September 2018 update: we’ve now collected more recent data on the best times to post on social media, so everything is up to date. The optimal days and times to post on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn listed here reflect the latest algorithm changes too. Plus, we’ve created a beautiful infographic version of the best times to post that you can download at the bottom of the page.
What is the best the time to post on social media?
To post or not to post, that is the question. Well, of course you should post, but when?
If Hamlet were an angsty teen today, he’d definitely be pulling his hair out deciding what time to put up that perfect Instagram pic. Should I post this selfie in my royal garments on Friday at noon? Or should I wait until Saturday night?
If you’re trying to up your social media game in 2018, you don’t need to end up like that poor Danish prince. Here at Falcon.io, we’ve combed through the latest data to make your life a bit easier.
Here are the times and days most researchers think are peak hours for maximum engagement with your posts.
If you’re looking for more in-depth information on timing your posts for success, check out our previous article on the best times to post.
What is the best time to post on Facebook? 12-4 PM
Most of the latest research suggests that if you want eyeballs, clicks, and comments on your content, you’ll want to post to Facebook between high noon and 4 in the afternoon.
Maybe everyone should be hard at work then, but who are we to judge? 10 out of 13 studies we consulted showed that Facebook usage and engagement peaks during early- to mid-afternoon hours.
The best day(s) to post: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
The week is almost over and everyone is feeling pretty good. Not only do Fridays account for 17% of all Facebook comments and 16% of all likes and shares, they also have the highest happiness index of any day of the week at 10% (check out this compilation of research over at TruConversion).
User engagement is at an overall high on Fridays, particularly for brands, but Thursdays are a close second.
Interestingly, a recent study by Unmetric found that the number of interactions per post was highest on Wednesdays for brands, although brands post less on Wednesdays on average. So if you want a great ratio of posts to interactions, try posting on Wednesday more often.
What is the best time to post on Instagram? 11 AM-1 PM, 2 AM (really!)
While it may sound hard to believe, the most-cited posting time to optimize engagement with your brand is actually 2 AM.
I know what you’re thinking. Who’s checking Instagram at 2 AM (unless they’re going through a really bad breakup)?
But that’s just the thing. Everyone is posting to Instagram during the day, so your content has a lower chance of standing out from the crowd.
If you catch your competitors sleeping, on the other hand, your Instagram posts will rack up engagements and emerge at the top of users’ feeds by morning (even with the latest IG algorithm change).
Meanwhile, lunchtime is also a peak time for user engagement on IG—and it’s not just because people are uploading pictures of their sandwiches. People are simply more likely to check their feeds on a break from their busy workdays.
Runner-up: 5 PM
The best day(s) to post: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Wednesday is the peak of the week, and it’s also the peak day to post to Instagram if you’re looking to rack up clicks, favorites, and comments. And no wonder. Halfway to Friday, everyone is looking for some gorgeous Insta shots to get them through the week.
All other weekdays except Tuesdays tend to have solid engagement rates too. But beware of posting on Sundays, as you’re unlikely to get many likes or comments then.
What is the best time to post on Twitter? 12 PM
Twitter is perfect for dishing out tasty little bite-sized nuggets of content when people get a break from their fast-paced days.
With that in mind, it makes sense that engagement with brands’ Twitter posts peaks at noon when everyone’s having lunch and from 5 to 6 PM, right after people clock out from their jobs.
Runner-up: 5 PM – 6 PM
The best day(s) to post: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
Generally, putting out Twitter content during the workweek will be your best bet, especially if you’re in the B2B sector. By Friday, a lot of people have already zoned out—and Saturday and Sunday tend to be even worse in terms of Twitter interactions.
Twitter usage and engagement is especially high on Wednesdays and Thursdays, so keep that in mind when planning your next post. Plus, Wednesdays generate the highest clickthrough rates and the greatest number of retweets of any day of the week.
What is the best time to post on LinkedIn? 5-6 PM
LinkedIn sees the most clicks, shares, and comments occur right as people are getting off work.
Maybe you’re finally remembering to update your profile after 20 years and changing your education from “the school of hard knocks” to an actual school. Or maybe you’re congratulating your former classmate on that amazing new job that you’re totally not jealous of.
Either way, most LinkedIn users are logging on just before they head home for the day. Quite a few also browse the professional network at the start of the workday and on their lunch breaks as well.
Runners-up: 8 AM-12 PM
The best day(s) to post: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
People prefer to check their LinkedIn feeds during the week rather than over the weekend. Plus, posts made on Mondays and Fridays just don’t get as much engagement as posts published during the middle of the week.
Maybe people are tired on Mondays and by Friday they’re already dreaming of winning big at that high-stakes Saturday night poker tournament.
Whatever the reason for these trends, you should focus your LinkedIn content strategy on the dead center of the week. Tuesdays in particular generate the most clicks and shares on the network.
Getting in the time zone
When should you post if you’re attempting to reach consumers or businesses in multiple time zones at once? One solution is to post at times that hit peak engagement hours in two or more time zones.
For example, if you want to reach consumers on Facebook at peak times in EST, CST, MST, and PST all at once, you could schedule your post for 4 pm EST. It will then appear in people’s feeds at 3 PM CST, 2 PM MST, and 1 PM PST—all optimal hours for posting.
Alternatively, you can even create ads targeted specifically at states in each of these time zones with Facebook Ads.
But what if my audience is different?
How do you know which time zones to focus on? And how can you be sure that these times and days will work for your specific follower base? After all, there is no one-size-fits-all solution that guarantees the right people will see your posts.
The simple truth is that you need to know your audience. And that’s where Falcon.io comes in.
With Falcon’s Publish module, you can see your average number of fans online at any time of the day. And our content calendar makes scheduling your posts for peak times easier than ever. Falcon.io helps you find your audience and reach them at just the right time–without all the guesswork.
Sources: CoSchedule, Adobe Spark, TruConversion, HuffPost, SurePayroll, Later, Maria Haltoff, Oberlo, and Add People.