HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU POST
I get this question a lot. Not as often as what is the best time to post, but still a lot. There is no right or wrong answer to this question either. Through my experience I have formed a very strong opinion about this subject. Based on the trends I have been witnessing, you should post at least twice a day unless you have already reached a very high number of followers (250K+). When you are just starting out, start posting twice a day, but post very good content to gain the trust of Instagram.
Later on, when you see steady growth, you can slowly increase this number to 3 times a day, then 4 times a day and so on. I try to never post more than 5 times a day because a new post will kill off the exposure for the previous posts that haven’t died out yet.
When you make a post, most of engagement happens within the first few hours. From my experience, the first 4 hours is when most of the magic happens on the post. Your posts will start up strong for the first hour, then peak, and then start dying out by the time the 4th hour comes around. If you are not too busy with real life, track your post progress and get ready to post another picture or a video when you see that the last engagement with your most recent content happened within 1 minute or longer.
Some huge accounts are known to post every hour, but they have a very large following, so their engagement will be good on all of their posts. These accounts are playing the numbers game. Once they post, engagement is through the roof and a lot of their content hits the Explore Page and takes off from there. But initial likes and comments mostly come from their own follower base, so building a good momentum and traction for them, is easy to do.
That being said, when you are just starting out, your initial engagement will be low, so you will not be getting on the Explore Page from the beginning. 1- minute gaps between engagements will happen much sooner than it would for someone with a large following base. That does not mean that you need to keep posting. Let Instagram warm up to you, and keep your posts spaced out properly. Posting too much from the beginning will classify you as a potential spam account, which will reduce your exposure significantly.
The biggest piece of advice would be, do not skip a single day without posting. If you do, it will be hard to hop back into the ballgame and it is almost guaranteed to lead to frustration. I have noticed that even accounts with huge followings have to deal with significant drops in engagement when they skip a full day without posting anything.
Instagram wants you to commit to the platform and post regularly. It started to remind me of YouTube quite a bit where the views you receive depend a lot on how active you have been recently. Trust me when I say this, it is not easy to regain relevance with Instagram’s algorithms.
I have seen accounts blow right past me mostly because they were religiously posting at 4 to 6 times per day. The fastest growth I have seen was accomplished by accounts that eventually got to posting 10+ posts per day. At that point, it is hard to come up with the content, so they started reposting content from other accounts with proper permission and credit given back.
I understand that you do not want to “SPAM” your followers’ feeds with you posting pictures numerous times per day. Keep in mind that the good ole Shadowban is protecting your followers from ever facing that problem. So, no need to be afraid, since a big portion of your followers will never even see your posts unless they directly search for your account. And that is the sad truth.