How Does the Instagram Algorithm Work?

Author : Coco Solution
10 de Septiembre, 2019
Discover all the information you need to know about how Instagram algorithm works and things to use and avoid.

Well... there's a lot of talk about how the Instagram algorithm works. Everyone wants to be influenced and promoted on social networks to make money honey doing what we love, right?

I'm sorry to tell you that this is going to be the first smoke-free article you read about how Instagram works, because we're "tired" of reading absurdities that don't work and that if they really worked, everyone would be on board because they would have discovered the goose that lays the golden eggs... nothing could be further from the truth.

But, as Jack the Ripper said: "Let's take it one step at a time.

Does Instagram have an algorithm?

Yes, it does. This is nothing new, it is Instagram's way of collating and evaluating the content that is uploaded every second to what is today the most used social network in the world.

And Instagram's poor algorithm is the target of all the rage from those users who see that getting a follower is harder than seeing Halley's Comet twice in your life...

How easy it is to blame others! How afraid we are not to recognize that we are mediocre and even worse... to recognize that what society likes is mediocrity!

There's no exact formula to know how Instagram's algorithm works or how to get over the 10,000 followers barrier and feel like "someone"...

But there are ways to do things right and you know the best part? They're so logical that you're gonna have a hard time believing us, but they're true...

But let's start with the lies and the "half truths", because reading on the Internet, social network experts can be as crazy as the bullshit they say in most articles.

Today we put on the gloves and goggles to dispel the myths and legends about how Instagram works, the sauce is served.

Methods to succeed on Instagram

What happens when your Instagram profile doesn't grow, or even worse, that it has a following of a quality similar to that of a pre-baked tortilla?

So here we are, to tell you which premises to trust and which not. Get ready because there are curves coming.

Abuse of hashtags is penalized: False

When we read that "don't go over X hashtag because Instagram penalizes you", we laugh...

Let's see... if Instagram lets us put in a maximum of 30 hashtags, why can't we put in all of them?

Put it all in! If you see that you can put 30 hashtag related to your publication, do it! Don't be afraid. The hashtags are used to position the post between the different tags we put. In this way the publication has more reach.

But watch out! This has its work and its follow up, it's not that easy... We don't want you to think that putting hashtags with 400,000 publications you're going to be in the Instagram world showcase.

You're not! You're gonna have to work on it a little bit...

You can read our guide on how to create a hashtag on Instagram, it will help you a lot in this regard.

Carousels have more visibility than images: False

Another fallacy of colossal dimensions... Choosing a photo carousel does not give more visibility than a single photo. This depends on the image, on the quality of the publication, on factors that have nothing to do with quantity...

Don't forget: "Quantity is not synonymous with quality".

Publish a carousel, if you like, but never under the premise or the intention that this format will give you more visibility.

Videos have more visibility: False

Publications are publications. If you do not violate the rules, all are valued equally, being the users the only variable of your success.

However, we must admit that the videos are in the select group of "potential virality". That is to say, publications, which being of quality or belonging to the mainstream can be shared by the users.

There are agencies designed only to make this type of content on social networks that are part of the archaic "Growth Hacking".

Time of publication counts for a lot: True

Finally something that is in all the articles about how the Instagram algorithm works and that is true. Hallelujah brothers!

You'll have to look at the time you have the most interaction with your followers. This is very easy to do: trial and error, like life itself.

When you have all the information about your best posting times, start posting on those ratios.

Tip: the time may vary depending on the day of publication. It is not the same to publish on a Thursday at 10 pm as on a Friday at 10 pm. The situations are very different.

Stories increase followers: 50/50

This has its history, because it is true that Instagram stories generate a lot of impressions and the user consumes a greater amount of this type of publication than ordinary ones.

But uploading a lot of stories doesn't guarantee you'll get more followers, in fact, the increase in followers isn't linked to the impact, which is what the stories do.

So we leave the veracity of this information at 50/50. TIE.

Plenty of text is bad: False

Instagram has many uses, from amazing pictures of people and places, food, landscapes... to phrases.

Images with text have become a viral trend, people are constantly sharing sentences with each other.

Many times these phrases come together with reflections, poems...content created to accompany the image.

And as you may have seen, there are many Instagram profiles with thousands of followers whose strength lies in their texts.

So, no, the text doesn't penalize... value friends!

By the way, speaking of value: we have a very comprehensive article on thin content, which talks about the importance of creating valuable content. Take a look at it.

Photos are better than images with text: False

There's no need to talk about it, right? A good publication with a sentence can become as viral as an image. In Instagram, the "a picture is worth a thousand words" is not entirely true.

It all comes down to how the publication impacts on the public, after all it is the energy that makes the success and hegemony of this social network possible.

Having a balanced feed gets your followers going: False

Thinking about how Instagram works and has something to do with "balance" where there are millions of users posting whatever they want, is a bit complex, isn't it?

If you're a perfectionist person, cocky, conceited, organized... you can set up a balanced feed, with harmony. Those of us who like to take a look at the appearance of the profiles will like your proposal. But it doesn't guarantee you a follow up.

Responding to comments helps the impressions: True

Absolutely right, in fact, we'll give you a very interesting fact.

Answering the comments, increases the engagement and therefore the number of impressions. These, in turn, are the metrics that guide Instagram's algorithm to make your post visible to users in the Above the Fold page of the hashtags you use.

In case you didn't know, Above the Fold is the main page of a hashtag or profile where all your posts are displayed. This is also the name of the main page of the famous "magnifying glass", which, by means of an algorithmic measurement, shows us the publications that we may like.

Knowing all this, you'll be able to separate the straw from the grain and identify the smoke in some of the posts you'll see about how Instagram works.

Now we're going to give you some tips that we've tried out ourselves and we can assure you that they work. Let's go!


Real tips to improve your Instagram profile performance

Let's see, we've put together some advice, but usually a piece of advice will help you, and this information we're going to reveal will lead you to a very clear conclusion: you're going to have to work on it!

And with this outbreak of sincerity you still haven't left is that you really want to apply this and you have us in professional consideration. We thank you very much for this, so here's a virtual hug.

Study the hashtags and break their pattern

There are people who put hashtags in their publications that have nothing to do with the publication they have made.

Their logic? Oh yeah, look! #instagood has 8 million daily publications, I like it, I'll put it so that my publication, which is me from fiestuki, will appear in the Above the fold of a user from Lausanne, in Switzerland.

Please don't do this, it's absurd, you'll be invisible and you won't reach the people you should.

Study the environment of hashtags that are related to your post and attack those with few posts. This will cause your position both on the pages of those hashtags and in the magnifying glass of those who also use them to be good.

You will increase your chances of visibility, and even more if your post is different from the highlighted ones, thus attracting the attention of the users who browse through it.

We do not guarantee that you will have 4000 impressions, but you will surely increase them. Instagram is a long-distance race, where the more constant and the more you try, the more numbers you will grow.

Use the standard measurements and make sure the image looks good

Instagram publications are optimally sized. Work your designs on them, as almost all applications give you the option to design on that format, so please use it!

Use emojis in the texts

Well-used emojis are an exceptional tool to increase the impressions of our publications.

They serve to attract attention and get users to stop for a few minutes to read the texts we publish.

If you are interested in this topic, let us know on social networks and we will publish an article on the use of emojis on Instagram.

Notify your posts on stories

We are entering hostile territory, because those who think they are influencers are constantly asking them to activate manual notifications through stories as if all their followers were "dummies".

Let's see, we got wet when we said that three quarters of Instagram users don't activate this option, do you know why?

Because when we interact with content we like every day, Instagram itself puts it in front of our precious eyes.

Hey, we can activate it, to access the post from the notification and be the first to leave a like, until they disappear, and a comment.

So, if you want people to know you've posted, put in a couple of stories that hook and link directly to your post.

Believe us, the stories are more visible than the three dots in the top corner to enable the notification option. It even looks like it's made on purpose so people won't find that option.

We can't forget about the importance of the Instagram Swipe Up in 2020 either. Activate it as soon as possible as it greatly improves interactions.

If you want promotion, promote stories

We are finishing this article without smoke, and we will finish with two key points to make the most of this social network.

One of the keys to knowing how Instagram works is accepting that the machine is made for you to invest in it. How? By putting money into your publications or stories.

In general we will think that promoting publications is the best option, but not... Stories are more volatile, more ephemeral and have a higher percentage of print.

However, we recommend that you try both, first promote a publication one day and then a story the next. You'll be amazed!

Have fun with what you publish and don't obsess

And the super tip of the day is: Have a great time, be creative, draw attention to yourself without being a hater, break stereotypes, create a community around your profile that vibrates with your creative content.

If you notice, the real bosses of this social network, don't know how Instagram works, they really do what they like and do well because they have people visiting their publications with them.

Be patient, don't obsess, let alone blame Instagram. The algorithm doesn't conspire to make you do badly.

Accept that what you're publishing isn't going well and change your style while remaining true to yourself.

Remember that Instagram is still owned by a private company and in the future another more innovative social network may appear and end up on our list of obsolete social networks.


And even this article has arrived where we have wanted to dilute the smoke that has spread through this sector.

The pyroclastic cloud that came out of the many absurd articles about how Instagram works, caused a wave of false influencers who through fake followers or garbage, who are attracted by extremely outdated mainstream photos, have contaminated and misinformed the true functioning of a social network that gives a lot of play.

We have preferred to blame the famous algorithm and not think we are doing something wrong. We don't stop seeing people who do things right and get the success they deserve.

We can rely on any application to manage social networks but in the end it will all depend on you.

We also see those who do the opposite, looking for the easy like and getting followers who won't be loyal to them when the real moment comes.

And we talk about real time because there are already many companies that have been victims of these misleading numbers, many likes, many followers, many comments ... but no community. how is that possible?

Because nothing revolves around their brand, there is no spectrum that points to these "influencers" as a prominent agent within the sector.

What happens then? A company puts money into an influencer and the return on investment is smaller than a neuron.

Who is to blame? Instagram for not having polished up these aspects before...and the social media super gurus who claim to know how to succeed on Instagram and make you articles that are industrial quantities of smoke.

At Coco Solution, we'll tell you to give it a try, enjoy the fun of starting a social network from scratch. You're bound to hit the jackpot sooner or later.

The best way to know for sure how Instagram's algorithm works is not by reading articles that give you the recipe for eternal life, but by applying the best entrepreneurial methodology available: DIY (Do It Yourself).

To discover more about Instagram, check our articles:

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