The other day when working on a client’s Instagram channel I posted a beautiful, on brand post, and then... crickets. No likes, no comments. Nothing. It made no sense.
I had a quick look at the hashtags and realised that I was using one of Instagram’s blacklisted hashtags.
What is a banned hashtag?
I know what you're thinking. Instagram loves hashtags. Why would they ban them? Firstly they’re not banning them all but a select few. These are often hashtags which Instagram sees used in spam posts. But some of the banned hashtags seem pretty harmless like #skype #citycentre and #humpday.
The problem is that Instagram will hide any post that has a banned hashtag used. So even though you might have used multiple hashtags no one will see your post except current followers if it appears in their feed.
What do I do if I’ve used a banned hashtag?
You might notice one of your posts under performing? Or maybe you noticed it wasn’t showing up in hashtag searches?
Don’t worry your Instagram account isn’t broken. You just need to remove the banned hashtag and there is a simple way to find out which hashtag is causing the problem.
Usually, when you do a hashtag search there will be the top 9 most popular posts at the top of the screen, but banned hashtags don’t do this. If you scroll down you will also see this message:
“Recent posts from #HASHTAG are currently hidden because the community has reported some content that may not meet Instagram’s community guidelines.”
So you can simply check through the hashtags on your post for this message. Once found you can just delete that hashtag from your post. Once removed your post will start showing in searches again.