Hashtags are an important part of business strategy on Instagram, as it allows you connect with wider audiences, trends and get seen. However, it is very important that you remain up to date with which hashtags you can use, and which ones you cannot, as using a banned hashtag could seriously harm your posts’ chances of being seen. If you’ve been using many hashtags in your strategy and other growth strategies and your account hasn’t been growing, you may be using banned hashtags by accident.

First of all, here’s a list of the current banned hashtags, some of them may be less obvious than you think.

What are banned hashtags?

Banned hashtags are hashtags that Instagram users have reported due to the posts featured going against Instagram’s Guidelines. This means that any posts that use those hashtags will be hidden – this of course will damage your reach, engagement, and any organic growth you’re attempting to get.

Banned hashtags are forever changing based on reports and investigations therefore, it’s always a good idea to keep on top of them. Unfortunately, Instagram doesn’t publish a list of the currently banned hashtags, so it’s an idea to keep on top of your research if you’re ever unsure!

Why does Instagram ban hashtags?

Instagram bans hashtags due to reports from users regarding those hashtags. Normally this is because people are posting inappropriate content or content that goes against Instagram’s guidelines using those hashtags. Some of them, however, aren’t always hashtags you’d expect to be banned. For example: #snapchat. But sometimes close alternatives will work, such as #snapchat👻.

It’s important to remain on top of which hashtags are banned or not for this reason, as you may be using banned hashtags unintentionally which will harm your organic reach.

How do I check if a hashtag is banned?

There is a simple way that you can check if a hashtag is banned!

You can conduct an Instagram search by opening Instagram on your phone, going to the Explore tab, clocking on the Magnifier button and entering the hashtag into the search bar. If the tag doesn’t appear, it’s very likely that Instagram has banned the hashtag.

But keep in mind! Tags can be blocked permanently or temporarily. If a tag is blocked temporarily, it may one day get out of a ban so don’t lose hope, and periodically check your tag to see if it does reappear or not.

Use the right hashtags!

Despite hashtags being banned or not it is, at the end of the day, a good idea to always use hashtags that are relevant to you and your posts or business. Not doing so can harm you as much as using banned hashtags can. So get out there and take advantage of hashtags! We promise, you won’t regret it!