Best Instagram Hashtags play a big part in your brand’s Instagram marketing success. Boost your Instagram success with the most popular hashtags we just compiled.
The power of a simple Instagram hashtag should never be underestimated. Using relevant hashtags can make or break your Instagram marketing strategy. You can extend your Instagram reach and develop your following if you play your hashtags right.
On the other hand, using wrong, irrelevant, spammy, or banned Instagram hashtags can damage your brand identity online. It doesn’t just affect your existing or potential followers, but Instagram’s algorithm can also penalize you.
So, it’s important that you understand what Instagram hashtags are and how they work to develop a foolproof marketing strategy for your brand. We’re here to help you do that. So, let’s dive right in.
What Are Instagram Hashtags?
An Instagram hashtag is a word (#love), number (#2022), or emoji (#💖) preceded by the hash (#) symbol. It can also be a set of two or more words (#nofilter or #picoftheday) and a combination of words and numbers (#newyear2022).
These hashtags are used to categorize or tag the content according to its niche or intent. Since hashtags are clickable, they make content more discoverable. By clicking on a hashtag, users can explore all the Instagram posts tagged with that particular hashtag.
Why Are Instagram Hashtags Important?
Using hashtags is a common practice on Instagram that yields multiple marketing benefits for brands. If you use the right hashtags, your content can reach people who have yet to discover your Instagram account.
When you use a niche or trending hashtag, your post becomes a part of that hashtag page. So, when someone searches for that hashtag, they will also see your post under it. Similarly, an Instagram Story that uses a hashtag also appears on the relevant hashtag page.
When your posts appear under different popular hashtags, people may visit your page and start following you. Besides, people can also follow hashtags. So, even if they don’t follow you, your post may appear in their feed if you use the right hashtags.
In other words, using the best hashtags for Instagram can boost your brand’s organic visibility – a vital ingredient of successful marketing.
Best Hashtags for Instagram
These are the top Instagram hashtags for 2022:
- #love (2.1B)
- #instagood (1.5B)
- #fashion (1B)
- #photooftheday (1B)
- #art (932M)
- #photography (916M)
- #instagram (904M)
- #beautiful (813M)
- #nature (728M)
- #picoftheday (708M)
- #follow (703M)
- #happy (686M)
- #cute (673M)
- #travel (640M)
- #style (625M)
- #followme (598M)
- #instadaily (598M)
- #tbt (593M)
- #repost (565M)
- #like4like (544M)
- #summer (538M)
- #beauty (508M)
- #fitness (503M)
- #food (490M)
- #instalike (472M)
- #selfie (469M)
- #me (468M)
- #photo (457M)
- #girl (448M)
- #friends (437M)
- #fun (436M)
- #smile (435M)
- #family (421M)
- #life (419M)
- #music (412M)
- #ootd (411M)
- #makeup (381M)
- #likeforlike (360M)
- #dog (348M)
- #model (348M)
- #motivation (319M)
- #sunset (308M)
- #amazing (301M)
- #follow4follow (297M)
- #igers (294M)
- #beach (289M)
- #foodporn (288M)
- #nofilter (288M)
- #instamood (273M)
- #followforfollow (254M)
While these are the most popular hashtags on Instagram, they may or may not work well for your brand.
No doubt, these hashtags are followed by a lot of Instagram users. But since there are already millions and billions of posts on these hashtags, your content may not get the reach you’re hoping for.
To avoid this, you should try different hashtag strategies to reach different users. You can combine trending hashtags with niche-specific ones to target both broad and specific audiences.
Top Instagram Hashtags by Categories
Hashtags for Travel
Contests & Giveaways
Health & Fitness
Hashtags for Pets
Likes and Views
Types of Popular Instagram Hashtags
Instagram recognizes nine distinct types of hashtags, including the following:
These are the most common Instagram hashtags and are more general in nature. They help describe your product/service to users. For instance, #coffeeshop or #handsoap.
With niche hashtags, you get more specific about your position in the community. These include hashtags like #weddingphotograppher or #foodblogger.
Instagram Community Hashtags
Instagram is a hub of numerous communities spreading across the globe. If you want your brand to be discovered by a relevant audience, you may want to use community hashtags, like #bookstagrammersofinstagram or #dogsofinstagram.
Special events and seasonal hashtags are popular categories of Instagram hashtags. You can use these tags to indicate that you’re celebrating a particular holiday, like #merrychristmas or #happydiwali. These keywords can also be used for national or international days, like #nationaldonutday or #internationaldayofpeace.
Besides geo-tagging your Instagram post/Story, you can also use location-based hashtags in the caption to attract a local audience. These include hashtags like #seattlesweets or #parispastries.
If you’re looking for a casual hashtag for your post, daily hashtags work best in this case. From #mondayblues to #fridaynightfun, these hashtags have got you covered for the whole week.
Popular acronyms are some of the best hashtags for Instagram. One of the most popular acronym hashtags is #tbt (Throwback Thursday), used in over 593 million posts. Some other acronym hashtags include #lol (laugh out loud), #ootd (outfit of the day), and #yolo (you only live once).
Emojis are an important part of social media, so it is only fitting that they made their way into hashtags. You can find hashtags with emojis (#💀) or phrases and words with emojis (#sunset🌅).
Popular Phrase Hashtags
These phrases combine the elements of product, niche, and community hashtags into a single hashtag. Such hashtags are used for connecting to users on a more personal level, like #amwriting or #catlover.
How Many Hashtags Should I Use on Instagram?
Instagram allows you to add up to 30 hashtags in a regular profile post. If you include more than 30, your caption won’t post. Similarly, you can add up to 10 hashtags on Instagram Story and not more than that.
But if you can do something doesn’t mean you should do it.
When it comes to hashtags to use on Instagram, there’s no one-size-fits-all formula. According to a study that analyzed 5.4 million Instagram posts, about 35.2% used 1-3 hashtags, 23.1% used 4-10 hashtags, and 12.1% used 10 or more hashtags.
Since every brand has a different marketing strategy, their hashtag strategy also differs. Even for a single brand, every post needs a different tag strategy.
According to stats, most Instagram posts use 1-3 tags, but marketing experts believe 11 hashtags per post is the sweet spot.
So, you shouldn’t just dump 30 tags under every post without thinking twice about it. Experiment with different numbers and learn how many hashtags on Instagram work best for your brand through trial and error.
2 Ways to Find Trending Hashtags on Instagram
When it comes to finding top-trending Instagram hashtags, you may have to dig a little deeper. Instagram is somewhat secretive about its stats, unlike Twitter, where you can see a public list of trending hashtags.
These two ways can be used to identify top hashtags on Instagram:
Method 1: Search Manually
The easiest way to find the top ranking tags on Instagram is through search. When you search for a hashtag, you can see how many posts currently use that tag. Besides, you’ll also get a list of multiple other popular tags with similar words and their post counts.
You can search for a hashtag on the Instagram app as well as the desktop version. On the app, you need to enter the search term in the search bar on the top and tap tags. In the desktop version, you need to enter your desired word preceded by a hash symbol in the search bar.
Method 2: Read the Feed
Another way to identify trending Instagram hashtags is by paying attention to your feed. If you look closely, you’ll see trending hashtags emerge on your feed even if you’re not following them. You can use those tags in your posts but make sure they’re relevant to your brand.
4 Steps to Create a Hashtag for Your Brand
Instagram encourages brands and businesses to create their unique hashtags to be noticed on the platform. These are the tips to create and market a hashtag for your brand:1
Choose a Brand-Relevant Hashtag
The first thing to do is to come up with a hashtag that resonates most with your brand. Instagram recommends using one that’s short and catchy. Besides, you can use something as simple as your #brandname.2
Encourage Customer Participation
No hashtag is successful if people aren’t using it.
After you’ve decided on your brand’s hashtag, it’s time to get your customers on board with using the hashtag. You should encourage them to use your hashtag in their stories whenever they use your product/services.
You can also offer them discounts and giveaways if they use your hashtags in their captions or stories.
When customers use your hashtag, other users will click on it, giving your content the reach and engagement you aim for.3
Follow Your Hashtag
Forget your heart; follow your hashtag to keep your brand alive.
When your hashtag has been used a few times, you may want to keep track of posts and stories mentioning it. To do that, you should follow your own hashtag, as it makes it easier to keep everything under check.
You can follow your brand’s hashtag by searching for it in the search bar and tapping the blue follow button. Then, you’ll be able to see all the activity happening around your hashtag.4
Create Special Hashtags
Besides having a personalized hashtag for your brand, you may also want to create occasional hashtags for special events, seasons, or holidays. If your brand is having a sale, you can use hashtags like #phonedaddysummersale or #pastrypuffsbirthdaysale. But make sure you only use these special hashtags for highlighting photos, videos, and stories from that particular event.
7 Tips for Using Hashtags on Instagram
Here are a few valuable tips for using hashtags correctly on Instagram.
Use Post Insights
Instagram business profile allows you to access insights on each post. In post insights, you can see how many impressions your post got from hashtags. This can help you identify the tags that work best for your posts to improve your account’s reach.
To access post insights,
- Open a post you want to check
- Tap View Insights (under the photo on the left)
- Swipe to check everything about that post, including impressions, reach, engagement, post interactions, and profile activity
Add Hashtags in Stories
Many brands don’t use the Instagram Story feature as much as they should. Adding your brand’s tags to the Story can also enhance your account’s reach. Plus, your account becomes more visible to users already following you.
On the hashtag page, a Story icon is visible in the top left corner. When you click, it will open a collection of Stories tagged with a particular hashtag. However, it only shows stories from public accounts. So, make sure you have a public account if you want impressions through this feature.
To add hashtags to Instagram Story,
- Use the hashtag sticker available on stickers
- Type the hashtag like regular text in the text tool with the # symbol
Avoid Banned Hashtags
Instagram sometimes bans hashtags if they become associated with inappropriate or illicit content. Banned hashtags aren’t just swear words and obscenities; they can be anything from #tgif to #fitnessgirls.
A hashtag is usually banned if users repeatedly report it for not meeting Instagram’s Community Guidelines.
When a spammy hashtag is banned, you can still use it in your posts. But it can lead your posts to the notorious Instagram shadowban aka Insta Jail. It means your posts won’t show up on your follower’s feeds, and you won’t even know it.
To avoid this, make sure you know about all the banned hashtags and not use them in your posts.
Some examples of banned Instagram hashtags in 2022 are:
These are just some of the hashtags that are banned by Instagram. You can find a complete list of banned hashtags online, and it keeps updating every year. So, make sure you’re up to speed with these hashtags to avoid taking a hit from Instagram.
Understand Hashtag Pages
To use the best hashtags for Instagram, you first need to understand the hashtag pages.
In the hashtag pages, you can see all videos, photos, reels, and stories associated with a particular hashtag. You can get the required exposure for your content through these pages, mainly if your posts get featured in the Top section.
If you have recently posted a photo with a hashtag and someone searches for that hashtag, it will be among the first ones they see. This post will be visible in the Recent section. Usually, niche and less popular hashtags stay at the top of this section for longer.
That said, adding hashtags later in the caption or again and again through comments won’t bump your post. The Recent section sorts content depending on the time it was initially posted. So, editing the caption or adding new comments won’t have any effect.
Only Relevant Hashtags
Keep one thing in mind when it comes to increasing your posts’ reach on Instagram. It has nothing to do with how many people see you and everything to do with if the right people see you. Using trending hashtags today may get you temporary traction, but you won’t secure long-term followers if they’re irrelevant.
Whenever you post, make sure you use only the tags that make sense and are relevant to what’s in the post. You can also throw in some generic keywords, but they shouldn’t overpower the primary ones.
Avoid Repeating Yourself
You said it; Instagram heard it – so stop repeating your hashtags.
The temptation to use the same list of hashtags you curated for your brand under every post is real. But don’t give in; stay strong. Otherwise, Instagram can penalize your content using its algorithm.
If you read the Community Guidelines, you’ll find that Instagram has warned users about posting repetitive content or comments to keep the platform spam-free. So, if you don’t want to get penalized or thrown into Insta Jail, you must abide by the rules and not repeat the same hashtags under every post.
Understand the Hashtag’s True Meaning
Before you use a hashtag, make sure you know what it means or stands for, especially if it is a phrase. Sometimes combining two words creates a jumbled phrase that may give rise to a completely unrelated and seemingly inappropriate phrase.
We’ve still not recovered from the #susanalbumparty fiasco that remains one of the biggest PR disasters of 2012.
Some brands use unclear or double-meaning hashtags on purpose to drive traffic, but the risk of it backfiring is always there. While many brands have cashed their PR disasters, others have suffered from their planned online antics.
So, if you plan on doing something like this, make sure you’re ready to face the backlash you may receive if it doesn’t go your way.
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