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instagram stories analytics

This article is all about data.

We are all aware that Instagram stories in a very short time have acquired the attention of every marketer in the world.

Therefore, we have interesting stats to prove why this social media format has taken such an important place in almost every marketing strategy.

Here you will find useful statistics and insights, starting from general data about the overall usage of Instagram stories, to real case studies that give evidence about the performance of the Instagram story ads.

Related to this, here are the main topics in this article:

5 General Statistics About Instagram Stories

These are official statistics published by the Instagram team about the vast usage and adoption of Instagram stories not just from regular users, but also by businesses from all over the world.

We’ve outlined these 5 data points to understand the power of the Instagram stories and why this format is gaining so much traction.

So, here are the main stats showing how many people use Instagram stories and how popular this format is:

  1. Instagram stories are used by 500 million users every day (Instagram internal data, January 2019)
  2. One third (1/3) of the most viewed Instagram Stories are from businesses
  3. 50% of businesses on Instagram worldwide created at least one story during a typical month
  4. 96% of US marketers surveyed plan to continue using Stories ads in the next 6 months

And if this format is compared to the current, most popular format such as the Facebook and the Instagram feed, there is a viable prediction that sharing with Instagram stories will surpass sharing through Feed views.

instagram stories stats

Huge, right?

Other tech giants are also following the trends with the recent launches of LinkedIn Stories and Google Stories.

Well, let’s see if this strong number can really impact your usage of the stories and if you can get some of the results that this format is promising.

How to Access Your Stories Insights?

In the previous section, we’ve seen that Instagram stories are generally enduring format. But in order to see this for ourselves, we need to start monitoring Instagram insights for our own stories.

Similar to the analytics section for your account and Instagram posts, your Stories insights can found in the top right corner of your Instagram business profile, by tapping the “Insights” button.

If you still have not seen the Insights section in your Instagram account, here are the steps on how to access them.

Please note: before you start looking for the Insights section, make sure your Instagram profile is converted to a business profile by connecting your Instagram account with your official Facebook business page. Once you do this you will get the Insights option in your Instagram profile.

There are a few ways how you can view your stories statistics, depending if you want to view the insights for the current/live story or you want to check historical data about the previous stories.

To access the Instagram stories of the active story, follow these steps:

  1. Tap on the current story
  2. Swipe up the story you are viewing
  3. It will open a bottom drawer view with the story insights
  4. Tap the (eye) icon to view the actual Instagram users who have viewed the story
  5. Tap the (chart) icon to view the insights for the story
active story analytics

If you want to access the insights for Instagram Highlights, the above steps are the same. Just go to your profile and tap on a Highlight, swipe up and tap the chart icon explained before.

To view Instagram stories analytics and insights for all your previous stories, follow these steps:

  1. Go to your profile
  2. Tap the top right (menu) icon
  3. Tap the Insights menu item
instagram insights

Next, you can see how to access the historical data about all your stories.

Just follow these steps:

  • In the Insights screen, tap on the Content menu
  • Scroll down to the Stories section
  • Tap the See All > link
instagram stories insights

In this section, you are able to view insights for each particular story. You will notice that in the layout the stories are organized based on the slides and a metric is displayed in the bottom middle.

Each metric can be changed by clicking on the top metric blue word that is selected at the moment. Here is how to do this.

change story metric

What are the Instagram Stories Specific Insights?

Once you access your Instagram stories insights, you will see some specific data items that are very unique to the story format. In order to understand their meaning and how Instagram measure them, please check the official Instagram stories insights definition for the most common metrics:

  • Impressions – The total number of views your story has received
  • Reach – The number of unique accounts who saw your story
  • Taps forward – The number of times someone taps to skip to the next piece of your story
  • Taps back – The number of times someone taps to go back to a previous piece of your story
  • Replies – The number of times people send messages through the Send Message option on your story
  • Swipe away – The number of times someone swipes to skip to the next account’s story
  • Exits – The number of times someone leaves the stories viewer to return to their feed
  • Next story – The number of taps to the next account’s story

In the preview of the story insights, you will also see a section with Interactions, that might include the following data points: Replies, Website clicks and Profile visits.

Another one worth mentioning here is the Sticker Taps, which shows the number of times people have tapped on a hashtag, location tag, mention, or product sticker on your Story.

It is good to know that Instagram shows this data since the moment you’ve converted your personal to a business account. So for any previous stories, you will not able to view their insights.

New Instagram stories metrics

Instagram is rolling our constantly new features and related metrics.

Some of the newest metrics are Directions, Calls, Texts, Emails – which are related to the effect that Instagram stories had on the action performed on your profile CTA buttons.

How to analyze Instagram Stories Data?

In the following text, we will show you a few tips on how to analyze the metrics of your Instagram stories and will answer some common questions that you might have about the stories’ data you will see in your account.

Why impressions and reach are different metrics?

The difference comes from the fact that a single person can view your story multiple times. So if they view the story 5 times you will get 5 more impressions.

And when it comes to the reach metric, it represents the number of unique people who viewed the story, regarding the number of times they viewed the story.

What is better, taps back or taps forward?

In short, taps backward. Why? Well if people tap more backward that can signal that they have viewed more of your story and that is interesting, so they go back and spend more time on the story.

Taps forward can signal that maybe some parts of the story slide is boring or not giving enough information so people want to jump straight to the end in order to get the idea of the story.

But please note that on the slides where you have arrows or explicit call to action to navigate further, the taps forward can be increasingly high if compared with other slides. So that will be an expected result of the action you want the story slide to achieve.

How Exits are calculated?

By definition, exits occur when a person leaves your story. This does not mean that they went back or tapped forward. This means that they:

  • Tapped the x icon
  • Swiped to the next story of another account
  • Closed the Instagram app
  • Swiped down to their feed.

So the conclusion is that your primer goal of the story is to have as a lower percentage of the exits when compared with the reach.

How to measure clicks and CTRs to my website?

To measure click-through rates or the number of clicks coming from the stories to your website, you can include a UTM type of link for your ‘See more’ button.

In order to measure the Instagram stories performance more precisely, you can track the number of clicks coming to your website in Google Analytics.

In many cases, this See more button is still not available, so if you do not have this option you can try adding @ mention to lead directly to your profile, where you can add the UTM link in the bio section.

Instagram Stories Platform

Generate, analyze and embed Instagram stories on any website.

How to aggregate and store Instagram Stories Data?

If you ever had the chance to analyze the success of your organic Instagram stories, you will come to the conclusion that the current Insights section described above is created for smaller users or business accounts who probably do not need to programmatically analyze the success of their stories.

But, if you want to have a professional approach in the stories insights analysis, you will need a third-party tool or software that will help you do more with your stories data.

The Instagram stories platform, EmbedStories tackles this issue and addresses the problem through a variety of functionalities that can help to analyze stories’ data at a larger scale.

Here are a few features that EmbedStories provides:

  • Generate automatically stories and their Instagram data points
  • Collect and store this data in one place with easily accessible functions
  • Options to embed the stories on any website
  • Unique data points for the success of your stories on your website
  • Boost Instagram Stories into Ads
stories insights comparison

Here is a quick view in a comparison mode for the insights of the generated stories in the EmbedStories system:

Regarding the Instagram analytics of the stories embedded on your website, here is a sample view of the report about the performance of a story beyond Instagram:

embedstories story analytics

Instagram Story Ads Analytics

When it comes to using the Stories format to create and boost sponsored ads, the results that most of the companies are getting are pretty awesome.

It seems that this vertical, mobile format is responding more to the user’s behavior, so having a native ad that can engage with them in a full screen makes total sense to drive great results.

We’ve analyzed few success stories that are published by Instagram on their official business page, and based on this survey, we’ve come to the following common statistics that can be expected if you run Instagram stories ads:

  • More purchases with ads in Stories compared to feed
  • Lower cost per acquisition with ads in Stories compared to feed
  • Larger % of prospecting purchases attributable to ads in Instagram Stories
  • Increased lift in ad recall and overall  awareness

Additionally, one important metric that marketers usually define for their Instagram marketing objectives is to increase website clicks is the Link Clicks metric.

This comes from the common practice to create Instagram story ads just to get the CTA option that allows you to add a custom link in the story. This is the main use case for Instagram accounts that still do not have the option to add links to their organic stories.

Here are other Instagram Story Ads metrics you will need to monitor:

  • Results: Link Clicks
  • Cost per Result
  • Result Rate
  • Result Rate
  • Unique link clicks
  • Landing page views
  • Relevance score

To access the insights of the Instagram story ads you will need to go to your Facebook Ads Manager account and view the Chart data for the Instagram story ad. The main report that you will need to monitor looks like the sample below:

story ads insights


Instagram stories are the most native format that has proven to provide great results for digital marketers, and many businesses already are incorporating them as a vital part of their content strategy. We’ve seen that there are lots of unique metrics for this format, that need to be monitored and analyzed in order to improve every future campaign that will include both organic or sponsored Instagram stories.

Instagram Stories Platform

Generate, analyze and embed Instagram stories on any website.

Avatar for Katerina Bojkov
Katerina Bojkov

Co-Founder of EmbedSocial and Head of Growth. A previous owner of a Facebook Partner Company and a digital marketing agency. Marketing API geek and a Call of Duty fan.