The Complete Instagram Post Size Guide in 2021 for Posts, Story, IGTV & Reels

Instagram Post Size Guide

Today, no social media marketing strategy is complete without incorporating Instagram in the plan. It is one of the most popular platforms that brands need to grow their presence on. Instagram lets you share your amazing photos and videos with the world in different formats including feed posts, feed videos, reels, stories, and IGTV. With so many options available, it can be a bit difficult to know which Instagram post size to use and when.

Instagram is a platform that is centered around visually appealing content. Thus, knowing the right sizes is crucial if you want to give your posts the best chance of getting engagement and build an aesthetic feed. 

In this blog, we’ll provide you with much more than the standard answer of “a width of at least 1080 pixels with an aspect ratio between 1.91:1 and 4:5” for Instagram post size.  

Looking for a way to schedule Instagram posts easily in advance? Click here!

Let’s begin.

Table of contents

Why do you have to worry about Instagram Post size?

1. For better visual storytelling

The size of the images has to be just right to be able to tell your story in the best way possible without losing any message. If you don’t use the right image size, your Instagram post might not appear properly on your profile, which might lead to people not completely getting your message.

2. To avoid cropping out images

This is the most important reason why you need to focus on the Instagram post size. While uploading an image, you might have noticed that it gets severely cropped, and sometimes, this can be highly detrimental to your story and the message you want to give. 

3. To make sure your text appears fine

When you are adding text to your Instagram post, you would want all of it to be properly seen on your profile. And when you are not using the right image size to create your post, you might lose a few words when the image gets cropped. Or else, you might have to pinch the image and make it too small so that it fits without losing any letters or words.

4. To keep logos and other elements intact

Just like text, you might add your brand logo and other elements to your Instagram post. While creating the post, you would need to ensure that the size of the logo does not overtake the image. Thus, having an idea of the correct Instagram post size will help you create a proper image and place your logo and other branded elements properly. 

The basics of Instagram post size

Before we talk about the ideal Instagram post size, you need to have a look at how your current photos and videos are. Have you posted all high-quality images? Or are they blurry? Do any of them have missing parts? Is there a black or white background added to images to fit them into the feed? If yes, then this blog will help you a lot.

The most important things you need to take care of are aspect ratio and size. The aspect ratio is the image’s width to height ratio. It’s represented in the form of a ratio – for example, 1:2. The first digit is the width, while the second is the height. While image size is the number of pixels that make up your image or video’s height and width.

When you upload a picture in an aspect ratio that isn’t supported by Instagram, then it’s either cropped or enlarged to fit. Instagram supports images with a width between 320 pixels and 1080 pixels. If your image is smaller than 320 pixels, they enlarge it, and if it’s wider than 1080 pixels, it’s cropped. 

Align with taking care of the best sizes, you also need to work on the best time to post on Instagram in order to get maximum engagement on your posts.

Now, let’s learn about the recommended Instagram post dimensions. 

Instagram post size: Feed Posts

When Instagram first launched, users were only able to upload square images. But now, you can upload square, horizontal, or vertical images on Instagram. This provides you the flexibility to upload a wide range of photos. 

The ideal Instagram post image size for each of these types of pictures are as follows:

1. Square photos

Even with the option of horizontal and vertical images, the square format is the most popular one. The optimized Instagram image size for square photos is 1080 px by 1080 px. As a result, the aspect ratio is 1:1. Thus, for best results, you should consider using this ratio. Otherwise, your image might get cropped. 

2. Horizontal photos

The optimized Instagram image size for horizontal photos is 1080 px by 566 px. As a result, the aspect ratio is 1.9:1, but you can also use 16:9. As much as possible, try to upload images with a width of 1080 pixels. When you do this, even after compression, the quality of the image is not degraded. 

3. Vertical photos

The optimized Instagram image size for vertical photos is 1080 px by 1350 px. As a result, the aspect ratio is 4:5. A study has found out that portrait photos receive more engagement as compared to square and horizontal photos. The reason behind this is that portrait pictures take up more space on the feed. 

Thus, by using portrait orientation, your brand can take up more space on the screens of users’ smartphones. Moreover, due to their size, they are more eye-catching and people take notice of them, which ultimately increases their engagement rate. 

Instagram post size: Videos

Videos receive a lot more interaction on Instagram as compared to still images. And just like photos, you can post them in three different orientations: square, vertical, and horizontal. Here are the best dimensions and aspect ratios of Instagram video post size for designing videos for your marketing strategy:

  • Square videos: They should have an aspect ratio of 1:1 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1080 px.
  • Horizontal videos: They should have an aspect ratio of 1.9:1 or 16:9 and dimensions of 1080 px by 607 px.
  • Vertical videos: They should have an aspect ratio of 4:5 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1350 px.

According to a study done by Buffer, square videos tend to receive more engagement as opposed to horizontal and vertical videos. Square videos get around 30-35% higher video views while their engagement increases by 80-100%.

Instagram post size: Stories

For Instagram stories, you need to use vertical/portrait videos. If you create a picture or video in landscape orientation, your videos and photos will show up much like landscape IGTVs — with a lot of dead space around them.

You should share images and videos with a minimum aspect ratio of 1.91:1 and a maximum of 9:16. In case you wish to cover the entire screen, the best Instagram post size in pixels would be 1080 px by 1920 px. That’s a 9:16 ratio. 

Instagram stories are mainly designed for people to view them while holding their phones vertically. Thus, using portrait or vertical videos will allow you to take advantage of the full screen without forcing people to rotate their phones or simply skip the stories because of the extra space in landscape photos. 

Instagram post size: Reels

Just like stories, Instagram reels must be shot vertically in portrait orientation. In IGTV’s, you get an option of playing the videos in full-screen mode, however, there is no such option for reels. Reels play directly in the Instagram timeline and thus you need to record them in portrait mode itself. 

The best Instagram post size in pixels for reels would be 1080 px by 1920 px, i.e a 9:16 ratio. You can make your reels appear in the profile grid too, but it will only appear in square size on the feed. While uploading the reel, you can set the thumbnail of your choice and crop the profile image so that your feed aesthetic is maintained. 

Instagram post size: IGTV

In Instagram IGTV, you can upload both vertical and horizontal. However, it is recommended to upload portrait (vertical) videos. Your videos must be of at least a minute to be uploaded as an IGTV. Regardless of the orientation you choose, all previews in the feed and timeline will show a 4:5 center crop of your video.

  • Horizontal videos: They should have an aspect ratio of 16:9 and dimensions of 1080 px by 566 px.
  • Vertical videos: They should have an aspect ratio of 9:16 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1920 px.
  • IGTV cover photo: They should have an aspect ratio of 1:1.55 and dimensions of 420 px by 654 px.

While uploading an IGTV, you will get a great option of editing the preview content. By default, Instagram will pick up the first 15 seconds of your video and show it as the preview. But, when you use portrait orientation, you can use the “edit preview” option to select the still image and the 15-second clip for the preview. This option will not be available when you choose the landscape orientation.

Instagram image size: Profile picture

Your profile picture is the first thing that people notice when they visit your profile. Thus, it is necessary to ace it. Profile pictures on Instagram are displayed in a 1:1 aspect ratio and the dimensions for this should be 110 px by 110 px. The maximum aspect ratio should be 180 px by 180 px.

Whether people search for your profile or discover you from ads, your logo/headshot should be well-positioned in the profile picture. You can choose a larger picture but make sure that the parts you want visible lie within the recommended ratio.

Along with your profile picture, make sure your bio is also up to the mark. To see some inspiration, here are 301 Instagram bio ideas you can refer to.

Instagram post size: Ads

Creating Instagram ads definitely requires much more effort than posting a normal image or video. You can create ads to reach a wider audience but you need to make sure that you use the optimum post size to get maximum engagement. 

Below are the best Instagram post size ratio for ads:

  • Image ads: Landscape image ads should have an aspect ratio of 1.9:1 and dimensions of 1200 px by 628 px. Square image ads should have an aspect ratio of 1:1 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1080 px. Vertical image ads should have an aspect ratio of 4:5 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1350 px.
  • Video ads: Landscape video ads should have an aspect ratio of 1.9:1 and dimensions of 600 px by 315 px. Square image ads should have an aspect ratio of 1:1 and dimensions of 600 px by 600 px. Vertical image ads should have an aspect ratio of 4:5 and dimensions of 600 px by 750 px.
  • Story ads: Story image as well as video ads should have an aspect ratio of 9:16 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1920 px. 
  • Carousel ads: Carousel image ads should have an aspect ratio of 1.9:1 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1080 px. Video carousel ads should have an aspect ratio of 1:1 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1080 px or 600 px by 600 px.

How to Upload the Right-Sized Images on Instagram

After having a look at all the above dimensions for Instagram post size, you might be a little overwhelmed. However, you don’t need to worry much about creating the right-sized posts for your profile. 

We know that you might be thinking that nobody has the time to resize images for different formats. And that’s where photo editing tools can help. You can use tools like Square Pic, Square InPic, or No crop & square for Instagram.

You can also let Instagram auto-crop your images and videos if you don’t care much about your feed aesthetic. The best way is to shoot/create your images and videos in the recommended ratios to avoid using tools for editing.

How to schedule Instagram posts in advance

If you are a brand that wants to grow its presence on Instagram, then you need to be consistent with posting. Uploading once or twice in a while is not going to make the cut. You need to upload frequently at the right times to grow your audience and follower base. The ideal posting frequency is once daily. 

It might seem a bit difficult to upload content daily on multiple social media channels including Instagram, and which is where a social media scheduling tool comes into play. RecurPost is a tool that lets you post to multiple social media at once, including Instagram. 

It provides an Instagram post scheduler using which you can manage both personal and business accounts. Using RecurPost, you will be able to easily sort out months’ worth of content in just a few hours. It offers bulk scheduling using which you can upload and schedule multiple images/videos in one go.

The content libraries help you to categorize your content into different spaces. You can create recurring schedules to make your evergreen content go out in a loop on your social accounts. To schedule Instagram posts using RecurPost, you simply need to sign up for an account, connect your Instagram account and start scheduling! 

Some of its star features include:

  • Bulk scheduling on multiple platforms at once
  • Recurring schedules to repurpose content
  • Create unlimited workspaces
  • Collaborate with team members
  • Auto-schedule posts for best times
  • In-depth analytics includes post performance and audience demographics
  • Download white-label reports with your choice of logo
  • Canva integration to design and schedule images without leaving the screen
  • Google alerts, RSS feeds, and Chrome extension to curate content from across the web
  • URL shortener, and more!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What size is best for Instagram post?

The optimized Instagram image size for photos is 1080px by 1080px. As a result, the aspect ratio is 1:1. For horizontal photos, it is 1080 px by 566 px. As a result, the aspect ratio is 1.9:1, but you can also use 16:9. For vertical photos, the recommended size is 1080 px by 1350 px while the aspect ratio is 4:5.

2. How do you post different sizes on Instagram?

On Instagram, if you want to post images of different sizes in the same post, you would have to select the size and resize the image individually for your feed. In order to do that, you can use a photo editing tool to change the sizes of your images as per the recommended dimensions. 

3. What is the recommended image size on Instagram?

The optimized Instagram image size for photos is 1080 px by 1080 px. For horizontal Instagram images, the size is 1080 px by 566 px. The Instagram image size for vertical photos is 1080 px by 1350 px.

4. What is the best image size for an Instagram ad?

Landscape image ads should have an aspect ratio of 1.9:1 and dimensions of 1200 px by 628 px. Square image ads should have an aspect ratio of 1:1 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1080 px. Vertical image ads should have an aspect ratio of 4:5 and dimensions of 1080 px by 1350 px.

5. How do you fit a full size picture on Instagram?

The best way to fit in a full picture on Instagram would be to first click on the plus sign that allows you to upload a picture or a video. Then you can select the picture that you want to upload from your gallery. Next, you will see a format button using which you can crop, toggle and zoom in or out for the full picture to fill the frame of your Instagram post.

6. What is the size of an Instagram post in inches?

The size of an Instagram post is not measured in inches but in ratios and pixels. The optimized Instagram image size for square photos is 1080 px by 1080 px. As a result, the aspect ratio is 1:1.

Conclusion

To make use of Instagram to the optimum, you should create a good mixture of fed posts, videos, reels, IGTVs, and stories. Be consistent and post regularly using RecurPost’s social media scheduler. Sign up for the 14-day free trial today – click here!