Instagram Analytics are essential in understanding your demographic, optimizing your content, and evaluating your performance.
However, knowing and mastering all the different metrics and terms can be overwhelming.
Why do Instagram Analytics matter?
Diving into your Instagram Analytics is not just about finding out which photo, video, or story performed best.
Truly understanding how your content performs — by tracking key metrics over time — is invaluable to developing a robust content strategy for Instagram
Analytics and the Instagram Insights feature help you measure the impact of your content creation efforts to see if there’s something you need to do differently — like target a different audience, post at a certain time of day, or experiment with a new content format.
To use Instagram Insights, you must first have a business profile. If you’re already using a personal account, you can switch to a business profile with a few steps:
- Make sure your Instagram profile is public. Private profiles cannot be used as business ones.
- Go to your profile and tap the gearshift wheel icon to visit your settings.
- Tap “Switch to Business Profile.”
- When prompted, select the Facebook Page you want to be associated with your Instagram profile. In order to have a Business Account, you must also have a Facebook Page for your brand — Instagram will give you the option to create a new one during this process if you don’t already have one.
- Review and change any contact information on the “Set Up Your Business Profile page,” then tap “Done.”
How to understand your audience through Instagram Analytics
Before investigating content performance and truly understanding why certain content outperforms others, it’s important to start with your demographics. Knowing where your audience lives, how old they are, and when they’re most frequently engaging with your content affects even the smallest adjustments to your content strategy. Luckily, native Instagram Analytics makes discovering this information very simple, and you can access it right from your app!
Let’s break down the demographic data:
Gender and Age Range
From the top, Instagram offers basic demographic information about your current audience including gender and age breakdowns. Not only is it simply good to know who you’re talking to daily, but you can use this breakdown to adjust the types of content you post and when. For example, if your audience skews younger, you may want to post more frequently to align with frequency of phone use or you could test how memes or pop culture references perform, rather than posting strictly informational content.
Like the gender and age range charts, knowing your audience’s location can help you improve your posting schedule and the content itself. While you may see a large portion of your audience is located in English speaking cities or countries, if you also have a sizeable audience in non-English locations, you might consider adjusting your content strategy to be less copy heavy for broader understanding. By viewing your top cities, you’re also able to learn what time zones most of your users are in, which can help you find your best time to post on Instagram.
Hours vs. Days
Instagram also offers information around when your audience is most frequently engaging with your content. You can toggle between the Hours and Days views, each presenting information around your engagement.
This data is especially handy when determining what time of day to post and which day sees the highest engagement.
You may find engagement is roughly the same across weekdays, but maybe you’ll typically see a higher uptick on weekend engagement, which could be an opportunity to save your best or most important content for the weekends when your audience may have more time to view it. That’s just one example of how free Instagram analytics can impact your bottom line!
How to Use Instagram Account Insights
To view insights into your overall Instagram account, start by visiting your profile. Then, at the top, click the icon of a bar chart, which will take you to your overall insights.
From there, you’ll see some general information about people are engaging with your profile, like how many followers you gained or lost in the past week.
Next, we’ll get into the more specific profile insights you can explore.
This insight represents how many times your ads appeared on users’ screens. This number includes users scrolling by in their feed, clicking through your business’ profile to view a photo, or viewing content directly through an Instagram DM.
This insight reflects the number of unique users that have seen any of your Instagram posts.
3. Website Clicks
This insight reflects the number of times any links you’ve included in your business profile have been clicked.
4. Profile Visits
This insight reflects the number of times your profile has been viewed.
This insight reflects how many followers you’ve gained or lost over the past week, as well as the average times of day when your followers are using Instagram — data that can be highly beneficial when planning posts.
How to Use Instagram Post Insights
For these posts, you can either view insights on the original version of the post, or specific ones from its promotion. For the latter, tap “Promotion.”
Next, we’ll get into the more specific post insights you can explore.
This one speaks for itself, and reflects the number of users who liked your post.
As with likes, this insight reflects the number of comments left on your post.
The number of unique users or accounts who saved your post, or clicked the bookmark-like icon that appeared below it in their feeds.
These insights indicate the number of actions that users took on your profile as a result of seeing your post — things like visiting your profile, then taking an action like clicking on your website link or following you.
As the name might suggest, these insights indicate where your post was seen — or discovered — the most, including how many accounts weren’t already following you when they first saw the post.
This section includes metrics on Impressions, which reflect the number of times your post was discovered from a particular place within Instagram, like the user’s home feed, a search, your profile, a location tag, or a hashtag.
Discovery insights also include data on a post’s reach — which reflects the number of unique accounts that saw your post.
How to Use Instagram Stories Insights
Finally, Instagram users with a business profile are able to view insights into their Stories. Instagram does not, however, offer such analytics for live videos.
To view your Story insights, start by visiting your profile. Then, at the top, tap the icon of the bar chart, which will take you to your overall profile insights.
Scroll down to the Stories section, and you’ll be able to see insights for older stories, as well as any that have not yet expired.
Next, we’ll get into the more specific Story insights you can explore.
This insight represents how many times your Story was seen.
When viewing these insights, keep in mind that you’re able to add multiple images or videos to your Story. When you do this, every piece of visual content in your Story is counted as a single photo or video in your post.
Let’s say you add six photos to your Story. Whether someone only views one or views all six, Instagram only counts your entire Story having received one impression.
The same goes for Story content that has been viewed by a single user more than once. Instagram still only counts that interaction as the entire Story having received one impression.
This insight reflects the number of unique users that have seen your Story.
3. Taps Forward
This insight reflects the number of times a user taps your Story photo or video to skip to the next piece of media.
4. Taps Back
This insight reflects the number of time a user taps your Story photo or video to go back to the previous piece of media.
This insight reflects the number of times users send messages through the “Send Message” text box on your Story.
6. Swipe away
This insight reflects the number of times users swipe to skip to the next account’s Story — not to be mistaken for “tap forward,” which reflects users skipping ahead to your next piece of Story media.
This insight reflects the number of times a user leaves the Stories section entirely to return to the home feed
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