Everyone’s thinking it, we’re just saying it; Instagram’s new algorithm can be frustrating! In 2016, Instagram moved from a chronological lay out to this new algorithm. On average, users miss about 70 percent of the content in their feeds. However, it’s not all Instagram’s fault. There are nearly 700 million active users which means there’s more content available than anyone could manage. In an effort to keep your timeline clean, Instagram implemented their algorithm so that you only see posts you care about (or one’s that the algorithm thinks you care about)
How do they do it? Instagram figures out what posts you’d most likely care about, and places them at the top of your feed. In an interview with Business Insider, an Instagram spokesperson said the algorithm considers several different factors to find out what you care to see. The first is timeliness. No, the order isn’t chronological but Insta still considers how many times you hit refresh or log in. Engagement is next. The algorithm boosts posts that are gaining more likes and comments (sound like a catch-22 anyone?) Comments are weighted more heavily than likes since they take more effort. It considers relationships. The depth of your relationship with an account is determined through likes, comments, and tags. Lastly, profile searches and direct shares. The more times you search an account, the higher they’ll sit on your timeline. Sharing an account’s posts is also considered.
So how do you apply to information to your business? While it’s true people may not see your post right when you share it, it’s still important to post at the right time to maximize engagement. Engagement on a photo you post is what will best boost your post to the top of people’s timelines. And what if you’re not getting engagement? Start building those relationships. Engage with your followers, look at their posts to see what they like, and tell them you like it! Gaining a loyal and active following isn’t easy, but without it, the algorithm will not work in your favor.