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Looking for the Best Business to Start On Instagram? Try These

You may see Instagram as simply a platform to scroll through when you waste time in line or in between Netflix episodes. But there are some real opportunities to make money using the platform. Instagram doesn’t have to be simply a promotional tool you add to your marketing strategy. With a little planning, you can also use it to add revenue.

If you’ve been thinking about stepping up your social media game, now’s the time. There’s no shortage of opportunities and potential customers when it comes to running an online business through Instagram. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of the

Why start a business on Instagram?

Ranked as the fourth most popular social media platform globally, Instagram has over 1.3 billion users. That’s a lot of potential audience members. Of course, not all of them are going to be interested in what you have to offer, but if even a fraction of them are, that’s a great start!!

One of the hardest parts of growing a business is attracting an audience to your product. As a business owner, you usually have to go out of their way to find their audience. But for Instagram entrepreneurs, there’s already a sea of potential audience members (and customers, depending on what kind of business you want to start).

The best part about starting a business on Instagram is that it’s completely free to use. While there are some areas where having a budget could help you out, you technically don’t need any cash to get your account up and running.

So long as you have internet access and a device to post from, you’re good to go!

Who should start a business on Instagram?

Running a business on Instagram isn’t the solution for every budding entrepreneur

Due to the fact that it’s a visually-focused platform, you’ll want to make sure that you’re someone who’s comfortable operating in the visual world. That doesn’t mean you need to be an expert, it simply means that you should, at the very least, have an interest in visual content. If visual content isn’t for you, there are plenty of other business opportunities out there!

Best businesses to start on Instagram

For those of you who love images and videos, and are ready to start posting your way to a full-time income, these are the best business ideas that are a perfect fit for Instagram:

1. Product reviewer

Instagram is an ideal place to get started with a product review business, particularly if you’re someone who enjoys working with visual content.

You’ll need to build a steady stream of image and video-based content to share your opinions and promote your business. For video content, the shorter the better. The ideal length for the platform is around 26 seconds, so you’ll need to get good at short, engaging reviews. 

To run a successful Instagram product review business, you’ll want to create a comprehensive content strategy and post on a regular basis. But simply posting isn’t going to be enough to build a full business. You’ll need to engage with your audience on a daily basis一smaller accounts can make money, but they need that engagement rate. 

Unfortunately, simply amassing a large audience on the platform won’t actually get you paid. How can Instagram product reviewers make money?

  • Through partnerships with brands and selling sponsored posts.
  • By providing affiliate links to the products they review.
  • The sale of their own digital products (though, you’ll need to incorporate an off-platform method to truly engage this method).

This is one major disadvantage of using Instagram for your product review business: limited linking opportunities. That means sharing affiliate links will be a little bit more challenging.

However, you can solve this problem by pairing your Instagram product review page with a blog. Not only could this provide extra revenue, but you could also have an opportunity to charge more for partnerships that want to utilize both audiences.

2. Influencer

While “influencer” might sound like a fictional job title, with an engaged audience of 10,000 or fewer followers, you could make around $88 USD per post. With 100,000 or fewer followers, you’re probably looking at around $200 USD per post. 

This isn’t McMansion money. However, there is potential to bring in some sweet side cash that can help pay off student loans, or let you grab the extra large pizza with the premium toppings on your regular Friday night in.

But relying solely on sponsored posts to carry your business’ finances isn’t the best monetary move. This is why many influencers combine paid posts with more passive means of income, such as affiliate marketing. 

Again, however, the lack of linking capabilities can make affiliate income a little more challenging. Instagram has a notoriously low conversion rate, which stems from the fact they aim to keep users on the platform as long as possible. This means your best chance of increasing your income is either seriously mastering conversion or doing it on-platform.

To utilize your Instagram influence to make money, you’ll need an engaged audience. Many brands are counterintuitively interested in smaller creators because smaller audiences often mean higher engagement. 

For the longevity of your business, you’ll also want to consider collecting emails,  establishing a website, or even creating an off-platform group. These tactics will give you a space where you own and control the content, and have more leeway to monetize your content and audience. 

3. Photographer

While Instagram has expanded its capabilities over the years, at its core, it’s a place to share great photos with your audience. This makes it the perfect place to start and promote your photography business. 

If you’re passionate about photography and good at grabbing great shots, this could be the perfect Instagram business for you. Popular photography businesses on Instagram include:

  • Portrait photographer
  • Stock photographer
  • Product photographer
  • Wedding photography

Not all photography businesses can be Instagram-only ventures. Businesses like portrait or wedding photography require you to get clients and work with them offline. But, even in these cases, Instagram is still a great promotion platform. Other photography niches, like product photography, may not require in-person clients.

If you truly want no “clients” and instead want to sell photography rights, you can use Instagram to promote your stock photography to get sales on platforms like Adobe Stock.

Or, you can cut out the middleman (so to speak) and use your photographs as a base for physical products. Using a print-on-demand platform like Society6 can allow you to create great products without having to pay any upfront costs or for a place to store them. You can even set up an Instagram store through their shopping capability and give people the opportunity to check out your catalogue on the platform.

4. Videographer

Instagram started out as a photo-focused platform, but in recent years video has begun to lead in popularity. This makes it the ideal platform to start promoting a videography business.

Much like photography, videography often requires off-platform work with clients, so it’s not an Instagram-only (or Instagram-mostly) business choice. That said, as far as promoting your business, it can be a great place to connect with clients and show off your skills.

Video content is versatile on Instagram. You can use any post type from your profile feed to your stories to share video content. While there used to be time limits, videos uploaded to Instagram can now be up to 60 minutes, with the exception of Reels which remain in the 30 to 60 second range.

If you have an eye for capturing engaging video, and are up for the challenge of building an audience on Instagram, this could be the perfect entrepreneurial opportunity for you.

5. Foodie

There is something for everyone on Instagram, and food recommendations are no exception. If you like sharing pictures of food on your adventures or in your hometown, and have no qualms about giving an honest opinion, then Instagram food critic might be the job for you!

Instagram food influencers grow their audience by sharing delicious visuals accompanied by engaging text. While everyone’s business is unique, they typically make money in the following ways:

  • Sponsored content (short term).
  • Brand collaborations/ambassadors (longer term).
  • Instagram bonuses.

While bigger audiences usually means more money, you don’t necessarily need one. Creators with as little as 5,000 followers are considered micro influencers, and can often find brand partnerships.

You’ll want to focus on creating stellar content, growing your audience, and increasing your engagement.

6. Craft or DIY expert

Do you always find yourself taking on another DIY project? Is crafting one of your favourite pastimes? Then showing off your crafting skills or DIY expertise on Instagram could be the ideal opportunity for you. 

Popular DIY and craft Instagrammers like @abeautifulmess, @damasklove, and @sarahpikepottery fill their feed with great visuals and fun videos sharing their love of creating with their audience. Whether they’re showing off the finished product or giving a step-by-step guide on how their audience can create their own versions, they’re engaging with their audience.

Like other Instagram influencers, DIY and craft creators make money via sponsorships, ambassadorships, and possibly bonuses from Instagram. But they can build another revenue stream if they’re creating products that can be sold.

Your audience is already interested in your DIY tips and they probably love your creations, so why not make it easier for them to skip the work and make a purchase? Instagram’s shopping feature is perfect for DIY and craft creators who sell physical products and want to promote them to their audience. 

6. Ecommerce seller

Instagram’s shopping feature can turn your feed into a storefront. You don’t have to make craft projects or sell photo products to utilize this ecommerce feature. Sellers of all types find themselves making waves and bringing in sales on Instagram.

Instagram Shop allows you to integrate your products right into your Instagram feed. With your product catalogue integrated, you can promote them to your audience through Instagram Stories, posts, and the “Explore” tab. Then, followers can make a purchase directly on Instagram through the Instagram checkout.

For creators that hope to see success with Instagram Shop, you’ll need to make sure you focus on having stellar product photos. While good images are important in every online selling situation, Instagram users expect stellar quality.

It’s worth it to point out that you don’t have to sell physical products. You could also utilize Instagram to sell digital products, which is a great low-cost business start-up idea. 

8. Topic expert

There’s an audience for pretty much everything out there. Regardless of what you’re an expert in, there’s an opportunity for you to monetize it on Instagram.

You could show off your fashion expertise and recommend styles. Or you could aim to educate your audience on topics in day-to-day psychology. Regardless of where your expertise lies, if you share your knowledge in an engaging and consistent way, there’s definitely a chance you could turn that into an Instagram business.

How can you make money as a topic expert? You can:

  • Team up with relevant brands and create content via sponsorships or ambassadorships.
  • Sell physical or digital products related to your niche.
  • Provide services that are relevant to your topic expert.

It’s up to you what you want to do with your Instagram business, you can take it wherever you want!

Getting started on Instagram

Instagram is an image-first platform, which means when you plan your business strategy, you need to think about aesthetics. Successful accounts stand out because they:

  • Post consistently.
  • Create great visual content.
  • Engage with their audience on a regular basis.

Creativity, inspiration, and connection is valuable on Instagram. So get ready to think big, have some fun, and flex your entrepreneurial muscles on Instagram.

If you’re ready to take your Instagram game from social media strategy to business official, Ownr makes registration a piece of cake!