Instagram

How much does it cost to advertise on Instagram?

Instagram is known for its unique visual style that mixes bright and lively artsy shots with videos full of action. Advertisements through the platform also follow the natural format of user posts, which doesn't interrupt the viewer's session.

How do you go about trying to buy Instagram ads? We've developed a guide with all the steps you need to follow to create a budget for your campaign and gain a better understanding of how much your Instagram advertising will cost.


Instagram ads cost

Your Instagram ads cost depends on the bidding option you choose. Facebook gives you the choices of cost per click (CPC), cost per thousand impressions (CPM), cost per action(CPA) or cost per like. You can also choose between automatic and manual bidding.

According to eMarketer, Instagram's average CPM is between $5-$6 on the buyer side and the average CPC is calculated to fall in the range of 56 cents and 72 cents.

Let's learn in detail how each of these factors impacts the final cost of your Instagram ads.

Related: An advertiser's guide to Instagram.


How Instagram calculates ads cost

Instagram follows the same rules as its parent company, Facebook, when calculating ad costs. There are a few variables that ultimately determine how much you will pay.

  • Bid price. The bidding amount tells the platform how much you’re willing to pay for your ad to be placed. Manual bidding tells Facebook the highest price you’ll pay and automatic bidding has Facebook choose your bid to match the best price for the most engagements.

  • Ad quality and relevance. Facebook gives a score to ads based on how relevant they are to the audience being targeted and how people react to it. Your score increases when people react positively to your ad and decreases if people respond negatively, such as hitting the “hide this” button. Ads with a high relevance score are placed over lower scoring ones.

  • Estimated action rates. This number represents how much Facebook thinks a person will perform the action an ad is optimized for (such as downloading an app or visiting a website).

  • Audience targeting and competition. The cost of advertising on Instagram inscreases when there are other advertisers competing to show ads to the same audience. Keep in mind the people you’re targeting and if others will be trying to land the same spot.

  • Time of year. With all advertisers fighting for ad space during the heavier advertising periods of the year, such as during the holidays, prices tend to increase because of the level of competition. Consider this variable before preparing your budget.

  • Placement. Allowing Facebook to place ads on their other networks, such as the main Facebook platform and the Audience Network, helps reduce the average cost of your ad.

  • Optimization of ad delivery. Just like in other ad platforms, be sure to optimize your ads for the results you want. Develop a targeting plan to ensure your ads end up in front of people that are valuable to you, increasing your chances of having your ad placed over a competitor and driving down your costs.

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Instagram ads budget

Through Facebook, your budget is either set daily or over the lifetime of your campaign.

With daily budgeting you decide the most you want to spend a day. Once the limit has been met, Facebook won’t place any more ads for the rest of the day.

Minimum budgets for your Instagram ads are calculated as a daily amount and apply regardless of the budget option you chose.

If you’re using USD, AUD, CAD, SGD, JPY, NZD, TWD, EUR, CHF, SEK, HKD, GBP, ILS, NOK, KRW or DKK, your minimums should be as follows:

  • At least $1 a day for ad sets charged for impressions.
  • Ads charged for clicks, likes, video views or post engagement need a daily minimum budget of at least $5 a day.
  • The daily minimum budget for low-frequency events, such as offer claims or app installs, need to be at least $40 a day.

Using any other currency besides the ones just mentioned does change the amount you’re allowed to put for a minimum.

  • At least 50 cents a day for impressions.
  • If you’re being charged for clicks, likes, video views or post engagements your daily minimum needs to be at least $2.50.
  • Low frequency events, such as offer claims or app installs, need to be charged at a daily minimum of $20 a day.

A lifetime budget has you decide how much you want to spend for the duration of the campaign and allows Facebook to average it out each day. The performance of your ad, whether it does well or poorly, will determine how frequently your ads will be placed and how much they will cost.


You are ready to buy Instagram ads

Now that you know the costs of buying Instagram ads are similar to Facebook's, moving efforts to include Instagram in your advertising plans should be a pretty easy step. However, be sure to keep in mind how the style of Instagram differs from Facebook and edit your ads to follow the Instagram model.

Taylor Schaller

Taylor is the Social Media and Content Marketing Intern at Strike Social. A graduate from The University of Alabama, she is now an MBA and MSIMC candidate at Loyola University Chicago.