Finding the best Instagram hashtags for your business account can be challenging, particularly if you are new to the platform and when everyone seems to have a different strategy. Using the right Instagram hashtags can help you reach your customers and build your network.
What is a hashtag anyway?
A hashtag is where the symbol (#) is used before a word or series of words together. Such as #dog #OfficeDog
Hashtags help Instagram to organise and categorise content. This enables the platform to present the right content to the right users. If you’re a frequent social media user then it’s likely that you’ve already seen hashtags in action.
To be successful with hashtags, it’s important to be strategic about your hashtag usage. Using popular hashtags like #love and #happy might get you a few extra likes. But it won't help build a relevant, engaging community specific to your brand.
Why should you use a hashtag on Instagram?
Instagram hashtags have different purposes — here are some examples of why you want to use them:
1) Gain More Likes:
Instagram users interested in a particular topic will search for related hashtags.
2) Gain More Followers:
Through your hashtag, the user may visit your profile. If they see your account matches a topic that interests them they will follow you for more content.
3) Make More Sales
You can also make more sales by using them for your e-commerce business account. Use relevant hashtags in promoting your products to draw in potential buyers.
How You Find the Best Instagram Hashtags for Your Business Account
So, how are you supposed to find these cool, creative, and community-oriented hashtags? The first thing is to research what people are already using. But, when you use a hashtag ensure you only use hashtags that are relevant to your post.
1) Research Your Audience
Throwing random hashtags in at the end of your Instagram posts isn’t going to grow your audience. Find out what hashtags your audience is using and see which ones fit the content that you’re publishing. To see how popular a hashtag is, type your hashtag into the app’s search bar and then select “tags” from the drop-down menu. You’ll then be able to see the related top hashtags. This reveals ways to reach and engage with your community.
2) Research Your Competitors
It’s always smart to find out what hashtags your competitors are using. By doing so, you can determine which hashtags provide the most engagement.
3) Research Industry Leaders
Every industry has its respective key influencers. Find out who these people are in your niche and piggyback off their success. Follow them and learn from them.
Find your niche
The narrower the scope of the hashtag, the more engaged the users are. It's surprising how niche hashtags can get!
For example, let’s say we were going to post a photo of the office dog Bingo, a Staffy-Lab cross. We could use the #dogstagram (over 15 million posts). If we use the tag #Staffy (over 2 million posts) we'll reach a more targeted audience. Use #StaffyLab (over 2 thousand posts) and we'll get an even more targeted audience. This is the best way to get a lot of targeted engagement on your posts!
You can browse through posts containing a hashtag you’re already having success with. Do you see a trend of any other common hashtags that you could include in future posts? If yes, write them down.
Some tools that might help get you started:
There are some tools out there to help you generate other hashtag suggestions.
Check what hashtags work for you
It’s important that you always review the performance of your Instagram content. This will help you to improve your social media output content and grow your business. A business account will allow you to view the insights on each post. This way you can see what is working well for you and adjust your hashtag strategy.
How many hashtags should you use?
Instagram actually allows you to post up to 30 hashtags with each post. There are different viewpoints on whether you should use all 30 in a post. Some Instagram users like to keep a post clean and not use more than 7 hashtags. Research has shown that around 12 hashtags is a good number to use. If you don’t want to clutter your captions, there are two ways you can “hide” your hashtags.
Hiding your Instagram hashtags.
Include them in the comment section below your post. Once other people leave a few comments, the hashtags won’t be viewable unless they click on the option to “See all”.
Separate your hashtags from the caption by burying them beneath dots and line breaks. In the caption or comment box tap the 123 key. Select return and then enter a period. Repeat those steps at least five times. Instagram caps off captions after three lines. So, your hashtags won’t be viewable to users unless they tap the “more” option.
How to save time entering your Instagram Hashtags
If you're entering 7 or more hashtags every post it can be time-consuming to type them all out and remember them!
Here are two tips to help you save time:
1) Create groupings of hashtags according to themes/subject matter in a Notes app on your phone. Then you can copy and paste when you post on Instagram. This saves you from having to type them all out and from trying to remember which ones to use.
2) Add a shortcut on your phone keyboard. For your iPhone, go to Settings > General > Keyboards > Text Replacement > Add New! Add your hashtag grouping in here. When you type in your shortcut your replacement text options will pop up. Then you can accept and you're done!
Save a shortcut or note for each of your “Instagram themes”. The popular hashtag groupings that are relevant to the content you are posting.
5 key things to remember:
only use your hashtags you need to relate to your post
using your keywords (the ones you’ve picked for your SEO strategy) can also be your hashtags when relevant. Think what people could be searching on Instagram
use at least 7 hashtags per post
create and use a few branded hashtags, and let your fans/clients know about them by using them on your content
analyse and review which hashtags work.