A few days ago, a popular social network added a new option for searching content based on keywords. So far, it was only possible to search by hashtags, location, names, and usernames. The new functionality enables searching by typing a chosen term. In this initial phase, this new functionality will be available in English, and the first countries who tried it were: Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, Great Britain, and the USA. after the trial period, it is expected this functionality will be available in other countries as well.
Based on the available information, we discovered this search will enable users to search the content via keywords, and the algorithm will find out those words in descriptions of photos, videos, and will show the most relevant content to users. Using machine learning, the Instagram algorithm strives to show the most relevant content that matches our interests. In the case of keywords, it will show the type of content the algorithm defines as the one that fits our everyday search.
Of course, there are certain limitations when it comes to this search, so it will not be possible to search posts related to politics, the search will output only the official profiles of the politicians. Instagram points out the search is limited to general interests, and keywords in accordance with their rules.
Of course, this tool is not perfect yet, but it will help, for example, the users who search clothes, or Instagram reels.
Let’s dig into the benefits of this new Instagram functionality.
New Instagram functionality and how it works
Though we explained in the introduction the way this new functionality works, we will provide more details, and use real examples.
To use this new functionality, type the full phrase consisting of several words, for example, “home office inspiration”. The search will output all posts that have these words in their descriptions, no matter if the same hashtags are part of the post. Also, it is possible to find “home office inspiration” in bios of certain profiles, so it can also count as a search result.
You might think it’s the same thing but without hashtags. Partially, you will be right, but keep in mind some hashtags are not easy to find, and the results they output are not always the relevant ones. Simply put, hashtag search was more complex and it took more time to search relevant hashtags. With this new functionality, everything will work much easier.
Instagram still didn’t reveal all the details about how this new functionality works. For example, we don’t know if the algorithm will recognize the synonyms, or if the algorithm recognizes a photo and based on that outputs relevant content.
Is there any potential for developing Instagram SEO?
Finally, we get to the point – why are we writing about this new functionality? Because it has a certain potential for marketing purposes.
Optimization of Instagram posts by using keywords? Exactly what we thought about.
The only way to optimize Instagram posts before was to use relevant hashtags (searching these hashtags was important for the success of posts) and adding geolocation. This new algorithm will be used for posts optimization too.
Yet, we cannot claim anything with certainty, because it takes time to try this new functionality. It is still not available on our market but we look forward to new challenges of course.
Currently, we have many questions, like – Will the users rather choose hashtag search or this new search? Will the users pick this functionality when searching specific visual content, just like Pinterest users do?
Optimization, indicators, and data
If we knew this new functionality will break through, all marketers that got the possibility to experiment with content optimization on Instagram would have to follow Insights data and check if there were any engagement based on keywords used. That would be the way to find out how and whether the keywords are used for discovering certain content, important to users that wouldn’t otherwise be able to find.
We are aware of the fact Instagram users don’t like any interface or algorithm changes. Maybe they will not accept this new functionality immediately as it is new and they will probably be able to figure it out instantly, but we are sure they will understand the benefits over time.
Still, it seems the search based on keywords will have more benefits for marketers because we will all be able to learn something new and enable Instagram users to have a great user experience on this network and quickly find the brands they prefer.
We hope you liked this post about new functionalities on Instagram, and that you will share it with your friends and colleagues. Till the next post, you can read other posts on our blog page.