Hashtags are an essential element of Instagram. They can help you reach a wider audience, increase engagement, and grow your account. However, it's not just about adding any hashtag to your posts. In this ultimate guide to using hashtags on Instagram, we'll cover everything you need to know to use hashtags effectively.

What are Instagram hashtags?

Instagram hashtags are keywords and phrases preceded by the pound or hash sign (#). They allow users to search for and find content related to a particular topic. When you add a hashtag to your post, it becomes part of a larger conversation and is more likely to be discovered by other users.

Why are hashtags important on Instagram?

Hashtags are important on Instagram because they help users discover new content and accounts. When a user searches for a specific hashtag, they are presented with a feed of all posts that contain that hashtag. This means that even users who aren't following your account can discover your content and potentially become a new follower.

Hashtags can also help increase engagement on your posts. According to a study by Simply Measured, posts with at least one hashtag average 12.6% more engagement than those without.

How to use hashtags on Instagram

Now that you understand why hashtags are important, let's dive into how to use them effectively on Instagram.

a. Choose relevant hashtags

When selecting hashtags, it's important to choose ones that are relevant to your content. This not only helps users find your content but also ensures that the users who do find it are interested in your niche or topic. For example, if you're posting about fitness, using hashtags like #fitfam or #fitspiration would be more relevant than #foodie.

b. Use a mix of popular and niche hashtags

Using popular hashtags can help increase the visibility of your content, but it also means that your post will be competing with millions of other posts using the same hashtag. To stand out, it's important to also use niche hashtags that are specific to your content. These hashtags may have a smaller audience, but the users who do discover your post are more likely to engage with it.

c. Keep an eye on hashtag trends

Hashtag trends can come and go quickly on Instagram. Staying up-to-date with current trends can help increase the visibility of your content. For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, hashtags like #stayhome and #quarantine became popular.

d. Use branded hashtags

Branded hashtags are hashtags that are specific to your brand or campaign. Using branded hashtags can help increase brand awareness and encourage user-generated content. For example, Starbucks' #RedCupContest encourages users to share photos with their iconic red holiday cups.

How many hashtags should you use on Instagram?

There is no magic number when it comes to how many hashtags you should use on Instagram. However, Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post, so it's best to use as many relevant hashtags as possible.

According to a study by TrackMaven, posts with 11 or more hashtags receive the most engagement. However, it's important to note that using too many hashtags can also come across as spammy.

How to find Instagram hashtags

Finding relevant hashtags can be a challenge, but there are several tools available to help you.

a. Instagram search

Instagram's search function allows you to search for hashtags related to a specific keyword. For example, searching for "travel" will bring up related hashtags like #travelphotography and #travelgram.

b. Hashtag generator tools

There are several hashtag generator tools available online that can help you find relevant hashtags.

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