Last week, Instagram announced that they were changing the Instagram algorithm.
According to the post, the updated algorithm will show photos and videos in a more chronological order according to when a post was posted and have a “new Posts” Button to give users more control if they want to see the latest posts.
Sounds great right? The answer to your prayers? But what EXACTLY did instagram change?
The New Instagram Algorithm Updates: What You Need to Know
1.Instagram is adding a “New Posts” button that allows users to manually refresh their feeds.
According to the announcement, the idea of the button came about as the results of many users complaining that their feeds would refresh unexpectedly when scrolling.
“We’ve heard it can feel unexpected when your feed refreshes and automatically bumps you to the top. So today we’re testing a “New Posts” button that lets you choose when you want to refresh, rather than it happening automatically,” says Instagram.
2. When You Post now has more weight in the algorithm.
Based on the announcement, the new Instagram algorithm update is now going to give more weight to when something is posted, and will supposedly prevent old posts from showing up in your feed first.
“Based on your feedback, we’re also making changes to ensure that newer posts are more likely to appear first in feed. With these changes, your feed will feel more fresh, and you won’t miss the moments you care about.”
So does this mean that the chronological feed is back?
Basically, the feed is still algorithm based, but the time that you post is more important than before. I've said before: If your post gets a lot of likes and comments shortly after it’s posted, this signals to Instagram that your Instagram post is quality content, and the algorithm will then show your post to even more of your followers! Instagram not only cares about how much engagement you get, it also cares about how QUICKLY that engagement happens. So if you post when the majority of your followers are online, you have a better chance at increasing your engagement and doing well with the algorithm changes.
So how do you figure out when to post?
The best time to post on Instagram is a very individualized thing based on your particular audience and there really is no single best time to post on Instagram. What time MY audience is active is different from yours based on a variety of factors. BUT most experts agree that lunch time from 11am to 1 pm was the best time to post on Instagram followed by evenings from 7-9.
1. Use your Instagram analytics
If you have a Business account on Instagram, use your analytics to find out when your audience is online.
Go to your analytics and look for the Followers section. You can then see when your audience is online by days and hours. Even what time zone the majority of your followers are in. Use this info to craft a plan on when to post your content.
P.s. If you don't have a business account….you are missing out on a lot of valuable content friends.
2. Test it out yourself.
If you haven't switched to a business account yet, and don't have a program like Later, Iconosquare, Tailwind or Hootsuite that can show you your analytics, experiment with posting times. Start with the most popular times above and try out a new time everyday for 2 weeks and see when you get the most engagement. By the end of your experiment, you should have a clear idea of what time your followers are online and one step closer to getting your content in front of the right people at the right time.
Hopefully this helped to answer some of your questions about the new Instagram Algorithm changes.
Different audiences will be active at different times, and in varying time zones, which is why it’s important to find your individual best time to post on Instagram.