Reasons Why Your Instagram Reels Views Aren’t Growing

Data shows small Instagram accounts have the highest engagement rates. So, why aren’t your Instagram Reels views growing? Discover the causes and get tips to boost your views.

According to recent research from Statista, in the first quarter of 2024, global engagement rates on Instagram Reels were between 5.1% and 6%. Surprisingly, “tiny” accounts, or those with less than 500 followers, had the highest engagement. “Huge” accounts of 50,000 or more followers had slightly less engagement than “medium” accounts of 2,001 to 10,000 followers.

Instagram Reels can be a powerhouse, growing your brand recognition, building trust, converting viewers into buyers, and nurturing loyalty in the long term. However many brand owners and managers report stagnant Instagram Reel views.

From content quality to post timing to harnessing trends, we’re going to look at 9 common reasons that you might be experiencing this stagnation. We’ll also share some tips and tricks for growing your numbers and smashing your goals.

Here’s why your Instagram Reels views aren’t increasing 

Let’s look at 9 of the top reasons why you might not be getting the growth you want from your Instagram Reel views.

1. Low-quality content

Shaky videos, bad lighting, and poor editing can cause viewers to scroll right past you. Take some time to focus on the quality of your content by focusing on your video production and editing.

Here are some tips:

  • If you’re shooting with your phone, eliminate shaky footage by using a tripod, gimbal, or even leaning it against a stable surface.
  • Shoot in well-lit environments, preferably with natural light. If you’re using artificial light, make sure it’s evenly distributed to avoid harsh shadows. Consider a ring light.
  • Keep your Reels as tight and succinct as possible: trim any unnecessary pauses or footage — even an extra second counts.
  • Adjust brightness, contrast, and saturation to enhance the look of your Reels, but don’t go overboard.

2.  Irrelevant content

It might seem like a no-brainer, but staying relevant is one of the toughest parts of building a long-term content strategy that works. The best way to make sure you’re creating relevant content is to constantly learn about your target audience. Dig into your Instagram Insights data and investigate their accounts. 

What are their demographics, likes, dislikes, interests, and passions? What are the key pain points they have in terms of the solution your brand offers? Once you really understand them, you can nail your content strategy with strategies like:

  • Addressing their pain points through informational content.
  • Using trending content, topics, and pop culture references they enjoy.
  • Partnering with influencers or other brands they like.
  • Showing your own passion and personality, which can become contagious.

3. Lack of originality

Carly Lynn, Meta’s Strategic Partnerships Development Manager, stresses: “It’s important to make your own reels your own unique, fresh content instead of simply resharing content made by other creators.”

Carly Lynn quote on Instagram Reels views

Of course, resharing every now and then can be a great way to connect with your viewers and show mutual interest. But it should be more of a sporadic, occasional activity instead of a backbone of your strategy.

To get more Instagram Reel views, showcase your unique voice and perspective. What are you passionate about and knowledgeable in? What opinions, attitudes, and ideas can you bring to the table that other people and brands aren’t talking about yet? Don’t be afraid to try new formats, styles, and approaches. Some of the most viral Reels are the surprising ones.

4. Inconsistent posting

If you want to stay top-of-mind with viewers, you need to show up in their feed regularly. After all, there are plenty of other people and brands who are happy to take up the space if you don’t!

According to Carly Lynn from the previous point, creators with the highest follower growth rates create on average more than 10 reels per month. If you want to grow your Instagram Reel views, this is a good piece of advice to follow.

Even if you can’t hit that number, set a goal and stay consistent. Try for 1 video per week at the very least (ideally 2 or 3). To help stay on top of your goal, consider batch filming and batch editing: film multiple Reels at once, and edit multiple Reels at once. Then you can schedule them throughout the week.

If you embed your Instagram Reels on your website as part of your engagement strategy, you can also try Instagram Reels templates to streamline the creation process and ensure a quality look every time.

5. Wrong timing

If you’re able to understand when your target audience is most active, you can dramatically increase your amount of Instagram Reels views and overall engagement. But of course, this can be easier said than done.

Once you dig in, you’ll find tons of research data on the optimal times to post. For example, research from Facebook suggests that late in the evening might be the best time to get views. In the study, Reels published at midnight performed best, garnering 25,000 views on average.

Other studies show that mornings and early evenings work best, around 7 to 8 a.m. and around 6 p.m. The Facebook research confirms this, with around 6 p.m. being the most popular posting time for creators. Bottom line: look at your own Instagram Insights and see how your unique audience interacts with your Reels.

6. Lack of interaction 

If you’re not responding to your viewers’ and followers’ engagements, you’re missing out. These are golden nuggets of opportunity when it comes to keeping the conversation growing and nurturing connections with your viewers.

Here are some of the top ways that creators foster interaction:

  • Reply and pin your favorite user comments
  • Use the video reply feature to respond to a comment using a video
  • Be the first person to comment something meaningful on a new Reel
  • Attach polls to your Reels (you can do this in your stories too)
  • Use the question sticker to get a feel for what followers want to see more of

Check out this helpful video from Instagram’s Creators account for more.

7. Misusing hashtags

We all know that hashtags can be a great tool for discoverability and getting seen by new audiences. But did you know that using irrelevant hashtags can actually hurt? Or that some hashtags are banned on Instagram, which can cause your account to be shadowbanned, or not shown to new users?

As you fine-tune your hashtag strategy, remember: it’s not about using as many as you can, it’s about using the right ones. Here are some tips:

  • Make sure they’re directly related to what’s inside your Reels.
  • Combine high-volume hashtags (more general, usually single-word) and niche-specific ones so you can stay competitive and target your ideal audience.
  • Research your niche to see what’s trending now.
  • Use a hashtag checker like this one to try and avoid including banned hashtags.

8. No caption or weak caption

A compelling caption can spark interest and engagement in your posts, setting the stage for the content they can expect to see in the Reel, as well as provide additional context to those who are watching or have already watched.

Let’s look at some tips for strengthening your caption game:

  • Use storytelling to add emotion or share something personal or unexpected.
  • Ask a thought-provoking question to keep users thinking about your content.
  • Spark a connection by showing your human side — try injecting some humor, inspiration, or wisdom.
  • Include a call to action (CTA) to encourage engagement, whether it’s a like, follow, comment, or tag.
  • Use formatting to help break up big blocks of text. Try things like line breaks, bullet points, and emojis.

9. Ignoring trending Audio

If you’re serious about drawing a wider audience on Instagram, pay attention to trending audio. It might seem trivial, but using recognizable songs, clips, and sound effects can foster instant connections with your viewers and help to create a sense of community. Jumping on trends lets your viewers know that you belong in the conversation.

To find trending audio on your Instagram Business account, tap “Professional dashboard” and choose “Trending audio.” If you’re on a personal account, check for the Trending arrow icon next to a Reels track name. This upper-right-pointing arrow indicates that the track is trending. 

Tap the track name and Instagram will take you to the audio page. Look for the button that says Trending arrowTrending to find more audio to use in your Reels.

Wrapping up 

While Instagram’s algorithm is ultimately what decides how many Reel views you get, there are still several steps you can take to help grow your numbers. (Plus, the tips we’ve discussed today are algorithm-friendly and part of what the algorithm is rating when it looks at your content.)

As you continue your quest for more views, use Spotlight to embed Instagram Reels into your website. It will expose your Reels to a wider audience and potentially increase views. You can even use Spotlight to play Instagram Reels directly on your site. There are tons of strategies to increase your views — which ones will you tap into?

Can Spotlight help you and your team revamp your website? We'd love to help you find out. Why not give Spotlight a try?

Article by

Dan Virgillito

Dan Virgillito is a professional content writer with a passion for social media. Dan’s insightful posts are a must-read for anyone looking to enhance their online marketing game through Instagram feeds.

Article by

Picture of Dan Virgillito

Dan Virgillito

Dan Virgillito is a professional content writer with a passion for social media. Dan’s insightful posts are a must-read for anyone looking to enhance their online marketing game through Instagram feeds.
Picture of Dan Virgillito

Dan Virgillito

Dan Virgillito is a professional content writer with a passion for social media. Dan’s insightful posts are a must-read for anyone looking to enhance their online marketing game through Instagram feeds.
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