Don’t know your hashtags from your hash browns? Not real sure what Reels even are? It sounds like need some Instagram beginner tips!

With over one billion active Instagram users in the world, it might feel like you’re the only person in the world who isn’t au fait with the ‘gram. But none of us was born knowing how to use Instagram. Luckily for you, though, Instagram is very simple to master in no time! Trust us, by the end of this Instagram for dummies guide, you’ll finally be ready to post pictures of avocado toast, cats, and sunsets!

Ready to learn the Insta basics? Check out these tips for using Instagram!

Setting Up Your Instagram Account and Bio

To create an Instagram account, you need to sign up to the app and enter some basic information such as your name, phone number, and username. If the username you wanted is already taken, try adding extra letters, numbers, underscores, or periods in there. For example:

  • @jenny_smith
  • @itsjennysmith
  • @jennysmith2000
  • @jenny.smith

Now, it’s all about personalizing your page. Adding a photo, your full name, and your pronouns make your account look more authentic and will help people find you. The last part is your bio, where you can add any information you want. Although, most people tend to include details such as their location, job, and hobbies. 

Sharing a Photo or Video Post

Many people using Instagram are only there to see other people’s content. But when you’re ready to share your first photo or video, the easiest way is to open the app and follow these steps:

  1. Click on the + sign near the top right of your Instagram home page and choose “Post”.
  2. Click on the photo or video you want to share and press the blue arrow in the top right corner.
  3. Edit your photo or video, if desired, then click on the blue arrow again. For photos, you can change brightness, saturation, and more. For videos, you can only add a filter and trim the length. 
  4. Right before you post your photo, you can write a caption, add the location, and tag other Instagram users in the photo via their username. The caption can be up to 2,200 characters long and can include text, emojis, and relevant hashtags to help you get likes for Instagram
  5. Once you’re happy, click the blue arrow to share your post.

Although you can’t edit posted photos, Instagram does allow you to edit the caption, location, and tags after posting. To do this, go to the image on your Instagram feed, click on the three dots above the photo, and choose “Edit.”

Sharing a Carousel Post

For a few years now, Instagram users have been able to share up to ten images in one post. Here’s how to try your hand at one of these carousel posts: 

  1. Click on the + sign on your Instagram home page and choose “Post”.
  2. Around the middle of your phone screen, you should see a white bar. Here, you want to click on the image that looks like two overlapping squares. It should turn blue once activated.
  3. Add up to 10 photos by clicking on them in the order you want them to appear in the carousel.
  4. Edit your photos, if desired, click on the blue arrow, then add details such as a caption and a location if you want to.
  5. Once you’re happy with your carousel post, click the blue arrow to give the go-ahead.

Carousel posts are very popular on Instagram right now, especially for photo dumps. These are essentially a collection of unrelated images that likely wouldn’t make the cut on your grid but give off a casual and authentic vibe when shared in a carousel. 

Sharing an Instagram Reel

Instagram introduced Reels in 2020 as a way to compete with rival social media platform, TikTok. Although Reels are videos, they can be a single video, a collection of photos, or clips of different videos. Having so many possibilities can make learning how to use Instagram Reels a little trickier. But, following these steps should make the process clearer: 

  1. Press the + on your home page and click on the third option, “Reel”.
  2. On the left side of the screen, you’ll see a musical note. Click on this to add music to your Reel. 
  3. Under the note there’s a circle that says 15, meaning that your Reel will be 15 seconds long. Click on it if you want to change the length of your video to 30 or 60 seconds. 
  4. To add existing videos and photos to your Reel, click on the blue plus sign in the bottom left corner of the screen. This will take you to your phone’s gallery. If you want to add more than one video, click on the overlapping squares icon above your photos then choose them in order then click on “Next” in the bottom right corner for a preview.  
  5. If you’re not happy with the result, click on the “Edit Clips” option in the right corner. This allows you to reorder your clips or add more in. 
  6. Once the Reel is ready, click “Next” to add a cover image, caption, tags, and any other details you want to include. 

Sharing an Instagram Story

Stories are casual, often unedited videos and photos that disappear after 24 hours unless you save them as a highlight. To share a Story, follow these steps:

  1. On your home page, you can either click on your profile image or the + and choose “Story”.
  2. To add content from your gallery, click on the image or video you want to upload to Instagram Stories. To record and upload something to Stories, click on the camera icon. 
  3. The final step allows you to edit the Story by removing the sound or adding details such as GiFs, tags, filters, and text. 

Your Quick Guide on How to Use Instagram

If you’re an Instagram beginner, tips like these will make getting to grips with this popular platform a whole lot easier. 

Although, once you start posting, liking, sharing, and saving, you’ll soon see that learning how to use Instagram is often nothing more than a case of following the instructions on the app. 

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