Where Should You Use Instagram Hashtags in 2022?

Posted at Apr 11, 2022 3:41:00 PM by THAT Agency | Share

For years there has been a great debate over where hashtags should be placed. Should they go in the posts' captions or in the comments? Due to the mystery surrounding exactly how the Instagram algorithm works, it has been difficult to paint a complete picture regarding which hashtag methods create the most engagement, reach, and new followers.


Where Should You Put Your Hashtags On Instagram? | THAT Agency of West Palm Beach, Florida


However, there is one thing we know about the Instagram algorithm: there is no gaming system. While trying different tactics is always recommended, we need to be clear that managing a personal Instagram account is much different than managing a brand account. What works for the fun food images on your personal Instagram account may not work the same way for the professional brand or business you are trying to build.

Why the Debate?

The trend of putting the hashtags in the comments came about as a way to keep Instagram captions looking clean, but then soon people realized that hashtags in comments were also discoverable by Instagram’s algorithm. From there, those rascally “growth hackers” decided the hottest tactic to trick the system is to swap out and edit your hashtags to surface your content for more terms. Exhausting, especially if you have to work at scale!

So, what is a marketer to do? There are advocates on both sides of the hashtag debate: one side believes in putting hashtags in the captions and the other is convinced that hiding hashtags in the comments are the way to go. Some even suggest doing both methods

As with all things in digital marketing, it's best to not make assumptions. We should let data inform the strategy and tactics we use!

We came across a great study in which Socialinsider partnered up with Quuu to analyze 649,895 Instagram posts from 6,700+ accounts of different sizes. Here's what the data tells us about the great hashtag debate.

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Where to Put Instagram Hashtags


When TO usE hashtags in the captions:

  • Profiles with fewer than 100,000 followers have better Reach rates.


When TO usE hashtags in the comments:

  • Profiles with greater than 100,000 followers have better Reach rates.

In other words, when deciding on where to place hashtags on Instagram, it all comes down to your follower count.

The study also shows that:

  • 87% of brands prefer using hashtags in captions.
  • When it comes to deciding how many hashtags to use in a post, there is no magical number.

Most professionals use anywhere from 7 to the full 30 hashtag limit permitted by Instagram.

In Conclusion

At the end of the day, you should follow your heart on which approach works best for your Instagram account. However, the data in this study does provide some practical guidance.

Regardless of placement, what's most important is to use the hashtags that have the most saturated search results and that are most relevant to your brand or business. Instagram is constantly changing its algorithm, so stay attuned to what is working for your company and use different hashtags to see which are producing results.

Speaking of social media data, download this ROI calculator to help demonstrate the value your social media marketing efforts add to the bottom line:


Free Social Media ROI Calculator | Microsoft Excel File | THAT Agency

Tags: Social Media

Best Practices for Digital Marketing in 2022: FREE GUIDE