Want to increase the number of likes on your Instagram posts?

No problem!

I’ve been an active user of Instagram for over 5 years, and while being that, I’ve learned the ins-and outs of Instagram. During the journey, I’ve been able to accumulate a total of over 1 million followers, and I’ve managed over 20 Instagram accounts.

In this article, I’ll let you in on the methods that I have found to be most effective when it comes to generating more likes on your posts.

Why more likes?

First off, why do you want more likes on your Instagram posts?

Well, what I’ve learnt is that people have different reasons for wanting more likes on their Instagram posts.

For some, it is because of the simple reason that they think it looks good, and for others, it is because they want to make their audience more engaged.

But let me tell you the main reason that you should want to increase your likes:

In 2016, Instagram introduced their new algorithm. This update is the biggest update in Instagram’s history, and here’s what it does:

According to Instagram’s CEO Kevin System, Instagram users missed 70% of the content in their Instagram feed.

In other words, you only saw 30% of the content from people you followed.

Before the update, the content in your feed was presented in a  chronological order. This meant that the content presented in your feed from the people you followed was presented as the most recent posts at the top and the oldest posts at the bottom.

With the algorithm, it’s different, though.

With the algorithm, Instagram now decides what posts you are going to see in your feed and which you aren’t. This is decided with the help of an algorithm that decides based on a variety of different factors such as the content you have engaged with previously.

But what does this have to do with likes, you may ask?

Well, the number one factor that the algorithm lives on is engagement. In other words, if you get lots of likes on a post, you can get the algorithm to work in your favour and present your posts in everyone’s feed, as well as present it in places like Instagram explore, or in the “top posts” section.

Okay, so now that we know the main reason to why it is valuable to receive lots of likes, we can start looking at how you can get it. However, remember that no matter for what reason you want to have more likes, all of the methods presented works for you. And when you get more likes, the algorithm will in turn work in your favour.

Let’s dig in!

  1. Hashtags

It’s impossible for me to talk about Instagram engagement without bringing up hashtags.


Because there is no other social media platform than Instagram hashtags work as well as on Instagram

Hashtags on Instagram can sky-rocket your likes, and if you aren’t using them, you’re missing out on a tremendous opportunity.

Did you, for example know that Instagram posts with at least one hashtag have 12.6% more engagement than those without?

The catch is that research shows that the optimum number of hashtags is 11, even though  30 hashtags is the maximum number of tags you can use.

However, I am very skeptical about the fact that 11 is the ultimate number. I have used hashtags ever since I started using Instagram, and from my experience, 30 has always gained me the highest engagement. What’s more, another reason that I am skeptical to the fact that you shouldn’t use all 30 hashtags is because all studies say differently. Some studies claim that the ultimate number is 8, others 20, and others 11.

My recommendation is that you try it out, but I would still claim that what has the biggest impact on how well your hashtags perform is what hashtags you use, rather than the number you use.

  1. Engage with people in your industry

This is a method I have used a lot during my years on Instagram, and if it wouldn’t be effective in increasing likes, I wouldn’t use it.

Hashtags are effective if you want to increase likes, but they are also effective when finding people in your industry.

What you’re going to to is search for a hashtag related to your industry. Preferably, you’re going to use this method right after you’ve shared a post, but it works even when you haven’t shared a post just recently.

Let’s say that you have shard a post of a golf club.

Then, I would recommend that you search for the hashtag #golf, or something similar to your industry. By doing so, you’ll find tons of posts (of course depending on the industry and what hashtag you search for) that you can interact with. What you’re going to do now is like as many photos as you can that has been shard with that hashtags.

What you’ll find is that many of the people whose photos you like will like your more recent post back, thus increasing your likes!

  1. Ask for likes

People are often afraid of asking their audience for likes or engagement, but if done in the right way, it is completely innocent.

Let’s say that you share a photo of a quote. To encourage your audience to engage with your post, you can write something as simple as “like if you agree”. What you’ll find is that you’ll increase the number of likes you receive.

By using this method, you encourage people to like your post by asking a question or making a statement that they can agree with.

Here are some terms you can use:

  • Like if you agree
  • Like this post if you vote yes
  • Like this post and we’ll Direct Message you
  1. Share quality content

Okay, this maybe isn’t the answer you we’re looking for, but the truth is that this is the foundation to receiving lots of likes on your posts.

Have you noticed a correlation between the number of likes you receive and the type of content you share?

Well, it is very clear.

The higher-quality posts, and the more relevant they are, the more likes you receive. Simple!

But how can you know what type of content your audience prefers and resonates best with?

Instagram Insights, also referred to as Analytics is your answer.

If you haven’t yet converted your Instagram account to a business account, you need to do so first, before you get access to Insights.

When you’ve done so, go to your profile and tap the analytics icon in the top-right corner.

Then, scroll down until you see “posts”. Tap “see more”

Here, Instagram will present your op performing posts, and they will also give you the opportunity to filter them based on time, but also based on different metrics. Considering the fact that we’re after the posts with the most likes, we should select “engagement”.

Now, you’ll find your posts with the highest engagement. Based off of that, it’s often possible to notice a pattern between the best-performing posts.

What do they have in common? Do they have similar colors? Are they photos of a similar motive?

Acknowledge the things that the top posts have in common and try to share more similar posts int he future.

Based on my experience, simply sharing content that your audience prefers to see is the single most effective way to boost your likes.

About the author:

Jens Wirdenius is the editor-in-chief and co-founder of Veloce International and the influencer directory Veloce Network. He is a social media and marketing nut, sharing his passion for business in his articles.


Covering most topics technology related, with a focus on small business, startups, and entrepreneurs in particular. PurelyThemes started out as a WordPress theme development initiative, but has since been focusing on publishing quality content for the past few years.