Hashtags Do's & Don'ts

It will take quite some time before hashtags go out of style.  While there are certainly other ways to grow your following on Instagram, hashtags are a simple way to give your account a boost.  In case you have no idea how hashtags work, think of them has Instagram file folders.  You add appropriate hashtags to your images so if someone wants to search by tag in Instagram they will be able to do so.  Just like you'd do with important paperwork at home.  File it away in the appropriate folder so you can find it later.

Here are a few tips to help you navigate using hashtags on Instagram.


  • Use hashtags in the first comment. This will keep your feed from looking spammy at first glance PLUS the tags will stay on Instagram if you happen to share the photo to Facebook..
  • Use plenty of hashtags. 20-30 to be exact. There's this misconception that you shouldn't use more than just a few hashtags.  Remember, the reason you're using them to begin with is to put your information in front of people who don't already know you.  The more applicable hashtags the better but 30 is the max.
  • Change your hashtags combinations. People find a groove and start using the same combinations of hashtag on their photos no matter what the content.  This technique could result in your account becoming shadow banned so be sure to change your tags up.  Add new ones, retire others.
  • Use location based tags. While these types of tags may have less photos associated with them, location based hashtags help you to grow your local market


  • Use irrelevant hashtags. There's no need to actively turn your content into spam.  If your picture doesn't contain "cats", don't use "#cats". 
  • Use reported hashtags. There are certain hashtags that have been abused by other users and reported.  Do not continue to use a reported hashtag or it will negatively affect your engagement.
  • Use #likeforlike #followforfollow etc. You're after real engagement and genuine followers.  Don't get so caught up in the numbers that you do things like this to try to artificially grow your following.  Engage with your followers, other accounts and post quality content to attract the right people and not just bots or people paying for a following.

I spent a few days compiling over 1800 hashtags for 60 different industries so you wouldn't have to do the work finding good hashtags.  To snag your copy, click here.