Instagram Stories has extended the amount of time people spend in the app by approximately ten additional minutes. But, while that extra time means more attention and focus on your brand, it won't translate to much if you can't get that traffic back to your site.
If you have over 10,000 followers or you're a verified user, you have an incredibly effective tool at your disposal -- the swipe up link. This link enables you to post exciting content regarding a new product, service, or event, and then encourage those users to "swipe up for details."
But with all that power comes some responsibility. How do you add a link to your story, and how can you use it to its fullest advantage? Let's dive into that now.
How to add swipe up to Instagram Stories
If you have 10,000 followers or a verified account, you'll see a link icon when you open your Instagram Story tool
Click the link icon, and enter or paste a link in the spot provided
Click "Done" in the top right
How to Add a Link to Your Instagram Story
I used HubSpot's official Instagram account for these instructions, since my personal account isn't verified (I also, you'll be surprised to hear, don't have 10,000 followers … ).
1. Take a photo or upload one to your Instagram Story, and then click the icon at the top right that looks like a chain.
2. Here, click "+ URL" to add a link to a web page. If you were interested in linking your Story to your IGTV video, you could choose that option, instead.
3. Type the URL into the text box. When you're finished, click "Done" in the top right.
4. When you're ready to publish, click the "+ Story" button at the bottom right of your Story. Now, your published Story has a "See More" swipe up link.
Food bloggers such as @Detoxinista use Instagram Stories' swipe up link to embed recipes on the platform. They wisely post images of delicious-looking food, which incentivizes users to swipe up to learn how to make it themselves. The link isn't a direct advertisement, but users are directed to Detoxinista's website, where they can find her cookbook and become familiar with her brand.
If you're a Bachelorette fan, you might've noticed the growing trend among Bachelor and Bachelorette contestants to become product influencers and embed swipe up links in their Stories. As a fashion and style blogger, Ali often takes pictures or videos of outfits she's wearing, with swipe up links so users can buy the items online. She also often incorporates discounts if users swipe up, further incentivizing a user to purchase an item from a brand's website.
One of the most effective ways to use the swipe up feature is to offer your followers something of value, for free. @Popsugarfitness, for instance, introduced a Summer Sculpt series with a tempting offer -- "Swipe Up for a 10-Minute No-Equipment Booty-Shaping Workout". Who could say no to that? Ideally, as users obtain more value from your site, they'll spend longer on it and become stronger brand advocates.
Reebok created a powerful and timely campaign called "Be More Human", celebrating women's empowerment through fitness. On their Instagram Stories, they raise awareness for the campaign by showing famous women like Gigi Hadid or Danai Gurira, and when you swipe up, you learn more about Reebok's campaign and how you can get involved. On the site there are opportunities to purchase t-shirts or donate money, but it's evident Reebok is committed to staying focused on their messaging above all else, a noble pursuit.
Originally published Sep 7, 2018 6:00:00 AM, updated February 15 2019