Make sure you switch your hashtags up as much as possible. Using the same hashtags over and over again can sometimes make your content look spammy and Instagram doesn’t like that. Some have even pointed to this as a reason for shadowban.
According to the pioneer’s at Planoly, researching hashtags (and incorporating into your social media strategy) isn’t nearly as hard or time intensive as it sounds. Here, they walk us through the hits, highlights and heroes of hashtag management.
Why Hashtags Matter on Instagram:
While the Instagram algorithm changes with relative frequency and hashtags aren’t as important as they were back in the day, they can still be a great tool in getting more eyes (and customers!) across your posts!
Instagram growth can be driven by researching and implementing the right hashtags. That said, the importance of hashtags can’t be understated if your goal is to grow your audience and increase your engagement.
There are several key performance indicators to consider. Here are a few of the most important factors:
Instagram audience discovery (getting your brand/product in front of new customers) has always been prompted by hashtags. They can also help you generate business for your brand. For example, let’s say that you make beautiful quilts and also use those materials to make one-off fashion items. By using hashtags like #quilts, #quiltsforsale, #designerquilts, and others that speak to your work or your location, anyone searching for likeminded products or content will be able to find your business.
Getting your content on the corresponding hashtag page provides an opportunity for discovery. You are giving yourself or your business the chance to be seen.
Similar to audience discovery, Instagram hashtags also live to help increase your engagement. By their very nature, hashtags work to heighten content visibility. So, by using hashtags on your grid post, stories and even in your IG lives, it’s easier for the Instagram audience to find you … this, plus more shares, saves, comments and likes.
However, engagement on Instagram looks different these days. Likes aren’t the most impressive metric anymore – saves are! So, using a variety of different yet thoughtful hashtags will help you reach a wider audience to potentially engage with your posts. Research proves it’s best to use 11 hashtags in your post. Think of it as the magic number.
A/B testing is important in any aspect of marketing. The same goes for Instagram hashtags.
There is no more valuable way to leverage hashtags on social media than testing different ways to implement them. For starters, extremely popular hashtags are largely irrelevant. Hashtags with millions of searches won’t help you at all. Your content will just get lost in a sea of others, leaving you no opportunity for audience discovery.
What we suggest is using more niche hashtags with lesser search volume so it’s easier for users to find you. For example, #love is an extremely popular hashtag that won’t generate much engagement. However, if you use, say, #loved or #lovehim or #loveher, there’s a much better chance for discoverability.
Make sure you switch your hashtags up as much as possible. Using the same hashtags over and over again can sometimes make your content look spammy and Instagram doesn’t like that. Some have even pointed to this as a reason for a shadowban.
A best practice is to use a tool like PLANOLY’s hashtag manager to pinpoint which hashtags are generating the least engagement, remove those and then a/b test new ones. You’ll also want to steer clear of including hashtags in your caption if at all possible. Add your hashtags using a tool like our auto-post first comment feature to both strategise your approach and save a little time.