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Instagram Hashtags – A Complete Guide with Ideas

Aasif Khan
By Aasif Khan | October 17, 2023 12:00 pm
Instagram Hashtags

1. Introduction

In the digital age, where social media platforms reign supreme, Instagram stands out as a visual storytelling giant. With over a billion users, it’s a bustling hub for influencers, brands, and everyday users. Its success has inspired many to explore how to create a social media app of their own, aiming to tap into the digital zeitgeist. But whether you’re navigating the platform as a user or aspiring to build your own digital space, one element remains pivotal: Instagram hashtags. These aren’t just trendy add-ons; they’re the compass by which content navigates the vast ocean of Instagram, ensuring it reaches its intended shores.

2. What are Instagram Hashtags?

At its core, a hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by the ‘#’ symbol. But on Instagram, it’s so much more. Hashtags are the lifeblood of content discoverability. They categorize posts, making them easily discoverable by users interested in a particular topic or theme.

Imagine Instagram as a vast library. Without a cataloging system, finding a specific book would be nearly impossible. Hashtags are that system, categorizing each post into a specific ‘shelf’ where interested ‘readers’ can easily find them.

When a user taps on a hashtag, they’re transported to a page that aggregates all content with that tag. It’s a realm of exploration, where one can dive deep into a specific topic, discovering a plethora of related content.

3. Why Use Instagram Hashtags?

The power of hashtags isn’t just in categorization. Their benefits are manifold

  1. Visibility & Reach: In the vast sea of Instagram, hashtags are the lighthouses guiding users to your content. A well-chosen hashtag can exponentially boost your post’s visibility, exposing it to a wider, yet targeted, audience.
  2. Engagement: Data consistently shows that posts with hashtags garner more engagement. This isn’t just about numbers; it’s about creating a community around your content, fostering discussions, and building relationships.
  3. Targeted Audience: Not all attention is good attention. Hashtags ensure that your content reaches those genuinely interested in it. It’s about quality, not just quantity.
  4. Campaign Tracking: For brands, hashtags are invaluable tracking tools. By creating a unique hashtag for a campaign, brands can easily monitor its performance, gather user-generated content, and gauge audience reception.

4. Types of Instagram Hashtags

Understanding the different types of hashtags can help you strategize better

  1. Branded Hashtags: These are unique to a business or campaign. For instance, Nike’s #JustDoIt isn’t just a slogan; it’s a rallying cry, a community, and a content goldmine all in one.
  2. Community Hashtags: These are broader and connect like-minded users. #MomsOfInstagram, for instance, connects mothers from around the world, sharing their joys, challenges, and everyday moments.
  3. Location Hashtags: These are perfect for local businesses or travel enthusiasts. A cafe in New York might use #NYCCoffee, while a traveler in Paris might opt for #EiffelTowerViews.
  4. Event Hashtags: Events, whether they’re as global as the #Olympics2023 or as local as a #FarmersMarket, have their unique moments, stories, and audiences. Hashtags help collate these.
  5. Industry Hashtags: These are broader categories, encompassing an entire industry. Be it #TechInnovations or #FashionWeek, they’re about staying updated with industry trends.
  6. Niche Hashtags: These cater to specific interests. A vegan chef might use #PlantBasedDelights, while a vintage car enthusiast might go for #RetroRides.

5. How to Find the Right Hashtags for Your Content

Finding the right hashtag isn’t about luck; it’s about strategy

  • Competitor Analysis: Keep your friends close and competitors closer. Monitor the hashtags they use. It’s not about copying but about understanding what works in your niche.
  • Instagram Search: A goldmine for hashtag research. As you type, Instagram suggests popular hashtags, giving you insights into trending topics.
  • Hashtag Tools: Platforms like Hashtagify, Later, or RiteTag can help you discover trending hashtags, analyze their performance, and even suggest alternatives.

6. Best Practices for Using Instagram Hashtags

Navigating the world of Instagram hashtags requires more than just adding a ‘#’ before a word. Here are some best practices

  • Relevance is Paramount: Your hashtags should align with your content. Using irrelevant hashtags might get you views, but it won’t get you the right kind of engagement.
  • Diversify Your Hashtag Portfolio: Don’t just stick to ultra-popular hashtags; mix in niche ones. While popular hashtags increase reach, niche ones ensure targeted visibility.
  • Stay Updated: The Instagram landscape is ever-evolving. What’s trending today might be passé tomorrow. Regularly update your hashtag strategy to stay relevant.
  • Avoid Banned Hashtags: Instagram bans certain hashtags that violate its community guidelines. Using them can decrease your post’s visibility or even get your account penalized.
  • Limit Your Hashtags: Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post. However, that doesn’t mean you should use them all. Research suggests that 9-11 hashtags strike the right balance between reach and engagement.

7. Best Instagram Hashtag Ideas

Dive into this curated list of hashtags across various categories


  1. #FashionDiaries
  2. #LookOfTheDay
  3. #FashionForward
  4. #StyleGuru
  5. #FashionOnPoint


  1. #TravelJunkie
  2. #PassportLife
  3. #TravelMoments
  4. #GlobeWanderer
  5. #TravelTales


  1. #CulinaryGenius
  2. #PlatePics
  3. #FoodLover
  4. #EpicEats
  5. #TasteSensation


  1. #Shutterbug
  2. #PhotoOfTheDay
  3. #LensLover
  4. #CaptureLife
  5. #PhotographyMagic

and more..

8. Tracking Your Hashtag Performance

Your hashtag strategy shouldn’t be set in stone. It should evolve based on performance. Here’s how to track it

  • Engagement Metrics: Monitor likes, comments, and shares. High engagement often indicates hashtag effectiveness.
  • Reach and Impressions: These metrics show how many people saw your post due to your hashtags.
  • Top Posts: For each hashtag, Instagram showcases ‘Top Posts’. If your content consistently makes it here, your hashtag game is strong.
  • Tools: Platforms like Iconosquare, Sprout Social, and Brandwatch provide in-depth hashtag analytics, from engagement metrics to sentiment analysis.

9. How to Generate Hashtags for Instagram using AI with Appy Pie

  1. Access the Tool: Begin by navigating to Appy Pie’s official Instagram Hashtag Generator.
  2. Enter Your Search Query: In the provided text box, type in relevant keywords or phrases that encapsulate the essence of your post. For instance, if your post is about a sunset in Bali, you might enter keywords like “sunset,” “Bali,” and “beach.”
  3. Generate Multiple Instagram Hashtags: After entering your search query, you’ll be prompted to provide your email. This allows Appy Pie to send you a comprehensive list of AI-generated hashtags.
  4. Review and Select: Browse through the list of hashtags generated by Appy Pie’s AI name generator. Carefully review these suggestions and select the ones that resonate most with your post. While the AI is designed to offer relevant hashtags, ensuring they align perfectly with your content’s context is crucial.
  5. Optional – Buy the Domain: If a particular hashtag resonates strongly with your brand or campaign, Appy Pie offers the option to purchase the domain associated with that hashtag. This can be particularly useful for businesses looking to create a unique campaign or branding opportunity around a specific hashtag.


In the vast digital tapestry of Instagram, hashtags are the threads weaving content together. They’re not just about trends but about community, visibility, and strategy. As with any tool, their power lies in how they’re used. So, whether you’re a brand aiming for global reach or an individual sharing snippets of life, remember: with the right hashtag, your content can touch corners of the world you’ve never even imagined.

Aasif Khan

Head of SEO at Appy Pie

App Builder

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