17 May Getting Less and Less Likes? Maybe You’re Shadow Banned.
Does Instagram Actually Banning You Secretly? Check it Out!
First thing first, what’s shadowban actually? A shadowban makes your hashtags become undiscoverable. Although you can still use those hashtags, your post will only appears on your followers’ feed, but not on the hashtag pages. That means, your posts won’t be visible to anyone else on Instagram. Surely, this will reduce your visibility to reach new audience. Sounds bad enough? Here’s what makes it worse. Normally when you get banned from Instagram you’ll receive a notice that your account has been reported. However with shadowban, you won’t receive any notification whatsoever. You’ll only see lower and lower engagement because of it, so you’ll probably still wondering what went wrong
How to confirm this?
Use several accounts, that have no relation to your account to check whether your posts can be found within the hashtag you used. Try to choose a small hashtag so you can find it easier. If you can’t find any of your post using those accounts, may be your account has been shadow banned.
How did this happen?
You maybe aware that Instagram has changed like a lot in the last year. From algorithm reboots to new logos and features, Instagram now is not the same app we knew anymore. Instagram has acknowledged issues on their hashtag search that caused posts to not be surfaced and says they are working on correcting it. However, they also suggested users to not rely solely on hashtags to increase their engagement and grow their audiences.
How do you fix this?
Also in their statement, Instagram suggested their users to focus on business objective or goal rather than hashtags, i.e., to include distinct visual presence, be a storyteller, and put thought into creatives (see some of content ideas here). Therefore, some concrete actions you can take to fix and/or avoid this shadowban are:
- Stop using bots. Instagram has recently updated their algorithms to a much tighter security against bots and automated tools. So, if you have used these bots before, stop doing so for your safety. Instead, use an app to remind you when to post, but don’t let it post it for you. Do it manually.
- Engage with your current followers. Interact with other users like a normal person, as that’s what Instagram wants you to do. Continue putting in the effort to respond to the comments you’re getting on your posts. Not only this will keep you safe from shadowban, you can also grow stronger relationship with your followers.
- Use hashtag wisely. Keep track of the hashtags you use, as a hashtag with inappropriate content can be removed completely by Instagram and affected the rest of your hashtags, thus make your posts undiscoverable.
- Be actually a storyteller. Utilize your Instagram stories to put some useful content, expert advice, and everything you think will help your audience. Let your audience know what you’re doing and give them a chance to interact with your stories.