5 Massive Changes to Instagram in 2018

Amy Coleman
Digital Communications Manager
Changes to Instagram

Everything from Shoppable Posts to Improved Stories

Instagram is set to keep pace with the times as it introduces a flurry of new and improved features to improve the user’s experience. Boasting over 800 million users, Instagram is looking to consolidate their position by introducing a number of exciting new features and here's our top 5…

Shoppable Posts

Instagram have announced the rollout of their new eCommerce feature, shoppable posts. This new style of posts will create a

‘seamless experience’

allowing brands and businesses to tag products in posts which consumers can tap on to find out prices, retailers, and other information.

Working exactly like the normal tags, brands will now be able to tag a number of different items. Once posted, users can then tap on the post to see all the tags and tap to find out prices and details without having to leave the site.

Tapping the subsequent ‘shop now’ button will then link users directly to the item on an e-store or business’ website. Given the popularity of Instagram in the fashion and beauty world this is the ideal way for users and brands to interact, removing steps between interest and purchase and allowing for dynamic marketing schemes in a competitive market.

Amy Cole, the head of business development at Instagram believes this to be the perfect addition to the platform stating;

“Given the number of requests we get every day about this [shoppable posts] means it has huge potential. It’s an incredible tool which makes what people are already doing much easier. It takes a lot of friction out of shopping and will hopefully be an invaluable addition to brands’ ecommerce strategy.”

Instagram tested the new feature with three UK brands: Marks and Spencer, slipper company Mahabis, and swimwear brand Heidi Klein. After a successful trial Instagram is set to roll out this new feature across the UK, Australia, Canada, Brazil, Italy, Spain, France, and Germany.

Shopping posts won’t be available on regular accounts however and is exclusive for business accounts. Furthermore, businesses and brands will need to sync Facebook catalogues with their Instagram catalogues to ensure a seamless transaction.

Overall, with a strong desire from users and brands, this additional feature is a no-brainer of businesses and certain hit for the social media giant.

Improved Stories

Instagram Stories

Instagram stories have become a popular choice for many businesses and social media fans. Taking pride of place at the top of an Instagram feed, these little snippets have seen Instagram muscle in on Snapchat’s territory and create a successful copy. Instagram’s new update looks to build on this by making story uploads faster and easier. Users will be able to upload 10 videos or photos in a single story and preview content before sending it out to users.

This new addition maintains the book scrapping flavour with each post editable with text, stickers, and other tools. Overall this update sees stories become more dominant with ever faster, larger, and easier posts at users’ fingertips.

Data Download

In the wake of Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal and the introduction of the European Union’s GDPR, Instagram have introduced a download your information feature.

Entitled ‘Data Download’, it allows users to export their profile including photos, information, videos, archived stories, comments, and non-ephemeral messages.

Currently, the data download feature is not available on iOS or Android but there is a planned roll-out to save users from downloading their content to a computer. By employing this feature Instagram have brought themselves in line with the 25th of May GPDR deadline and reduces the need for users to employ questionable third-party scraping apps.

Music Sticker

Helping businesses and users to add more personality to their profiles, the new Instagram music sticker can be used on boh videos and photos.

The new feature will allow instagrammers to choose from 1000's of songs and add a soundtrack their your Instagram stories. Depending on your choice of song, you can gget creative and make your video or image reflect a certain mood or add a comedic touch.

Follow Hashtags

Follow Hashtags on Instagram

The final change which has already come into play allows users to follow hashtags. This removes an extra step allowing users to follow hobbies, brands, places, and other hashtags without having to search manually.

This is especially useful for marketers and brands as they can share content to more users without requiring a follow on their brand page. Brands can also use hashtags to test their effectiveness with target audiences. This makes Instagram an even more important resource for brands.

These changes show how Instagram have grown from strength to strength. A major player in social media they are ubiquitous and their constant updates will keep them at the cutting edge of modern social media for years to come.

With Instagram continuing to find new ways to improve their platform, we are sure that there will be more changes to come. However, for the time being, these are five new and exciting changes that we can't wait to try out!


If you would like to go into further detail on how to make the most of  your businesses social media, contact us and see how our SEO experts can help you!

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Amy Coleman
Digital Communications Manager