Starting an online clothing store is something we often see on Instagram but rarely successfully executed. A significant reason for this is that most overlook designing their social experience from the ground up, beginning with what someone will see when they first visit your page to them getting to your website on checkout. That’s why we’re going to go over a few tips on how to launch your store, so it’s Instagram-ready. Check them out below:

Focusing On What You Stand For

One of the most significant parts of starting a clothing store that resonates on social is first knowing just what exactly you’ll be socializing about. While on a practical level your main purpose will be to pick clothes, photograph them, and try to sell them through your Instagram on an online shop, unfortunately, there are plenty of other stores trying to do the same. That’s not to say it isn’t a good idea, however, it’s important to know how what separates you from the crowd, which starts with what you stand for.

A big part of knowing what you stand for is first knowing what the core of your belief system is. To establish this, most companies write a brand mission, statement, or mantra, which is an outline of the core reasons why they’re in business in the first place. This statement is something a lot of customers seek out first; as noted by Vision Critical, 91 percent of customers want to follow brands they consider to be authentic in their posts. Take the time to map out your values as a clothing store, as this will guide your content.

Giving Yourself A Brand

Once you’ve established your core values, it’s time to weave those into a cohesive brand. This is part science, part storytelling, as it primarily deals with taking these core ideas and translating them in a way that someone can immediately understand what you’re offering. For example, color increases brand recognition by 80 percent, which is why when you think of “burnt orange” or “lime green,” most likely a brand is one of the first associations you make that. Capturing and accomplishing that tone for your company is imperative, which begins with bringing your brand to life.

While that might sound like hyperbole, successful brands are living, breathing things. After all, as we can identify the personality of say Patagonia or the NFL without ever really diving too deep into them, your clothing company needs to figure out its personality. Is it dark and rich overtones? Light, natural and comforting colors? Whatever the case may be, it’s wise to do a brain dump to sketch out your ideas and further bring this thing to light; because although the perfect brand may not come overnight, it’ll eventually become clear as you cut down to your values.

Knowing How To Engage

With a brand established and core values set, it’s time to hop on Instagram and showing the world your product. It’s important to make yourself look presentable before you begin posting. This includes strategies such as posting enough clothes that your page is full as well as constantly having your story running with new inventory, especially as you get started. As Instagram is one of the best platforms for something like selling clothes, it’s also one that’s highly competitive, which is why you should learn all the in’s and outs.

The trick to long-term growth is to keep your outreach consistent. As noted by Social Bakers, since Instagram’s last update, brands with regular posting have seen an increase in engagement by 105 percent. When doing the normal hashtagging and geotagging, this shows it can be worth the repetition. It’s also a wise idea to bring on an Instagram engagement team; they’re great at getting you genuine interaction, so your brand looks prominent. Although creating a well-rounded mix of strategies can seem a little overwhelming at first, through time, coming up with ideas and executing them will become much, much clearer.  

Creating Action

Finally, with all my content set in stone, it’s time to get some cash rolling into our store. The biggest consideration with this is creating what’s called a call-to-action, or an actionable for someone to go from Instagram to your store. This is a pretty important factor in social selling because as noted by Protocol80, in a study on Facebook posts, adding CTAs to the copy increased behavior by 285 percent.  Accomplishing that consistently could help your store reach monumental success, but first, you’ll have to learn how to construct CTAs without coming off as too sales-like.

If you’re not familiar, CTAs are usually statements like “Getting ready for fall? 25 percent off sweaters, today only, link in our bio”, where the action is the link, the rationale of the discount, and the scarcity of the short time frame. Those three factors in combination make for a pretty strong CTA; however, these also need to be brand specific. The best in social will usually tell you that even in writing sales copy, the brand voice still needs to shine through, which the guidelines we wrote above should give you a cursor on how to refine this strategy. As Call-To-Action strategies can be tough, they’re also one of the most important aspects to generating sales, so take your time in constructing messages that you, yourself, would act upon.

What are you most excited about in launching an online clothing store? Comment with your answers below!