Goodbye, Yelp. Hello, Instagram.
Over the last couple of years, Instagrammers have begun using the social media platform to search for local businesses to visit. 2017 internal data from Instagram shows more than 200 million users visit at least one Business Profile each day.
So, how are Instagram users finding these local companies?
Similar to hashtags, Instagram location tags make posts and Stories searchable. Using location tags can be a powerful tactic for brands, requires minimal effort, and helps increase transient and local business.
To stand out among the competition, ramp up your strategy by adding a location to your in-feed posts and Stories.
Before diving in, let’s go over what an Instagram location tag is.
What is an Instagram Location Tag
Instagram location tags, or geotags, are precise latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates of physical locations you can add to a post or Story. The areas are identified by the GPS on your mobile device and can either be geographical (like a city) or a business (like a restaurant).
When added to a post or Story, Instagram location tags act as a content library, housing all media geotagged to a specific place.
Essentially, it’s a way to put your brick-and-mortar business on the map.
If you have an Instagram Business Profile and have already connected your Facebook Business Page, your specific location tag should automatically populate within the Instagram app.
However, if you do not see your business name, you can create a custom Instagram location tag — which we’ll go over in detail later in this guide.
Business benefits of Instagram Location Tags
Now that you know what an Instagram location tag is, it’s crucial always to tag your business location in your post — and encourage customers to do the same.
Instagram location tags offer many benefits for your business, such as the ability to:
- Increase brand awareness: Posts and Stories with location tags show up in Explore pages or location-based Stories, increasing visibility among your target audience.
- Increase engagement: A comment acknowledging your users’ tagged posts adds a personal touch to their experience and can lead to higher engagement with your brand.
- Drive social proof: Potential customers rely on social proof when making decisions, such as lively photos of other users tagged at your place of business.
Say you’re a Korean BBQ restaurant, and you post an image of one of your signature dishes and tag your location. Now, when one of your followers shares the post, users in their audience will know exactly where to go without having to look up the information.
Not to mention, when someone clicks the location name, they’ll be redirected to the search results page, which includes all the content tagged with your location on Instagram.
So, not only will Instagram users be able to learn more about your business through the images you post, but also through your customers’ posts.
If you want to beat out the competition and get found by potential customers, adding location tags to your content is essential.
Pro Tip: Request permission from Instagram posters to use user-generated content (UGC) with your tagged location to increase your content library.
How to create a custom location on Instagram
- Sign in on the Facebook mobile app
- Enable Location Services
- Tap “Check In” from within the post status box
- Type in your business name and add your location
- Choose a category
- Select a physical geolocation
- Add any additional details and tap “Create”
- Claim your location
Follow these steps to create a location on Instagram in 2020.
1. Sign-in on the Facebook mobile app
Yes, we mean Facebook.
Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012 for $1 billion, and the two social media apps have been intertwined ever since. As such, certain Instagram business tools — like custom geotag creation — require the use of your connected Facebook Business Page.
Instagram does not allow you to add a new location tag from its platform.
2. Enable Location Services
Location services must be enabled for Facebook to use your mobile device’s GPS to determine your exact coordinates.
Here’s how to turn on location services through the Facebook app:
- Tap the three–line dash icon on the bottom right of your screen.
- Scroll down and tap Settings & Privacy > Settings.
- From the pop-up, scroll down to the Privacy section and select Location.
- Directly under Device Settings, tap Location Services. This will open the Facebook app settings on your mobile device.
- Tap on Location and choose Facebook permission access — either Always or While Using the App.
Once you’ve completed these steps, go back, and re-open the Facebook app to continue creating a custom Instagram location tag.
3. Tap “Check In” from within the post status box
To access this feature, tap on the What’s on your mind? status box at the top of your screen. Then, scroll down and tap Check In from the pop-up.
4. Type in your business name and add your location
Ignore the other autogenerated places and type in the name of your business in the search bar.
If you notice another brand has already taken the name you planned on using, you’ll have to get creative. Try adding a descriptive word before your business name (i.e., Official Joe’s Pizza), or put the city or town where your business is located after the business name (i.e., Joe’s Pizza Chicago).
After you’ve typed in and determined the custom location tag, scroll down and tap on the Add button next to the + icon.
Pro Tip: Double-check spelling and make sure it’s the exact name you want to use. Once created, you cannot edit or change the location tag.
5. Choose a category
On the category page, you’ll see a list of options. Select the category that most closely resembles your business offerings to ensure potential customers can find the location you’ve added.
6. Select a physical geolocation
Creating your custom location works best if you are physically at your place of business. This allows you to select the I’m here right now option from the Location page to pinpoint the exact area. However, you can also type in the name of your city.
7. Add any additional details and tap “Create”
If you chose to select your location by the city in the previous step, add your business’s street address in the Location section of the Create a Place page.
If everything looks good, tap Create at the top right of your screen.
8. Claim your location
You’ve created your custom geotag for your business; now, you need to claim it.
You can do this by typing in the name you just created in Facebook’s search bar and selecting the corresponding place page from the results.
From here, tap on Is this your business? below the cover photo and claim the page from the pop-up.
After, you should be able to do an Instagram location tag search and begin adding your geotag to posts and Stories.
How to add an Instagram Location Tag to in-feed posts
- Tap on Add Location.
- Select the proper location from the nearby suggestions or tap the > icon to search for it.
- Tap Share at the top right of your screen.
How to add an Instagram location sticker to Stories
To add a location sticker to your Instagram story, follow these steps:
- Tap the camera icon at the top-left of your screen, or swipe right from anywhere within your feed.
- Take a new photo or video or select a media asset from your library.
- Tap on the square face icon at the top right of the Story screen.
- Select the Location sticker
- Type and select the name of the location you want to use.
- Rotate, resize, or move the location sticker and tap to change its color.
- Users can now tap on the location sticker to see tagged content.
Final Thoughts: How to add an Instagram Location Tag and the business benefits
Instagram Location Tags offer brick-and-mortar businesses a way to put their brand on the map physically. It’s an easy way to increase transient and local business, and essential if you want to be found by potential users and stay ahead of the competition.
Adding geotags to in-feed posts and Stories is simple; just follow the steps outlined above.