Instagram Stories: How Many Should You Post?

Ya’ll, let me be real with you: I love Instagram stories.

I love that they connect me to my audience in real time and allow them to trust me with ease. On my Instagram stories, I enjoy posting pictures of my dog, my meals, and videos of the J* team behind-the-scenes. I know my audience resonates with them too.

But, like most entrepreneurs, something I’ve wondered when crafting my marketing strategy is: Is there is a magic trick to Instagram stories? So I did a little research.

Then, just as I was getting my diploma from the University of Google, I also received a question on my weekly Facebook Live, Ask Me Anything.

  • Alvin asked, Is there such a thing as having too many or not enough stories?

I was happy to answer his question because I know this is something many business owners are wondering. Below I have charts and graphs (source: for us to have a conversation about the statistics, but there’s one thing I have to clarify before we get into the nitty gritty.

>>Instagram shows and prioritizes Instagram stories according to your followers’ previous behaviors.<<

This means that if there are people who have engaged with your stories previously, then they are much more likely to see your story first next time.

When you watch all the slides (i.e. photos/videos) of someone’s story, or if you DM and react to what they posed, Instagram is watching what you are doing to create a better, more individualized experience for you the next time you click on the app.

Another thing to take into consideration before we get into the meat (or the tofu, I don’t judge) is that the rate of follower engagement on stories is different depending on the industry you are in.

It is important to note that the average across all industries is that between 7-8% of people will see them, but some industries are higher and lower, as you can see below.

Now  that we got those out of the way, it's time for the big question:

How many Instagram stories should you should post?

The graph below will show you that if you have anywhere from 2-10 stories, 59% of those watching your story (which is around 7% of your followers) will watch all of them.

However, take a look at that bar on the right: 38% of people watching your stories will watch more than 51 of them! This was MIND. BLOWING. to me. I can’t imagine seeing that many stories and clicking through all of them!

But the article argues that after someone watches until a certain point (after 25 or 30 stories), those people are committed and will watch the story to the end like a TV show.

The next interesting statistic is that the average exists within stories are mostly after the first 1 or 2 stories. Once people make it past story 7, they typically watch until the end, regardless of how many more there are.

This caused me to think… Who am I making stories for? Am I making them to be cool and popular, only posting 2 or 3 that are super artistic and perfect? Or am I making real stories, building trust with my followers by having a conversation with them and letting them into my life?

Boo, I do not create Instagram stories to be popular, I create them to have conversations.

I post to build relationships with my ideal customer and that, my friends, is how to build a profitable business with effective storytelling on social media.

Happy Instagram story-ing, boss!

*Graphs by Social Media Today*