The time has passed to discuss why we should use hashtags, it’s old news. It’s the time to discuss how you can use hashtags in the most effective way possible. Anyone can add in a few hashtags after a caption, or pasted over a photo in Stories, but how can you squeeze in lots without it looking spammy and where is best to use them?

Here are five of the best Instagram hacks regarding hashtags.

Hack #1 – Use 25 not 30

Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post. However, if you use all 30 in your caption it limits the possibility of it being reposted. Brands may want to add in their own hashtags and custom tags and if the limit has already been reached it may deter them for the repost. Give users the option of being able to add in a few of their own hashtags.

Hack #2 – Check Banned List Frequently

If you use a broken or banned hashtag, you can be ‘shadowbanned’ on Instagram. This is where your posts won’t come up in searches of people who do not follow you. This is mainly to stop spam or vulgar/aggressive content spreading but sometimes random hashtags like #elevator are on the list and you can accidentally get yourself shadowbanned. This will obviously limit your reach extensively and prevent you from growing your account or getting any more followers on Instagram.

Hack #3 – Hashtag Hacking

That’s right, a hack about hacking. Instagram allows you to add up to 30 hashtags per post. However, if you add an ampersand (&) before the hashtag symbol in the Instagram app, it for some reason allows you to bypass the 30 limit. Adding the symbol before the hashtag does not affect the searchability of your hashtags either.

Hack #4 – Hide Hashtags

Sometimes it can be undesirable to have too many hashtags visible on any given post. Keep in mind that Instagram only displays two lines of the caption before adding a Read More button. If you add hashtags after this, they won’t be visible to users scrolling and they might be more inclined to like the post. If your caption is short, you can always add line breaks or copy and paste dots on each line to create the space needed to hide the hashtags.

You can also hide them in Stories (because hashtags added to the content are searchable) by placing a sticker over it or changing the color to match the background. It remains there, so it remains searchable, but users can’t see it.

Hack #5 – Stay Trendy

Always make use of trending hashtags. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking they are too popular, they will make your posts relevant. You can use a niche hashtag like #hathayoga but add the year onto it to make it trending #hathayoga2019. Also include any holidays or seasonal happenings like #Thanksgiving2019 or #CherryBlossom2019. It’s even better to tailor them to your account, for example, if you run a vegan Instagram account, use #VeganThanksgiving2019 or #VeganChristmas2019.

Hashtags are the best way to ensure your posts are being seen by the maximum amount of people, and these hashtag hacks should help boost your engagement levels and number of followers even more.