The Ultimate List of Instagram Hashtags

Instagram hashtags can help make your Instagram content do some serious heavy lifting. So, here’s a huge list to help you reach and engage your ideal social media audience too! 

Why Should You Use Hashtags? 

While you might see a lot of people throwing around hashtags, when used correctly, they can actually be a huge asset to your business. 

Did you know that Instagram posts that have at least one hashtag average 12.6% more engagement than posts that don’t have any hashtags?    

Indeed, hashtags are a powerful social media tool. When you use them correctly, they can help you achieve many goals. These include: 

  • Reaching a target audience 
  • Raising engagement
  • Expanding your web presence
  • Cementing your brand’s image  

SEE ALSO: Why Brands Are Moving to Instagram

Not Just Any Hashtag Will Do

So, hashtags are important, right? This means you should use as many as possible, right? We have all seen social media posts with whole essay’s worth of hashtags tacked on.

Users do this in the hope that their content will be seen by as many people on social media as possible. But, are these people doing it right?  

Hashtags can work wonders for your business, but if used too frequently or without any strategy, they don’t really work for you. For example, have you ever seen a post with a sea of hashtags like this? 

#grateful #thankful #blessed #workhardplayhard #workworkwork #lucky #hardwork #gratitude  

While you can use up to 30 hashtags per Instagram post, this can look a lot like spam. Also, listing endless synonyms of feel good buzzwords without a plan is not the kind of strategy that will take your brand to the top.

This guide will help you take a deeper and more strategic look into Instagram hashtags. Are you ready to not only attract social media followers but the right followers? 

SEE ALSO: Setting Goals for Your Business on Instagram

What’s The Big Deal With Hashtags?

While some people poke fun at hashtags as just another social media trend, this is far from the truth. As a matter of fact, hashtags are actually Instagram’s sorting process for content.

As about 95 million photos are posted on Instagram every day. For this reason, without some sort of organization, users would not be able to find anything. 

When you categorize your post using hashtags, it helps Instagram show it to the right people. Therefore, hashtags are what makes sure that your post will be seen by people who are interested in it. They also make sure that users can find you when they search.  

social media

Krystal Gillespie, HubSpot’s Social Media Community Manager, explains exactly what hashtags can do: 

“Hashtags are like a funnel. For instance, #marketing is incredibly broad and attracts all types of posts. We’ve found #digitalmarketing or #marketingmotivation gives us a more specific, targeted reach. The audience searching for these hashtags are also trying to narrow their search to what we offer related to Marketing, so we’re actually reaching more of the right people.”

Hashtags give you the power to categorize your posts. This helps you reach your target audience. However, more importantly, it makes sure that your target audience can find you also.

Users searching specific hashtags are more likely to interact with your post and brand because they were specifically searching for something along those lines. 

SEE ALSO: 5 Instagram Hacks You’ve Been Missing Out On

The Top Instagram Hashtags of 2018 

  • #love
  • #instagood
  • #me
  • #cute
  • #tbt
  • #photooftheday
  • #instamood
  • #iphonesia
  • #food
  • #motivation

A Deeper Look Into The Top Hashtags of 2018 

Keep in mind that simply using one or all of the most popular hashtags of the year in your posts is not the path to success. For one, excessive hashtags that are unrelated to your actual content look spammy. They can also look unauthentic on social media.  

Another thing to keep in mind is that these hashtags are the most popular of the year because millions of people use them day in and day out. Due to this, your post will have more competition when tagged in these categories.

Here’s a deeper diver into these massively popular hashtags. 

1. #love 

Many Instagram users build photo galleries on capturing good feelings and memories. So, you will often see pictures of friends, family, events, vacations, pets, and all things beautiful with the #love hashtag tacked on. There are over a billion posts sporting #love on IG. 

2. #instagood 

This hashtag is used thanks to the @instagood Instagram account. This account searches this hashtag for excellent and super shareable user photos. When you use this hashtag, there’s a chance they might repost your content.  

3. #me

This hashtag is commonly used on selfies, or pictures users take of themselves. 

4. #cute 

It’s no secret that people of the internet love cute things. From kittens and puppies frolicking to babies napping to famous cartoon characters, everyone loves things that are #cute.  

5. #tbt 

#Tbt stands for “Throwback Thursday.” This is where you get the nostalgia out. This hashtag is all about posting pictures from the past, whether it’s a selfie or of an event. Nostalgia is in, and here is how you can enjoy and tag it on Instagram. 

6. #photooftheday

If you are managing a business account that posts daily, consider using this hashtag also. It is a great way to attract followers and repeat visitors. This is a great one to use especially if your daily content centers around a common theme. 

7. #instamood 

This hashtag is all about the mood or feeling that a photo inspires. Scenery, beach trips, and nights out with friends were all commonly posted with the #instamood hashtag in 2018. Landscapes are a standby for this hashtag. 

8. #iphonesia 

Notably, Instagram is really taking over in Indonesia. It has the 4th most Instagrammers of any country on earth. This hashtag is used by Instagrammers from that community. 

9. #food 

There is a joke that Instagram is mostly just people taking pictures of their lunch, and there is a grain of truth in it. Meal pics are huge on Instagram.

People love to know what others are eating, where they are eating, or what they cooked themselves. If it is relevant to your account, #food pics can be great

10. #motivation 

#MondayMotivation is a popular Twitter hashtag that uses encouraging photos and messages to help people start off their week. However, on Instagram, people tag all sorts of things with #motivation too.

The Top Trending Instagram Hashtags

Below are a list of hashtags that are always popular. Regardless, only use them if they apply to your content. 

  • #life
  • #travel
  • #fitness
  • #repost
  • #igers
  • #instadaily
  • #followforfollow
  • #likeforlike
  • #nofilter
  • #ootd
  • #fashion
  • #fun

How To Use Hashtags The Right Way


Now that you have a place to start, what should you do with all of these hashtags? Here are some smart ways to approach hashtagging! 

SEE ALSO: Creating an Instagram Content Strategy

Keep Organized 

An efficient hashtag system needs either an excel spreadsheet or an analytics tool, like Iconosquare. Keep track of which hashtags you use, how often, and which lead to the most popular posts. Over time, you will be able to see what works and what doesn’t too.  

Know How Many Hashtags To Use 

Many top brands use seven or less hashtags per post. However, this is not a hard and fast rule. Instagram allows user to have up to 30 hashtags per post. You should test out different numbers of hashtags and keep track to find your sweet spot. 

Narrow It Down

While broad hashtags like #me or #marketing are very popular, this is part of the problem. They enter your posts in a massive pool with millions of other posts, making it likely that they will get lost in the shuffle.

When you choose more specific hashtags, you make it easy for those who are looking for that specific thing to find your content. 

Follow Your Own Hashtag

Make a hashtag for your brand, make sure people know about it, and follow it. This way, as long as a post is public, you can see and interact with those who are using your brand’s hashtag easily. 

Search For Hashtags 

Not sure which hashtags to use on social media? Instagram wants you to use hashtags and has made it easy to find the perfect ones. If you type any topic into the search bar and click the “tags” tab, it will show you the most popular hashtags involving that topic. 

Instagram has made it easy, so users can find content in a snap. Because of this, it is equally easy to use hashtags in your own content. 

For example, here are the most popular hashtags related to “travel.” Don’t just go for the first popular hashtags you see, however. Don’t be afraid to poke around and see what truly suits your brand too. 

instagram hashtags

Hashtags Are A Powerful Tool

Hashtags are a great way to get your digital brand noticed on Instagram. So, with the right hashtags and the right strategy, your digital brand will be set up for a true social media takeover! 

Is there such a thing as too many hashtags? Comment below…

Written by
Juntae DeLane

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