The Beginners Guide to Hashtags

Hashtags are a great tool to grow your audience and engagement, as well as connect with like-minded people.  Studies show that by adding even one hashtag to your post, engagement is increased by about 12.6%.  Sounds good right? Knowing how to use hashtags and having a good strategy for using them is crucial to the success of your business marketing on Instagram.

What hashtags should you use?

Use hashtags that are relevant to your business and the content that you are creating, and be as specific as possible.  For example, using the popular hashtag “shoes” will yield millions of results and your post will likely just get lost.  Be more specific about what you’re posting and use a hashtag like “amazonshoes”, “suedeboots”, “nikesneakers”, “redboots”.  There will be a smaller number of posts with these types of hashtags, which means your content has a better chance of being seen by more people.

Where can you find hashtags?

Research accounts from other businesses and influencers in your niche market.  See what hashtags they are using and try them out, or use them to inspire ideas of your own.  You can also go to the search bar on instagram, choose tags, and then just start typing different words.  It will bring up a list of hashtags that closely match what you’ve typed and how many posts there are using those hashtags. 

 It’s all about trial and error.  Keep trying different hashtags until you find the ones that work best for you.  Save them in your notes or a spreadsheet so you can easily copy and paste when needed.  Another tip is to switch it up from time to time.  Even once you’ve found a group of hashtags that work, try out different hashtags to reach different groups of people.  That way you’re constantly getting fresh eyes and followers to your page.

How many hashtags should you use?

The max amount of hashtags you can use in an Instagram post is 30, and it is recommended to use all 30.  Think about it, the more hashtags you use, the more people you can reach.  

Where do you put them?

Adding a ton of hashtags to your caption can make it look messy and could potentially discourage people from actually reading the caption.  The best way to hide hashtags is to put all of your hashtags in the first comment of your post.  That way, people are not distracted and can clearly see your message.  The hashtags in the comments section will still do their job and get your post seen by the right people. 

By: Denecia Graham