Instagram Gives You More to Explore


The recent redesign of Instagram’s Explore section suggests a move toward eCommerce and a whole new set of rules for tagging of your posts.

We explore the revamp and offer some tips on how marketers can navigate. 

A recent addition to Instagram, the re-vamped Explore section is something that all Instagram marketers need to pay attention too.

Updated Instagram Explore Layout

Updated Instagram Explore Layout

Announced in May, the new Explore layout will remain personalized by each user, but now the content will be organized into ‘topic channels’

which, as shown above will be displayed across the top of the screen. 

“With topic channels, you can be more intentional about how you navigate posts on Explore. When you open the page, you’ll see a tray at the top with personalized channels. This includes a ‘For You’ channel, which has a mix of posts tailored to your interests. You’ll also see channels on topics you might like such as Art, Sports, Beauty or Fashion – as well as a list of hashtags, giving you more ways to explore your interests. Now, when you want to get inspired by the latest fashion trends or discover a new travel destination, you can easily find posts you’re looking for and follow those accounts or hashtags.”

The new search is akin to ‘Guided Search’ on Pinterest,

which suggests related product categories based on the search patterns of other users. The reason why marketers need to take note is cause it suggests that Instagram may be moving towards eCommerce. 

Categories like ‘fashion trends’ and ‘travel destinations’ within Explore would make it easy for Instagram to point their billion users towards sponsored content. 

Another way this impacts marketing behavior on Instagram is through related hashtags. The new Explore section makes hashtag choices even more important. This isn’t too different from how Instagram has always used hashtags - there have always been suggestions based off of what you search. The big difference is that now these terms are on the top of your search screen, meaning more users to click through to see stories and photos based on their interests. 


At CROWD.Agency, we believe it’s important to conduct regular research to discover which tags will have the biggest impact on your following.

Using the right tags is important for natural discovery of your content, so be sure to see which tags will have the highest impact and review the Explore section regularly to see what hashtags are trending or being suggested. 

“We’re also giving you better ways to control what you see on Explore. You can browse through a variety of interests by swiping from grid to grid, or you can go deep into a specific interest by tapping on a channel and scrolling up. If you’d like to remove a topic channel, press and hold the channel and select ‘Mute’ from the menu. This sends the channel to the end of the tray, giving you the option to unmute it at any time.”

New search options mean new search behaviors. With 200 million people visiting Explore each day it’s definitely important to pay attention to how users find content.

It'll take some time to understand how Instagram users are warming to this new search function, but it may be another element to consider when looking to maximize your reach and connect to fans. 

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