Instagram is one of the most effective platforms that utilize hashtags and allows its users to embed them in their posts. You can use hashtags to promote your business, brand, or personal means. However, sometimes we see that Instagram hashtags are not working properly as they should, and it’s quite normal that users who try to establish a foundation on the platform get affected by it a lot. Let me explain in detail.
A hashtag is among the most trendy symbols on Instagram and all social media networks. You can use hashtags on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, and even on some less-known platforms.
How to Use Hashtags on Instagram
Hashtags serve great purposes and are great for both yourself and your brand accounts if you manage to utilize them smartly. There are some guidelines on the internet; we also created a complete guide for the use of hashtags on Instagram. If you are curious about the answer to how to use a hashtag on Instagram, you should pay attention to some of the following criteria.
- You should not use shadowbanned hashtags as they’ll cause a drop in your engagement; we listed those hashtags at the end of this article.
- You should not abuse the number of hashtags on your post, don’t overkill. According to the analysis of TrackMaven, the optimal number for hashtags seem to be around 9 of them.
- Avoid spammy hashtags! If you use hashtags irrelevant to the content you post, you’ll be branded as spam, damaging your account.
Pros of Instagram Hashtags
First of all, we should identify why people use hashtags in the first place. It’s almost like those old forums where you exchange ideas and arguments to benefit both ends. If someone searches for #foodpics, they’ll find what they are looking for. This is especially important if you also consider that Instagram is not just a visual-hosting platform but also a search engine. Also, when you post an image with the hashtag #foodpics, it’s guaranteed that it’ll benefit you if the content you posted is relevant; in that case, a bowl of ramen. Besides, you can even get featured on that particular hashtag and double your visibility in almost no time.
There are many pros of Instagram hashtags like this, but there are also some indirect factors.
- It allows the content you share to reach thousands or millions of people at the same time.
- It increases the interaction on your content and allows more people to see it. So it gets more Instagram likes, comments, and such.
- When hashtags are used in the right place and time, it provides spectacular feedback and leads from an interested audience.
- Instagram hashtags are a tool that allows you to do free advertising while not appearing like you’re doing any promotion.
However, if you use them incorrectly, this problem may have very dangerous consequences for your account.
Why My Instagram Hashtags Are Not Working?
If you see that Instagram hashtags are not working, keep in mind that this problem is quite easy to solve, as the solution depends entirely on your platform’s usage.
If you receive an error message or suspect that you’re a victim of hashtag problems, it may be caused by the following reasons:
- You have used a shadowbanned hashtag.
- You have exceeded the limit of hashtag usage.
- The content you posted and the hashtag you embedded are not relevant.
As you can see, the user causes all these reasons, and Instagram’s policies or updates are not related to them in any possible way. Please don’t waste your time trying to alter the app settings, as there are no technical problems caused by the Instagram application that breaks the functionality of hashtags. Especially with the great turning in increase in hashtags in recent years, social media users had the opportunity to reach a wider and more relevant audience through niche-specific hashtags.
However, Instagram hashtags not working error is inherently hard to recognize; and it’s not that easy to understand why the problem even occurred and your hashtags stopped working in the first place. User-related mistakes typically cause this problem. Especially it may be due to improper or illegal hashtag use.
Your Account May Be Shadowbanned
You are a victim of shadowban when the hashtags inserted under your photos don’t work. It’s called a shadowban because it is not a real ban. In fact, the photos remain visible on your profile, and your friends can see and comment on them, but they’re not displayed under the hashtags. Your profile is, therefore, not “banned” nor subject to a limitation of normal functions.
It’s all normal, except… hashtags don’t work! It is a bit complicated to realize that you have stumbled upon the shadowban.
You May Have Used Banned Hashtags
Even if you use just one banned hashtag, the hashtags you used will not work. That’s why you need to be careful about the list of banned Instagram hashtags.
List of Banned Instagram Hashtags
We listed the prohibited hashtags on Instagram right below, so you can avoid using them and experiment if that solves your hashtag problems.
Usually, using shadowbanned Instagram hashtags will result in a drop in engagement on your post. Therefore, if you are not sure about what you are doing, it is best to sway to safer alternatives.
- #beautyblogger, but #beautybloggers works.
- #hardworkpaysoff, but #hardworkpaysoff? works.
- #kansas, but #kansascity works
- #snapchat, but #snapchat? works.
You May Use Too Many Hashtags
If you can’t share a post, you should ask yourself how many hashtags you used. You can find many hashtags to use for your post; however, there is a limit to hashtag usage. According to Instagram Support, using more than 30 hashtags for a post or video is impossible, and you can’t share the post if you use more than 30 hashtags. Instagram allows you to use hashtags up to 30, but we recommend not using more than 10. Constant overuse can also be troublesome for the algorithm.
Your Hashtags May Be Irrelevant
You may use some hashtags just because they are popular. However, using irrelevant hashtags may cause spam. In the past, using irrelevant hashtags was working, but now it is a problem for the Instagram algorithm. Irrelevant hashtags will decrease the chance of appearing on the Discover page. If you continue to use this method, your account may be shadowbanned. That’s why you can try to use the Instagram hashtag generator tool to find the most relevant and popular hashtags.
You May Use the Same Hashtags Every Time
Using the same hashtags every time is a great reason for being spam. When you copy and paste the same hashtags all the time, the algorithm will be noticed, and it will cause it to be detected as spam. There is no doubt that Instagram doesn’t like spam. So, it can be dangerous for your account credibility in terms of the Instagram algorithm. In this situation, Instagram can shadowban your account. We suggest listing 50 hashtags for each topic and making different combinations with them.
Your Hashtags May Be Too Big
You may think that broad hashtags for Instagram help you reach millions of users, but the reality is not like that. Your post may be lost in the millions of posts with the same word. Instead of using board hashtags, doing keyword research and using niche hashtags would be better for your account to reach your potential followers. Thus, you can easily stand out from the competition.
You May Use Too Competitive Hashtags
Too competitive hashtags are really similar to broad hashtags. It is not important to use too competitive or popular hashtags. The main point is using niche words for your topic. Competing with influencers with many followers is not a great strategy for getting more followers. Continue step by step instead of trying to compete.
There Can Be User Errors or Technical Problems
If your hashtags don’t work and there is no problem with your account, the problem can be technical problems with the Instagram applications. In addition, there are spelling or grammar issues. Thus, first, check the hashtags you used and then learn whether there is a problem with the application or not.
Solutions to Instagram Hashtags Problems
Instagram hashtags not working solution is pretty easy, and it won’t take much of your time. If you have not made any user errors mentioned above, you have already fixed the problem automatically. So you don’t even need to do anything extra for this. Only use the hashtags by the rules. Thus, you will have no problem with the use of hashtags. The problems with using hashtags are unrelated to the Instagram application’s settings. Therefore, do not make changes to any of your settings.
- Another solution is that you don’t always use the same hashtags. Sometimes, Instagram may recognize it as spam and won’t allow you to use it anymore.
- If you’re having a hashtag problem on Instagram, you can try deleting the image or video you just added and posting it again using different hashtags.
To Conclude, Instagram Hashtags
After our examination, we can easily say that hashtags problems are not caused by Instagram’s policy changes or technical updates. If you want to avoid getting branded as spam or a manual penalty given by Instagram, you should be careful to use relevant hashtags. Also, it’s important to utilize your hashtags at the optimal scale; overdoing this won’t help you in any way, but it’s guaranteed to hurt your visibility if you go nuts with the hashtags.