If you own a business and you use Instagram to share content, it is important to know when to post on Instagram. Finding the best time to post on Instagram is known to increase reach and engagement, which is important when trying to grow a business. In reality, it boils down to where your followers are located. Many articles will tell you the best overall time to post on Instagram, but truthfully there are no one-size-fits-all solutions. The best time to post on Instagram depends on you, your business, and your audience. Below, I will explain why it is important to post at specific times, and how to find your best time to post on Instagram.
Why does it even matter to post at specific times on your Instagram?
Posting at a specific time can help you reach more of your followers, which in turn would result in a higher engagement rate. It is beneficial to drive as much attention to your Instagram post as you can within the first 15-20 minutes. The reason being the algorithm looks for those posts that get an initial spike of likes. If your post gets a lot of engagement after you post, it tells Instagram that your posts should be pushed up the feed for more people to see.
There are some things you can do to get those likes as quickly as possible. For example, using specific hashtags, boosting your content with ads, and lastly, liking and commenting on other’s content right after you post. Keep in mind though that these things will not necessarily work if you publish posts when your audience is not online. Therefore, knowing when your followers’ are online is crucial.
How to know when your followers are online
If you have an Instagram Business profile (which you should, if you own a business), the best thing to do is to research your audience with Instagram’s Analytics tool, Instagram Insights. This analytics tool will allow you to see where your followers are located, their gender, their age, and most importantly when they are active on Instagram. Once you know when your audience is online you can figure out the best times and days to post on Instagram.
Other Things to Consider:
1. Instagram Algorithm
We spoke a little bit about the algorithm earlier but besides looking for posts that get a lot of attention in the first few minutes, another factor to consider is that Instagram’s algorithm gives more weight to the time that something is posted. Essentially what this means is that very old content doesn’t constantly get bumped up in people’s feeds. It gives priority to newer content. What this means for you is posting new content as often as you can to reach more people for your business.
2. Post for your Most Active Time Zone(s)
As mentioned above, using Instagram Analytics you can see where your followers are living. Therefore, you should schedule posts based on the region the majority of your followers are located. For example, if your primary audience lives in Florida, you should be posting with the Eastern Standard Time (EST) in mind. Likewise, if the majority of your followers are in California, you should be posting in Pacific Standard Time (PST).
However, if you have followers scattered around the world, try experimenting with different times. For example, try posting at times that are considered “odd” for the time zone that you live in because it may be the perfect time in another part of the world.
3. Save your Important Posts for Weekdays
Even though it may not be a big difference, Instagram engagement does shift depending on the day. For example, content creators may get more engagement on the weekends because their audience has more time to read or view the post. While on the other hand, companies like Skype, or Mailchimp may get more engagement on weekdays because their audience will most likely interact while at work. Please note that these are just examples, and ultimately you have to see what works best for you and your own business on when to post on Instagram.
4. Finding your Best Time to Post Applies to all Things Instagram
IGTV and Instagram Reels are also affected by the algorithm. Therefore, it is a good idea to post these videos at the appropriate time as well. The only part of Instagram that may not apply to this is Instagram Stories, only because they disappear after 24 hours. However, it may not hurt to post the stories at your optimal times because it may draw more engagement to your business page.
When to post on Instagram ultimately depends on your business and your audience. It will take time to discover what time(s) and day(s) work best for you, so give yourself some grace. Accumulating the data is what takes the most time, therefore always remember it is a marathon and not a sprint. Just remember by doing this research and planning your posts, you can increase your reach, boost engagement, and ultimately gain more followers and customers and that is priceless. Check out my content intensives to learn even more about mastering your social media.