Instagram Engagement Rate Is Decreasing – What to Do?

instagram engagement rate is decreasing

The rumors are true: Instagram engagement rate is decreasing for traditional posts.

With the launching of Reels, engagement has been declining year-over-year for other post types (carousel, single-image, and in-feed video posts).

And, suffice to say, users aren’t completely happy:

The good news? We are all in the same boat.

Here is why engagement is dipping on the ‘gram, and the way to pivot your content strategy.

What Is Instagram Engagement? 

Within the simplest terms, Instagram engagement is the variety of interactions your content receives on social media.

These interactions can be broken down into:

  • Likes
  • Feedback
  • Shares
  • Saves
  • Views
  • Link clicks
  • DMs
  • Interactions on Stories stickers (polls, emoji slider, question, etc.)

Sometimes, engagement rates for feed posts are calculated by dividing the number of likes and comments (and typically saves or shares) by an account’s total number of followers.

Why Has Instagram Engagement Dropped in 2022 for Feed Posts?

Instagram engagement rates have dropped for many accounts in 2022 because of three major factors:

Reason #1: Instagram Reels 

Instagram’s concentration on Reels has meant that different feed formats have taken a success in engagement.

The average engagement rates have dropped over time.

So with traditional images taking a backseat to Reels, it’s time to consider incorporating short-form video into your overall Instagram strategy.

Reason #2: Suggested Content within the Main Home Feed 

There have been many feed updates on Instagram now — from the new Home feed views to the new more suggested content in Instagram’s main Home feed.

With this change, some posts may not get as much exposure as they once did. It leads to a potential decrease in the engagement rate.

Nonetheless, you should use suggested content to your advantage by using particular keywords.

Reason #3: Less Scrolling By Users 

According to Forbes, Instagram was the second most used social app in 2020, with users spending on average 53 minutes a day.

However, in 2022, our Instagram usage has shifted.

Between the rise of TikTok and a sense of social media burnout, there’s been a dip in how much time users are spending on the app.

According to Statista, the average time spent on Instagram in 2022 is 30 minutes a day.

And even further — TikTok is in the first place with an average time of 45 minutes.

While the number of Instagram users continues to grow, the decrease in time spent on the app reflects a shift in how users are engaging with it.

What You Should Do When Instagram Engagement Rate is Decreasing

First, try not to take it personally. Engagement rates have taken a hit for everyone. However, it’s not all gloom and doom.

The future of Instagram presents many news opportunities to promote your business.

Here are 5 methods to adjust your Instagram strategy to increase engagement in 2022:

Tip #1: Share More Instagram Reels

Olivia Noceda – who posted Reels almost exclusively to her feed for the last six months and get a 75% increase in follower growth.

She said: “I can’t explain it, however, the engagement on my Reels feels so much richer than anything else I’ve posted on Instagram. It is on another level of connection with my viewers.”

Because of your bandwidth, Olivia’s strategy may not be possible for you, but it’s still worth auditing your content.

Are there any top-performing posts that could be repurposed into Reels?

It may be as simple as speaking to the camera, as you would in stories, like Andrea Casanova:

You can also use stock videos and a simple quote like Michell C. Clark:

Tip #2: Keywords Should be At the Heart of Your Strategy

Instagram’s suggested content depends on keywords to accurately categorize and recommend posts.

According to the platform, these ideas are based on “posts from accounts like the ones you follow and posts similar to the ones you like or save.”

instagram seo - instagram engagement rate is decreasing

So with a strong Instagram SEO technique, you’ll be able to reach high-interest users who are more likely to engage with your content.

Tip #3: Audit Your Followers and Remove Spam Accounts 

Your engagement rate takes into account your total follower count, so if you have many spam followers, they could be doing more harm than good.

While Instagram does remove spam accounts, it’s a good suggestion to do a little spring cleaning too. Visit your profile, tap “Followers,” and manually delete them.

Keep in mind: follower count is actually a vanity metric. A smaller, more engaged community is often better for converting real outcomes.

So, spend more time in your community — engage with their comments, and the posts they tag you in and build better relationships.

Tip #4: Experiment With Different Carousel Posts

Traditional feed posts may not perform as well as they once did, however, they’re not completely out of the picture either.

Carousel posts have consistently outperformed image and video posts (excluding Reels) over the years.

You should use the carousel format to post behind-the-scenes content, tips, and tricks, a round-up, or even experiment with different content types like a photo dump or memes.

Carousel posts are great engagement drivers and will help increase the number of likes, comments, and shares you get on your posts.

Tip #5: Post When Your Audience Is Most Likely Online

Posting when your audience is most engaged is a superb tactic for boosting engagement.

your own personal best time will differ based on your audience’s behavior.

So, how do you know when your audience is most engaged?

You can manually track when you post on Instagram, and see how your content performs over time.

And there you have it! Instagram is constantly changing, so what worked for your account might not still work this year. However, with an updated strategy, you’ll be able to deal with it when the Instagram engagement rate is decreasing and still see a growth in engagement on the platform.

Try these tips, check your analytics, rinse and repeat.

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