Everything you need to know about the Instagram algorithm in 2021

Everything you need to know about the Instagram algorithm in 2021


The key to understanding how the algorithm works Instagram is to understand that this social network provides each user with their own personal flow according to their way of interacting with the platform. In this article, we explain the rules that the algorithm takes into account and the steps you need to take to increase your reach and engagement. Keep reading!

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How does the Instagram algorithm work?

Maybe you’ve already felt like you’ve done a lot of work on the content you post in the social networks and you did not achieve the desired results. You’ve probably wondered “how does Instagram decide which shows up first?” Why do some posts get as many views as others? What criteria does Instagram follow to display posts in Explorer? Finally,how the Instagram algorithm works?

Instagram doesn’t just have one algorithm that monitors what users are doing. They use a wide variety of algorithms, classifiers, and processes, each with a specific purpose. The key is to use as much technology as possible to personalize the user experience.

When it was born, Instagram was simply a platform that displayed photographs in chronological order. As it has been perfected, In 2016, the platform realized that users did not have time to see 70% of all posts from their close contacts.. For this reason, they developed a feed that ranked posts according to their order of importance.

The flow, the Explorer and the Coils they use their own algorithm adapted to their use. Users often search for the stories of their closest friends, but want to see new content on Explore.

Myths about the Instagram algorithm

In recent years, we’ve heard dozens of theories about what Instagram values ​​and what it doesn’t. Here we debunk some of the most famous myths:

  • Instagram doesn’t hide posts. In other words, if you swipe the feed, you will get all the posts made by the accounts you follow.
  • Business accounts have no additional presence in the flow.
  • The algorithm does not favor videos. The number of videos or images a user watches depends on how often they interact with the respective formats. The Instagram algorithm does not favor videos over images or vice versa.
  • The stories, the direct and IGTV they are neither favored nor penalized. Like videos and images, their placement in the feed is determined by engagement level, which is tracked in real time.
  • Instagram doesn’t penalize those who post multiple times a day. At the most, if you quickly post different amounts of content on the same day, the algorithm could swap other content between your posts.

In short, Instagram doesn’t penalize anyone for using too many hashtags, posting too often, or anything else that could be considered “excessive”. It’s programmed to show the most relevant posts and get the most engagement first.

Appearing frequently and posting quality content is essential for growing your fan base and your business. That doesn’t mean you should just focus on how often you post. You have to focus on quality. If your content isn’t generating a lot of engagement, it might not appear first in user feed. No matter what the right or wrong theories are about how the Instagram algorithm works, content creation takes time and effort.

How is content rated on Instagram?

Typically, Feed and Stories are places where users want to see content from their friends and family. According to the social network itself, five key factors influence the Instagram algorithm for feed posts. These are the following:

1. Interest

We tend to think of the feed as showing us posts based only on the users we follow. However, it’s also based on the accounts and types of posts we’ve historically enjoyed. The more the algorithm creates that we like a certain post, the higher it will appear in the feed.

We could say that what we see on Instagram is basically a combination of all of our behaviors on the platform. From the accounts we interact with the most to people who tag us in photos or the type of posts we usually like and comment on.

2. Commitment

The interactions that are most important to the Instagram algorithm are the ones that have the most engagement. That is, in which a greater number of people participate. The most important interactions for the classification of publications are as follows:

  • Comments on the number
  • number of likes
  • Number of times it has been shared
  • Video views

3. Relations between users

Instagram seeks to prioritize posts from friends, family, and accounts that interest us. To have the platform show you what you want, use our interactions to find out who is closest to you. This is detected by following the different points. Instagram tries to calculate this relationship, along with your level of interest, as soon as you follow someone, showing you their content and monitoring how you interact with each user.

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