Why IG Shops Should Not Set Their Accounts Private

Oct 14, 2014

5 Reasons Why Not To Private Account

1) Time + potential sale wasted.­­­­­­

        If your shop is private and you're not online, the time and potential sale from a buyer is wasted. Just imagine: A buyer saw your SFS from another shop or have come across your Instagram account, tries to follow but you're not online. Buyer refreshes your account after some time but request is not yet accepted; still pending. Buyer browses through other shops and found a shop who sells similar items as you; a shop who was not set private. Buyer gets to browse through their other items and ordered some items that was suppose to be yours only if your feed was set to public.

        Do you see how important time is in online selling? Don't waste the time of your buyers and most importantly, don't waste the opportunity to get a sale.
        Besides, have you seen Forever 21, Maybelline, Payless, Mango and the other known brands set their accounts private?
2) Buyers forget.

        Buyers, myself included, follow shops we find interesting. We follow shops from friend referrals (friends posting and tagging the shops), and usually through shop SFS request posts. I remember seeing this particular SFS post for a shop. I got interested with their items. But since their account was private, I had to wait for them to accept it. Overtime, I forgot that I followed that shop or that kind of shop even existed.

        Though Instagram has a notification feature for follow requests, we all know that we don't really pay much attention to that. And though it technically seem you earned a follower, remember that it's useless if the follower don't make a purchase from your shop.
        There's so many online shops in Instagram so don't expect buyers to actually remember you; unless of course you're well established.
3) Not seen in the explore feed.

        Please know that even if you got a hundred likes in your photo, it will not appear in the EXPLORE feed simply because you're account is private. You missed the opportunity of being exposed to other buyers and other Instagram users.

        The explore feed shows the trending photos in Instagram. This is where some buyers browse through. They are either looking for a new awesome feed to follow or a new shop to follow. So don't miss the opportunity of being discovered. Instagram made that explore feed for a reason.
4) Follow to unfollow.

        I get annoyed when some shops rant about their unfollowers. Have you guys ever wondered why they unfollowed after they followed you? That maybe your feed disappointed them? That maybe the item they thought you sell isn't really displayed on your feed? That if only your account was set to public, you wouldn't have much unfollowers and that you'll have the organic followers? And by organic I mean those who followed you because they really want to be updated with your posts or items.

        Honestly, as a seller, I blocked some of my unfollowers before too then I realized that I shouldn't. The follow feature is like the interest of your buyers. When they followed you, they were interested and they unfollow for their own valid reasons. Blocking them would do you no good. You might lose a potential buyer with that. Remember that some buyers would visit, follow & unfollow you for a several times before they convince themselves to make a purchase.
        Don't waste the opportunity to get a new buyer who could turn out to be a loyal customer in the future.
5) Useless hashtags.

        Hashtags exist for easy viewing of photos, topics, etc. We use hashtags for other internet users to view our posts. But with your account private, there will be no way your posts would be seen by others users who don't follow you; that even if you use the trending hashtags, if you're account is private, it's simply useless.

         If you compare it with a physical stores, do they close the display windows for those who didn't subscribe with them? They don't, right?
        So evaluate yourself. Why do you set your shop's account private? What are you afraid of? What are you hiding? Because if you'll say that you're just afraid that some shops would copy/grab your photos or that they get to follow your buyers, then that's no good reason. Remember you entered the business world and there will always be competition. No matter how much you try to keep your competitors away from your account, they will always find a way in. They could create dummy accounts to follow you. Now, let me ask you, how do you know which ones to accept and which ones to ignore?
        Remember that you do business to gain customers and not avoid from competition. It does help to know competitors' actions but don't make it to a point that you're more focused with them rather than your buyers. Focus on the customer's needs and satisfaction not your competitors!
        Besides, there are ways to solve your fears. If you fear that they would use your photos, then use watermarks. If you fear they would follow your buyers, then think of how you would retain your buyers. If you fear that they'd get an idea what's profitable to sell, then make sure to sell items that your competitors would have a hard time finding. There are numerous ways how to be competitive and setting your account private isn't one of that.
        I hope I have made my point why shops shouldn't set their accounts private. Thank you for reading through.
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