How Much Do Instagram Ads Cost? (The Complete Overview)

  • January 13, 2021
  • Marketing





How Much Do Instagram Ads Cost? (The Complete Overview)

  • January 13, 2021
  • Marketing





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How much do Instagram ads cost? Well, there are a variety of factors that affect the overall Instagram advertising cost. Depending on the bidding setting, however, Instagram Ads can cost you anywhere between $0.40 to $7.00. For CPC (cost per click), marketers usually pay $2 per click. For CPM (cost per impressions), marketers end up paying $12 per 2000 impressions.

However, before completely diving into the Instagram ads cost – let’s learn about Instagram a little, shall we?

The Instagram Science

With over 800 million active monthly users, Instagram is one digital platform to be reckoned with. Instagram has given rise to several digital advertising opportunities. Since its inception back in 2010, the platform has gone through numerous iterations and improvements, making it an even more business-oriented platform.

While using Instagram for your brand, you can leverage influencer, paid, or organic marketing to reach a wider audience. Additionally, creating an influential brand on Instagram is quite easy compared to creating an influential presence on other social media platforms.

The audience’s size online on Instagram increases as we speak, and several users tend to check their Instagram news feed at least once a day. So, I think investing time and money in Instagram is quite viable for any brand’s digital success.


Instagram is a photo-sharing platform that enables you to chat, get live, like, comment, and share. There are literally several features of the app that you can leverage to market your brand. However, one thought comes to mind whenever Instagram advertising is considered: the Instagram ads cost.

Here at Cydomedia – we have studied and understood Instagram as a business model. We realized that Instagram advertising cost depends on the bidding model. On average, companies and advertisers can expect 1100 impressions per $7. However, this is an estimated figure. The cost of impression ratio may change concerning your product, services, or brand.

Also, it is important to consider the medium or the type of ad used to run campaigns. For example, single image ads can be expensive; however, multiple image ads or carousel ads tend to perform better than single image ads.

Moreover, video ads are the most successful medium that you can leverage for advertising because, firstly, they’re more engaging. Secondly, they have, in some instances, outperformed other types of ads, i.e., image, carousel ads.

Also, the audience you’re targeting can affect the Instagram ads cost. Since several factors affect the cost of advertising on Instagram – we managed to sum them all up into a complete brief guide for you to understand.

Today we’re going to explore the advertising cost of Instagram along with some other essential information that would lead you to market your product more effectively on Instagram. Let’s begin.

Realizing That Instagram Is A Part Of Facebook

How Much Do Instagram Ads Cost

Image Source: TechCrunch

Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012, and since then, the entire landscape of this phenomenal social media platform has changed.

Originally introduced as a photo-sharing platform – Instagram soon became an advertising hub for brands. Honestly, Instagram is providing better ROI than Facebook today.

According to research, Instagram offers 10x more chances of interaction as compared to Facebook. This interaction translates into more engagement, which means higher ROI.

Instagram’s advertising costs more than Facebook’s. The substantial lead that Instagram has over other social networks gives brands even greater opportunities for communication with their followers.

Moreover, Sprout Social conducted a study on Instagram followers and found out that Instagram has a majority of female skew and a youthful bias. This study meant that you can find several paying customers by advertising on Instagram since many of their audience are early adopters.

Also, considering that Facebook now owns Instagram – Facebook has hardwired super-useful analytical tools to help brands target their audience more accurately and efficiently.

Why Instagram Advertising Cost More Than Facebook?

AdEspresso studied and analyzed Instagram and Facebook ads in 2016. They found out that the average cost of advertising on Instagram in terms of CPC was $0.70 compared to Facebook ads cost, which was $0.35 (CPC).

I know this is a significant difference that can cost you a lot more in the long run but considering that Instagram’s ad effectiveness is 10x more as compared to Facebook, you

Considering the fact that Instagram often has up to 10 times the engagement of Facebook, you are likely to get far better results from your Instagram ads. Moreover, there are three main factors that affect the overall Instagram advertising cost:

  1. The bidding amount that you’re setting for your advertising campaign.
  2. Instagram/Facebook’s relevancy score (how perfectly your ad is customized according to the audience you’re targeting).
  3. Estimated action ratio (how likely it is for people to convert once they see your Instagram advertisement).

You can find brief details regarding the factors mentioned above in Facebook’s help section. So now you know that only your bid setting doesn’t affect yours all over Instagram ad cost. Actually, your Instagram ads cost also depends on the ad’s quality, the value your ad provides, and targeting the most relevant audience.

Type of Ads on Instagram

When you run an ad on Instagram or anywhere – you’re given several mediums (formats) through which you can convey your message to the audience.

Selecting the best medium will surely attract more audiences and ensure a low Instagram advertising cost. So, here are the four types of ads that Instagram offers:

1. Story Ads

According to research, nearly 500 million users use Instagram stories.

Furthermore, 96% of the advertisers are thinking of leveraging Instagram Stories for advertisements.

With the stats mentioned above, it is pretty much clear that Instagram stories are becoming a viable advertising medium. They’re a great opportunity through which brands can connect with their audience.

Also, because36% of businesses use Instagram stories to connect with their audience, having a paid story ad won’t seem different.

The Insta Story ads are generally full-screen ads. If someone clicks on your story ad, the ad will pop up and covers their entire screen.

How does the format help?

This format allows you to fully grab your users’ attention by diverting their focus solely on your product or services.

Although Story ads still feel new as compared to other ad formats that have been there for years. Still, they have proven themselves to be super effective and engaging. This obviously means that you can drive conversion-oriented results with them.

2. Photo Ads

The most common type of ads simply display advertisements in the form of images in the audience’s news feed in square or portrait frames.

As mentioned earlier, these ads have customized CTAs at the bottom along with the sponsored tag. The idea is to entice the audience with a compelling design, persuading content, and complete the objective by placing a CTA they can’t help but click on.

However, with Photo Ads comes the need for a stunning photo (of course) that magnifies your product or service’s importance.

Having a unique and attractive Photo that embodies your brand image will surely attract your audience, and they’ll start interacting with your ad.

3. Video Ads

Video Ads get marketers 66% more qualified leads per year. This stat solely is enough to let you incorporate this super-effective medium into your Instagram marketing campaign.

Not only do Video Ads have proven to be a more engaging medium, but also, they tend to lower Instagram advertising costs by helping you reap more valuable results while on a limited budget.

These ads are more like Photo Ads. However, the difference is that instead of a Photo, your audience gets to see a Video.

You can upload a video up to 60 seconds long, and considering that the attention span has decreased to eight seconds over the years – a shorter but compelling video may just do the trick.

How do the users see the video?

When the users are scrolling in their news feed, Instagram shows them your brand’s video. It starts playing immediately and captures your audience’s attention.

However, make sure that the visuals of the video contain a highly effective hook from the start. Although Instagram immediately plays your video once the user sees it in their news feed – it does not play the sound.

So, incorporate important information from the start for a few seconds. You can use bold headlines in the video or any other text format to do so. Once the user gets engaged, he/she can then turn on the sound on their will.

4. Carousel Ads

Carousel Ads are my favorite and the best option if you want to decrease your Instagram ad cost. They are highly interactive and can contain up to 10 images or videos.

These ads aim to provide your audience with all the essential knowledge about your brand or product within a single ad.

They’re a great way to include/provide several options to your audience too.

Carousel ads are literally built to represent a variety of products to your audience. For example, if you’re a jewelry brand and want to promote your jewelry through Instagram marketing.

The carousel ads will let you attach several pictures of your product and promote them all within a single ad.

Also, there are times when your audience wants to see more products from you before they finally make the decision. Here, Carousel ads perform amazingly well by giving your audience exactly what they need to see.

Why Would You Want to Run Ads On Instagram?

How Much Do Instagram Ads Cost

Image Source: Medium

There are literally several reasons for advertising on Instagram. Since Instagram is basically a platform on which you share photos – enticing your audience by showcasing stunning visuals can reap several distinct advantages.

Here are some of the advantages you get when you advertise on Instagram:

  • Instagram has more engagement rates than any other social media channel out there.
  • The photo-sharing platform is best for showcasing your products or services in images to attract your audience.
  • Suppose your product is meant for a younger audience. In that case, Instagram is the perfect fit for your business because 9% of the Instagram audience is on the young side.
  • Instagram is best for products that seem visually appealing in images like Jewelry or beauty products.
  • In 2019, 1/3rd of the Instagram audience made a purchase online with their phone. The average spend was 15.4% greater than Facebook’s.

How To Create Your Instagram Ad In The Most Cost-Effective Way?

How Much Do Instagram Ads Cost

Image Source: Social Media

Brands face tough competition in the digital world today. To stand out, you need to capitalize on any opportunity you get.

One of the most common mistakes people make when advertising on Instagram is that they don’t understand the platform properly. This incomplete approach always leads to money loss and no impressive results.

Therefore, it is highly recommended that you understand the whole concept of advertising on Instagram to ensure cost-effectiveness and high efficiency. One way to do this is by understanding your audience and what entices them.

Once you learn about your audience, you would create the perfect ad that aligns with their need and generates immense revenue. To create an ad, you need to work on three sections in the Instagram Ads manager:

  1. Campaign
  2. Ad Set
  3. Budget
  4. Bidding
  5. Ad

Note that these sections are an integral part of your Instagram ad that will make up most of your ad:

1.   Campaign Setting

Think of your campaign setting as your goal that you want to accomplish through Instagram marketing.

This is a vital part of your overall Instagram marketing strategy because it is here that it all begins. Identifying your goals and setting your Instagram marketing strategy according to it will ensure not only optimum results but also a low Instagram advertising cost.

My recommendation here would be to add as much value to the setting process as you can. Insta and Facebook’s ads manager gives you 11 marketing objectives on which your ad can be based on:

  1. Brand Awareness.
  2. Reach
  3. Engagement
  4. Video Views.
  5. Messages
  6. Lead Generation.
  7. Traffic
  8. App Installs.
  9. Conversions
  10. Sales
  11. Visits

Suppose you have clearly defined goals and you’re running. In that case, you’re curating your ad, its content, and design collaterals according to your goal – it will do wonders.

But if you don’t have clearly defined goals and you’re simply running your ad on instincts, the ad isn’t going to go well.

So, make sure you have a clearly defined goal from the beginning of your ad campaign.

This approach will tell Instagram’s advertising algorithm working as per your defined goal to bring you the most out of your advertising campaign at a lower Instagram advertising cost.

2.   Setting Details For Your Campaign

The details are another crucial part of Instagram. This section lets you briefly define your audience, which in turn increases traffic, engagement, or installs, whatever your marketing goal is.

For starters, after defining your goal, you are asked about the audience you want to get, i.e., When you select “Traffic,” you are given the option of targeting immense traffic for either your website, app or messenger.

After this, you’re asked to incorporate an engaging offer that might help you achieve your goal by helping your audience convert quickly.

The goals and audience targeting options are quite similar to Facebook’s “Audience Insights,” where you can add information and refine your audience to a significant extent.

So, suppose

You want to lower your Instagram ad cost and harness this platform’s true potential. In that case, you need to create a customized audience as per your marketing goal.

You can also save your customized audience for later use if similar advertising goals arise.  Although broad targeting may seem tempting to you because of the potential reach, let me tell you that this isn’t a good idea.

In other words, it is a total waste of money. Broad targeting may show your ad to 15 million people. Still, the majority of these people may not be interested in your product. This would ultimately translate into poor sales or conversions:

Moreover, here are the options through which you can target your audience in the ad’s manager:

  • Area/Location.

Once you’re done with filtering all your targeted audience and creating a precise audience persona – Instagram will give you an estimation of your potential reach and engagement. The more precise your audience is, the leaner your reach will become.

You can also choose your ad placements – where you get the authority to place your ads wherever you want. Suppose you only want to prioritize Instagram rather than Facebook. In that case, you can simply click deselect automatic placement and opt for edit placements.

Although it is a good idea to target your audience on Instagram and Facebook, I believe that you get more control over your advertising campaign by editing ad placements.

Since earlier you created pre-defined goals by thoughtfully studying your audience, you can determine where your ad should run.

You can also edit the ad placement on iOS or Android devices so, it’s kind of obvious that this super-useful ad placement tool is there for you to leverage.

3.   Setting The Budget

The third and probably where every person new to Instagram advertising gets confused is the budgeting option.

This feature is also an integral part of the overall ad campaign because it will determine how much your Instagram ad will cost you.

There are two options here. You can either select the daily budget option in which you can enter the daily amount spent on your ad. You can choose the lifetime budget option in which a one-time payment would be charged for your entire ad campaign.

The Insta budget options.

The daily budgeting option gives Instagram an average value in which you want your campaign to run.

This option gives Instagram control over the number of times your ad is displayed; thus, the limit of impressions is compromised.

There will be days when people will click on your ad. If CPC pricing is in effect, you may go over your daily spending limit. Still, Instagram manages and compensates the amount for tomorrow.

Instagram also gives you the option to run your ad within a specific time frame.

My suggestion would be to look for the ad delivery option and optimize it if you’re advertising on a budget.

The Instagram ad’s cost is dependent on a variety of factors, which is why it is important to analyze every option and customize it to minimize spending.


The ad delivery option gives you the facility to change your ad’s frequency (how many times it is being displayed per day).

This enables you to optimize your ad by ensuring that it does not reappear in front of the user who has already seen your advertisement.

Instead, you can tell Instagram to show your ad to the audience who is more likely to click on the link or a landing page.

However, suppose you’re an impression-oriented person. In that case, you can optimize your ad to be displayed to as many people as possible within your defined audience to attain maximum impressions.

4.   Automatic/Manual Bidding

Another useful but complicated part of advertising on Instagram is the bidding features. This feature lets you select the bid of your ad either manually or automatically.

I recommend that you go for the automatic bidding option if you’re new to Instagram advertising. Still, once you have the relevant experience, you can start experimenting or editing the bid as per your requirements.

Let’s assume you opted for a manual bid. Now you’ll get two options either optimize for Maximum or Average bid. Note that these factors are extremely important because they affect your Instagram advertising cost.

So, if you’ve selected a Maximum bid, know that this option is viable for those who want to maximize profits. That’s because Instagram will not be running your ads if the cost per result is higher than your bid.

What else?

On the other hand, if you opt for Average bidding, Instagram will optimize your ads to ensure maximum ROI. This method is also known as the Pacing Method. This approach ensures that your ad doesn’t drain you of your entire budget within a single day by missing out on several profitable opportunities later.

The best reason to choose an Average bid is that it maximizes your ad delivery while ensuring more conversion. However, this option may cost you a bit more on some conversions.

Another suggestion would be to start with automatic bidding to build-up data that shows your CPR (Cost per result). This approach would help you design the perfect strategy.

Pro-Tip: Experts say that selecting a figure closer to the end of Facebook’s suggested bid is considered more effective.

5.   Selecting The Best Format For Your Ad

This section is purely based on your ability to think differently and creatively to engage your targeted audience.

Instagram gives you four ad formats, out of which you can select the most beneficial one for your product or service.

Keep in mind that the more visually compelling your ad is, the better it will perform. Here are the four Instagram Ad formats:

  1. Single Image.
  2. Single Video.
  3. Slide-show.
  4. Collection (only available for mobile Facebook feed)

Insta Story Ads

Also, in 2016 August, Instagram started Insta-Stories, and the feature became immensely popular among users.

Later in 2017, Instagram announced the launch of Instagram Story Ads that gained advertisers’ attention worldwide. Here are the two Instagram Stories advertising formats:

  1. Instagram Single Image Story.
  2. Instagram Single Video Story.

The most cost-effective ad format? Well, Carousel ads are the best option if you want to lower your Instagram ad cost.

Carousel Ads

Carousel ads give you the ability to showcase more than one product or service within a single ad. This enables you to run a single ad for multiple products or services; hence it saves money.

Learning about the ads mentioned above will help you decide which type of ad format will work best for your product or service. And this brings us to our next stop, in which we’ll learn the different types of ads on Instagram.

How Does Instagram Bidding Work?

To bid like a pro on Instagram, you need to learn how bidding works. Learning about bidding on Instagram will help you decrease Instagram advertising costs and manage run ads efficiently.

Since they’re both are parts of the same platform, Instagram Ad bidding is similar to Facebooks ad bidding.

However, this similarity doesn’t mean that you need to optimize your ad on Instagram the same way you did on Facebook.

But it does mean that the bid amount you’ll be incorporating would serve as a worldwide auction for grabbing people’s attention.

Factors That Affect Instagram Ads Cost

Here are the three main bidding factors that affect your Instagram advertising cost:

  • The more you spend on your advertisement, the more Instagram will deliver or show your ad to your audience. So, by choosing automatic bids – you get a chance to handover your ad to Instagram so that it can manage your ad all by itself. However, if you go for the manual bid – you would have a limited budget. Eventually, your ad would require revamps and adjustment to keep running smoothly.
  • The relevance score is extremely important to ensure low Instagram ad costs while ensuring high returns. Also, the relevance score affects your Instagram advertising cost because the platform prioritizes it to determine whether your ad is designed as per the requirements of your audience or not.
  • You should also lookout for the estimated action rates because they are exactly what they sound like, several factors.

Generally, this means that lowering your Instagram advertising cost is not the only thing you should consider. Creating high-quality and relevant ads that entice your audience on Instagram should be your goal.

What Type of Ads Work Best on Instagram?

How Much Do Instagram Ads Cost

Image Source: Sh1ft

For those wondering how much does it cost to advertise on Instagram?” a simple and precise answer can be that, “if the approach is strategic and the ads are interesting, relevant and compelling – the Instagram ads cost won’t be too much.”

Instagram has been around for 10 years now. The users are shy away from traditional ads on Instagram. They now desire something different and more like a typical Instagram post.

Platform-friendly and audience-oriented ads tend to perform amazingly well. Although they may not bring the best results, it doesn’t matter as long as everyone included in your targeted audience, bypasses it at some point.

What’s more?

Moreover, I suggest that you focus on creating quality content because engagement is what matters on Instagram. Don’t try to push sales or clutter your ad with too much information. Instead, introduce your brand to the audience by starting from the top of the funnel.

Also, keep your relevance score in check because it acts as an excellent guide in determining whether your content is audience-centric or not.

Instagram is indeed one of the fastest-growing social platforms out there. It feels like yesterday that people considered Instagram as just a photo-sharing platform. Fast forward today, brands consider it as essential.

Over To You

Here are some of the most technical and visual aspects you might want to cross-check while creating your ad on Instagram.

Although all of the ones of the elements in check will ensure low Instagram advertising costs and higher results, it is vital to make sure that you know every detail of advertising on Instagram before you opt for it.

Since there is no one answer to “how much does an Instagram ad cost?”, it is important to know that every feature of the ad has some interlink to the overall cost of advertising. To get the most benefits out of your campaign, you need to work on all the information mentioned above. You can also take the best services from the marketing managers of CydoMedia.

Nabeel Ahmed