How Does Instagram Choose The Order Of Stories?

How Does Instagram Choose The Order Of Stories?

Instagram Stories are displayed up front and center when you open the Instagram app. It is one of the most popular features, loved by all, for its crisp and relevant content, making users wonder how Instagram chooses the order of Stories. You will be able to see evites from your friends to offers and announcements made by business organizations via Instagram Stories.

Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms, with over 2.35 billion monthly active users from all over the world. Most users make use of Instagram Stories to post 15-second, photos and video montages, that are displayed directly in the Feed of all their followers. Large organizations can use Instagram Stories for their business by making announcements of current events, offers, and discounts to notify all their patrons. 

Instagram chooses the order of Stories by following a unique Algorithm, that is based on user interaction, recency, interest and relevance, timelines, interactions, relationships, usage patterns, and advertiser influence.

Instagram goes the extra mile to understand the user’s interests. But, how does Instagram choose the order of Stories, and display them according to their preference and convenience? Read on to learn the full story.

How Does Instagram Choose The Order Of Stories?

One of the key factors that determines the reach of your Stories is the order in which they are displayed. All Instagram Stories are displayed on top of Feed, for all your friends and followers. However, Stories that are displayed first, tend to get more attention. Many users do not keep scrolling to the right until they reach the very end to view all the Story updates. So how does Instagram choose the order of Stories and on what basis are they displayed? 

Instagram’s algorithm determines the Stories Viewers Order. The key factor that concludes the visibility of all Instagram Stories is the algorithm, which is based on user interaction, timelines, and patterns, as explained in detail above. Users who wish to display their Stories even after 24 hours, can add them to their Instagram Highlights and rearrange the photos. These Highlights will be displayed on the user’s profile and will be accessible to all their friends and followers at all times.

What Is Instagram’s Algorithm For Stories?

Instagram’s algorithm has a direct effect on the users’ experience while using the app. While every user takes time and effort to create and edit an Instagram Story and post it for all their friends and followers to see, the success of the Story and its reach is determined by the Instagram algorithm, as it directly influences the user’s experience.

Instagram’s algorithm is a system that takes into account, all the user’s interests and interactions on the platform, which is used to personalize the data that is displayed on the Feed. If the user likes and shares the posts of a particular user, then their posts will be displayed on priority, as per Instagram’s algorithm. Users who interact with posts on a particular topic, tend to get related content on that topic, randomly pop up on their Feed.  

Understanding The Algorithm

Head of Product for the Home Experience of Instagram, Julian Gutman has officially stated that the order of Instagram Stories is based on the user activities on the platform including likes, messages, comments, and profile visits. Instagram chooses the order of Stories, not based on the chronological order or the time of users’ posting it. We on Deasilex, have run various tests and experiments to determine how Instagram choose the order of Stories, as follows, 

1. User Interaction

Users interact with Stories that they are interested in. Instagram chooses the order of Stories based on user interaction. Every time the user interacts with a Story on Instagram by liking, sharing, or commenting on it, it will be noted by the Instagram algorithm. This will also include the reach of the user’s posts and their profile visits, which shows their interest in the particular type of posts and the users who post them.

For example, fans of a particular musician or band, who follow their official accounts and interact with all the posts made by them, tend to be displayed on priority, based on their past interactions.

2. Recency

Instagram Stories that are posted recently will most likely be displayed first. Instagram chooses the order of Stories based on the recency and the time that they have been posted. All Instagram Stories are displayed on Instagram only for 24 hours. While Instagram allows you to view the user’s old Instagram Stories, they will be displayed on the platform only for the allotted time limit. And all the recent Stories that have been posted by your friends and followers will be displayed first.

3. Interest And Relevance

Instagram allows users to like the posts, Stories, and Reels by clicking on the Heart icon. Every time you hit the Heart icon, it will be noted by Instagram’s Algorithm. Users tend to show their interest by tapping the Heart icon, only when they are interested in the content or the user who has posted them. Based on this data, Instagram chooses the order of Stories based on the users’ interest and their relevance.

4. Timeliness

One of the key ingredients that determines how Instagram chooses the order of Stories, is based on the different timelines. Instagram displays the Stories that are posted by users recently, that hold more relevance in the particular timeline. For example, Instagram Stories of large organizations that make an announcement for a large discount or flash sale and for a limited-time offer, are more likely to be displayed on priority.

5. Relationships

It is basic social etiquette to like and share posts made by all your close friends and family members. Your personal relationships with Instagram users will directly affect the way how Instagram chooses the order of Stories. Automatically, all the Instagram Stories of your friends and family will be displayed first.

6. Usage Patterns

Almost all Instagram users have a daily routine while using Instagram. Be it checking for new posts made by your friends or being on the lookout for updates of an ex, all Instagram users follow a particular pattern of using Instagram. This is noted by the Instagram algorithm and Instagram chooses the order of Stories based on these regular usage patterns that are ritually followed by the user.

7. Advertiser Influence

Large organizations and major brands often make announcements or post grand sales and flash offers via Instagram Stories. Instagram chooses the order of Stories based on such advertiser influence that is bound to benefit all users.

How Instagram Ranks Stories?

All Instagram Stories are ranked based on a multitude of factors that contribute to Instagram algorithms, that classify and process every Story that is displayed on the platform. Users will be able to view the Stories that are ranked based on Instagram’s algorithm, which determines the ranking based on user interactions and their interests. While it predominantly posts the Stories that are most likely to be interacted with, it does not rank the Stories of non-followers or repetitive posts of the same Story.  

How Can You Influence The Order Of Your Stories?

People change and mature with time. This results in a change in your taste and preference. You may no longer be interested in topics that you were previously interested in. If you are looking for a way to change the way Instagram chooses the order of Stories, all you have to do is access the posts and Stories that you are currently interested in and interact with them. This will automatically change Instagram’s algorithm hence resulting in a change in the order of your Stories.

How Does Instagram Order Who Watches Your Stories?

While Instagram chooses the order of Stories that are displayed, based on the timeline, interaction, and relevance, in what order does Instagram display the viewer’s list, consisting of the list of viewers who have viewed your Instagram Story? When you open the viewer’s list, 

  • the first 50 views, consist of the list of usernames of the Instagram users who have most recently seen your Story. 
  • Then comes the list of users who you interact with the most on Instagram, but does not include the number of times every user has watched the Story.
  • You will find the Instagram users who you do not follow back, at the bottom of the list.

Wrap Up

Instagram is one of the most organized social media platforms. It follows a well-accounted set of algorithms, that determines the efficient functioning of the app. All the posts, Reels, and Stories that the user encounters during their time spent on the platform are not just random, but by a well-calculated algorithm, based on the user’s interaction and preferences. Instagram chooses the order of Stories based on a well-formulated algorithm, to ensure that every user has a productive time, while on Instagram.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Can I Manually Change The Order Of Stories On My Feed?

You cannot tap an icon to manually change the order of Stories on your Feed. However, you can directly influence Instagram’s algorithms by making changes to your behavior patterns and interactions while on the platform.

Q2. Why Do I Sometimes See Stories From Accounts I Don’t Follow?

If you have not made changes to your privacy settings, your posts will be visible to all, and you will also be able to see Stories from accounts that you do not follow. To restrict your discoverability you can change your Instagram to be a private account.

Q3. Do Instagram Influencers Have Any Influence Over The Order Of Their Stories?

Yes, Instagram influencers can have a direct influence on the order of their Stories. They can choose the order in which they post the Stories and then add them to their Highlights to save them for all their followers to see.

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