Ah, the all-mystic Instagram algorithm love it or hate it, the algorithm ultimately determines how successful your page will be. We’re here to help you separate fact from fiction about how the algorithm actually works, and how you can beat it to get more engagement on your page!
Your interests matter
As Instagram starts its transition towards a personalised feed, we can see it moving away from the chronological feed, instead placing posts based on who and what you like closer to the top. This is because the algorithm is focused on sorting the content it believes you are more likely to ‘like’ closer to the top, to gain your interest. Essentially, your past behaviour will set the precedent for how the app will interact with you in the future. That’s why the friends you like the content of, get tagged by or comment on will be more visible to your feed. According to Instagram, the most important engagements for feed ranking are comments, likes, reshares, and for video posts, it’s all about the views.
UPDATE: Latest news tells us that the chronological feed may not be gone just yet! Thanks to a new feature called ‘Latest Posts’ a pop up style message will appear when users open the app. This will prompt individuals to see the latest posts from their community, or opt for the not now button. If a user chooses to ‘See Posts’ they will be redirected to a most recent posts feed. However, if they select ‘Not Now’ they will continue to scroll down the standard home feed, sorted by the algorithm.
Interactions and relationships will change your experience
Following on from this emphasis placed on your behaviour patterns, interest won’t be the only factor the algorithm will prioritise. Judging on the way you interact with specific accounts it will also determine your relationship with followers. Instagram categories people as ‘friends and family’ if it sees consistent likes, story views, direct messages, searches and active engagement between your profiles. As a business make the most of stories to appear on your followers feeds daily. The more they watch your content the more likely your profile will remain visible to them.
It’s all in the timing
Instagram wants to cut down on old posts being shown both on the feed and your discover page. This means they have become more concerned with not only what you post but when it was posted. Why? Because they want to serve the latest most interesting posts. Hack the system by finding your personalised best time to post on Instagram, increasing your reach. If you post at a time when most of your followers are online, you give yourself a better chance of getting those likes — quickly! Which will mean better interest and relationship rates too.
Usage rates will change your feed’s appearance
The amount of time you spend scrolling, the number of times you open the app and how frequently you visit your feed versus certain profiles will all play a major factor in what content is pushed to the front of your app. That’s because Instagram’s goal is all about tailoring their service to meet the individuals needs. If you find yourself surfing the app a lot your feed will look like the old chronological theme. However, more casual users will only receive ‘highlight’ posts from the day or the week.
Stories will be the key to success
Instagram Stories that appear closest to the beginning of the row on your home feed are from accounts that you engage with the most, whether that may be through the user’s posts or stories themselves. By posting stories more often, you have a better chance of appearing at the top of the feed on a follower’s homepage – giving you multiple chances throughout the day to be discovered! Plus, this signals to the algorithm that you’re continuously engaging your audience with content they are interested in.
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