Instagram's advertising base increased by more than 100 percent during the past six months, reaching a whopping 500,000 advertisers on the image-centric platform.

Observant users might remember that the Facebook-owned photo-sharing service talked about another advertiser milestone in February, when it counted no more than 200,000 advertisers. The company's good fortune and proper planning more than doubled that number, with a total figure of advertisers on the platform reaching 500K in September.

Keep in mind that the figure counts only active advertisers in a given month, so it does not add those who ran a one-time only campaign some time ago. Instagram notes that as much as 1.5 million ventures tapped into the new business profiles that went live in June, this year.

Instagram's main message is not about creating business exposure, but instead triggering real action from customers. On one hand, the company touts that since it debuted its ad program last September, more than 1 billion users purchased items online. The company also affirms that its platform's ads impacted offline sales, which also spiked by 2 percent.

Instagram uses the example of handbag brand Dagne Dover. The firm deployed an Instagram campaign in which it used a Shop Now button and paired it ads that were aimed at mothers, students, women and professionals who have an interest in traveling and fashion. The result was that Dagne Dover registered 13 times more return on ad spent, over only two months.

James Quarles, VP and GM of monetization at Instagram, explains that it is crucial for small businesses not to draw a parallel between their followers and likes and their success. Instead, focusing on "real world actions" is how they should gauge their affluence.

According to Quarles, Instagram is preparing to offer enterprises more data to back this up.

What is more, the company is cooking up a myriad of versatile ad formats that cater to different business branches. In fact, it is planning to take steps in order to better perceive the "customer journey."

This could mean testing customer behavior, so that potential clients are showed an ad at the proper time.
"[The ads have to be] relevant to you ... they're as well-crafted, they're as high quality as all the content in people's feeds," Quarles says.

As of June this year, the platform has had more than 500 million users, 300 million of which are logging in to it on a daily basis. At the end of August, it topped the 1 billion downloads mark on the Google Play Store.

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