Instagram Hides Likes Worldwide: How to See the Likes Number?

Clara Alex
Combin Blog
Published in
3 min readNov 22, 2019

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Instagram hides likes globally

Instagram’s update dedicated to likes hiding was revealed back in April 2019. The test started in Canada and then moved forward. Instagram claimed in Twitter that they would hide these vanity metrics to make Instagram a place free of depression and likes obsession.

But initially, Instagram removed likes in seven countries only. The testing went well, so earlier this month, Instagram claimed they would test likes hiding in the US and later — globally.

Now Instagram is hiding the metrics around the globe (check your feeds, though).

If you’re among those, who can’t see likes under other users’ posts and yet want to see these metrics, keep on reading.

How to see the number of likes under other users’ posts?

Instagram likes don’t mean that much alone, not put together with other factors influencing the account performance. But still, looking at the number of likes, you can estimate whether the post is working well or not.

Now, users can only see the names of mutual friends who liked the post.

Moreover, the update doesn’t touch on the number of your own likes. After this new change, you will still be able to see how many approvements your posts gain.

To see others’ likes, you need to use third-party tools. Combin Growth, for instance, provides you with this information.

With this tool, you can see the likes while searching by hashtags and location.

When you’re looking for some posts marked with special hashtags or published from a specific area, the results will appear on your main window, and you will see the number of likes and comments under the post, just like it used to be on Instagram.

In Combin Growth, you can see how many likes other users have

Instagram removes likes. Do I need to see them at all?

As we’ve mentioned above, these metrics means almost nothing in a vacuum; only paired with other data.

Still, likes are an important indicator pointing at your overall engagement rate. For instance, with likes, you can calculate the ER rather quickly with this formula: calculate the average number of likes in posts 4 through 10, divide it by this number of posts, and then divide the result by the number of your followers.

The result you get after the calculation is an average number of followers that your content resonates with.

When you see that a post has 17k likes with almost 800k followers, you can roughly estimate if this influencer is relevant for you.

So it means that likes clearly indicate the approximate interest of an audience, and without them, you need to ask a blogger you want to partner with for statistics or check it via some third-party tools. And these account statistics can be easily falsified or photoshopped.

Likes are a trivial and not an excellent way to check if the influencer or a content creator is even worth spending your time on.

Final thought

Yes, likes are vanity metrics. And yes, the ER and effectiveness of an account cannot be measured by likes alone.

Regular users and small bloggers will surely be glad that no one will see how few likes their posts have. But these metrics still deserve to be tracked as it may give a small hint whether the influencer gets the most of their Instagram growth strategy.

No matter the update, likes will influence Instagram algorithm and overall accounts engagement, so if you want your posts to have more likes, don’t forget to like others’ posts.

To read all our updates and get new Instagram marketing tips, follow us on Twitter, Reddit, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

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Clara Alex
Combin Blog

Managing Editor at Kill the DJ. Content strategist in audio tech companies. Write about music, AI in audio, podcasting, and all things audio.