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Why Are My Instagram Story Views So Low? 5 Reasons

Picture of Steven Miller
Steven Miller
Why Are My Instagram Story Views So Low

Key Takeaways

  • Between 2021 and 2022, reach rates are down across the board
  • Big brands have 25%+ ghost followers, and they can impact your views
  • Posting an Instagram Story too early or too late may lead to fewer views

Instagram Stories should be filled with views and engagement. However, there’s a consensus among social media managers that views are falling. Between 2021 and 2022, brands with 50k – 200k followers saw their reach rate fall from 2.4% to 1.6%.

If you’re wondering why are my Instagram Story views so low, you’re not alone.

We may not have all the answers on why your views have dropped, but the problem often falls into one of the following categories.

5 Reasons Your Instagram Story Views Are So Low

Small missteps in your post timing or the type of posts that you make may be the culprit in your Story views dropping. However, the main reasons that we’ve found views drop include:

1. You Have Ghost Followers

Ghost followers are often easy to spot. Open up the profiles of some of your followers at random and see if they have:

  • No profile
  • No bio
  • There are tons of people they’re following with few followers
  • No or little posts

You may also notice that these accounts have odd usernames with random numbers or words that don’t make sense. Sure, it’s possible that these accounts are real or someone who abandoned their account, but there’s also a chance that the account was created by a bot.

Almost every account has a ghost follower.

Nike is estimated to have 27.5% fake or ghost followers. Even if your fake followers account for only 10% of your following, it will impact your Story views because these accounts don’t interact with anyone’s posts.

You can run tools to find these accounts and remove them, but it’s better to focus on your content to boost engagement.

2. Your Content Isn’t Engaging Enough

Is your content engaging? You can open up your Instagram Analytics, if you have a Creator or Business account, and view the analytics for your Stories. Pay close attention to this data so that you can learn:

  • Which content performs best
  • Which content always underperforms

You want to create more of the content that your audience consumers and less of the types of content that aren’t being viewed.

Compare your account to others in your niche and gain inspiration from them on what’s working and what’s not working.

3. You’re Neglecting Story Hashtags

Story hashtags matter. You can add hashtags to your location tag, in text or even in one of the stickers that you add to your story. People who are following the hashtag or searching for it may find your story organically.

Every creator should work on using hashtags to attract new followers and to keep their account growing.

4. Your Timing is Off

Timing is key when posting on any social media platform. Your audience is unique, and let’s assume that 70% of your followers are in the United States. If you post at 2AM EST, chances are, that a lot of people will be asleep.

When your followers wake up in the morning, they will have dozens of other Stories that they need to weed through before stumbling on the one you posted in the middle of the night.

What are the Best Times to Post? A General Rule of Thumb is:

  • 9AM – 4PM on weekdays
  • 8AM – 12PM on weekends

You’ll find recommendations for posting between 11AM and 1PM on Monday and at different times based on specific days. If you post between 9AM and 12PM on weekdays, you have a better chance of followers viewing your Story.

However, use your analytics and test Stories to see which have the highest views and the time that you posted the content.

5. You’re Not Engaging with Your Followers

When was the last time you engaged with your followers? If you see your followers post to their Stories, or send you messages or comment on a post or Story, engage with them. Your audience is following you because they want to know more about you or your brand.

They also want to learn from you.

Engaging with your audience will make you “real” and can lead to more engagement. Followers are more loyal to accounts that spend the time to engage with them, have discussions or even run polls.

Show your audience that they matter, and your views will start increasing over time.

5 Tips To Boost Instagram Stories Views

Now that you understand why your Stories views may be low, it’s time to take action to boost your engagement. Here are some tips:

1. Be Creative with Your Content

One big reason why people stop watching Stories is because the user’s content isn’t as interesting or engaging as it once was. You can change that starting today

Sit down and come up with some new and creative ideas for Stories content. When coming up with ideas, think about:

  • The message you want to send. What’s your “brand” all about? Whether you’re an influencer or a business, it’s important to create content that aligns with your message, values or mission.
  • Your target audience. What do they want to see? What kind of content do they find engaging?

One way to get creative with your Story content is to use different formats or templates. Hootsuite has a great collection of Instagram Stories templates that you can try.

Experiment with different formats and templates to see what your audience likes. Make a note of the content that does get more engagement and create similar Stories. 

Instagram also has many features that you can add to your Stories to increase views and engagement, like:

  • Location hashtags
  • Shoppable stickers (if you sell products)
  • Countdown stickers
  • Swipe up links

Incorporating these little elements into your Stories can help keep your audience interested in what you have to say.

Location hashtags, in particular, are really great for boosting views. If Instagram users are searching for the location you tag, there’s a good chance that they’ll see your Story.

2. Add Hashtags and Stickers 

Instagram allows you to add fun stickers and hashtag stickers to your Stories. Take advantage of these features to make your Stories more interesting.

Along with funny little animated icons, you can also use stickers to add music or quizzes, mention people, add locations and more.

Try incorporating stickers into your Stories to see if it helps boost your views. 

In addition to fun stickers, you also want to make sure that you’re using the hashtags sticker. Hashtags can help your Stories be found on Insta. Choose ones that are relevant to your niche or brand.

3. Be Consistent

An estimated 500 million users use Instagram Stories every day. There’s never a shortage of new things to see on this platform. If you’re not posting consistently, your followers will easily lose interest.

How often should you post?

The answer depends on your niche and audience.

Buffer recommends posting 1-7 Stories per day. Instagram recommends two Stories per day. So, if you’re not posting a Story at least once a day, then you’re not being consistent enough. 

If you’re struggling to stay on track, try creating a plan. In the first tip, we recommended making a list of content ideas. Flesh out those ideas and create a calendar of posts to start publishing.

Creating a plan eliminates excuses. You’ll also have something to post and a direction for your content. You’ll find that over time, your view count will increase because you’re being more consistent.

4. Ask Questions and Create Polls

If you really want to boost engagement and Story views, ask questions and create polls. People love to share their opinions and thoughts.

Make sure that your questions and polls are related to your niche. 

Polls are a great way to also collect feedback and information from your audience.

For example, let’s say that you’re a fitness influencer. You could run a poll asking your followers what their favorite type of workout is: cardio or strength training.

If most people choose strength training, then you can create more content related to weightlifting routines.

Questions will also give you some insight into your audience. You can ask them a question, and you can also invite them to ask you a question.

5. Use the Highlights Feature

The highlights feature has been around since 2017, and this is a great way to keep your interesting Stories alive. 

Turning a Story into a highlight will allow followers to view it whenever they want for as long as you keep it a highlight.

Highlights appear underneath your bio, and they’re essentially pinned Stories.

If you notice that one of your Stories is getting a lot of views and engagement, consider making it a highlight.

Final Thoughts

Why are your Instagram Story views so low? There are a lot of factors at play. If you take the time to analyze your analytics, dissect which Stories perform best and focus on quality content, you’ll be well on your way to improving your Story views.

Sprinkle in some of the tips above and you’ll create a strong foundation for your account to grow.

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