Instagram’s algorithm issue has become another issue facing users worldwide. Ever since its initial release in October 2010, Instagram has gradually became one of the few social media behemoths to survive the test of time; having over 800 million in active users each month. With this amount of growth and success comes the likelihood of change, and that is exactly what has been developed in recent times within Instagrams backend algorithm.


Instagrams updated algorithm has created an imbalance within small to medium business and brands using the platform to advertise their services or products.


Viewer attention plays a key part in how your Instagram feed will be presented. If you spend time viewing and actively interacting with a users post, by commenting, liking, and viewing their stories, their content will be ranked as more relevant for your individual feed within Instagram’s algorithm. In theory, the more users you interact with, the more their content will appear on your feed.


The big issue with this development is that not all Instagram accounts will be able to obtain this amount of interactions compared to larger, verified brands and businesses on the platform for it to be deemed as relative content. This will result in smaller businesses getting a reduction in their reach with their potential audience due to their posts not receiving enough engagement.


To further explain how the program works and ranks posts based on relativity, when you create a post, that post will only be displayed to a percentage of your followers. This is estimated to be approximately 10 percent of your total followers. If your content does not generate enough engagement within an hour of posting, the algorithm will rank it as “not relevant content” and subsequently lose its position on your followers feed only to appear lower down where fewer people will be able to see it.


One method that has been helping smaller businesses surpass the algorithms content relativity test is by joining what is known as an “Instagram pod”. These groups consist of a community of users with similar businesses that work together by communicating when they have created a post and everyone in the group engages with that specific post. This allows the post to receive engagement which will be deemed as relevant by the algorithm and thus allowing the post to be viewed to a wider audience.


There are other methods for increasing your potential reach organically; Utilising Instagram’s features such as creating a poll on a story post or using live video will give you new engagement opportunities. Posting during your followers most active times will help you increase the chance of higher interactions. Even interacting with potential followers before posting can help you generate interest in your account which may lead to an increase in users engaging in your content.