In 2017 the Instagram team introduced the concept of posting multiple pictures on Instagram, as well as videos all under one new post. Known as an Instagram carousel, this format has become more and more popular.
Throughout the years, it has been proven that Instagram carousels can generate more engagement than posts containing only one image or video.
If you still haven’t used carousels as part of your Instagram content strategy, we’ve got you covered. In this article we are going to cover the following aspects:
- What are carousel posts
- How to post multiple photos on Instagram
- Why do carousels generate more engagement than other types of posts
- What Instagram ideas you should try for your brand for better results
Schedule and Post Instagram Carousels with SocialBee!
Table of Contents
What Is an Instagram Carousel?
An Instagram carousel is a post that contains more than one photo or video. You can add a maximum of 10 photos or videos, and your audience can swipe left or right to see them all.
This type of posts appear on the main Instagram feed screen of any Instagram user.
Three main elements differentiate an Instagram carousel post from a normal Instagram feed post:
- The icon that showcases the number of slides in the upper right corner when viewed on the homepage.
- The small dots underneath the post.
- The white gallery icon from the upper right corner when visiting the business page.
The Instagram post size is going to matter if you decide to post multiple photos and videos on Instagram too. You’ll need to make sure first that your collection of Instagram multiple photos is uniform, and that all the images are the same size. The first photo in the carousel will determine how the rest of your photo gallery will look like.
Here is a quick breakdown of the Instagram image and video sizes:
The recommended resolution for a carousel is 1080 x 1080 px, so take this into consideration when putting together your carousel.
How to Post Multiple Photos on Instagram
Now that we’ve gone through the basics of Instagram carousels, it’s time to get into the more practical side of things.
To post multiple images on Instagram you have to:
- Click the Plus sign found in the upper right corner of your Instagram app.
- Click on the Gallery icon to select and upload photos (up to 10). Keep in mind that the first photo you select will be the one shown to Instagram users.
- Click on the Next button and your carousel post is ready to be edited.
You can apply a filter to each individual picture and adjust your carousels to fit your own aesthetic. Then, like in the case of any Instagram post, you can add your Instagram caption, tag Instagram users, or add a location.
Carousel posts are available in SocialBee too—you can post up to 10 images, upload multiple videos, or a mix of both.
Create Instagram carousels from SocialBee and take advantage of the benefits of simple scheduling for your Instagram feed.
How to Add Multiple Photos to an Instagram Story
Posting multiple photos is also possible on Instagram stories. So, if you want to share multiple posts without messing with your Instagram grid, then choose the story format for the job.
Here is how to add multiple pictures in one story on Instagram:
- Click on the plus sign on the top right corner of your screen and choose “Story.”
- Tap on “Select” and choose the images you want to post from your gallery.
- Choose from two story formats “Layout” or “Separate.”
- Edit your visuals by adding stickers, and other effects you might want to be included as part of your Instagram story.
- Choose how you want to post your story (Your Story, Close friends, or Message) and click “Share.”
Did You Know that You Can Post Instagram Stories with SocialBee?
While Instagram story scheduling is not officially supported in SocialBee, our users can achieve this by using SocialBee’s mobile app and Reminders.
Here is how you can share Instagram Stories with SocialBee:
- Choose a content category and click on “Add post to this category”
- Upload your story content
- Click on the mobile phone icon at the bottom right corner of your text editor
- Once you receive the post notification, make sure to open it
- Tap on “Share Post”
- Click “OK” once you receive a confirmation that your caption has been copied
- Choose the story option and share it with your audience
Instagram Carousels and Engagement
Now we’ve found out what carousel posts are and the process of creating these multiple photo posts. There are a few more questions you might have.
For instance, maybe you wonder what happens if you add multiple photos on Instagram, in terms of engagement. Or more exactly: Are carousel posts better for engagement?
Well, yes. Carousel posts are better for engagement than any other type of Instagram content. In fact, a recent study has demonstrated, that a post on Instagram that contains multiple photos tends to have more success than one that contains only one photo or video. This comes from the analysis of more than 22 million posts, and around 3 million carousel posts.
If you’ve been debating if you should post multiple photos on Instagram, the average engagement rate stands at 1.92% for an Instagram carousel. This is in comparison to 1.74% for single images, as well as 1.45% for single videos. It has also been demonstrated that there is a correlation between engagement and the number of slides used in the carousel.
Carousels that contain 10 slides are the ones that generate the most engagement among Instagram users, the average engagement rate standing at 2.07%. Carousels that have nine or eight slides are the runner-ups, as they stand at 1.94% and 1.91% in terms of engagement.
Mixing multiple photos and videos in your carousel also generates a higher engagement rate, the number standing at 2.33%. However, if your business doesn’t want to mix the content types, multiple videos tend to generate a higher engagement rate than multiple photos.
Why Do Instagram Carousels Drive More Engagement?
Truth be told, it’s a matter of curiosity and attention span. A higher number of slides can make your audience more curious. Thus, it drives them to swipe to find out more about the subject you’re covering in your carousel.
Also, a CTA that sounds like “Swipe left to find out more” can influence your audience, so don’t be afraid to try it out. It can also keep their attention for more time, as each slide could bring new information that could be of interest.
However, just adding multiple photos and videos to your Instagram page won’t drive engagement alone. You also need quality content to create the perfect Instagram carousels. Your content needs to be in line with the rest of your Instagram aesthetic, so make sure all your slides follow the same pattern and design.
How to Schedule Instagram Carousels for Better Reach and Engagement
On top of creating engaging Instagram carousels, you have to plan a posting strategy that will help you reach your target audience and increase the visibility of your posts.
To do so, you can an Instagram scheduler that will help you create, publish and monitor your content performance: SocialBee.
Once you connect your Instagram account to SocialBee, you will have access to amazing content creation and distribution features, such as:
- Content categories: Organize your Instagram posts in different topic categories and schedule them alternatively to create a more diverse and interesting posting pattern.
- Instagram first comment: Schedule and post the first comment under your posts. Add your hashtags and more info to avoid overcrowding your caption.
- Tags & mentions: Tag other users, and add location tags directly from SocialBee.
- Hashtag collections: Keep your hashtags organized in collections for any occasion and add them to your posts with two clicks.
- Grid preview: Make sure you stay true to your Instagram aesthetic by vizualizing how your future posts will look on your Instagram grid even before publishing them.
- Instagram analytics: Keep track of your Instagram account growth, audience demographics, post reach and engagement, and more from SocialBee’s analytics dashboard.
- Social media scheduling: Schedule whole content categories at once or schedule individual posts at specific times in no time. Requeue your posts to create evergreen posting sequences and use the expiration feature to disable posts at a certain point in time or after multiple shares.
- Team collaboration: Invite your team to SocialBee, assign them roles and tag them under each post where you left your feedback and notes.
- Canva Integration: Create your Instagram visuals with Canva directly from SocialBee.
Open a content editor, click on the Canva button and access all its design functionalities from SocialBee.
Instagram Carousel Ideas & Examples
Now you know how to upload multiple photos and videos on Instagram, but do you know how to use them in a format that will drive more engagement?
Here are our top ideas to create your own engaging carousel posts on Instagram:
- New Products
- Before and After
- Step by Step
- Customer Reviews
- Brand Storytelling
1. New Products
If your business has launched a new series of products, you can take advantage of that. You can post multiple photos on Instagram showcasing the whole collection in all its glory.
Instead of making separate posts for each product, you can squeeze multiple photos into an Instagram carousel and drive more engagement. This way, you will also avoid spamming your audience with multiple promotional posts.
For instance, let’s say that the new product you’ve launched comes in different color versions. Instead of creating a single post for each version, you could add multiple images to one post, to showcase all the colors.
Maybe you can pair the new product with different accessories and create a carousel post that promotes multiple products while providing valuable fashion advice at the same time.
Showcasing product usage or product details are other ideas that are worth incorporating in Instagram posts, especially carousel ones. Choosing to post multiple pictures in a carousel can provide your audience with a better understanding of your products, in a visual way too.
2. Before and After
Posting on Instagram a transformation of any kind through multiple pictures is an easy way of catching the attention of your audience.
A before and after concept requires at least two pictures and what better way to post them than through a carousel-type of post? A before and after type of post is suitable for any type of business.
If your business concentrates on selling skincare products, a before and after photo gallery is a great way to drive more engagement. That is because you can show the benefits your products have had for your clients. It’s also a great way to share user-generated content.
If your business helps people change their food habits, a before and after of their diet change can also influence your audience.
Before and after posts containing multiple images not only drive more engagement, they also spike sales, so make sure you use this to your best advantage.
Want to post multiple photos on Instagram that showcase a process, but don’t want to do that separately?
An Instagram carousel is a great way to provide your audience with a step-by-step process, without the need to scroll up and down to follow the steps.
The easiest way to put together this type of post is by adding a specific action per slide. You can show your users how to use a specific feature of your product, as an example.
There is also the option of using tutorials, depending on the area of your expertise. Let’s say your business helps people decorate their houses in a chic way, while on a budget. You can put together a tutorial on how to make a homemade flower vase and post multiple pictures containing instructions and a video of the final result.
4. Customer Reviews
Do you have multiple positive reviews and testimonials you would like to share with your Instagram audience? Then carousels are the best way to go.
Edit your testimonials on top of a branded background and create an appreciation post for your customers while using their reviews as social proof.
As a result, you will establish yourself as a trustworthy brand and build credibility by showcasing the experience other customers had with your business.
5. Brand Storytelling
Storytelling is often used in marketing to get the attention of customers worldwide. Now add this content format to the carousel post structure, and you might discover a recipe for success.
And no, you don’t have to write an actual in-depth story just to make an Instagram post—it’s about giving shape and meaning to what you share with your audience.
But what are some ideas you can present as a carousel?
Well, once again, we made a list you can use as inspiration:
- Summarize your business journey from the beginning until now by using images and text.
- Introduce your team members by telling the story of how they got hired and how they evolved in your company.
- Tell the story of how your business idea came about.
- Describe the process of manufacturing your products.
- Talk about a challenging part of your business journey.
A great example of using storytelling and Instagram carousel posts comes from SocialBee.
The freelancer spotlight series showcases SocialBee’s talented professionals, and it follows their professional evolution within the company.
Start Sharing Multiple Images and Videos on Instagram
Can you drive more engagement if you post multiple photos on Instagram? There are a few rules you should take into account, but all in all, the answer is yes.
According to studies, posting more than one photo on Instagram can help your business drive more engagement. It piques your audience’s interest and curiosity, and it also helps you keep a clean and organized feed. In the early stages of Instagram, the only possibility to present your products in different colors was to post them separately.
Nowadays, you can take full advantage of the carousel feature and present your products by using multiple photos. Along with that, you can do before and after posts and even provide tutorials, in just one post. And it doesn’t even have to be a carousel that contains only multiple pictures or videos—a mix of these two can drive better results than you’d expect.
If you’ve decided that it’s time to post multiple pictures, you can create that perfect Instagram carousel with the help of SocialBee.
SocialBee offers a 14-day free trial and other features such as scheduling your posts, Instagram grid, or Instagram first comment.