How many Instagram algorithms are there? Instagram algorithms are among the most commonly misunderstood topics, and there are so many myths circling around, so it’s time to get a bit technical.
Instagram remains a dominant force in the world of content marketing. So, how does your posts and Reels end up on someone’s feeds and Explore Pages? Yes, it’s all thanks to the Instagram algorithms! The Instagram’s algorithms match users and viewers to posts, ensuring content is served to the right audience. But what is the Instagram algorithm, have there been any updates in 2023, how can you beat it, and… Are there multiple Instagram algorithms?
What Are Instagram Algorithms?
To put it simply, Instagram algorithms are a set of rules and calculations that Instagram uses to determine how content is displayed to users. All Instagram algorithms create a recommendation system that determines which posts and which Reels will appear on your (unique and highly personalized) feed and your Explore Page. No two users will see the same posts on their Explore Page, and the posts you see change over time based on your viewing preferences and even your current state of mind and all your preferences that Instagram algorithms track.
Algorithms are actually used by all social media platform out there (yes, TikTok and Youtube as well!) to serve us relevant content. The algorithms’ goal is to keep users glued to their screens for as long as possible. Now a technical perspective: Instagram algorithms are a series of mathematical formulas and calculations that take inputs and create a series of outputs in the form of Explore Page, Feed, Reels and Stories recommendations and all the served content.
How Many Instagram Algorithms Are There?
Many parts of the way Instagram algorithms work are still a mystery and Instagram team has never revealed any details about them, but we know for sure that there are at least 4 different algorithms, and these are:
1) Feed Algorithm – This algorithm shows posts and Reels based on the user’s interests and activity. The rank of your post can be also impacted by:
- Image and video quality
- Reported Content (reported content rank much lower)
2) Stories Algorithm – This algorithm prioritizes Instagram stories from the accounts that you interact with the most.
Instagram stories are ranked based on your:
- Viewing history
- Engagement history
- “Closeness” with the account
3) Explore Page Algorithm – This algorithm delivers content based on all your latest interactions and interests. The content you see in your explore section is displayed based on the history of your likes, shares, and saves.
4) Reels Algorithm – This algorithm is in charge of sorting and prioritizing Reels. Some key points that are really important for this particular algorithm:
- The quality of Reels
- Relevant keywords included in the content (or in captions)
- On-screen captions added
As you can see, the Feed, Stories, Explore and Reels sections are all controlled by a different algorithm. Our behavior tends to differ so much in different areas of Instagram.
Adam Mosseri explains it that way: “People tend to look for their closest friends in Stories, use Explore to discover new content and new creators, and be entertained in Reels”.
Instagram is a business. And as it’s easy to guess, the platform wants you to spend more time inside the app, so to achieve this goal it’s learning to serve the content you’ll like, appreciate, and enjoy the most. Yes. Instagram wants you to spend maximum time on its platform. It aims to keep you hooked.
Instagram Algorithms Q&A
As always, we’ve prepared a handy and practical Q&A with the questions we get asked more often – the questions about Instagram algorithms!
Does Instagram have multiple algorithms?
Yes, it’s true. Much like TikTok or Youtube, different parts of Instagram have different algorithms, the two main ones being your Feed and your Explore Page (Suggested Content).
Did the Instagram algorithm change in 2023?
There have been some major updates, and these things really make a difference:
- Instagram has strengthen the role of Instagram keywords
- Now users can discover new content with keywords (typing in the keywords and phrases they’re interested in into the Instagram search bar), not only using hashtags as it was in the past
Can you beat Instagram algorithm?
That’s exactly what we’re discussing in all our guides and this is what we’re passionate about! With the right tools, relevant keywords, and strategic keywords, it’s still possible. Plus, you can start your 7-day free trial of the smartest Instagram analytics tool out there – IQ Hashtags – to quicken your organic growth and attract new followers the strategic way!
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