Instagram Tips: How To Fix an Instagram Hashtag When a Photo Doesn’t Show Up in Search Results



Hi everyone! I’m sorry you’ve found yourself here on this page, and that your Instagram hashtags aren’t working – I know how annoying that is. The method I describe in the post below is no longer working for several users. Two things to know:

  1. If you are using a third-party app to post photos, such as Adobe Lightroom or Dropbox, that seems to cause the hashtags to not work.
  2. This seems to affect brand-new accounts more than established ones.

Unfortunately, I’m not an Instagram expert and I am not currently (in September 2016) experiencing this issue so I do not yet have the solution. I would hypothesize that Instagram may want to discourage overuse of hashtags, especially on new accounts, so as to limit “spam” accounts, but I’m not sure. Some people in the comments below have had luck submitting a help ticket to Instagram. Actually, there is lots of activity in the comments section of this post that I hope will help someone out. I will update the post if I learn more.

I recently started a daily photography challenge loosely based on the project #100HappyDays. I wanted to create my own hashtag in order to keep my photos grouped together and organized for me personally, so I chose one that nobody else had used yet, #stephlovestoday. I happily began tagging my photos with it and they would show up in the search results for that tag without a problem.

Then I noticed that one of my Instagram photos wasn’t showing up in the search results for that hashtag. I thought this was odd, since I’d never had any problems before. I did a bit of a Google search and finally found the information I was looking for, buried in the replies to a Yahoo Answers post. I’m sharing it here in the hopes that I can be helpful to someone who might be encountering the same problem I was!

Here’s what it comes down to: there are a few broken hashtags on Instagram. When you tag using those tags, they ruin it for all their hashtag friends and none of the other tags you use on that photo will show up in their respective search results.

I don’t have a definitive list of all the broken hashtags, so you’ll have to do a bit of trial-and-error if you’re encountering this problem. But here are a few to watch out for (in my experience):

  • #photography
  • #instagram
  • #love

These are all popular hashtags, so I think they all work at least sometimes, but if you’re encountering an issue with one of your photos not showing up for another tag, chances are one of these tags are causing an issue.

I’ll show you an example. Here’s a photo I took for my photography project. I tagged it with a few hashtags.

DSC_0229Unfortunately, the search results for my personal tag don’t show this photo, despite it being tagged!

DSC_0242How annoying. Luckily, I put all my hashtags into a comment. If you tagged your photo in the caption and not a comment, you’ll have to delete and re-post your photo for this fix to work.

Here’s how to fix it.

Insta1Locate the broken hashtag. Again, this is where trial-and-error might come into play, but for me it was definitely the #photography hashtag.

Insta2Click “Comment” underneath your photo and it’ll take you to the screen above. Swipe to the left, and then click the red trashcan to delete the comment.

Insta3Once you’ve identified the problem, you can tag to your heart’s content!

DSC_0223And happily, your photo will now appear in the search results for all the hashtags you used, including of course your own personal tag.

I hope this was helpful! If you have had a similar problem, share your experience in the comments.

You can follow me on Instagram @lifeinlimboblog.