How To Use Instagram To Boost Your Website Traffic

How To Use Instagram To Boost Your Website Traffic

Food as art. That’s one of the benefits of Instagram.

With nearly 60 million photos posted on Instagram daily, and about 89 million active users in the United States, it’s time you started using Instagram for your restaurant.

Like restaurants nationwide, you can harness the power of Instagram to build your brand and boost engagement.

If you’re like many people, you may not be as familiar with Instagram as you are with Facebook or Twitter. What sets Instagram apart is its ability to start a visual conversation. Instagram is all about the great-looking photo.

We’d like to talk about how to use Instagram to boost your website traffic. We’ll look first at some best practices for Instagram and then dive into the marketing possibilities for driving visitors to your website.

How to Use Instagram

Since Instagram is an out-of-the-box social media platform for many restaurant owners, we’ve put together some first-timer Instagram tips:

  • Use quality photos. We’ll talk about photo tips in a bit.
  • Know your voice and keep it consistent throughout your postings.
  • Post every day. Wait at least three hours before posting again.
  • Use #hashtags. Instagram organizes content this way. Research your hashtags to see what’s trending. Keep them short and to the point. Have some older photos? You can always use #tbt for Throwback Thursday or #tipTuesday and offer a cooking tip.
  • Engage your users. Don’t sell to them. Try the #MotivationalMonday and feature something inspirational.
  • Post in the early morning and mid-evening. That being said, you need to know when your target audience is on their phones, so do some research.
  • Be local. Tag other businesses in your area. Tip: don’t tag your competitors.

Instagram Photography Tips

Since Instagram is a visual social media platform, your photography matters. (tweet this) Does that mean you need to go out and buy an expensive camera or hire a professional? No, but it does mean you have to think about your photos.

Change up the angle in your photography. Consider some photos from the side and shoot some from above.

Keep the rule of thirds in the back of your mind. This means you should keep the subject of your photo in only about one third of the frame.

Be careful with filters. While they are popular on Instagram, they aren’t always right for food shots.

Take lifestyle photos, too. This means photographing people. This gives your followers something and someone to engage with.

We encourage you to spotlight your staff, including your kitchen staff and your chef. Set these photos apart by taking them in black and white. This sets your food photos apart because they are full color.

When it comes to lighting, natural light is best. You’ll end up with truer photos, especially the lights and whites.

Photos with red and orange colors do well on Instagram. This works especially well for restaurants.

Now that you’ve got a few tips to work with, let’s talk about some ways to use Instagram to boost your website traffic.

Instagram

Unique and engaging photos work well to increase engagement.

Boost Website Traffic with a Link

The easiest way to use Instagram to drive traffic to your website is by putting a website link in your bio. You can add a clickable link in your bio, so use your website’s URL. Go to Edit profile and type it in the appropriate place.

Use a Call to Action to Boost Traffic

Grab your favorite photo editing program and add a call to action and your website address onto your image. You can then use the caption for your photo to drive traffic to your site.

You can tell your followers to click on your link in your bio. You will encourage interaction on Instagram with a call to action. (tweet this)

Boost Website Traffic with Specials

One way to boost site traffic is by posting a photo of your daily special. You want to send it out at the right time, so pay attention to when your followers are online.

How does this work? Let’s say you are offering a free appetizer with the purchase of a burger. Your customers have to visit your website to get the coupon. You post a fabulous looking photo of a burger with a link to your website.

Imagine doing this right before the lunch or dinner rush. You’ll boost website traffic and business inside your restaurant.

Drive Traffic with Video

Instagram videos are big. You should be using them. And, when you use them, you should include a text link to your website as an overlay.

Give your followers a reason to visit your website, and you’ll increase the likelihood that they’ll stop by for a visit. This could be a contest, coupon or reward offer.

Use Your Blog Photo to Generate Visits

Share your main blog photo on Instagram advising your followers of your new blog post. Again, consider adding text over the image with a call to action.

Tease your Instagram followers encouraging them to visit your blog page.

Purchase Instagram Ads to Boost Traffic

This is a great way to get more website visitors. Be creative and design ads that really deliver. Take advantage of the option to include a website link to increase the number of new hits on your website.

To Conclude

Start a visual conversation on Instagram, and you’ll soon be on your way to boosting your website traffic and growing your leads and your sales.

Instagram is the perfect place for restaurants to market their food. Beautiful food photos shared at the right times can drive customers to your website and your restaurant.

Monitor your results, tweak your photos and your text and watch your website visit count rise.

Is your website up to par? Does it showcase your menu photos? Is it mobile-friendly and responsive? Before you start driving traffic to your website, you want to make sure your customers have the best experience.

At Restaurant Engine, we build responsive, mobile-friendly restaurant websites. Contact us today for your free website consultation. We are here to help you update your website and stand out in the crowd so you can stay ahead of your competition.

Images: 5chw4r7z and Christopher.Michel via Visual hunt / CC BY

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