For a few accounts, engagement on Instagram posts plummeted many months ago.
This was a bit different from what some firms had encountered before with the introduction of Instagram’s feed algorithm.
As a result, several accounts’ follower counts actively declined, and their posts stopped appearing in Instagram’s Discover area.
It’s possible that some of these people were shadowbanned without even realising it was possible.
Just what is a “shadow ban”?
Shadowbans are similar to time-outs in that they are imposed on accounts based on the actions of the user (especially business profiles). As part of this, it’s common to break the rules set out by the service’s terms of service.
A person is not really banned under a shadowban, so they may continue to use the site and interact with other users as usual; nonetheless, their material may be buried or given lesser importance in the algorithm.
Usually, when you’ve been shadowbanned, the platform won’t notify you; it’s as if they don’t want you to know.
If you’ve been shadowbanned on Instagram, your posts will still be visible to your followers, but they may be buried farther down the newsfeed. Additionally, neither Instagram’s Discover section nor hashtag searches will index your post.
The loss of potential reach has a direct correlation to falling engagement and a smaller number of followers. This might be a hint that you need to rethink your Instagram approach, in which case you should definitely get our free guide on “How to Have a Picture-Perfect Instagram Strategy.”
What is the status of my shadow ban?
Consider the possibility that you’ve been shadowbanned on Instagram if you see a steady decline in interaction and new follower acquisition.
Some websites claim to be able to determine if an Instagram account has been shadowbanned.
According to my own experience and discussions with other professionals in the field, these sites are completely unreliable.
Telling if You’ve Been Shadowbanned
If you’re not sure if a hashtag is being used, the quickest method to find out is to search for it after you’ve published a post that uses it. As long as you can track down your material (which won’t be under “Top content,” but rather “Most Recent”), you’re good to go.
Causes of Instagram Shadowbans and What to Do About Them
A typical reason for receiving an Instagram shadowban is engaging in behaviour that Instagram considers spammy, even if it is not a technical violation of terms of service for which they might really ban you.
Here are a few of the most popular methods to get your Instagram account shadowbanned (or permanently banned).
Disallowed use of hashtags
I heard that Instagram has removed several hashtags. Hashtags are usually only removed from Instagram if they are being used in a way that is abusive or otherwise against Instagram’s rules.
Even a single use of a restricted hashtag is enough to get you in trouble.
If you’re not sure if a certain hashtag is allowed, search for it first to see if it turns up as a prohibited term. If it does, the hashtag will be hidden from view and just the top results will be shown; the “most recent” section will be empty.
Making use of the same hashtags over and over
If you do this, Instagram can mark your posts as spam. Even while you should always use your branded hashtag, it’s a good idea to mix up your use of more general hashtags like “#TBT” and “#instagood.”
You have gone above the Instagram post limit
Did you realise there were restrictions on how often you could post on Instagram? Truth be told, I didn’t know it until I started looking into it for this article. There is a daily limit on the number of posts you can like, comment on, or upload, as well as the number of individuals you can follow.
These are some rather stringent restrictions. You’ll have a hard time getting there without utilising a bot (and check the two sections above for more on this) or being really active on Instagram.
Constraints like as…
- No more than sixty persons can be followed or unfollowed every hour.
- Following this rule: don’t like more than 150 posts in an hour (you may like 300, but you shouldn’t).
- No more than 30 hashtags should be used in a single post.
- Commenting on other users’ posts at a rate of no more than 60 per hour
Avoiding Permanent Banishment in Shadows
Your first step if you suspect a shadowban on Instagram is to identify the reason(s) behind it.
Learn about the most typical causes of this problem, and ask yourself if you could have been complicit in any of them by unintentionally. Immediately alter your approach if this is the case. If you want to repost an item after having removed a prohibited hashtag, you should delete the original post first. Get rid of any apps that aren’t in accordance with Instagram’s TOS (and replace them with Agorapulse)!
Taking a break from your account for a little while won’t affect anything. As soon as feasible, put a hold on all marketing efforts for at least 48 hours.
Make sure there is nothing malicious in the list of applications you’ve authorised to use the Instagram API. To achieve this, go to the settings cog (from where you may also log out) and choose “Authorized Apps.”
Additionally, you may report the issue by contacting Instagram directly. The fact that your content is disappearing from search results is an important detail to highlight with the decline in interaction.