So How Does Instagram Search Work?

Instagram search works by finding content based on your search term – taking into account pages, post content, locations – your results will vary from another person as Instagram uses an algorithm that takes into account your own past behaviour and topics of interest.

It’s different from Feed, Stories, Reels and Explore because your direct search term helps figure out what results to show you.

Let’s search “Women’s Active Wear” and see what we get.


Instagram Search Example - Womens Active Wear

How Does Instagram Rank Its Search Results?

 Your Instagram search results are based on 3 key areas

The text you enter in the search bar is by far the most important signal for search.

Including accounts you follow, posts you’ve viewed, and how you’ve interacted with accounts in the past. Instagram will usually show accounts and hashtags you follow or visit higher than those you don’t.

When there are a lot of potential results, Instagram also looks at popularity signals. These include the number of clicks, likes, shares and follows for a particular account, hashtag or place.

Because of these 3 factors, your search results will differ from someone else.


How Can You Get a Better Ranking On Instagram?

How can you make your page, your posts, your location (your everything) rank better on Instagram?

3 things you can do (or start to do) right now.

Use ALL the space to describe your business and include as many words that people may search. If you have a physical store, be sure to include your location.

Include relevant keywords in your copy.

Include relevant hashtags in your copy


“For a post to be found in search, put keywords and hashtags in the caption, not the comments.”

Adam Mosseri, Instagram

August 2021

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