Instagram Hashtag Hacks You Wish You Knew Earlier

Instagram Hashtag Hacks

It seems like hashtags are a mystery! Among Instagram growth methods, hashtags are the most ambiguous ones! Some people use them drastically; others don’t even add a single one. Although it’s possible to gain engagement on Instagram without hashtags, they are still powerful social listening tools, campaign management, and building brand awareness.

In this article, I’m going to show you some real hacks about Instagram hashtags that you wish you knew earlier. So, let’s jump right in!

Instagram Hashtag Hacks
Instagram Hashtag Hacks

Why Is It Important to Use Hashtags on Instagram?

Using hashtags is a great way to get discovered on Instagram. They act like labels for the posts and help Instagrammers to find their favorite topics on the app, especially when around 95 million photos are uploading every day. 

Also, hashtags help Instagrammers to organize their contests and increase their brand awareness. For example, Warby Parker is doing a great job of using branded hashtags. They introduced a new hashtag #warbybarker and asked their followers to send photos of their dogs wearing Warby Parker glasses.

Warby Barkers hashtags on Instagram
#warbybarker on Instagram

Now more than 4,500 posts are out there with the #warbybarker on their captions. Also, they created a new page only for these Warby Barkers!

How Many Hashtags Should You Use?

Instagram is filled with hashtags; #love, #instagood, and #fashion are the most popular hashtags on Instagram. Analyzing data from over 81M Instagram posts and 1.6M Instagram users by Mention revealed that the average Instagram post contains 10-11 hashtags.

So, should you use all the 30 available hashtags or stick with the 10 hashtags?

The truth is, no one exactly knows! Based on a study carried out by Hubspot, posts that contain only five hashtags get the highest level of engagement.

Chart Showing Average Number of Engagement vs. Nymber of Hashtags
Average Number of Engagement vs. Number of Hashtags.

No matter how many hashtags you use, the important thing is to find out which hashtags are more effective and investing more in them. These hashtags are highly related to your content.  

Here are the most engaging hashtags on Instagram. You can start using them and see how things go.

Most engaging hashtags on Instagram
Most Engaging Hashtags on Instagram

Now, let’s see some real Instagram hashtag hacks that work on Instagram.

Best Instagram Hashtag Hacks in 2020

Psst…here are the best 8 Instagram hashtag hacks!

Instagram Hashtag Hacks #1: Get Your Post among Top Posts

Did you know with a strong hashtag strategy, you can find your way through the top posts on Instagram? When you search for a word on the Instagram search engine, it shows different categories, such as accounts, places, and tags. Those accounts and posts that pop up first on the list are likely to be the most engaging ones for that keyword. 

If you optimize your post for specific hashtags and people start to engage with it in the early hours, there’s a chance that your posts will be among the top posts for Instagram.  

Being among Instagram’s top posts is no easy task because it mainly depends on the hashtags you’ve used. As I mentioned above, as hashtags working mysteriously on Instagram, it’s a little bit hard to determine what factors contribute to making that post rewarded by Instagram. 

This is a result for #book that I’ve got for top posts on Instagram:

Likes and Comments on Top Posts
Number of Likes and Comments of Top Posts

As you can see, each of these nine posts has a very different engagement rate (looking at their likes and comments). The same is true about their followers. For this competitive hashtag, some posts got around 100 likes, while one post got 17.7K likes!

So, it’s not clear what is the Instagram algorithm behind the top post by hashtags. But luckily, I know a great way to find your way through these top posts!

Watch this video first:

AiSchedul: A Powerful Instagram Planner

Schedule Instagram posts Banner

As you saw in the video, AiSchedul is an advanced Instagram planner that helps you be among the top Instagram posts by continually refreshing your post for a specific time. 

The only thing you need to do is to upload your post on AiSchedul, write a catchy caption for it, add your targeted hashtags, and then schedule a time for posting and then deleting the post for one month. 

This method is effective because you provide fresh content every day. Also, we know for a fact that Instagram posts only gain engagement for around 24 hours. 

To try this hack and enjoy being among top posts, sign up for AiSchedul for free.   

Instagram Hashtag Hacks #2: Hide Your Hashtags

Don’t like it when your post seems scammy with tons of hashtags? Luckily, there are ways that you can try to hide your hashtags both in caption and Stories. Here are the ways:

1- Add Hashtags as the First Comment

Some Instagrammers say that putting hashtags on a comment is not as effective as the hashtags as captions. The truth is, no one can 100% be sure about this. I’ve seen posts without any hashtags in the caption that went viral. 

For example, here’s a top post for #book, which placed all the hashtags as a comment.  

Instagrm hashtag hacks: Add hashtags as a comment
Hashtags as a Comment

2- Use Line Breaks in Your Caption

Another way to (almost) hide your hashtags on Instagram is to add line breaks! After finishing writing your caption, hit return on your keyboard and then add a dot in the new line. Continue this for several times and finally put your hashtags at the end of the section. 

3- Use Hashtags Throughout the Caption

Okay, this is not exactly hiding the hashtags, but it’s still a good way to make your post look less spammy. It’s easy, and you probably saw Instagrammers use this method all the time. 

Instagram post with hashtags withing the caption
Hashtag Through The Caption

4- Hide Hashtags in Instagram Story

If you want to add hashtags to Instagram Story, you can change the color or make it really small, so it’s become almost invisible. 

Hack #3: See Which Hashtags Are Working for You

Although you can use 30 hashtags for each post, it’s not a good idea to randomly use a bunch of hashtags for ALL of your posts. First of all, by using hashtags repeatedly, Instagram might take this as a spammy action and hide your content (again, there’s no official statement that indicates this, only user experiences). 

Instead, you should only focus on the hashtags that are effective for you. Unfortunately, Instagram won’t show you which of your hashtags are doing good. It just tells you how many reaches you get from all of your hashtags.

For example, this post gets almost 70% of its reach from the hashtags. But it’s not clear which hashtags were most effective.

Reach From Hashtag on Instagram
Reach From Hashtags

One way to find out which hashtags are performing greatly is to upload your next posts using only one hashtag by the time, but it might take you one month! 

Luckily, there’s a quick way to see exactly how much reach each hashtag got.

First, promote one of your posts.

Then set the budget in any amount that you want.

Promoting Instagram post
Credit: Square Academy

Finally, go to the insight to see exactly which hashtags get the most reach.

Instagram Post Impressions by hashtag
Credit: Square Academy

Focus on the best options and get rid of the others.

Instagram Hashtag Hacks #4: Search and Add Multiple Hashtags to Save Time

Have two or three main topics or keywords that you want to find the best hashtags for? Instead of searching for all of these hashtags one by one on the app, which can be time-consuming, you can search and add multiple hashtags to your posts! How? Read this post in which I explained exactly how to do it.

Hack #5: Organize Your Hashtags into Groups

One of the best ways to organize your hashtags and save time is to categorize them based on the type of posts you want to use. You can save them on a document and copy them whenever you want to use hashtags. But a smarter way is to use an Instagram management service like AiSchedul.


After signing up for AiSchedul and adding your account(s), go to “Post & Scheduling.”

AiSchedul Scheduler
AiSchedul Scheduler

In the subtabs, select “Listening and Repost” and then click on “Hashtag Monitoring.”

Add as many hashtags as you want. Notice that you can also see and track all the best posts that have those hashtags.

Next, go to the “Scheduler” and upload your post. You’ll see a tab like this:

Add my Hashtags on AiSchedul
Add My Hashtags

Scroll down a little bit and to see this box in which by clicking on “Add my hashtag,” all the hashtags that you’ve selected will appear. 

Try AiSchedul for free right now!

Hack #6: Steal Your Competitors’ Hashtags

It’s always a good idea to learn from the best ones, right? Simply go check out your successful competitors’ posts and see what combination of hashtags they’ve used and adjusted the bundle according to your own post.

Hack #7: Follow Hashtags

Did you know you can follow hashtags, just like the accounts? Instagram has added this feature for a while, and it allows you to see posts with certain hashtags in your feed. The good thing about following hashtags is that Instagram only shows you the best posts, so your feed won’t be saturated with scammy posts. 

To follow a hashtag, simply go to your explore page and type in the hashtag into the search bar to see the top posts. 

follow hashtags buttons on Instagram
Follow Hashtags on Instagram

Then tap on the “Follow” and it’s done!

Hack #8: Add Hashtags To Your Bio

By adding hashtags to your bio, you’ll increase the chance of being seen by people who are looking for you. It’s like optimizing your bio using that hashtag. For example, this profile uses some hashtags in the bio:

Vocab Rainbow Bio
Vocab Rainbow Bio

Here are the insights of one of its posts:

Instagram Insights
Instagram Insights

As you can see, 21 people find this post using the profile. 

Final Words on Instagram Hashtag Hacks

As you read, hashtags are still powerful features of Instagram that can greatly help your page grow. With sophisticated hashtagging, espouse your posts to more followers.  

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