Write the Perfect Instagram Post Caption in 4 Steps!

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You might think that SEO and Instagram don’t have anything to do with each other. SEO, or search engine optimization, is usually synonymous with keyword research, meta descriptions, tags, and most importantly, ranking on Google. However, we often overlook the fact that a lot of platforms function as mini search engines in their own right, which means that they come with their own set of SEO rules. And that’s where Instagram comes into the picture. It has an internal search function that you use on a daily basis without even noticing. This means that there is room to incorporate some SEO tricks into your Instagram post and caption strategy as well! So in this guide, we’ll go over some SEO-friendly Instagram post caption tips that you can start incorporating today!

Best Practices

Write Keyword-Optimised Captions that Connect to Your Industry

This might be obvious to some, but bear with us, because there’s a reason we bring this up. Instagram features a lot of accounts on its Explore page, but you’ll notice that your Explore page will not be the same as someone else’s. That’s because Instagram notices the kinds of posts you’re engaging with, and shows you accounts that post similar content. Do you see the key differentiator here? The more your captions relate to your industry/ field, the easier it is for Instagram’s algorithm to pick up on that, making it more likely for your account to appear on the Explore page. And the easiest way of doing this? Incorporating keywords around relevant searches! Yes, this is a very simplified explanation of a very complex AI, but it’s enough to give you an idea of why you should be incorporating keyword research into your Instagram post caption strategy. 

Screenshot of Canva's Instagram post

Source: Canva Instagram

Keep Important Parts to the Front of the Caption

This is an important note when you’re structuring your Instagram post captions. While Instagram has a caption 2,200 character limit, it tends to cut off at 100-125 characters. This means that you’ll need to incorporate your key message points within the first line of your caption, which will entice your audience to click “more” to read on. Now, we’re not saying to keep all your captions at under 125 characters. We’re simply saying that frontload your captions with all the relevant information first, and leave the @mentions and other extra content for the end. 

Screenshot of Dr. Sheth's Instagram post

Source: Dr. Sheth’s Instagram

Ask for Engagement in Your Instagram Captions

A way of increasing your post engagement is to include CTAs, or calls-to-action, to your Instagram captions. A CTA includes an action, which can prompt users to actually stop and engage with your post, instead of quickly scrolling through their feed. And remember, like we mentioned above, try keeping your CTA towards the front of your caption so it’s not hidden by Instagram. Below are some examples of CTAs that you can incorporate into your post caption: 

Click Link in Bio

The most commonly used CTA, this directs users to the only place on your account where you can have a clickable link. You can add your website link, blog link, or direct users to wherever you want them to visit. And a pro tip? Use a link shortening and tracking tool like bit.ly to track how much traffic you’re actually receiving from Instagram.

Screenshot of Buzzfeed Tasty's Instagram video post

Source: Buzzfeed Tasty Instagram

Comment Below

This can be a simple way to get people to engage with your post. You can pose a question, ask for feedback, or simply start a conversation. One of the best ways to keep the conversation going is by responding to all the comments like you’re talking to a friend. This allows users to feel more connected to the brand, and in turn, more likely to engage with your account. 

Screenshot of Hubspot's Instagram post

Source: Hubspot Instagram

Tag a Friend

One of the most commonly used ways to incite engagement is by asking people to ‘Tag a Friend.’ This typically goes hand in hand with contests and giveaways, where users are encouraged to tag friends in the comments to increase the popularity of the post. This is a quick and easy way to get people interested in your posts. 

Source: Rare Beauty Instagram

Get Feedback on Your Instagram Post Captions

This is the final step in your Instagram post caption writing strategy. Captions are rarely a one-and-done situation. They require some strategy, a structure, and most importantly, feedback. Oftentimes, us writers get so involved in the technique that we forget to keep in mind the end user. Therefore, it’s a good idea to get some constructive feedback for your captions. Try asking someone who fits your target audience. But even if you don’t have someone like that around, there’s never any harm in getting a fresh pair of eyes to view your content. 

Source: LinkedIn Marketing Instagram

So there you have it! A comprehensive guide to writing SEO-friendly Instagram captions that will also help boost post engagement. These strategies work for all kinds of content writers, from absolute beginners to pros. It’s also a good idea to start implementing some SEO techniques into your social media marketing strategy. While it might not be easy, it’s definitely possible for your social accounts to help amplify your search engine optimization. And if you’re looking to see how you can improve your SEO, say hi at hello@estoot.com!

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