Within the last year, Instagram introduced a new algorithm that affects how posts are displayed in users’ feeds. This has caused some dismay among those who were used to content being ordered by time and date.
Don’t worry, though. This article will go over the five things you need to know to understand Instagram’s algorithm.
1. How does the algorithm work
There are a multitude of factors that determine how well your posts perform. Here are some that we know about.
Engagement is perhaps one of the most crucial elements. The more that users interact with your posts, the higher they are placed on other people’s’ feeds. Furthermore, the algorithm seems to also be based on how quickly engagement is received. This means that posts that generate engagement faster tend to be prioritized over posts that accumulate it at a slower rate.
Another factor is the relationship between accounts. How much you tend to engage with certain users will affect their placement on your feed. This is why many brands will use an Instagram growth service to increase their engagement capabilities. If you seem to have a close relationship with another account, then its placement on your feed will reflect that. This usually gives a boost to your friends and family.
A post’s timeliness is important as well. While the most recent posts are usually brought to the forefront, it also depends on how often you use Instagram. If you’re not on it every day, then older posts are given more of a chance to be seen.
Other factors that influence the algorithm include: search histories, favored types of content, personal interests, the amount of time that posts were viewed for, and how often the posts have been shared between users in DMs.
2. What are its advantages
While a few have expressed frustration towards Instagram’s algorithm, others have reaped the benefits it has provided. In general, the algorithm has helped raise engagement rates for everybody. It has also had many other positive effects.
As previously mentioned, the algorithm takes into consideration the fact that some people aren’t as active on Instagram as others are. So posts linger around at the top of feeds for longer, and you’ll often receive a steady stream of engagement for hours or even days after posting. This results in greater visibility overall.
The most evident consequence is that high-quality content is rewarded above all. As long as you consistently post eye-catching photos and videos, you should get the attention that you deserve. Meanwhile, users that put in a minimal amount of effort will need to pick up the slack to catch up.
3. What should you keep in mind
One thing to remember about Instagram’s algorithm is that not all forms of engagement are viewed as equal. Comments are the most valuable form, as the time and exertion put into them gives them more weight. Shares are worth more as well. So you shouldn’t expect to climb to the top of everybody’s feed through accumulating likes alone. However, likes definitely still impact the algorithm, and there are tools that can help you get Instagram automatic likes.
You should also constantly think about optimization. Before publishing your post, you should consider all of the individual parts. You want everything to be honed to maximum effectiveness.
Has your photo been tweaked, edited, and polished enough? Are the captions engaging, with an effective call-to-action? How does the post look next to the others in your feed? Are you posting during peak hours of user activity? Is your profile as attractive as it could be?
While it may be tiring worrying about so many small elements, it’s a necessary part of marketing on the platform now. It’s not like the old days, when Instagram posts were organized chronologically. The algorithm has made it much more complex, but also more rewarding for those who are attentive and persistent.
4. How can you make the algorithm work for you
The algorithm shouldn’t be seen as an insurmountable obstacle blocking your path to Instagram success. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. By learning how to use the system, you can reach greater heights than ever before.
The number one thing to focus on is delivering great content to your audience. You need a strong base to build everything on. No matter how well you do otherwise, your account won’t go far with weak, low-quality content.
Next, you should take the time to understand your audience. Research the things that your target demographics enjoy and respond to the most. Keep track of different trends and popular aesthetic styles. Find out which hashtags they tend to use more than others. Look into which times they seem to be the most active.
Influencers can become your major allies in conquering the algorithm. Given their closeness to their communities, many influencers provoke high rates of engagement. Try to reach out to them and form mutually beneficial relationships. Maybe you could send products for them to feature in their posts, or offer to host a takeover where they choose the content that gets uploaded to your feed.
5. What else is affected other than your feed
The other areas of Instagram sometimes have differing algorithms. For instance, the algorithm used for browsing a hashtag is universal across all users. That means everybody sees the same thing. It’s mostly based on the amount and rate of engagement that each post receives.
Meanwhile, Instagram Stories and the Explore page are personalized to each individual user. They’re based more on the content and accounts that you interact with the most.