How to Make Instagram’s Algorithm Work for You | Iceberg Web Design

How to Make Instagram’s Algorithm Work for You

Instagram is a great way to amass an audience and get your message across, but its algorithm is unique. 

Instagram’s Algorithm

Instagram uses a combination of algorithms. Each works differently depending on which part of the app a user interacts with. That’s because people use different features of the app for unique purposes.

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Feed and Stories

The two parts of the app that are most similar are the Feed posts and Stories. That’s because these are the places users go to see content from their family and friends. So while you might see the occasional ad pop up here, you will never see content from strangers—only people you follow.  

Other considerations include

  •         The popularity of the post (how many likes does it have)
  •         How often (and how, historically) has the user interacted with the poster?
  •         Does the user like this type of content?

The posts a user sees at the top of their feed are ones that Instagram predicts they are most likely to like, comment on, save, and spend time looking at.

Timing is Everything

Because interactions are a decisive ranking factor in the algorithm, you want as many likes and comments as possible in the first few seconds of posting your content. For this reason, timing your posts for when your followers are most active is essential. Using a scheduling tool to send your posts automatically is a great option. Various studies recommend Thursdays as the best day to post. 2–3 pm is the best time to post, in general. Also, 11 Am on Wednesdays and 10 am on Fridays are good times to post.

Invite Interactions

Interactions signal popularity on Instagram. Use question stickers, polls, and emoji sliders to encourage interaction with your stories among your followers.

Explore Page

Explore page is all about finding new things that you will probably like because they are somehow related to the things you have liked in the past. How does Instagram figure this out? They look at posts a user has interacted with in the past. Then they see what other people who have liked those posts are looking at.

Other considerations include

  •         The popularity of the post (how many likes does it have). This is very important for Explore.
  •         Has the user interacted with the poster, even though they don’t follow them?
  •         How, historically, has the user interacted with other posts on the Explore page?

Use #RelevantHashtags

Hashtags help the algorithm know what the content is about, so using them right can improve your visibility and ranking on Instagram.

Instagram Reels

Instagram Reels is meant to entertain, so the reels the user sees are often from accounts they don’t follow. In many ways, the algorithm for Instagram Reels is like the Explore page, except it is meant to be more entertaining.

Keep your Reels light-hearted, and keep your videos short. This will increase the likelihood that the user will watch to the end, which the Reels algorithm values highly.

Other considerations include

  •         Instagram shows Reels to users that have interacted with similar Reels in the past to offer them relevant content
  •         Has the user interacted with the poster, even if they don’t follow them?
  •         How popular is the Reel?

Invite Comments

Likes are great, but comments are better! Write captions to your Reels that add value to the content. This can increase the amount of time users spend interacting with your posts. And always end with a call-to-action telling your users exactly what you want them to do. Often a prompt is a great way to get the discussion going.

What to Avoid in Your Instagram

It’s essential to follow the Instagram Community Guidelines, which have been put in place to keep its users safe and comfortable. They recommend avoiding content that (is):

  •         Potentially upsetting or insensitive content
  •         Labeled as misinformation by third-party fact-checkers
  •         Promotes vaping or tobacco
  •         Political in nature
  •         Includes photos and videos that don’t belong to the poster
  •         Illegal content
  •         Spam
  •         Nudity
  •         Low-resolution
  •         Watermarked

Instagram is Just One Part of Your Marketing Plan

There are many parts to a good marketing plan. Iceberg Web Design has you covered when it comes to your website, SEO, and reputation management. To increase your online visibility and streamline your business, contact us today!

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