Now, when implementing your various methods of marketing on Instagram, you need to remember a crucial step: analyzing and evaluating those methods. You should always measure the engagement and effectiveness of each marketing material in order to know what is working and what isn’t so that you can further streamline and enhance your overall marketing strategy. Being able to track analytics is also important as a means of showcasing your brand’s value and impact to potential clients or partners.
For regular Instagram users (non-business accounts), Instagram doesn’t have its own analytics dashboard to measure the engagement and effectiveness of their posts. However, there are various other analytics tools out there, including some that are free to use.
Here are five of the top free Instagram analytics tools:
Iconosquare, formerly known as Statigram, is a desktop app that provides both high-level and in-depth analytics, such as the total number of likes received, the average number of likes and comments you receive per photo, a history of your most liked photos throughout the duration your account, your follower growth charts, and more.
The app also allows users to add a custom Instagram tab to their Facebook profiles, which is helpful for boosting cross-channel engagement. Additionally, Iconosquare has an embed feature that enables you to display your Instagram feed on your website.
While these features are free, you can also pay to utilize Iconosquare’s content functionality, which allows users to create Instagram content and promotions.
SimplyMeasured allows Instagram users with accounts that have up to 25,000 followers to access a free user report, which is a great option if you want to present a high-level summary of your brand’s Instagram account to the rest of your team or executives at your brand.
This comprehensive, two-month web-based report presents valuable analytical data such as average engagement per photo, most active followers, keyword analysis for comments, top locations and filters, and posting times with the highest engagement. For a free report, this information can give you a large boost in your marketing strategy.
Instafollow is a mobile app available on both iOS and Android devices that provides insight specifically into your follower base, including the ability to track new followers and unfollowers, track followers who you don’t follow back, track users that you follow and don’t follow you back, and follow and unfollow users within a simple tap inside the app.
This type of information can give you valuable insight into who your followers or customers are and thus how you can market more specifically to them. After downloading the app, you will need to sync it up with Instagram account in order to receive this data.
Union Metrics is another web-based tool that allows users to receive a free report with statistics and data about their Instagram account “in just two minutes,” according to the company — similar to the concept of SimplyMeasured.
Union Metrics also claims to incorporate some of the algorithms from their paid tool into the free report. Some of the information you will receive in the report includes when the best time of day to post is, who your top fans and followers are, which hashtags receive the
highest engagement, and what type of content you should either produce more of or reduce on your feed.
While it is not as in-depth or comprehensive as SimplyMeasured, Union Metrics still provides worthwhile data for only two minutes of your time.
Crowdfire is an analytics tool for Instagram and Twitter that can be used both via web and via mobile device (on iOS and Android) and, similar to Instafollow, focuses on the management of relationships.
This includes helping users find and identify who their inactive followers are, then unfollow them, as well as identify new follower opportunities by locating relevant users to follow based on your current following habits and hashtags.
The app has other beneficial features like the ability to program the app to remind you to upload a photo at a specific time to post to your account, which can be useful in helping you stick to your set Instagram posting schedule. These are the top five free analytics tools available outside of Instagram.
Additionally, to measure the results of your influencer marketing, you should create trackable links for your influencers to use.
You can use a tool such as Bitly to create multiple trackable links for each influencer you’re partnering with and ask them to paste the link in their bio, as well as the caption of the post. This will allow you to measure exactly how much traffic each influencer is driving to your site or webpage.
How to Get Instagram’s ‘Insights’ Tool
These tools used to be the only way to measure the results of your Instagram marketing; however, Instagram recently debuted its very own analytic tool, called Insights, which is available only if you have an Instagram business account.
This tool allows you to track results such as impressions, total reach, clicks to the link on your bio, what regions of the world your followers are from (even the exact cities), what percentage of your followers are female or male, and more.
Here is how to access the tool:. First, go to your profile and click on the gear in the top right corner to go to your Settings. Scroll down to ‘Switch to Business Profile,’ where you will be asked to link your account to a Facebook Business Page.
As Instagram is owned by Facebook, this can only be done with a Facebook business account, so you will want to make sure to create one if you do not already have one. Once you have completed that step, go back to your profile.
You will see the icon for Insights in the top right corner, where you can then access the main screen and view data such as impressions, reach and clicks to the link in your bio. To see even more in-depth data, click ‘See More,’ which will allow you to gain insight into information such the types of followers you have, where they are from, and what types of photos garner the most likes.
A side note: after switching to a business page, you will be required to add a “Contact” CTA to your profile page. This can be assigned to either a phone number, email address, or even a location.
You can also view Insights directly from one your posts by tapping an image in your profile that you want to see Insights on, then tapping View Insights below the image. You will be able to see data such as impressions, reach, and engagement at a glance.
Engagement includes the total number of unique Instagram accounts that have liked or commented on the post. If you have promoted the post (it will say Promoted in the bottom-right corner), you will be able to view Insights for both the original post and the promoted version of the post. Tap Original to view insights for the original version, and Promotion to view insights for the promoted version.
You can also view Insights from your Stories. Insights for each of your Stories will be available for up to 14 days after they were created. They will be automatically sorted chronologically, to help reflect how people engage with your content.
Here is a quick rundown of all the data Insights has to offer:
Insights for Posts and Stories Impressions: Total number of times your post or story was seen
Reach: Number of unique accounts who saw your post or story Website Clicks: Number of accounts that have tapped the website link on your
Business Profile Follower Activity: Average times your followers are on Instagram on a typical day
Video Views: Number of times your video was viewed for 3 or more seconds Saves:
The number of unique accounts that saved your post-Insights Specific to Stories Replies Number of times people send messages through the Send Message option on your story Exits: The number of times someone swiped from one of your stories to someone else’s story or returned to their Feed.
Note: Instagram does not currently offer insights for live content.
Keep in mind that impressions and reach are different. Impressions are the total number of times your post was seen. A single individual may see your post 5 times. Each time they see it, you’ll get an impression. Reach is based on the number of unique people who view your post.
Each unique individual will only be counted once, even if they view your post multiple times. You’ll also see the following insights about your followers, including gender, age, and location information.
The only downside to using the Instagram Insights tool is that becoming a business account can have some negatives. For example, it marks you as a business page, which could possibly lead to limiting the reach of your organic posts.
However, it also gives you access to a powerful analytics tool like Insights and the option to create a CTA for clients and collaborators to reach out to you directly, so there are upsides to becoming a business account as well.