Learn how to connect your Folksy shop to Instagram so customers can buy direct from your grid and stories
Have you ever wondered how to get the shopping tags on your Instagram posts – the ones that look like the pic below? In this post we’re going to show you how to connect your Folksy shop to Instagram Shopping, so customers can buy your products directly from your Instagram posts and Instagram Stories.
Instagram Shopping Tags can a bit of a faff to set up, but once you have a Facebook Catalogue that’s linked to your Folksy shop, the rest is pretty easy, and the nice thing is it will keep updating automatically, so you’ll be able to tag your latest products on Instagram as you add them to your Folksy shop – making it much easier for customers to find your products and click through to your Folksy shop to buy them!
How to set up Instagram Shopping for your Folksy Shop – Step By Step Guide
IMPORTANT: Facebook has changed their eligibility criteria (as of 22 Sept 2020) so users now have to be able to verify that they own their domain before being approved for Instagram Shopping. This means that, as a Folksy seller, you will not be able to be approved and it also means that if you have already gone through the process below and been approved from Instagram Shopping, you may lose the ability to tag your products. This is immensely frustrating and we are trying to speak to Facebook and find away to fix this for Folksy sellers. We are very very sorry.
Here’s our step-by-step guide to getting Instagram Shopping up and running for your Folksy store. First, a little disclaimer: Facebook and Instagram are constantly updating their systems, terms and interfaces, and they also vary depending on which version or app you are using, so the instructions below may not match up exactly to your experience. If you do have any problems, have a look at the official Facebook Guide to Instagram Shopping here > https://www.facebook.com/business/instagram/shopping/guide.
- Make sure you have a Facebook business page and an Instagram Business account and that they are connected
- Get your personalised Folksy Shop Data Feed
- Set up a Facebook Catalogue for your Folksy shop
- Get your account approved for Instagram Shopping
- Share your first Instagram Shopping post!
Step 1. Make sure you have a Facebook business page and an Instagram Business account and that they are connected
You’ll need a Facebook Business Page (rather than just a personal Facebook page) in order to set up Instagram Shopping. If you haven’t already got one, learn how to do that here https://www.facebook.com/business/pages/set-up
NOTE: To be approved for Instagram product tagging, your Facebook Business Page needs to use the ‘Shopping’ Template rather than a ‘General’ business page. To change your templates go to your Facebook Business Page:
- Click Edit Page Info on your Facebook Page.
- Click Templates and Tabs in the left menu.
- Click Edit to the right of Current Template.
- Click the ‘Shopping’ template.
- Review the new buttons and tabs for your Page and click Apply Template.
You’ll also need to have a Business account on Instagram and the latest version of the Instagram app too. To switch your Instagram profile to a business account:
- Go to your profile and tap in the upper right corner.
- Tap Settings.
- Tap Account.
- Tap Switch to Professional Account.
- Tap Business.
- Connect your account to your Facebook Page.
- Add details, like your business category and contact information.
- Tap Done.
If you haven’t already done so in the previous steps, connect your Facebook Business Page to your Instagram account by:
- Going to your profile on Instagram.
- Selecting Edit Profile.
- Under Public Business Information, click on Page.
- Choose a Page from your Pages that you’d like to connect to or select Create a New Facebook Page.
Step 2. Get your personalised Folksy Shop Data Feed
Once you have a Facebook Business Page, you need the Data Feed for your Folksy Shop. With this, you’ll be able to set up a Facebook product catalogue that’s linked to your Folksy shop and updates automatically whenever you add new items, change a price or a product sells out, so you won’t need to keep updating your catalogue manually.
Your data feed file URL will look something like this but with the YOURSHOPNAME replaced by your actual shop name:
Work out what your data feed file URL is and have it ready to copy and paste during Step 3 below.
NOTE: There are certain restrictions about what you can and can’t sell through Facebook and Instagram, which you can see here – https://www.facebook.com/policies/commerce
Step 3. Set up a Facebook Catalogue for your Folksy shop
Now you know your Folksy Shop Data Feed URL, you’re ready to upload it into a Facebook Catalogue. You can create and manage Facebook Catalogues in either Catalog Manager or Business Manager on Facebook. (Find out more about Catalog Manager here or read this step-by-step to setting up Business Manager on Facebook.)
- Go to Catalogue Manager on Facebook and select the catalogue you want to add items to.
- Go to Data Sources.
- Select Add Products.
- Select Use Bulk Upload followed by Next.
- Select an upload option for your data feed. Select Scheduled feed to set an hourly, daily or weekly upload schedule. Select Next and start the upload.
Your Folksy Shop should now be linked to your Facebook Catalogue. If you have any problems or need more information on how to upload a Data Feed file to a Facebook Catalog, this article should help – https://www.facebook.com/business/help/125074381480892?id=725943027795860
If you don’t have Business Manager, here’s an alternative way to set up your Folksy Catalogue on Facebook:
- Go to your Facebook page, click on Shop from the left-hand menu, then click on ‘Manage Your Catalogue‘ under the blue ‘Shop Now’ button.
- Click on ‘Product Data Sources‘ in the left-hand menu, then click on the blue ‘Add Products‘ button on the right. Click on ‘Add Products’ from the dropdown menu, then select the second option of ‘Use Data Feeds‘. Click Next.
- Give your data feed a name (eg “Folksy Shop”*) and set your currency. Then in Section 2, select the first option ‘Set automatic file upload schedule’. In the ‘Data feed URL’ box, enter https://folksy.com/shops/YOURFOLKSYSHOPNAME.rss
- Set your upload schedule and then click on the blue ‘Start upload’ at the bottom. Your listings should then be uploaded to your Facebook shop.
Once you have done all the above – ie. you have an Instagram Account Business that is connected to a Facebook Business Page, and you have a Facebook Catalogue that uses your Folksy data feed – you can submit your account to Instagram for review. To do this:
- Go to your profile on Instagram and tap
- Tap Settings
- Tap Business.
- Tap Instagram Shopping.
- Then follow the steps and submit your account for review.
According to Instagram, the approval process usually takes a few days, but sometimes it can take longer. You can visit Shopping in Settings at any time to check your review status.
When you’re approved, you’ll receive a notification from Instagram with instructions on how to to complete the set-up and then you’ll be able to start tagging products on your Instagram posts and stories! If you have different catalogues set up on Facebook, make sure you choose your Folksy Shop catalogue.
‘Instagram shopping is not available for this account’ error
If you have followed all the steps above but get this message from Instagram, “Instagram shopping is not available for this account”, try editing your categories on Facebook so that ‘Shopping & Retail’ is the first category tag. If you have ‘Artist’ as a category tag, replace this with ‘artist’ and put this after ‘Shopping & Retail’.
To do this on the Facebook app:
- Go to your Facebook business page
- Tap on ‘About’
- Scroll down to the bottom of the page
- Tap ‘edit page info’
- Tap on the ‘category’ section
- Remove ‘artist’ category tag
- Add ‘product/service’ or ‘shopping & retail’ category tags
- Replace the ‘artist’ category with ‘art’
- Make sure ‘shopping & retail’ is the first category tag.
- I put shopping first and replaced ‘artist’ with ‘art’
We’re not really sure why or how this works but it does seem to! Thanks to our brilliant Folksy community for the tip!
‘Missing or Invalid Information’ warning in your Facebook Catalogue
You may get an warning in your Facebook catalogue that some items have missing or invalid information. Or a notification that an invalid Google category has been provided. We are aware of this but it shouldn’t affect your ability to tag a product in Instagram or be approved for Instagram Shopping.
Google regularly updates its product categories (which it uses to run Google Shopping adverts), and we need to make some changes to our database to reflect the most recent updates to some of its categories.
Step 5. Share your first Instagram Shopping post
Now it’s time to try it out! Choose a picture or video you want to post on Instagram that includes one (or more!) of your products.
TIP: It doesn’t have to be the same product picture you use in your shop, it can just be a photo you want to use that features that product or even a picture of lots of your items, or a video.
Then tag products from your Folksy shop into your Instagram post by:
- Selecting a photo or video and adding a caption in the usual way.
- Tapping the products in the photo that you want to tag. For videos, you can select up to five products you want to tag.
- Search for the names of the products you want to tag, then select them as they appear in the search box.
- Tap Done.
- Tap Share.
Extra Fun Step. Add Product Stickers to Instagram Stories
You can also tag products in your Instagram Stories, using product stickers. You can add one product sticker in each story. Here’s how to do it:
- Choose a photo or video to upload to your story
- Select the product sticker from the sticker tray
- Select the product from your catalogue that you want to feature
- Move the product sticker to where you would like it to appear on your story.
- (OPTIONAL) Change the colour of the sticker by tapping it.
- Share your story
Hopefully that all helps and you’ll have Instagram Shopping enabled for your Folksy shop in no time! If you need more advice, there are lots of useful articles on Instagram and Facebook. Here are a couple you might find particularly useful: