One thing has remained constant throughout all the Instagram changes over the years: the importance of Instagram hashtags.
Using relevant, targeted hashtags on your posts and stories is still one of the best ways to get discovered by new audiences on Instagram. And this can translate into more engagement, more followers, and more customers for your business.
How does it work? Instagram hashtags work by organizing and categorizing photo and video content.
Every post you create on your Instagram feed can be accompanied by a caption and a few hashtags (up to 30), and these hashtags help in the process of discovery.
For example, a wreath seller might post a picture of a gorgeous wreath on a door, and then use the hashtags #wreathsforsale #springwreath #doorwreath when it’s uploaded to Instagram.
By using these three hashtags, the image is cataloged so other Instagram users who enjoy wreaths can easily find it.
So while a relatively simple concept, hashtags can really get your posts off the ground and into the hands of the right audience.
And the good news is that Instagram is continuously making improvements on how and where we can use hashtags in our posts and stories.
In the last year alone, Instagram has released a ton of new hashtag features, including new capabilities and even better tracking. Here are some of the highlights:
- Track Your Hashtag Insights: With Instagram Insights, Instagram added the ability to analyze how effective your hashtags are in getting more views (or impressions) on your posts! Which is a great indicator of whether or not you’ve chosen the right hashtags for your strategy. To access this data, just open a post and tap the “View Insights” text below it.Swipe up and you’ll find a full page of data for that post, including profile visits, follows, reach, and breakdown of how and where your post was discovered.
Pay special attention to the “From Hashtags” metric under impressions. This number tells you how many people discovered your post through the hashtags you used.
- You Can Also Follow Hashtags: meaning you can now stay up-to-date on various topics (or communities) by following a hashtag related to your interests. Following a hashtag works just like following a user’s profile. When you find a hashtag you’d like to follow you simply open the hashtag page and tap on the follow button
This opens up a great opportunity to regularly appear in a follower’s feed. For example, if you have a branded hashtag for your business, you can invite your followers to also follow your unique hashtag in other promotional materials you give them. This means that your content could appear twice in a follower’s feed — once as they follow your profile, and once again as they follow the hashtag. It doubles your chances of engagement!
- Add Clickable Hashtags in your Bio: What’s so great about this feature is that it makes your bio more functional — you can use hashtags for promoting your Instagram community (#wml2019) to highlighting hashtags that are relevant to your industry (#wreaths). All you have to do is include a “#” before any word in your bio and it will automatically become a clickable link that leads visitors to that hashtag.
- Research your audience: Throwing random hashtags at the end of your Instagram posts isn’t going to grow your audience. Instead, find out what hashtags your audience is using and see which ones fit the content that you’re publishing. Your hashtags should be relevant and contain keywords that users are actually searching for.
- Watch the video below on how I do quick research for hashtags.