Guide to use Instagram hashtags in 2018

Instagram is the fast-growing social network that has already gained 1 billion users all over the world. Among the bunch of posts and videos posted each day it’s difficult to deliver the content to the right audience. That’s why it’s required to supplement each post with the right bunch of hashtags that will highlight your photos among others and let you gain more likes and followers.

Instagram users can create their own hashtags, follow them to get new content right in their feed, even “ignore” some of them. For Instagram business accounts hashtags are the powerful tool to grow their business on Instagram, attract potential customers and rival the competitors.

What is an Instagram hashtag?

Hashtag is a word or a group of words entered without gaps or emoji with a hash “#” symbol. Numbers are allowed to be used in hashtags but not the special characters as %. They can be added to the posts captions, in the comments and Instagram stories. The caption limit is 30 hashtags, if you add more the caption won’t be published. After adding them, your posts will appear in the relevant hashtag page: you can check it by tapping a hashtag. But if your Instagram account is private your posts won’t be displayed there.

Instagram photo caption with hashtags

Why to use Instagram hashtags?

As we’ve already mentioned hashtags help users to make their posts more visible for the users who check a hashtag page or follow a specific hashtag.

Plus there are other reasons why your posts should go along with hashtags:

  1. Get more likes on Instagram – the number of likes on Instagram post reflects its popularity. So the more users will see your posts the more likes you will get. But the use of random hashtags won’t let you achieve this goal. Use relevant niche hashtags to target the users that will be interested in your content while checking the hahstags pages.
  2. Draw potential followers to your account – not only likes can be gained due to the use of hashtags but also followers. When the users discover and like your posts they evidently check your account and all the content posted. If these users are in your niche they will follow your account. Hashtags can bring you a hundred/thousands followers if you use them in a smart way.
  3. Increase sales – if you offer some products or services on Instagram, you can draw customers attention by using specific niche hashtags so the users would have an opportunity to find it quickly and make a purchase. The right hashtags mix can boost your sales and draw awareness of the public to your brand. You can even invent your original “brand” hashtag and encourage users to use it.

How to use Instagram hashtags?

The correct way of using hashtags can really benefit to your business. But what is this correct way. We offer you some useful tips:

  • Find the best hashtags for your posts – you can check how your customers and competitors tag their posts and borrow some hashtags from them; check the hashtags tools that will help you to choose popular and niche ones that fit in your account category; invent your brand’s name/campaign hashtag so your followers could use it as well.
  • Use hashtags in your Instagram stories – don’t miss the opportunity to share your story with Instagram users. Instagram stories is one of the most popular Instagram features that attracts users. To expose your story to a greater number of people you should add hashtags on it. There are two ways of doing it: firstly, you can use the special “#hashtag” sticker (just tap on the ‘sticker’ icon in the top right corner); secondly you can add the hashtag as text – just use the text icon, enter some text and add hashtags. As stories feature is very popular, for you it’s a chance to gain more followers on Instagram.      
  • Experiment with the hashtags and analyze – you’ll never know what mix of hashtags will work best until you try them. Switch up them for every post, use different number of them, not exactly 30 hashtags available. After some testing check the results: which collection drew more users to like and comment your posts, follow your account. Instagram insights – the built-in analytics tool provides the following data for business accounts or other third-party apps as Iconosquare.
  • Follow your own hashtag – it’s a great way to define if your brand becomes popular or not on Instagram. Plus you can find the mentions of your brand to evaluate the attitude towards it. It’s important to react to the negative reviews to solve the users issues quickly and develop the good relationships with your customers

How to choose hashtags for your posts?

After learning the reasons and tips to use hashtags on Instagram, the only question that is left – what hashtags should be added to posts?

Of course, it depends on your account category – it can be fashion, food, beauty, fitness, art, nature and others. You can check what hashtags your competitors and their followers use.

Plus research the influencers in your topic – their hashtags will be also useful.

We have already advised to use the niche hashtags as they are the best tool to draw more followers. But the popular hashtags should be used too. About 8-10 of them will also contribute to the growth of your Instagram account. Just enter “Instagram popular hashtags” in the search engine like Google, and you will get tons of results. Among them you can choose the suitable hashtags for your account category.

Concerning the niche hashtags we would recommend to use some tools that will help you to define the perfect mix for each post.

TagsForLikes – it’s the useful tool that has the collections of the most popular, 2nd and 3rd popular tags and hashtags ranged by topics such as nature, weather, animals, family and much more. Each category has subcategories, e.g. for animals they are dogs, cats, horses, insects. This tool is really easy-to use and you will find hashtags for your account category quickly.

Tag Blender – this tool also offers popular and less popular hashtags divided into theme categories and subcategories. But the great feature is that you can combine them right there: just click +10 or +30 and the tags will appear in the ‘Tag Blender’. This way you can collect the 30 hashtags from different topics, copy them and add to your Instagram photo!

InstagramTags is great for marketers and advertisers as it offers packages with sponsored tag-category. Plus there are collections of popular Instagram hashtags updated every hour so your posts will always get the maximum exposure and reach on Instagram.

Hashtagsforlikes – one more useful tool to find the hashtags for your Instagram posts. The tool ranges the tags into different topics, some of them are really unusual but can be quite useful, e.g. Comedy Instagram Hashtags, Spiritual Instagram Hashtags, Tumblr Instagram Hashtags and others. The copy button is greatly appreciated as it’s very helpful when using your mobile phone to make posts on Instagram.

The last tool we’d like to share – Snoopreport. It’s not the usual tool that provides you the list of hashtags but it lets you find the hashtags that will definitely attract your target audience. Using Snoopreport you can monitor what content your customers and the potential ones like on Instagram. Then using group report feature you will get the exact mix of hashtags that target the exact users. So now you won’t need to check every user to see what hashtag he uses and what hashtags are added to the posts he liked. Now you can minimize the efforts and get the perfect list of hashtags to grow your Instagram community.

Snoopreport group report with the 10 Instagram users likes and hashtags of the posts liked

Bonus content: TOP 10 Instagram Hashtags