There are lots of mobile applications and third-party tool to help you manage your Instagram account - around 800 of them! These complementary apps mean that using a mobile phone for managing your Instagram account is convenient but it is not always the most efficient way of doing things. Luckily there are other options available for those of us who need to use these services at work or from our desktop computer.
We have compiled a list of the best free desktop apps for streamlining your Instagram marketing and getting the best out of this platform:
Using trending and relevant hashtags is your best chance to maximise the reach of your posts on Instagram. The only problem is that identifying the best hashtags for your business can be a very time consuming process. For Display Purposes Only is a basic hashtag research tool that helps you discover related tags to your chosen topics. Simply type in some of your preferred tags and let their generator suggest a selection of related hashtags. Use these suggestions to expand your research or set the search limit to 30 and cut and paste straight into your caption.
Ever wish you could blitz through liking all of the posts to your branded hashtag without having to solicit dodgy third party apps or robots? Everliker is a chrome extension that operates through whatever Instagram account you are currently logged in as on your desktop. It never asks for any login details and only uses your computer and local IP address to perform the liking function. Because it is coming from you directly, this activity doesn’t compromise the safety or your account or suggest to Instagram that you are employing automated or external practises.
Cost: Free for for 700 likes per day
Flume is a simple desktop app that enables you to easily use and engage with Instagram from your Mac. The free version allows you to use Instagram as you would from their own web app but with the added bonus of being able to send and reply to direct messages. There is currently no simple way to upload content to your Instagram account from your desktop, unless you use a third-party scheduling app or activate the mobile version of Instagram from your computer. For a one time $10 upgrade Flume will allow you to post content directly to Instagram and activate the software on several computers with multiple accounts.
Cost: Free or $10 to upload or use multiple accounts
There are lots of great photo editing apps for mobile but for those who don’t want to invest in expensive software for their desktop, Pixlr is a great alternative. This web based photo editor has just the right amount of features that makes it easy to use but still has some powerful functions. Those familiar with Photoshop will appreciate the familiar layout and find it easy and intuitive to use.
Canva is a nifty piece of design software that you can use from your browser to create branded content your audience will love. Canva's range of over 8,000 free templates is vast and contain the most on-trend options you'll find in any of the free options on the market. Canva now supports video content and supplies free stock photos, icons and even animated gifs. Perfect for creating unique Instagram stories and making your profile pop with eye-catching Highlight covers.
Cost: Free or AU$13.99 per month for premium
There are a lot of scheduling and posting tools out there and for desktop users Later is one of the best. Although this service has many more benefits than just the ability to plan your instagram posts in advance such as comment moderation and saved hashtag collections. Ever wondered how some people can get actual paragraph spacing in their Instagram captions? Somehow the wizards at Later can make this happen for you. Other bonuses of this software their own Linkin.bio feature which a landing page that looks like your Instagram page and displays your content as clickable images. This makes it simple to create a clickable and shoppable Instagram feed that links your audience to your products.
Cost: Free for 1 account and 30 posts per month
With Instagram limiting accounts to only use one link in their bio and not enabling users to share clickable links it is vital to use your link wisely. Linktree creates a handy dashboard for you to save multiple links with appropriate headlines that is easy for your audience to navigate.
Cost: Free for 10 links or upgrade to pro for $6 per month
If you want to look at detailed daily statistics on your own or a competitors Instagram account, you'll get the full blow-by-blow on Social Blade. You don't have a lot of control over how you view the data but it is a handy way to see how your account is performing each day. Social Blade is also a good place to start if you are interested in working with influencers and wish to pursue a partnership with them or invite them to promote your brand online. Before you do this you might want to assess the integrity of their audience. Using a tool like Social Blade will allow you to see if they have any unusual activity on their account such as mass followings which could indicate bought or low-quality followers.
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