2021 Instagram Trends for Small Businesses
Rebecca McIntyre
Head of Operations
4 Jan 21

2020 has been a roller-coaster ride. There have been so many changes in how we live and interact with each other. Instagram is just one of the many platforms that have been keeping up with the competition. What will 2021 bring to this platform? Here are some trends to look out for so that you can be better equipped for the unprecedented changes expected to happen in 2021.

SEO will drive organic growth in Instagram

When it comes to prepping up for 2021, you need to take advantage of Instagram. Last November 2020, Instagram officially announced that it will be more “search-friendly.” Now, even without the use of hashtags, you can search for a keyword in the search bar, and it will show relevant videos, profiles, and posts. This will be a game-changer as you can expect increased reach for your posts. 

How to leverage this 2021 trend for your business:  In terms of SEO, make sure that your captions include relevant keywords to help Instagram identify what’s being shown or discussed in your post. Use your keywords in your bio as well to rank higher. Follow similar accounts to your business so that you can be a recommended page to follow. To further help Instagram categorise your account, consistently post content that’s relevant to your niche. Don’t stray away.

Experiment with Reels

There is clearly a trend towards short-form videos. The new “Reels” is Instagram’s way of competing with the rising popularity of Tiktok. It’s content delivered in 15–30 seconds to create quick, attention-grabbing moments in a creative and entertaining way. The reach is dropping for Stories and feed posts and exploding for Reels. It’s time to hop in and embrace short-form video marketing for your business. 

How to leverage this 2021 trend for your business: You don’t have to reinvent anything. Just build on whatever’s working and use it for your business. Even if you’re not a TikTok user, create a TikTok account to observe what posts are the most popular and getting the most attention and likes. Then, put your own spin on it and use it for Reels. Here’s another tip from us, stick to 15-second content pieces as they outperform 30-second content pieces. Instagram Reel’s preview is only limited to 15 seconds before people can click to see more. Stick to 15-second content so that your video can be played even on Preview mode.

With Reels, you can add music and text to keep things fun and engaging. Try to use the Green Screen effect for your business since it gives you the ability to share photos, screenshots, or videos in your reel. Try posting screenshots about the questions your business gets or even post before and after images that your business delivers. The possibilities are endless. 

Instagram stores will be popular

E-commerce has been on the rise due to the “new normal.” Many businesses have already pivoted to ensure sales keep coming, but that isn’t a usual option for “brick-and-mortar stores.” In 2021, your local gyms or yoga studios will offer online classes in Zoom or even Instagram live. Grocery stores will offer online shopping and deliver your goods right at your doorstep. Professional services like banks, lawyers and doctors will offer online meetings. 

How to leverage this 2021 trend for your business: Survey your audience first and determine what they need and want from an online offering. Research and test how they will react to your latest scheme. Focus on their experience and make sure it’s optimised for Instagram. Any inconvenience can significantly reduce your conversion rate.