As users of the Instagram platform continue to grow, the demand for your audience’s attention is becoming increasingly competitive. This leads many of us to the question of when is the best time to post on Instagram.
To find the best time to post on Instagram, we looked at the studies of 5 different social media management executives. We also ran our own test for our growing Instagram account to see if engagement and impressions have changed.
We found that several of the studies conflicted with each other. For example, Social Sprout decided that the best time to release Friday was Friday at 10 a.m., while Hootsuite found that Thursday at 4 p.m. or 5 p.m. was the best time.
Based on the results of all expert studies, the best time to post on Instagram is generally between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., with Wednesday and Thursday possibly the best days to post.
Below is a summary of the results published by these platforms. Later in this article, we will further break down their results to show the best release times for industry, as some of these reports show.
Changes to Instagram posting during COVID-19?
These results are interesting, but I recommend that you test them on your own Instagram accounts. There are many reasons for that. First, most of these studies were conducted before the COVID-19 pandemic found its way around the world. As we know, COVID-19 changed almost everything. Keep in mind that as work and leisure changes, so do many people’s social media habits.
Social Sprout updated their report and found that the best time to post on Instagram had lengthened during the block from Wednesday at 11 a.m. and Friday from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. until Monday, Tuesday and Friday at 11 a.m. and Tuesday at 2 p.m.. Their update shows that Instagram activity and engagement increased over different times during the ban.
- HubSpot – between 2pm and 3pm – Thursday the best day
- Sprout Social – Wednesday at 11 a.m. and Friday at 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
- Later – 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. EST
- Hootsuite-Different times depending on the branch
- StartUp Mindset test for companies and technology – 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. EST
Best times to post on Instagram by day of the week
Later.com analyzed 12 million Instagram posts and found that the best time to post on Instagram was between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. EST. To find the best time to post on Instagram in 2020, we analyzed 12 million Instagram posts that were posted in multiple time zones around the world by accounts between 100 and 1 million followers.
Her research was a little more precise because she looked at the exact times when posting on Instagram was most effective.
The best time to post on Instagram during the day:
- Monday: 6 a.m., 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. EST
- Tuesday: 2 a.m., 4 a.m. and 9 a.m. EST
- Wednesday: 7, 8 and 11 p.m. EST
- Thursday: 9 a.m., 12 p.m. and 7 p.m. EST
- Friday: 5 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. EST
- Saturday: 11 a.m., 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. EST
- Sunday: 7, 8 and 4 p.m. EST
Social Sprout conducted its research by analyzing its over 24,000 customer base. Your data comes from viewing customers under different plans, industries and locations.
Best times: Wednesday at 11 a.m. and Friday from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The engagement decreases before 6 a.m. and after 9 p.m. every day
- Sunday: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
- Monday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. (engagement peaks at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.)
- Tuesday: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., * 7 p.m.
- Wednesday: 5 a.m., * 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- Thursday: 5 a.m., * 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Friday: * 5 a.m., 9 a.m. – 10 a.m., * 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
- Saturday: 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Another planning platform for social media, Hootsuite published its own results from their investigation. Using data from Unmetric, a social media benchmarking tool, they categorized their results by industry.
Friday between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Media & entertainment
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12 noon to 3 p.m.
Food & drinks
Fridays at 12 p.m.
Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays at 12 noon
Friday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 9 or 10 a.m.
Tuesday at 4 p.m. or 10 a.m.
Thursday at 9 p.m. or 4 p.m.
Pharma & healthcare
Wednesday and Sunday at 9 a.m.
Friday and Thursday at 1, 2 or 3 p.m.
Monday and Tuesday at 2 p.m.
Thursday at 4 or 5 p.m.
Other important factors to consider
There are a few things to consider when deciding when to publish:
When you start planning posts for Instagram, you want to make sure that you schedule those posts to be deleted when your target audience is most active. This means that you need to make sure that the time zone you set is best for your audience, not your audience.
How often you should post on social media has been controversial for years. On Instagram, the answer most people give is common, but not too common. What exactly does that mean?
In our research, it seems like a good start to post once a day. Instagram posts last longer than Facebook and Twitter posts.
Instagram’s algorithm can affect who sees you posting
Another factor to consider is that Instagram’s algorithm can determine who sees your posts. In 2018, Instagram released a change to its algorithm that prioritizes newer content over older posts. But just being new doesn’t necessarily mean you’re the first to be seen.
The algorithm also takes your engagement into account when deciding where to put your post in others’ feeds. In general, posts with higher engagement (comments, likes and shares) are shown to more people. Instagram believes that it has to be quality because so many people interact with the post.
Here are some other factors that can affect the visibility of your post.
- The relationship of your followers to your account-The gram wants to prioritize contributions from family members, friends and accounts that are important to people. If a person interacts frequently with your account, Instagram assumes that this person takes care of this account and therefore shows more posts from this profile.
- Videos and photos are treated equally– There is currently a lot of talk about the importance of videos on social media. There have been rumors that social media platforms give video more priority than other types of content. This rumor was put to bed for Instagram.
- Business, copyright and personal content are treated equally– One of the concerns of some entrepreneurs who have set up their Instagram account as a personal profile is the impact that switching to a business account can have on their reach. Instagram addressed this and checked it Business, creator and personal content have no influence on the ranking.
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