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Hashtag Strategy

Everyone is allowed to use 30 hashtags on Instagram with a post. Some basic tips:

  • Put your hashtags in the first comment, not the image itself (putting them in the image can make them look spammy)
  • Use all 30 hashtags (every time)
  • Try to avoid posting the exact hashtags in the exact order every time, since Instagram has actually penalized posts for this

Hashtag research

Divide your hashtags into thirds:

  • 10 hashtags: should have 10K-100K posts
  • 10 hashtags: should have 100k-1 Million posts
  • 10 hashtags: should have 1 Million + posts

You can see the number of times a hashtag has been used by clicking on it. If you don't know what hashtag to use, just click on the related hashtags that Instagram suggests when you enter a tag. You'll have a greater likelihood of showing up on the Explore page for the hashtags that are used 10K-100K times, but when you are featured on the Explore page for one of the more highly used hashtags, that's when a post can take off and go viral (which is why you want to have a variety).

I would suggest making a list and then making different variations (putting them in different orders) and putting them in different notes on your phone so you can quickly copy and paste. Some scheduling tools also allow you to schedule the first comment (Grum and Schedugram, for example, although scheduling tools often don't work well because Instagram wants to discourage scheduling content).

Another helpful tool for research (of if you just want to grab a list of hashtags quickly):

Note: Always include LOCAL hashtags in your list!