Always up to date: The best time to post on Instagram

Want your posts to have the best chance of being seen? Here’s when to post content.
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The pace of change within social media is relentless, which is also true of the Instagram platform. 71% of consumers use Instagram, which makes it an attractive platform to engage with consumers across the globe. And with a global audience using the app across multiple time zones, it means you need to get clever with your content timings. 

Much has been written about the best time to post on Instagram, which seems to depend on who you ask (or which website you land on). To help clear things up and give more straightforward guidance, we’ve analysed the top responses on the web to curate answers with the most consensus. 

Let’s delve into what we found to uncover the best times to post on Instagram. 

Best times to publish on Instagram at a glance

According to Influencer Marketing Hub, the best times to post on Instagram are: 

  • Monday: 6 a.m. 10 a.m. 10 p.m. 
  • Tuesday: 2 a.m. 4 a.m. 9 a.m.
  • Wednesday: 7 a.m. 8 a.m. 9 a.m. 11 a.m.
  • Thursday: 7 a.m. 8 a.m. 2 p.m. 3 p.m.
  • Friday: 5 a.m. 10 a.m. 1 p.m. 3 p.m.
  • Saturday: 11 a.m. 7 p.m. 8 p.m.
  • Sunday: 7 a.m. 8 a.m. 4 p.m.

So far, so good. But to really hone your Instagram strategy, you’ll need to get clever. Work out what your goals are before you plan your Instagram marketing strategy. Are you looking to drive sales?  Do you want to increase brand awareness? What does a successful social media marketing campaign look like to you?

You’ll also want to look back at previous successes. At what times did your previous Instagram posts do well? How can you use that data to drive your social media strategy forward? 

Best time to post per day

By looking at what’s happening right now on Instagram and doing a bit of number crunching, experts have discovered that globally, the best time ever to post on Instagram is:

Wednesday at 11 a.m.

best time to post on instagram heatmap
Image credit: Sprout Social

Now that you know Wednesday is the best day to post on Instagram, what about the rest of the week?

best time to post on instagram week view
Image credit: Hootsuite

Research has shown that Instagram users like to check their feed during work and/or school hours, with most preferring to do so at around lunchtime, in the middle of the week. 

Generally, weekends are the worst time to post, as that’s when engagement dips. This is probably because people are out and about, having fun and getting stuff done in the real world.

If you want to post each day, here are the optimum times according to research by Hootsuite:

Best time to post on Instagram on Monday: noon

While Influencer Marketing Hub recommends the morning for Monday posts, or 10 p.m., Hootsuite’s analysts say that noon is the best time to publish on a Monday. This goes to show that figures do vary between countries, sites, and sectors. (More on that later…)

Best time to post on Instagram on Tuesday: 9 a.m.

Users are online early on a Tuesday, with many visiting Instagram by 8 a.m. The peak time slot is 8 a.m. until  10 a.m., with 9 a.m. being the sweet spot. 

Best time to post on Instagram on Wednesday: 11 a.m.

In the middle of the week, Instagram sees quite a drastic peak in engagement at 11 a.m. 

Best time to post on Instagram on Thursday: noon

Peak engagement on a Thursday is early lunchtime, although the hours of 11 a.m. through to 2 p.m. will yield good results. 

Best time to post on Instagram on Friday: 2 p.m.

Engagement is pretty consistent on a Friday from early in the morning until after lunch. 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. is a good time to publish on a Friday, with 2 p.m. being peak time.

Best time to post on Instagram on Saturday: 9 a.m.

Believe it or not, Instagrammers are awake early on a Saturday and checking in with the platform at 9 a.m. 

Best time to post on Instagram on Sunday: 7 p.m.

Sundays are a bit more laid back. No early starts here. Instead, users prefer to scroll at 7 p.m. in the evening, although research shows that use is steady between midday until 8 p.m. 

What times to choose?

If you don’t have the time or resources to create a lot of Instagram posts, just pick a couple of the best days and times. Not forgetting of course, that Wednesday at 11 a.m. is the time that results in the most engagement. 

However, the best time to post on Instagram according to Sprout Social varies depending on which industry or sector you’re in. For example, the best time to post on Instagram for consumer goods brands is on a Sunday between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m.. Meanwhile, financial posts perform best on Wednesdays at 6 a.m., while anything to do with education will peak on a Tuesday at 10 a.m. 

best time to post on instagram by industry
Image credit: Tide

Worst time to post on Instagram

Later analysed 35 million Instagram posts globally and discovered that the worst time to post on Instagram is Thursday night between 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. That doesn’t mean that you should never post then, but you may want to avoid these times for key activities. 

Best time to post Reels on Instagram

The absolute best time to post Reels is Monday to Thursday from 9 .am. until midnight. This says that if you want to maximise engagement on Instagram, you should be using Reels, which are effective content pieces any time of the day.

Data indicates that Reels get up to 300% more engagement than regular Instagram posts. So if you’re looking to go viral, Reels are a must. We have loads more information on boosting Reels if you need it.

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How to work out the best times to post on Instagram for your brand

  1. First of all, you need to think about what country/countries and time zones your target audience live in, and work out the school/leisure/work hours in each of them.
  2. Next, who is your target audience? The best timings to post listed above may not be right for your audience. For example, if you’re targeting parents, you may prefer to avoid school drop-off and pick-up times. 
  3. Finally, work out when your audience is online and then schedule a few test posts at different times. Analyse the figures and use them to work out the best time to post on Instagram for your own particular brand.

Best time to post on Instagram globally

Optimum posting times differ slightly from country to country. Note the differences below.

Best time to post on Instagram in the UK 

According to Host Reviews, there are two optimum periods for posting during the week – 4 a.m. to  9 a.m. and 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. On the weekends, the best times are noon and between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Best time to post on Instagram in the USA 

Monday 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. is the best time to post on Instagram in the USA central time according to Razorpay. In the USA, Sunday is a bad day to post on Instagram, as audiences tend to drop. 

Best time to post on Instagram in Australia 

If you’re posting for an Australian audience, I Am Famous say that the best times are weekdays between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. Sydney time. 

Examine your best performing Instagram posts

Past wins are key when it comes to planning your social media strategy. What do the stats indicate? Is the content more compelling than other posts you’ve shared? Or have you already hit the best time to post on Instagram for your brand? 

Use your Instagram insights and analytics, which are built into the app if you have an Instagram business or creator account. It will show the top locations for your posts, the age range of users, reach, engagement and followers.

When do your competitors post on Instagram?

t’s worth taking a close look at your competitors’ posts. What time are they posting and which of their posts are doing really well? Once you know that, you can do what they do, only better!

Check out Vamp for business to get the edge on your competitors. You can start using the tool for FREE. Need some inspiration first? Find out how our clients have skyrocketed their Instagram campaigns with Vamp

Engagement is the top priority on Instagram

So what’s the need for knowing all of this? It comes down to giving the algorithm what it wants to see – engagement.

Engagement should be your priority on Instagram – that means potential customers interacting with your account. Engagement comes in the form of likes, comments, views, shares, and direct messages.

You can increase engagement further by leaning into the platform’s algorithm by sharing Instagram Stories, utilising Instagram Video (formerly IGTV), and, most importantly at the moment, posting Reels. 

The quickest way to get more likes

A sure-fire way of increasing your likes is to ride the rule of recency, which boils down to being as up-to-date as you possibly can, i.e. posting when your audience is likely to be online. 

The most recent posts on Instagram get priority. If you post several hours after your target audience has stopped scrolling, you could miss the sweet spot.

Paid for content on Instagram

Another way to boost your Instagram posts is to do a paid-for promotion. You can increase engagement with ads and/or sponsored posts. With competition for visibility at an all-time high on Instagram, paid for posts can be a useful tool in your marketing strategy. Find out how to boost your paid content on Instagram.

Creating a social media campaign on Instagram

Now that you know the best times to post on Instagram, all you need now is some great content to turbo-charge your social media marketing campaigns. Get started with an Instagram influencer campaign on Vamp.

The Everything Guide to Instagram for Marketers


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