Instagram’s algorithm is ever changing, which means your social media strategy needs to keep evolving in order to meet your goals. However, one thing still remains true: posting at the right times can do wonders for your engagement.
Here’s the down-low on the best times to post on Instagram in 2023.
Does Posting Time on Instagram Actually Matter?
Yes, it does! Instagram’s algorithm favors recency and the posts that get more engagement in the first hour after they are posted. This means your post will show up higher on your followers’ news feed if:
- It’s recent
- It garnered enough engagement to override other recent posts
And hey! Nobody keeps scrolling forever to check out all the new posts, right? This means that if you want your audience to actually see your content, you need to post them when they are online. This is why posting time matters on Instagram to increase your engagement.
Best Times To Post on Instagram Globally
Based on analysis from SproutSocial, HootSuite, HubSpot, and Later, these are the best times to post on Instagram in 2023.
|Monday||10 AM to 1 PM|
|Tuesday||8 AM to 12 PM|
|Wednesday||5 AM, 9 AM to 12 PM|
|Thursday||10 AM to 1 PM|
|Friday||7 AM, 9 AM to 11 AM, 2 PM to 4PM|
|Saturday||8 AM to 10 AM|
|Sunday||6 PM to 8 PM|
All the four sources we analyzed had slightly differing best times, but the consensus was this:
- Majority of the users were most active during early morning, mid-day, and post work hours in the evening. This makes sense as early morning is when people wake up to get ready for the day. This makes for the first Instagram scroll of the day. Mid-day during lunch is another time when people are likely to check their social media platforms. Finally, when they are unwinding after work, or on the way back home from work, they are likely to check Instagram again. So, for maximum engagement, schedule your posts during early morning 5 Am to 7 AM, or mid-day 11 AM to 1 PM, or late evening 6 PM to 8 PM.
- Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays were the best days to post on Instagram during the week. Wednesdays from 10 AM to 12 PM turned out to be the best time overall.
- Weekends were found to be the worst times to post with the lowest engagement. This is because during the weekends, people are out enjoying their lives and don’t really have a lot of time to check Instagram.
Best Times To Post Reels on Instagram
Short-form videos such as reels have skyrocketed in popularity recently, which means posting Instagram reels is a no-brainer if your goal is to increase engagement. In fact, reels actually get 3x more engagement than normal posts!
The best time to post reels on Instagram is between 9 AM to 12 PM from Monday to Thursday. 6 PM to 9 PM also saw high engagement for reels.
Best Times To Go Live on Instagram
Weekdays from 7 PM to 9 PM is the best time to go live on Instagram. This is when almost everyone is home from work and relaxing while scrolling through social media, so they are more likely to tune in to your live.
Best Times To Post on Instagram by Location
The best times to post on Instagram also differ across locations. This is because people from different locations have different behaviors.
Here’s a guide on when to post for maximum engagement based on your geographic location. The data below was gathered from Later.
|Time Zone||Best Time To Post|
|U.S + Canada Pacific Time||9 PM to 12 AM|
|U.S + Canada Central Time||10 PM to 12 AM|
|U.S + Canada Eastern Time||11 PM to 4 AM|
|Latin America||5 AM|
|U.K||3 AM to 4 AM|
|Western Europe||4 AM to 6 AM|
|Eastern Europe||5 AM to 7 AM|
|Africa||2 AM to 3 AM|
|Middle East||4 AM|
|East and SouthEast Asia||6 AM to 8 AM|
|Australia + Asia||11 PM to 12 AM|
This table brings up an important question: if you have a global audience spanning across several continents, what do you do?
If you review both the tables from above, you’ll likely see some overlap, so you can choose those times to post on Instagram. Or you can post during different times of the day to cater to different audiences. For example, you can post at 11.30 PM on Tuesday to cater to your Australian audience and post at 7 AM on Thursdays for your European and Asian audience.
Best Times To Post on Instagram According To Industry
The best times for you to post on Instagram also depends on which industry/ niche you belong to. This may not always align with the overall best time.
Think about it. If you’re a restaurant that serves only lunch, then posting early in the morning or late evening won’t do you much good because your audience is probably active at mid-day. So, if you post during lunch time, that’s when you’re going to get the most engagement.
Here’s a breakdown of the best times to post according to industry. The following information is based on the analysis by SproutSocial and HubSpot.
|Industry||Best Times||Best Days||Worst Days|
|Education||10 AM to 12 PM||Monday||Sunday|
|Restaurants||2 PM, 4 PM to 6 PM||Monday||Saturday, Sunday|
|Hospitality||10 AM to 12 PM||Tuesday, Wednesday||Sunday|
|Healthcare||1 PM||Thursday, Friday||Sunday|
|E-commerce||9 AM to 12 PM||Saturday||Monday|
|Retail||3 PM to 6 PM||Sunday||Tuesday|
|Business Services||9 AM to 12 PM, 6 PM to 9 PM||Friday||Tuesday|
|Travel and Tourism||9 AM to 11 AM||Tuesday||Thursday|
|Media and Entertainment||3 PM to 6 PM, 9 PM to 12 AM||Friday||Sunday, Monday|
|B2B||4 PM to 5 PM||Monday||Saturday|
|Influencers||7 PM to 8 PM||Friday||Saturday|
How To Find Your Best Time To Post on Instagram?
The specific best time for each person varies according to several factors: their niche, audience demographic, and the time at which their audience is most likely to be active.
If your account is new, and you’re just focusing on building an audience, then post during peak times as illustrated in the tables above. However, if you already have a loyal customer base, then you need to find out when your audience is most active and post at those times for maximum engagement.
You can easily find this out using your Instagram analytics. You’ll find information about the age range of your followers, where they are from, and when they are most active (hours and days). You can use this to schedule your posts accordingly.
The top locations of your followers will also help you determine when to post. For example, if a large percentage of your followers are from California, then posting during the Pacific time zone might be the best option for you.
Alternatively, you can also use social media scheduling tools like HootSuite. It will analyze your insights and let you know when you should post for maximum engagement. Finally, you can always experiment with different times and see what works best!
Before we leave, here’s a pro tip: if 10 AM on Wednesday is the best time for your industry, then other businesses will most likely post at 10 on the dot. Distinguish yourself by posting a few minutes before or after!