As a brand or individual, the performance of your Instagram posts is crucial in building an online presence.
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Therefore, understanding when to post is pivotal. In this article, we delve deep into the best time to post on Instagram in Australia, so you can make the most of this powerful social media platform.
Understanding Instagram’s Algorithm
Before we get into specifics, it’s essential to grasp the fundamentals of Instagram’s algorithm. Introduced in 2016, the algorithm prioritises posts based on several factors, including timeliness, relationship, and user interest.
This means that recent posts are more likely to appear at the top of a user’s feed, making the timing of your posts a key factor in their visibility.
The Importance of Timing
The time you choose to post can have a significant impact on your reach and engagement. Since Instagram prioritises recent posts, your followers are more likely to see your content if they’re on the app when you publish.
Hence, to increase the chances of engagement, you need to find the best times when your target audience is most active.
Best Time to Post on Instagram in Australia
With over 9 million active Instagram users in Australia, understanding their activity pattern is vital to maximise your post engagement.
General Best Times
Our analysis suggests that the best time to post on Instagram for Australian users is between 7 PM to 9 PM (AEST) during weekdays. This is the peak active time when users are winding down from the day and frequently check their social media.
Moreover, posts uploaded at 5 AM (AEST) on a Tuesday also get significant engagement. It seems that a lot of users check their Instagram feed first thing in the morning.
Industry-specific Best Times
While the general best times give a broad understanding, let’s break it down further based on industries.
For retail businesses, weekdays from 12 PM to 3 PM are effective posting times. This aligns with lunchtime and afternoon breaks when users are likely to browse and shop online.
Fitness-related posts have the most engagement early in the morning (5 AM to 7 AM), aligning with the common early workout routine of many fitness enthusiasts.
Food & Beverage
For food and beverage businesses, posting between 12 PM and 1 PM from Friday to Sunday generates high engagement, as users often look for dining inspiration around these times.
Leveraging Instagram Insights for Optimal Timing
While the mentioned times provide a guideline, it’s essential to remember that the best posting times can vary depending on your specific audience. That’s where Instagram Insights come in handy. This built-in analytics tool offers a comprehensive overview of your follower demographics and activity, including the days and times when they’re most active.
How to Access Instagram Insights
To access Instagram Insights, you need to have a business or creator account. From your profile, click on the menu in the top right corner, then select ‘Insights’. Here, you can view ‘Your Audience’ and then see the most active times under ‘Most Active Times’.
Utilising Scheduling Tools
If the optimal posting times don’t align with your schedule, consider using Instagram’s scheduling tools, like Later or Buffer. These platforms allow you to plan your posts and stories ahead of time, so they go live when your audience is most active.
Adapting to Changes and Trends
In the world of social media, the landscape is continually changing. This is true not only for Instagram but all other platforms. Hence, it is crucial to adapt to these changes and trends to maintain an effective Instagram strategy. Here, we’ll explore a few key aspects that require your attention:
Instagram frequently updates its algorithm to improve the user experience. These updates can significantly impact your post visibility and engagement. For instance, the switch from chronological feeds to algorithmic feeds in 2016 changed the game for many brands and content creators.
When such updates occur, it’s vital to understand them and adjust your posting strategy accordingly. Keep an eye on Instagram’s announcements and updates to stay informed about any changes that may affect your posting times and overall strategy.
Changing User Behaviour
Instagram user behaviour can change due to several reasons, such as shifts in lifestyle patterns, cultural trends, or global events. For instance, the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in more people working from home, changing the times they are active on Instagram.
Therefore, it’s essential to regularly analyse your Instagram Insights and adapt your posting times to align with these behavioural changes. Monitor the engagement rates and times of your posts to identify any new trends.
Emerging Trends and Features
Instagram frequently introduces new features, such as Reels, IGTV, or Stories, each having unique usage patterns and peak times. Brands that effectively leverage these new features often see increased engagement.
Stay on top of these new trends and test them out as they roll out. For instance, you might find that your audience is more engaged with your Instagram Stories at a different time than your regular posts. If that’s the case, you may need to adapt your posting schedule accordingly.
Seasonal trends can also influence the best time to post. For example, you may notice different engagement patterns during holiday seasons or major events like the AFL Grand Final or Australia Day. During such times, people might use Instagram more frequently, providing opportunities for increased engagement.
Other Factors to Consider
While the times mentioned can serve as a guideline, several other factors may influence the best time to post on your Instagram. Let’s discuss some of these considerations:
Understanding your target audience and their behaviour is key. For instance, if your audience is predominantly working adults, posting during lunch breaks or after work hours might be most effective. However, if your audience includes students, their active hours may be different.
Given Australia’s vast geography, it spans multiple time zones. This may influence your posting times. For example, when it’s 7 PM in Sydney (AEST), it’s only 4 PM in Perth (AWST). Therefore, consider where the majority of your audience is based and adjust your posting times accordingly.
The type of content you post may also determine the best time to post. For instance, motivational posts might do better in the morning, while entertainment-based posts might get more engagement during leisure hours.
A/B Testing for Post Timing
A/B testing can be an excellent way to find out what works best for your specific audience. This involves posting at different times and days of the week and comparing the engagement levels. Over time, you’ll be able to pinpoint when your posts receive the most engagement and adjust your strategy accordingly.
Effectively leveraging Instagram’s potential involves understanding your audience and adapting to their habits, which includes knowing the best times to post. In Australia, general best times during weekdays, early mornings, or specific industry-related timings offer a good starting point.
However, remember to personalise these based on your specific audience demographics, content type, and geographical considerations.
Leveraging Instagram Insights can be a potent tool to understand your audience better and plan your posting schedule. Furthermore, consider conducting A/B testing to further refine your strategy. And remember, with the ever-changing digital landscape, staying flexible and adapting to new trends and algorithm changes is crucial for long-term success on Instagram.
In essence, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for the best time to post on Instagram in Australia. But with a strategic approach, data analysis, and continuous adjustments, you can optimise your Instagram performance and engagement effectively.
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