coffee. Sweet/Savoury etc. and then build into more industry specific questions to gather more understanding and market research.

If you are using polls to connect with your audience rather than gather insights try using softer terms. Often people won’t take action on a poll if they think the response will offend someone so if you share a picture of your outfit for example. Instead of saying:

Do you like my outfit: Yes\ No


Do you like my outfit: Absolutely/Sure


You need to train your audience before you will get many responses from using this feature as you are asking quite a lot from them.

Often people are mindlessly scrolling so asking them to perk up and suddenly start thinking can be a tall order. But don’t let that put you off trying. A response to a question has the ability to start a Direct Message conversation which is the best place to start making sales.


This can be a fun way to get people to help you choose something, like which product to sell or put on sale whilst driving more engagement to your stories.

Getting your audience to feel like they are involved in your business often helps them feel invested in your brand which means they are more likely to buy from you.



Using the countdown feature draws on the psycology that people don’t want to miss out on something and the physical appearance of a clock counting down triggers that FOMO experience.

Next time you go to launch something or get new stock or put somehting on sale try using this feature.

People can choose to sign up to get alerts when the countdown ends.

But that isn’t the best part. You know that those people who have signed up to receive the alerts are what we call ‘red hot’ leads. They are the people who really want to buy from you so try having a conversation in your Direct Messages with them and build that like, know and trust factor a bit quicker.

Related Posts: (clicking on the links will open a new tab, so feel free to click on what you want to read next without losing this post)

How to get Instant Exposure and Social Proof on Instagram

The Follow/Unfollow Method: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

How to Host a Successful Giveaway


Usually this is reserved for those with over 10k followers but fear not there is a way around this.

But I can’t talk about making sales on Instagram without mentioning this feature as it is one of the most successful ways to get people to make a purchase.

It is notoriously hard to get people off of the app no matter how many times we ask them to head to the link in our bio so this feature takes that barrier away and allows them to temporarily leave the app to make a purchase before heading back into the app where they left off.

Now don’t worry if you don’t have 10k followers there are two ways to get the swipe up feature with out having that many followers.

Paying for your stories to be an advert allows you to direct people off of the app and if you create an IGTV video you can then get the Swipe Up to direct people to the video and in the description you can have a clickable link which again allows people to leave the app. This is slightly more long winded but definitely worth using if you don’t yet have enough followers


Tagging other users acts as a double whammy when it comes to getting sales through your stories.

Firstly it acts as instant social proof if you can tag a current or previous client. When your followers see other people trust you enough to buy from you it will increase the trust they have in your brand.

And secondly it allows that user to share it on their story too which means it raises more awareness and visibility of your brand.



Without the use of hashtags it’s extremely hard for your stories to be seen by anyone outside of your current followers, much in the same way your posts wouldn’t be seen.

You can add up to 10 hashtags in a story (you just need to type them in instead of using the hashtag sticker).

As opposed to the advice I usually give about using smaller more niche hashtags here is the place to go big or go home. Most people don’t take advantage of using hashtags in stories so the competition for large hashtags isn’t as fierce but you know that there is still a huge amount of traffic heading to them so make the most of it.


This is particularly useful if you are a location dependent business, tagging your location means you will show up in that locations story. But, don’t limit the location to just the area yo are. If you know your ideal client hangs out in a specific location or event tag that instead so when they are searching for that place you will pop up.


The rule of thumb I use is upload little and often throughout the day. If you struggle posting to stories or being on camera isn’t something you feel entirely comfortable with try uploading a Good morning post (a picture of your morning commute or cup of coffee) and a goodnight post (a meaningful quote always works well) and then challenge yourself to film just a minute of footage that is 4×15 second clips.

That is more than enough to build credibility and the like, know and trust factor and encourage your audience to buy from you.


What does that mean, using Instagram Story Features are a great way to instantly build a connection with your audience, build anticipation for your products or service and grow a following.

Using all the tools Instagram provides you, will help you grow, sell and connect!!

Related Posts: (clicking on the links will open a new tab, so feel free to click on what you want to read next without losing this post)

How to get Instant Exposure and Social Proof on Instagram

The Follow/Unfollow Method: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

How to Host a Successful Giveaway

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