How to find hashtags to use on Instagram

How to find hashtags to use on Instagram

Before you begin hashtag research, there are a few terms that you should know.

Hashtag density

High-density are hashtags that have over 500,000 posts. There is a lot of competition when using these hashtags, as new posts are made with them every few seconds, making it harder to get a high-ranking post.

Low-density are hashtags that have less than 500,000 posts. There is less competition when using these hashtags since users post less frequently with them making it easier to get a high-ranking post.


Hashtag groups are a collection of hashtags that cover similar topics. Hashtags in the group can range from broad to specific markets within the topic. Below are different types of hashtags in order of broad (high density) to specific (low density)

  • Industry Hashtags – #Photographer, #Blogger
  • Niche hashtags – #WeddingPhotographer, #TravelBlogger, #TravelPhotographer
  • Brand Hashtags – #WeddingPhotoMag by @weddingphotomag, #WeAreAllbirds by @allbirds
  • Community Hashtags – #BakersOfinstagram, #FoodiesOfInstagram, #MyTravelgram
  • Location hashtags – #SydneyWeddingPhotographer, #PastryNYC, #MadeInToronto, #NYCFoodie
  • Celebrations/Event hashtags – #SuperBowl, #NationalDonutDay, #WorldEmojiDay, #Christmas2020
  • Campaign hashtags – #ShareACoke by Coke,  #IceBucketChallenge by ALS Accociation

Hashtag Research

Start by creating a list of popular hashtags in your industry. You can find these hashtags by looking at popular influencer and competitors posts, doing a search by tags on Instagram, or checking the top posts on the explore page.

Once you have a list of the hashtags, it is time to curate the list, starting by removing generic and irrelevant hashtags as well as all location-based hashtags that aren’t your location.

Next label each hashtag based on their type and color-code them based on their density.

With all this done you now have a list of relevant hashtags that you can pull from when creating posts.  We recommend doing no less than 10 hashtags for Instagram posts, using a mix of high- and low-density hashtags. Through trial and error, you will eventually discover the perfect blend of the two for your posts.