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TikTok vs Instagram for Business: Which To Choose in 2024?

Nathaniel Okwoli Nathaniel OkwoliSocial Media Expert July 12, 2024
July 12, 2024
The many similarities between TikTok and Instagram can make it difficult to decide which is better for your business. Both focus on a younger audience and what’s trending. So, how do you choose? The answer lies in each platform’s features, algorithm, and demographics.

If you want to take advantage of advanced social commerce tools and various content types, Instagram should be your platform of choice. However, TikTok takes the lead for virality and high engagement, which can lead to quick brand presence and growth.

Read on to learn the differences between TikTok and Instagram for business and discover which platform best fits your brand.


Instagram Suits Established Brands; TikTok Benefits Small Businesses With Viral Potential

When deciding between TikTok and Instagram for your business, you must understand each platform’s unique features. While both platforms allow you to promote your business effortlessly, TikTok is ideal for brands targeting Gen Z, and Instagram lets you reach a broader demographic.

TikTok and Instagram offer many features that allow businesses to share content and promote their brands. These include:

Content Types

TikTok and Instagram both offer engaging content formats that you can use to promote your business or brand.

TikTok content formats:
  • Short videos: Videos up to 3 minutes long for quick, engaging, and often viral content
  • Duet: Collaborative video created alongside another user’s video
  • Stitch: Clipped or integrated scenes from another user’s video you can use in your own
  • LIVE: Real-time video content where creators interact with viewers directly
Instagram content formats:
  • Photos: High-quality single images or carousels (series of images)
  • Videos: Posts in the main feed (up to 60 minutes) or Reels (up to 90 seconds)
  • Stories: Temporary 24-hour content that can include images, videos, and various interactive elements like polls and quizzes
  • Live: Live broadcasting to followers, often used for real-time engagement
  • Reels: Quick, engaging videos set to music or other audio, similar to TikTok’s short videos


TikTok’s algorithm is uniquely designed to rapidly learn user preferences through likes, shares, and viewing time interactions. It makes it easy to push content to a broad audience through its For You page, regardless of the creator’s number of followers. This feature significantly levels the playing field, allowing new and smaller businesses to achieve visibility alongside more established ones.

While robust in its targeting capabilities, Instagram primarily boosts content from accounts users already follow, supplemented by recommendations based on past interactions. This approach favors accounts with larger followings or those who can invest heavily in paid promotions to maintain visibility.


TikTok and Instagram provide valuable insights that can guide your content and advertising strategy, but Instagram provides more detailed analytics tools than TikTok.

TikTok Analytics metrics:
  • Follower growth: Growth of your follower base over time
  • Video views: Number of views your videos receive
  • Profile views: Number of users who visit your profile
  • Content performance: Performance of individual videos in terms of views, likes, shares, and comments
  • Audience demographics: Insights into the demographics of your audience, including age, gender, and location
Instagram Insights metrics:
  • Follower demographics: Detailed demographic information about your followers, including age, gender, and location
  • Engagement metrics: Metrics such as likes, comments, and shares for individual posts
  • Content reach: Post reach and impression tracking to understand your posts’ visibility
  • Website referral traffic: Amount of traffic directed to your website from your Instagram profile
  • Story analytics: Metrics related to your Instagram Stories, including views, replies, and exits.
Pro Tip: TikTok’s and Instagram’s native analytics allow you to track performance over a specific timeframe, but it’s capped at 90 days. For extended data and more customizable reporting options, you can use third-party social media tools for your business.

Social Marketing and Selling Tools

Both TikTok and Instagram provide tools for social commerce and advertising. To promote your products and get access to new customers, you can take advantage of some of these tools.

TikTok for Business:
  • Auto Message: Welcome message or automated replies set up for customers.
  • TikTok Ads Manager: Range of ad formats, including in-feed ads, branded effects, and hashtag challenges.
  • TikTok Creator Marketplace: Influencer collaboration that enhances your reach through authentic, creator-driven content.
  • E-commerce integration: Virtual storefront on TikTok, where followers can explore your products and purchase directly through the app.
Instagram for Business:
  • Instagram Insights: Comprehensive analytics tools to track engagement, reach, and the effectiveness of your posts and stories.
  • Instagram Shopping: Product catalog integrated into your business profile so customers can purchase products through posts, stories, and the dedicated shop tab.
  • Instagram Ads: Different post formats, such as photos, videos, and Stories, are turned into ads and target specific audience segments.
Overall, Instagram’s features better serve established brands with bigger budgets to invest in high-quality images and videos. However, TikTok does it better because it allows small businesses and individuals to gain traction and visibility without needing a large budget or professional production quality. TikTok’s video-focused content formats and algorithm make it easier to go viral faster, even with little organic traffic.

Ease of Use

Navigating TikTok Is Simpler Than Feature-Rich Instagram

TikTok and Instagram are fairly easy to use. Both websites adopt minimalistic designs so you can find your way around quickly. However, navigating Instagram can be overwhelming due to its content creation and analytics tools that support various content types, unlike TikTok, which primarily focuses on video content.

Creating and switching to a business account on TikTok is straightforward, requiring just a few taps in the app settings. On the other hand, setting up an Instagram business account may take longer due to the extra optional opt-in/out slides, although you can skip them. Additionally, creating a shop on TikTok requires creating a separate seller account, whereas you can use the same business account to set up a shop on Instagram.

Easily see the detailed breakdowns of your videos’ performance on TikTok Analytics
Thanks to the helpful Overview, Content, Followers, and LIVE tabs at the top of the screen, TikTok’s analytics page is easier to navigate. In contrast, Instagram Insights doesn’t have tabs, and you need to scroll and tap the reach, engagement, and followers buttons to access the rest of the metrics.

Overall, while both platforms are designed to be user-friendly for businesses, TikTok offers the most user-friendly platform among the two. You can easily access the business tools and set up your marketing campaigns.

Audience Demographics

TikTok Skews Younger, While Instagram Appeals to a Broader Age Range

Both TikTok and Instagram have fairly young demographics. However, TikTok generally appeals more to a younger audience, with a significant portion of its user base under 30 and around 1.8 billion monthly active users globally (Business of Apps, 2024). This makes it an excellent platform for businesses targeting Gen Z and younger Millennials, particularly for industries like fashion, entertainment, and technology that resonate well with trends and viral content.

TikTok is the best platform to reach Gen Z and Millennials
While also popular among younger demographics, Instagram has a broader age distribution and a user base of over 2 billion active users worldwide (Statista, 2024).

It provides a valuable platform for businesses looking to engage with a slightly older demographic that values quality visual content and detailed narratives. This diversity makes Instagram particularly useful for e-commerce, service-based, and B2B businesses that benefit from a rich storytelling approach and detailed product showcases.

Ads and Pricing

TikTok Ads Can Be Cheaper Than Instagram

Both TikTok and Instagram offer various ad formats, but they differ significantly in terms of pricing and targeting options.

TikTok ad formats include:
  • In-feed ads: Ads that appear on users’ For You pages, blending with organic content
  • Branded effects: Custom filters, stickers, and effects that allow users to interact with your brand
  • Branded hashtag challenges: Hashtag campaigns that encourage user-generated content and engagement
  • Spark Ads: Organic posts turned into ads to gain more visibility
You can quickly grow your brand with TikTok’s in-feed ads
Instagram ad formats include:
  • Carousels: Multiple images or videos in a single ad
  • Stories ads: Full-screen ads that appear between Stories
  • Reels ads: Similar to TikTok’s in-feed ads but in Instagram’s Reels format
TikTok’s ad costs are generally lower than Instagram’s, especially when targeting younger demographics. TikTok’s cost per thousand impressions (CPM) is often cheaper than Instagram, making it a more cost-effective choice for reaching large numbers of users, particularly during less competitive times of the year, like January. For example, TikTok’s average CPM can be as low as $2.25 in January​ 2024 (Gupta Media, March 2024).

TikTok’s average CPM is cheaper than Instagram and most other platforms
However, the cost of advertising on both platforms can fluctuate based on the season and location, with prices peaking during high-shopping periods like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. While TikTok offers lower starting prices for campaigns, with daily minimum spends as low as $20 for ads, Instagram can start at just $5 per day, offering flexibility for smaller budgets​​.


TikTok Offers Superior Customer Support and Well-Organized Resources

TikTok generally offers superior customer support options for businesses compared to Instagram. The articles in TikTok’s Help Center are well-organized, making finding information on specific ad or business tools easy. Additionally, the extensive video tutorials and step-by-step guides simplify the app’s usage, even if you’re not tech-savvy.

You can easily find the tutorials you need in TikTok’s well-organized Help Center
Using a dedicated form, you can report various issues on TikTok, such as business-related inquiries, account bans or suspensions, bug reports, and policy violations. For TikTok Shop-related inquiries, you can use its Contact Us form in the Seller Center. Additionally, there’s a Safety Center with guides that provide support for safety, privacy, and security.

On the other hand, navigating Instagram’s Help Center can be more challenging. While the information is comprehensive, the absence of visual aids can make it difficult to follow tutorials. Instagram provides dispute support forms for limited, restricted, or disabled accounts and offers a report feature to flag posts that violate community guidelines.

TikTok vs Instagram: Which Is Better for Your Business?

After an exhaustive analysis of the features, algorithms, demographics, and content formats, I’ve concluded that the best platform for your business depends on your type of business and growth stage.

Instagram is most suitable for your campaigns if your business is already established and you have a decent marketing budget. You’ll be able to design high-quality images and videos that appeal to all demographics. Best of all, if you have an e-commerce business or run a B2B enterprise, Instagram can be a great way to reach your customers. However, remember that you must have a large audience to make the best of Instagram for business.

On the other hand, TikTok can work for all stages of business, especially if you’re a small business with few followers or a limited budget. Thanks to its algorithm that promotes organic content and its young and highly engaged audience, you can quickly go viral on TikTok. So, if you sell items that thrive on trends, such as clothing, electronics, and beauty products, expect to expand your customer base more rapidly using TikTok.

Each platform has distinct strengths, so choose the one that best aligns with your business type and marketing goals.

TikTok Instagram
Short videos (15 – 60 seconds) Photos and videos (1 – 15
Focus Short-form, entertaining videos Photos and longer-form content
Sound Often includes music and sound
effects; music library with up to
10,000 commercial sounds
Can include music, but not as common
Editing Basic video editing tools available More advanced editing tools available
Interaction Likes, comments, shares, duets,
interactive add-ons
Likes, comments, shares,
saves, broadcast channels


Is it worth using TikTok for business?

Yes, using TikTok for business is worth it. It offers targeted ad options, business-friendly features like TikTok Shop for direct sale,s and analytics tools to track engagement and performance. These tools allow businesses to effectively engage with a young, dynamic audience and leverage viral content for brand visibility.

Is it easier to grow on TikTok or Instagram?

It’s easier to grow and go viral on TikTok because its algorithm favors content that engages users regardless of the creator’s follower count. This platform is designed to adapt to user preferences quickly and can promote videos to a wide audience based on engagement metrics like views, likes, and shares.

Do you make more money on Instagram or TikTok?

Making more money on Instagram or TikTok depends on how you use each platform’s features and your audience engagement strategy. Instagram focuses on a more traditional e-commerce approach by offering product tags, shopping ads, and a dedicated storefront. TikTok monetization focuses on viral content, live gifts, and in-video shopping.

Is it better to do affiliate marketing on Instagram or TikTok?

Instagram is generally better for affiliate marketing due to its more mature audience, diverse content formats, and advertising tools. You can add links to paid Instagram ads, Stories, and even on your bio, making it easier to direct traffic to your sales page. You can also track campaign effectiveness with Instagram Insights or a social media marketing tool to improve your strategy for better engagement and conversions.

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