Instagram order of followers explained

A phone user on the Instagram app.

A phone user on the Instagram app.

If you’re wondering about the Instagram order of followers, here's a little explainer for you.

The Instagram algorithm is designed to curate content in your explore feed and suggested posts, tailoring it to your interests. Similarly, this algorithm guides the order of your followers on Instagram.

We’ve done a little research to try and explain how your Followings and Followers list are ordered on Instagram in 2024. But, before that, you might want to hide your Instagram Following and Followers list from others.

Instagram order of followers explained 2024

Previously, Instagram sorted your Followers and Following list by who you followed most recently (chronologically). Now, you might be surprised to discover that Instagram has changed that up a bit.

Presently, the order of followers on Instagram is majorly based on one factor: interaction. In other words, the accounts that you have interacted with the most by liking, commenting, sharing posts, tagging in posts, or sending DMs will appear at the top of your Followings and Followers list.

However, if you have less than 200 people in your Following or Followers list, the above method of sorting may not apply. In that case, we believe, the order of followers is just a random list of people.

It is unclear how the order is determined in this case, as Instagram has not revealed anything about it.

How does Instagram’s followers ordering algorithm work?

We know that this sounds a little complicated, but we’ll explain it as best we can.

As we mentioned above, interaction is the main factor that Instagram uses to determine the order of your Followers list. Instagram’s Followers ordering algorithm is meant to determine how important a user is to you by looking at the amount of interaction you have with them. This means:

  • A person who likes or comments on your posts frequently is more likely to be at the top of your list of followers.
  • Likewise, the followers you frequently interact with the most by liking or commenting are sorted first.
  • A follower’s profile that you visit regularly will rise on your list of followers even if you don’t follow that person.
  • If you follow each other.
  • Both users share some interests, and mutual followers also factor in.
  • The longevity of being a follower on Instagram.
  • There are multiple instances of having mutual followers on Instagram.
  • The amount of recent interactions with each other outside of the app.
  • Users' geo-location.
  • Having a verified account.
  • The number of Instagram followers both accounts have.

The order of your Followers list on Instagram is constantly changing based on your interactions with your followers. This means that you may see new people at the top of your list if Instagram thinks they’re more important to you than others.

What does sort by default mean on the Instagram following list?

On Instagram, the "Sort by Default" option on the following list refers to the default way in which the list of accounts you are following is organised or displayed.

The default sorting algorithm used by Instagram arranges the list of accounts you are following based on a combination of factors, such as your interactions with them and other engagement metrics.

Before you leave, have a look at other Instagram tutorials, such as how to add more than 10 photos to an Instagram post and how to see the exact time of an Instagram post.

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