Instagram isn’t easy to crack. Just when we think we’ve figured out how to succeed on the platform, Instagram changes its algorithm again.
For those who might not know, the Instagram algorithm determines who sees your posts and when. However, even with the periodic updates, one element of the algorithm never changes: Instagram continues to focus on the user experience. These new updates are an example of Instagram showing users what they want to see.
Instagram stopped showing posts in chronological order in 2017 for this reason. Instead, the platform began showing photos based on relevance to the user. Now, a follower may or may not see your post – even if she is on the app when you post it.
Here’s what you need to know about the new Instagram algorithm update:
1. Don’t edit a caption for 24 hours after posting.
Lingerie store owners shouldn’t edit a caption for 24 hours after posting the photo. Instagram will notice this, and it may force the algorithm to show your content to less accounts. (Also known as shadowbanning.) This means you must have your caption perfected when you post it. Even just a slight change counts. So, triple check that you like your caption before publishing it. Once it goes live, it must stay live for 24 hours.
2. Don’t delete and repost a photo.
You could delete a photo and repost it at a more optimal time before the Instagram algorithm update. However, Instagram can somehow pick up on this now. Deleting and reposting a photo could get your lingerie store’s photo shadowbanned.
3. A photo’s first hour of engagement matters.
The first hour that your Instagram photo is live is the most important. Instagram will track engagement during this hour to see how your followers respond to it. The more engagement your lingerie business’s photo gets in that hour, the better. The algorithm will decide who else sees the photo from that first hour of engagement. For this reason, it’s still important to post content at optimal times.
4. Reply to comments within an hour.
Responding to users’ comments on your photos or Instagram stories has always been important. However, lingerie store owners must now respond to comments within 60 minutes of the comment being posted. (I know – that’s a fast turn-around!) Instagram counts this is authentic engagement with your followers, which gives you a boost in the algorithm.
5. All hashtags should be included in the caption.
If your lingerie business previously included numerous hashtags in the comments, stop. Instagram considers this to be “spammy,” which can get your photo shadowbanned. Instead, lingerie store owners should post hashtags within the caption area.
6. Be strategic with hashtags.
Does your lingerie business use the same hashtags on every Instagram post? You can’t do this anymore. This is something else the Instagram algorithm considers “spammy.” Lingerie store owners should switch up the hashtags.
Hashtags are a hot topic for business owners on Instagram. Some people believe in strategically using all of the 30 hashtags that Instagram allows. Others believe in sticking with 5-10 specific hashtags. Whichever route you go – don’t choose overly broad hashtags. It’s better to use few hashtags that truly speak to your content, than a lot of random ones.
Engagement and authenticity are driving Instagram’s latest algorithm. Personally, I’m excited about these changes. I think there’s more opportunity for small accounts with good engagement to be seen. But, that means that Instagram engagement has never been more important.
Featured image via Stocksnap
So, what do you think about the new Instagram updates? Have you noticed a difference in your stats?