It's time to unpack the greatest mystery in the history of social media: the Instagram algorithm.
Too much? Okay, let's bring it back. These days, it feels like the Instagram algorithm is changing by the minute. There's a lot going on. So today we're breaking down all of the new Instagram algorithm changes in 2022. Spooky! Okay, I'm done.
Update #1: Following and Favorites Home Feed Views
After months of Instagram users complaining about being fed old content at the top of their homepages, the chronological Instagram feed made a shiny comeback with the introduction of two new chronological feed experiences: the Following and Favorites feed. So what's the difference between the two?
The Following feed is a throwback to the OG days of Instagram, where posts from people you follow show up in chronological order. Essentially, if you follow someone, you'll see their content.
The Favorites view allows users to see content of up to 50 accounts of their choosing, still in chronological order. Think of it like the Close Friends feature on Stories but for your in-feed content.
If you don't select one of these views, you'll still find yourself in the new era of Instagram's default homepage, which is non-chronological with ranked and personalized content. So if you like discovering new content, or if you're a small business or brand trying to keep up with the social media trends, we recommend sticking to the default homepage.
To toggle between these feed views, simply tap on the word Instagram in the top left corner of your homepage to choose who you see.
Update #2: Increase of Recommended Content in the Default Home Feed View
Like I mentioned, the default Home feed view on Instagram is where you'll find the content of people you don't follow sprinkled throughout your feed.
With Instagram's latest algorithm update, this kind of content is definitely something we're going to see more and more of. It's all part of Instagram's strategy to get more creators discovered and keep you on the app longer by showing you content that you'll find relevant and interesting. Plus, it's no secret that the algorithm is favoring Instagram Reels over just about everything right now.
But don't take it from me; take it from the head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, himself.
Adam Masseri: "That said, I need to be honest. I do believe that more and more of Instagram is going to become video over time."
So if you're really looking to get on the Instagram algorithm's good side, we suggest getting to know the Reels-specific algorithm. Lucky for you, we've got a blog for that. I've just linked that up here and in the description below.
Update #3: Prioritization of Original Content
The algorithm inspectors are out in full swing these days, and if you're not posting original content, they're out to find you... In the form of not pushing out your content, of course.
The Instagram algorithm favors content that hasn't already been shared by someone else on the app. Basically, if you didn't make it and you share it, the algorithm will detect this. Now, if user-generated content is part of your strategy, this doesn't mean that you have to stop posting user-generated content forever, but we do suggest limiting how much you rely on it.
This update also stands for previously shared content on other apps, including TikTok, so that TikTok watermark on that Reels just posted? Gotta go. We recommend using programs like Snaptik to download a clean version of your TikTok before repurposing any videos on Instagram. You can thank us later. Finally...
Update #4: Improved Content Categorization
Instagram's algorithm is getting better at identifying what an image or video is about based on keywords and content.
With this update, we suggest really leaning into keyword research and SEO, including adding alt text to your posts. By doing this, you're essentially telling the algorithm exactly where you want your content to go. And, since it's getting better at detecting visuals and keywords on its own, the chances of you seeing an increase in reach are pretty high. Teamwork makes the dream work.
There you have it: four of Instagram's biggest algorithm updates in 2022. So, I guess it's really not so scary after all. If you want even more Instagram algorithm tips and advice, I've linked a blog post below that gets into all the nitty-gritty details. If you found this video helpful, feel free to leave us a comment below. And don't forget to hit that Subscribe button for more social media industry news, tips and tricks. Catch you later.