How to Use Hashtags on Instagram

How to Use Hashtags on Instagram

Carefully chosen hashtags hands down make your Instagram account more visible. How to find the very best ones? How and where to post? How many of them? All of these little details matter when you are dealing with organic traffic. It is not enough to simply post great hashtags.

Engage with the accounts that are already featured on the explore page with the hashtags theme that you usually use. Reaching the explore page with a big hashtag should be your goal.

Each time you post a new post with different hashtags, take your time and visit the accounts that are already featured. Comment at least 4 words comment under the first 5 accounts for one hashtag. Also, like their photos, answer their stories, and simply engage with their content. Instagram is a social media for a reason. You grow when you help others grow too.

mom and daughter laughing

Lightroom Presets: Wonderland

Choose a Niche

This isn’t always easy, however, definitely worth trying. Even if you want to expand your niche, later on, it is still good to start with the smallest possible one in the very beginning. You see, when somebody sees your feed the very first time, they have to know immediately what you are all about. For example, if I am looking for some illustrations inspiration, I will not really care about your photos. Also, if I want to check out some outfits, I would prefer to see them in a photo.

#1 Think About Your Followers First

Okay, now that you know your niche, how do you choose the hashtags? First of all, you will need to ask yourself a question: how can I help my followers? What would be valuable information for them? You need to find hashtags that people actually search for or even follow. E.g. #entrepreneur, #girlboss, #outfitoftheday, #dailyoutfit, #inspiringoutfit. All of the hashtags mentioned above are followed or searched by people because they inspire them.

#2 Follow Instagram Hashtags in Your Niche

Not only you will be able to like and comment on photos that are relevant for your account, but you will also see the latest Instagram trends. Also, whenever you check the first accounts on the explore page, take a look at their hashtags as well.

#3 Do Not Use the Same Hashtags Over and Over Again

Instagram has been lately doing its best to track spammy behavior. For example, you may be shadowbanned if you always post the same 30 hashtags. You can check if your account has been already shadowbanned for free here.

woman in  car

Lightroom Presets: Vintage Dream

#4 Use Different Size Hashtags

Your account will not gain traction if most of your hashtags only have 10 posts that use them. This works the other way around, if the chosen hashtags are too big, you will simply not have a chance to appear on the explore page. By using different size hashtags, you will be able to grow your account gradually.

#5 Do Not Use Irrelevant Hashtags

Users can choose “Don’t Show for This Hashtag” option. However, there is something more important than that. If people see your post on the explore page with irrelevant hashtags, they will not click on it. So you will most probably lose your spot on the explore page and who knows when you will get another chance to appear on one.

What If I Don’t Know My Niche Yet?

Some Instagram niches are really oversaturated. That being said, you can still make it work. One of the ways to get more people to see your hashtags is to use trending topics. From #tuesdaymotivation to #blackfridayweek. In other words, when you are adding hashtags, don’t only focus on the photo. Pay attention to what is happening in the world at the very moment.

woman smiling next to window

Lightroom presets: Mercury

How to Use Hashtags on Instagram Stories?

Instagram stories currently reach the most engagement. By creating stories you show to your followers that you are an active account. This is even more relevant for the new followers because they will see a purple circle around your account which will make it more likely for them to follow you.

The best way to use hashtags in the stories is to make them relevant. I would also like to share with you that there is a new feature on Instagram that can place your Instagram story on the explore page. There is no scientific data behind it, but I have noticed that many stories that end up on that page are usually polls. By combining both hashtags and pole, you will increase your chances to appear on the explore page. Simply make sure that the hashtag you use is relevant for the photo.

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