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Best and Worst Times to Post on Instagram: A Brief Guide

What are the worst times of day to post on Instagram? If you’re running an account for your business or personal brand, steer clear of these days and times.

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There are many ways to get your business, product, or service into greater social and cultural awareness through marketing. One of the best ways, at least of those introduced in recent years, is using social media websites for marketing purposes.

There are a variety of websites where you can put your brand out there, with some social media sites better for certain companies than others. Determining which one is best for your company will ultimately come down to the type of audience you can find on these platforms. Certain marketing techniques may also have better traction than others on certain social media websites.

Instagram, perhaps more than any other platform, is a very visual social media website. Before anything else, people go to Instagram to see imagery with text, rather than text with imagery.

There are a lot of factors that need to be considered when posting on Instagram, including the timing. To wit, what the best and worst times to post on Instagram are, and Mailchimp has a helpful guide to explain this.

Why it matters when you post on Instagram

The time of day, and the day you post, may not seem like it is as big a deal for a lot of people. This is especially true if you generally find success on any day of the week.

But one thing you might notice, especially by checking the analytics of your posts, is that some days and times do better than others. But why is that the case? Well, people use Instagram more on certain days and times than others.

When using Instagram, your posts will appear on a feed, but if you don't see the post, you have to manually check the poster's page to see it. And for the most part, even people who follow you will tend not to check out your earlier posts, so getting attention right away is paramount.

Worst times to post on Instagram

Generally, Instagram is a website that is accessed on smartphones and tablets much more than it is accessed on PC. Thus, the worst time of day, at least on a weekday, is whenever your target audience is least likely to have such devices. You also should not post content too early in the morning or late at night, though there may be exceptions.

For most people, they will be dead asleep, and by the time they wake up, the post will be long gone from their feeds. Whether you are using Instagram for small business or Instagram for fun, there are certain times of day, and certain days of the week, that are objectively better for most content than others.

Weekend posting tends to be one of the worst times to post your content, mainly because when people are home for the weekend, they are not quite as concerned with scrolling Instagram. There is one exception, however, namely when it involves Instagram Stories and Instagram Reels.

Both of these are relatively easier for Instagram users to consume, so you might find people who are scrolling through them on the weekend just to catch a few short Stories and Reels. However, for regular content, stick to the weekdays whenever you can.

One of the big problems to do with figuring out the worst or best time to post on Instagram is that Instagram does not necessarily deliver content to its users in the most ideal way.

While some websites may show content chronologically, Instagram uses an algorithm to determine what content would appeal to its users the most.

Is Sunday a good day to post on Instagram?

Sunday tends to easily be the worst day to post on Instagram, and the reason is plainly simple: people just don't use their devices as much as on other days.

This does not necessarily mean that you cannot get any engagement on Sunday, but in the grand scheme of things, most things you could post on Sunday could be posted on Monday. This is the best way to avoid a bad Instagram advertisement strategy.

One exception that might do all right is if you are posting Christian content, especially if the Instagram account represents a church.

Such a post would be good, if only due to the fact that the content is most relevant on that day. You may not get as much reach, but it may seem out of place depending on what the content is if you post it on another day.

Best times to post on Instagram

In general, the best time of day for all time zones is to post from 11 am to 3 pm (though 11 am to 1 pm is in that range). Avoid posting in the early morning or late afternoon for the most engagement.

The reason why this is so good is that this is often when people take their breaks during work or school, and common activity is to scroll through their Instagram feed while they eat or chat with friends.

Posting at around 2-3 pm is also good for students, as this is around the time they get out of school. This rings true mainly for weekdays, although this is not the worst time of day to post on the weekend. However, you may want to push the time up just a bit for any later risers on these days.

This is not the only time of day that is generally good for your brand. 7 pm to 9 pm is also a prime time to post Instagram content, as this is when people are just now settling in after working. You may also find that 7 am to 2 pm is the best time to post on Friday.

Take your specific audience into account

Depending on the Instagram audience your brand has, you may want to consider bucking the conventional wisdom of the best times to post on Instagram.

For example, if the demographic you are trying to reach through Instagram marketing tend to be night owls, for example, posting at the best posting times of day for other people would be the worst times to post on Instagram.

Ultimately, the best timing for Instagram posts and Instagram ads cannot be approached as though there is any science to it.

While most people will tend to perform better on certain days or at a certain time of day, this does not, by any means, suggest that every brand and industry needs to operate by the same rules.

If in your experience, your brand does not appear to perform as well during the peak posting times for Instagram, or if the bad posting times are better for you, then you do you!

Instagram posting for different time zones

If your business is mainly focused on your own time zone, you won't have to worry too much about this.

However, for a company or brand with a more widespread market, focusing only on posting with your own time zone in mind runs the risk of both lowering engagement and alienating other customers.

There are two methods you can employ to reduce these risks. First, try to find a nice middle ground in time zones.

For instance, if your customers are primarily within the continental United States, that means you only need to cover a four-hour span. So, when it is 12 pm in Pacific Standard Time, it is 1 pm in Mountain Standard Time, 2 pm in Central Standard Time, and 3 pm in Eastern Standard Time.

The second method of reaching your Instagram specific audience is to post multiple times a day, with the intention of reaching all time zones. Be sure to avoid being too repetitious about the type of content, though, as the people in the one time zone do not want to see the same Instagram post four times in a row.

If possible, try to think of Instagram posts for those time zones that appeal to the region while making sure that it at least is able to be enjoyed by the other time zones as well.

Instagram isn’t the only way to get noticed

While Instagram is a solid place to get the word out about what you have to offer, it is certainly not the only way you can be noticed.

For example, complementing your Instagram marketing campaign with an email marketing campaign only helps to spread the word even more. You should take advantage of other social media websites as well.

Thus, if you want to maximize your social media presence, be sure to look for someone who has expertise in more than just managing your brand's Instagram account.

However, while there are similarities between marketing on Instagram and marketing on other social media websites, there are some differences that are vital to success.

For example, the best time to post on Instagram may not be the best time to post on Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, or Reddit. Similarly, the worst time to post on these websites may be less bad than it is on Instagram.

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