5 Reasons Why Buying Instagram Likes Is Such A Bad Idea

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Rafaella Aguiar

Last Updated: May 26, 2021

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While it might seem like a simple way to increase your engagement, buying Instagram likes will only cause problems for you down the line. This sounds dramatic, but it’s true. If you buy Instagram likes, it can flag your account within Instagram’s system, it can make you look phony to your followers and it won’t translate to sales for your business. There are plenty of other quality ways you can increase your likes on Instagram without having to buy them.

How Buying Instagram Likes Works

Buying Instagram likes is actually a fairly simple process, even though it’s something we highly recommend against doing. There are plenty of services that you can use to purchase likes, and most of them just need your credit card. You choose how many likes you want and pay accordingly. Some services will “guarantee” your likes for a specific period of time, and if they drop below that number they’ll “refill” them with more likes. 

For example, here’s the prices for the service Buzzoid. To purchase, you need to enter your username, email address and select the photo or photos you want to have liked. Then, make your payment via credit card and you’ll see the likes come in.

buzzoid pricing
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Buying Instagram Likes Apps

We really don’t recommend going down the path of buying Instagram likes. It’s simply more trouble than it’s worth. If you really want to go down this path, though, here are some apps you can choose from where you can buy Instagram likes fairly easily.

Stormlikes

With Stormlikes, you can see the results of your purchase within a few moments of your order being placed.

Buzzoid

We shared Buzzoid’s pricing above, and they have many different packages to choose from so you can find the right likes for you.

Instafollowers.co

At Instafollowers.co, you can choose the specific number of likes you want to purchase, rather than choosing from a pre-set number.

ViralRace

ViralRace has been in the business for over 10 years, so they have plenty of experience with selling likes, followers, views and more.

Blastup

With Blastup, you can choose to have all of your likes delivered at once or to spread them out over time.

Mr. Insta

Mr. Insta provides a unique offering: free Instagram likes. But, if you want to generate them for longer than 48 hours, you’ll need to remember to re-run it, or pay for an automatic service.

Mr Insta website

Do Instagram Likes Still Matter?

Before we get into all the reasons why you shouldn’t buy Instagram likes, let’s talk about why Instagram likes still matter. Most importantly, Instagram likes play into the algorithm, because they show the platform that your audience is truly interested in the content you’re creating. The algorithm decides which posts are shown to users. Generally speaking, the more popular a post is, the more likely it is that Instagram will promote it to others. 

There are six primary factors the algorithm uses to determine which posts to show. These factors are relationship, interest, recency, frequency, usage and following. 

The one that’s most relevant to likes is interest. With interest, Instagram is deciding how much a particular user will likely care about your post. It relies on how a post is performing to make a guess about how others will respond to it. When your posts get more likes, it tells the algorithm that people are enjoying and are interested in your post. This increases its strength in the interest category. 

Obviously, likes aren’t the only thing at play here. There are still those five other factors that impact whether or not someone will be shown your post. All of these things make a difference in whether or not your post will be shown.

Instagram like

Why Can I Still See My Instagram Likes? Didn’t Instagram Hide Them?

If you remember back to 2019, Instagram began testing the possibility of hiding likes. With this feature, you would still be able to see the likes on your posts, but other people wouldn’t. The algorithm, though, would still know how many likes your post got and could use that information accordingly.

This feature was primarily used as a test, although it’s still active in some specific countries. Currently, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan and New Zealand have their likes hidden, but that doesn’t mean users in these countries don’t need to worry about their engagement anymore. Likes are still important for performing well on Instagram, even if no one can see them.

5 Reasons Why Buying Instagram Likes Is A Bad Idea

We’ve told you that we don’t recommend you buy Instagram likes, but let’s take a little time to dive in deeper and explain why we feel this way. We aren’t simply biased – there are five strong reasons that buying Instagram likes can hurt your brand, business and Instagram account, rather than improve it.

1. Results In Loss Of Credibility

When you’re present on Instagram, you’re working on building trust with your audience. Buying Instagram likes is a shady way of improving your engagement, and your followers know this. Many of them will care. If they find out that you’ve been purchasing likes (and it’s not that hard to find out), you could lose followers. More importantly, you could lose the trust your followers had in your brand.

2. You Could Get Your Account Banned

Instagram also doesn’t like it when you buy Instagram likes, rather than getting them organically. If the platform finds out that you purchased likes through an outside source, they could easily ban your account. If you don’t have an account anymore, your number of likes won’t even matter.

error message when your account is disabled for buying Instagram likes

3. You Won’t See An Increase In Sales

Chances are high that your brand is on Instagram to use it as a marketing tool. If that’s the case, you’re growing your following, posting consistently and engaging with followers as a way to increase sales for your business. When you purchase likes, you’re only increasing your likes. You won’t see that increase in engagement translate to more sales for your business, which is what you were aiming for in the first place. 

4. Brands & Influencers Won’t Work With You

While there’s a chance your followers might not catch onto your purchased likes for a while, brands and influencers you want to work with will notice immediately. Part of the reason a brand or influencer might work with you is because of your follower count and engagement rate. If that’s faked, it’s a red flag that will send many professionals away. 

5. Your Account Will Look Spammy

Finally, if you buy Instagram likes, it can even hurt your ability to attract more (real) followers in the future. Fake likes often come with spammy comments, which could hurt your credibility in the eyes of your existing followers or those who are considering following you. Chances are high that your follower to like ratio will have a huge drop off, as well, which can signal to potential followers that something shady is happening. 

instagrams message for removing inauthentic likes

How To Get More Instagram Likes (Without Buying Them)

Clearly if you’re considering buying Instagram likes, you’re looking for a way to increase them. Instagram likes are important for your overall performance on the app, so that makes sense. Don’t worry, we have tips for you that can help you generate real, organic likes from your followers. 

1. Create A Better Hashtag Strategy

Hashtags are sometimes underappreciated when it comes to improving your reach on Instagram. With a little research and a strong strategy, you can reach more potential followers with your content. At the very least you’ll find someone interested in that particular post, and you’re more likely to get a like from them.

Creating that hashtag strategy can sometimes feel difficult, though. It can be overwhelming trying to figure out where to get started. Begin with hashtags that are relevant to your industry and those that are relevant to the particular picture you’re posting.

You’ll want to add a mix of both, and you can use up to 30 hashtags on each post. If you’re stuck trying to come up with more hashtags to use, consider using a hashtag generator to help you identify similar hashtags that will likely be relevant to your audience.

hashtags in an Instagram post

2. Use A Quality Instagram Growth Service

Using an Instagram growth service like Kicksta that focuses on organic follower growth will get you more Instagram likes in time as your account grows more quality followers. When you have more followers that actually care about your content, they’ll be more likely to engage. 

Working with a reputable growth service like Kicksta, you’ll be confident that you’re attracting the right followers because you’re targeting them strategically. This is certainly a strategy that requires some patience, as it takes time to organically grow your following and for those followers to begin seeing and engaging with your posts. 

Kicksta dashboard
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3. Stay Active On Instagram

Think about it – the more posts you publish, the more chances your audience has to actually like and engage with your content. By staying active and publishing frequently, you can make sure that your audience has plenty of chances to see and like your posts. 

It’s also a good idea to publish different kinds of content on Instagram. Sometimes the app can feel like multiple platforms in one, especially when you consider Stories, Live, IGTV and Reels.

By creating content for each of these mini platforms, you’re giving your audience more chances of seeing you. Stories are probably the most important, since so many people enjoy looking through them. Reels are also popular right now because they’re so new.

Instagram Reel

4. Post Quality Pictures & Captions

People want to look at and engage with high-quality content. Lackluster photos will probably be scrolled past, and boring captions will lose your reader’s interest. Instead, choose captivating images or create compelling graphics. By posting scroll-stopping images you’ll have a better chance of having your audience like your photos based on looks alone. 

When you write your captions, tell an engaging story to keep your audience involved. Then, write a clear call to action that will make your audience want to follow through. The easiest way to do this is by asking your audience to like (or “double tap”) if they agree with you. This is a simple but compelling way to increase your likes.

caption on Instagram post

5. Run Giveaways & Contests 

Create a giveaway or a contest that requires your entrants to like your post. You can work with another brand or an influencer to promote the contest, or you can run it on your own. Make sure you talk about it enough, and make the prize something your audience really wants. It’s a good idea, though, to choose a prize that’s relevant to your business, rather than something that’s valuable but disconnected. This is important to ensure you’re attracting the right kind of people to enter your giveaway and engage with your post.

Instagram contest

6. Cross-Promote Your Content 

Talk about your posts on your other social media platforms, in your email newsletters or on your blog. Promote your Instagram account on your YouTube channel or on your podcast. Wherever you’re creating content, you can simultaneously be talking about your Instagram account. 

When you promote your Instagram content on other platforms, you’re talking to your audience that already knows and likes you. It’s fairly easy to show them why it’s worth it to come see and engage with your Instagram content if they already like the other content you’re producing.

7. Schedule Your Posts At A Specific Time

When you plan your content in advance and schedule your posts for a particular time, you can train your audience so they know when to expect to see new content from you. They’ll be ready to engage with your posts, since they’re going to be filled with quality content. By scheduling your posts you’ll also know that you won’t miss a day of posting. Scheduling helps you stick with your consistency since you’re planning in advance. 

scheduling Instagram posts with Hootsuite

Final Verdict

Buying Instagram likes is a bad plan, and it can cause you plenty of headaches. Instead, invest some time in these organic methods of attracting likes and followers. When you do, you’ll see quality growth on your page, and the Instagram algorithm will be much more content. Hopefully you’ll also see an increase in sales, since that’s one of the main goals of using Instagram marketing your business.

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