How to Boost your Instagram reach with SEO

How to boost your Instagram ranking with SEO

Search engine optimization or SEO is something that most people associate with websites and Google. It is important to note though that you can boost your Instagram reach with SEO. This means that you do not always have to have a big ad budget to reach your ideal client.

According to, as of July 2022, Instagram had 1.440 billion users around the world. Search engine optimization is an effective way of getting your business to stand out on this platform.

What is SEO?

Search engine optimization (SEO) happens when you enhance certain factors that search engine algorithms use to determine where you appear in a search query.

In November of 2020, Instagram made it possible for users to begin to search using keywords.

searching for keywords and hashtags on Instagram

The process of search engine optimization for Instagram is all about creating a profile and content that appears in as many searches as possible.  It is about improving your chances of becoming highly visible for the keywords that relate to your business. This increases your likes, views, followers, and shares by getting you noticed by the audience.

Learn more about SEO in this video.

How to optimize your Instagram profile for SEO

The first step to optimization for any search engine is to spend time researching your keywords. Once you have a clear understanding of which keywords relate to your business, service, or offer, you can begin to put them to use in your Instagram profile.


Choose a username that is relevant to your content. I help women who are wanting to learn SEO so my Instagram username is  This name allows me to use the broad keyword “SEO”.  

If you are a recognized brand, your username will be your brand name. You may, however, still want to add a keyword to your username.  

how to optimize your username for SEO on Instagram

For example, Later is a social media management tool. They use the username @latermedia on Instagram. By adding the keyword “media” after Later, they are sharing a bit more about their service with people who may be searching the word “media”.


As with your username, the name section of your profile should contain a keyword or two. Pai (Pie) Skincare has the username @paiskincare. They want to attract clients who value vegan and organic products. To do this, in the name section they have written “Pai Skincare | Vegan & Organic”

adding keywords to your profile name to boost instagram results

Your bio

Finally, you want to ensure that your bio has descriptive keywords that explain who you are, what you are all about and what kind of content people can expect to find from you.

If you don’t feel like you are getting enough traffic, update your bio. Set a time to regularly review your bio. Try using new keywords or changing up the ones that you currently are using. Monitor your growth or interactions and then tweak your keywords again.

How do you optimize your content for SEO on Instagram?

SEO for Instagram doesn’t end at your bio. Your content also needs to be optimized. This means that you must be using your keywords to create compelling and descriptive captions.

Use the main body of the caption to target a specific high-value keyword. Your hashtags should then reinforce that specific keyword. You can also target other related keywords with your hashtags.

Don’t forget your images when optimizing your content! Click on the alt text setting before you post. This allows you to place your keywords in your image’s alt text description.

What else impacts Instagram search results?

things that impact your ranking on Instagram

Instagram considers how relevant your keywords are to the search query, but SEO for Instagram doesn’t end there. It also looks at things like user activity and the popularity of the content.

Search engine are always focused on the needs of their clients. This is why when looking to boost your Instagram reach you need to be thinking of your ideal client as well.

Begin to comment on their content even before they have found you. Follow keywords that are important to them. Create content that has a clear call to action that involves engagement with your account.

Instagram is more likely to show your content to people who have interacted with you. They show accounts and hashtags that the user has interacted with before those that they haven’t.

Finally, Instagram considers location. It will share content that is physically located closest to the searcher. It may therefore be to your advantage to indicate a location in your profile.

How to boost your Instagram reach with SEO.

In a sea of 1.440 billion Instagram users, search engine optimization offers you an effective, no-cost way to stand out.

Do your research and learn what keywords your ideal customer is searching with. Begin to interact with accounts that are using those keywords.

Establish the keywords that you feel best describe your business and add them to your username, profile name, and bio.

Use specific keywords in the content of your posts as well as the alt text of your images. You can then mix other keywords into your hashtag strategy.  

Watch key metrics on your account like likes, shares, and follows. Make changes to your keyword strategy in accordance with the results of your key metrics.

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