Instagram Adds Keyword Search in Addition to Profiles and Tags

6th January 2021

Instagram Adds Keyword Search in Addition to Profiles and Tags

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Let’s take a look at what the recent Instagram updates really mean. You might have seen a lot of hype about Instagram keywords, using alt text and Instagram’s improved SEO features.

Let’s take a look at what all of this really means…

Profile Name

This has been searchable for a while, a rather long while, this is not a new thing! If you are a business on Instagram, it is advisable that you should make the most of this section to SEO optimise your profile.

Think about what your ideal client or audience are searching for, and add those keywords to your name.Stuck for inspiration? Take a look at Answer The Public or Google‘s People Also Ask.

Alt Text

I’ve seen a lot of people hyping this up, but I’ve also seen some things being shared that aren’t true.

So let’s break it down… what is alt text?

The purpose of alt text is to communicate what your image is about. It is the written copy in the background that appears in place of an image on a webpage if the image fails to load on a user’s screen.

How does this work with the new Instagram updates?

With Instagram’s newly improved SEO capabilities, using alt text allows Instagram to read the keywords and better understand what your image is about. Using keywords with thus increase your chances of being seen on the Explore page.

However… Google and other search engines DO NOT crawl and index Instagram images… so using alt text on your Instagram images will not make your photos appear on Google Images.


This newly-improved feature helps users to search for unique and specific content a lot easier than before. By using relevant keywords, it willincrease your chances of getting featured on the Instagram Explore page.

Previously, users could only search by account name, hashtag, and location. Whereas now with the addition of search terms (or keyword search), users can search for untagged content on Instagram in a way they never could before.

Here’s an example…

Previously, searching for “virtual assistant,” you’d only be able to find posts tagged #virtualassistant or accounts that have ‘virtual assistant’ in their name or bio.

Now, Instagram allows you to search the keyword itself, and find any relevant content regardless of whether it’s properly tagged or not.

I hope this helps, and if you have any questions, give me a shout!

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