Best Instagram Reels Length to Get More Views and Shares

Updated on June 26, 2024

7 min to read

Content Writer

Published July 19, 2022

Best Instagram Reels Length to Get More Views and Shares
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(Published on July 19, 2022 | Updated on September 11, 2023)

Your Instagram Reels length can impact the outcome of your Instagram marketing initiatives.

Depending on your goals, whether you’re looking to get more views, engagements, or conversions, there’s an ideal Reels length that tends to generate great results.

And that’s what we’ll cover in this guide.

(Must read: IG Reels Tutorial: The Ultimate Guide [Tips, Steps, Tools])

Table of contents

What you’ll learn:

  • What is a Reel on Instagram?
  • 3 Reasons why length matters for Instagram Reels?
  • Best Instagram Reels length for views
  • Best Instagram Reels length for shares
  • Best Instagram Reels length for comments 
  • Best Instagram Reels length for conversions
  • Best practices to get more from your Instagram Reels
  • What is the best time to post Reels on Instagram?
  • Post high-performing Instagram Reels now

What is a Reel on Instagram?

A Reel on Instagram is a short video that has their own tab on the IG navigation bar.

When choosing a length for your Reel on Instagram, the platform will offer four options: 15, 30, 60, or 90 seconds.

Unlike Instagram Stories will automatically disappear after 24 hours, a Reel will only disappear once the user deletes it.

3 Reasons why length matters for Instagram Reels?

The length of your Instagram Reels plays a crucial role in its success and engagement. 

Here are a few reasons why:

1. Capture user attention

Now, more than ever, the attention span of internet users is much shorter.

According to a study conducted by Microsoft, the average human attention span dropped to 8 seconds in 2015 compared to 12 seconds in 2000.

Given the audience’s shorter attention span, shorter Reels are more likely to capture and maintain viewer attention throughout your content.

2. Audience engagement

Shorter Instagram Reels increase the likelihood that your audience will watch the entire video, signaling IG’s algorithm to prioritize your content for higher engagement and visibility.

HubSpot reports that videos under 30 seconds achieve the highest engagement rates on Instagram.

3. Shareability

Concise and engaging Reels tend to get shared more than longer videos.

Considering how most people are using their mobile devices, this makes absolute sense.

People not only have limited screen time but also find it much more convenient to consume and finish watching short videos on mobile devices.

Best Instagram Reels length for views (3-15 seconds long)

The ideal length of Instagram Reels for maximum views is anything over three seconds—but as close to it as possible.

Several studies talk about people’s diminishing attention spans. That’s why short videos get more views overall in social media marketing, including Instagram Reels. 

Maxing out the 90-second time limit for Instagram Reels may discourage viewers from watching the entirety of your videos. Even if they watched till the end, they might already be disinterested at that point.

For higher views, create short videos that conclude the key takeaways in 15 seconds or less. Mention Calls-To-Action (CTAs) like sharing, commenting, tagging, or saving to increase views in the long run.  

Best Instagram Reels length for shares (around 18 seconds long)

Talk about your core message within 15 seconds, then add three seconds for a CTA focused on shares. That brings your Instagram Reels length to about 18 seconds. 

Add a simple message like “Like and share this video if it helped.” If you create valuable and user-oriented Reels, most viewers will be happy to oblige. 

Best Instagram Reels length for comments (7-18 seconds long)

Generating comments with Instagram Reels isn’t a question of length. It’s how you structure the main content and CTAs. 

Be more conversational and ask questions during the Reel’s main video. In the CTA, drop a one-liner saying, “Let me know what you think in the comments section.”

Make viewers feel like they’re a part of the conversation to encourage them to write a comment or leave a direct message.

Let users express their thoughts and gather feedback about your client’s products, social media content, and more. 

Respond to them with a unified social media management platform like Vista Social to build a healthy and engaged following. 

Best Instagram Reels length for conversions (30-90 seconds long)

Instagram Reels made for conversions target high-quality prospects. 

These are Instagram users with a proven interest in your client’s business. They are eager to learn more about the solution to their problems or your client’s products/services, so don’t be afraid to upload 90-second Reels.

However, don’t make 90 seconds your target. If you can deliver your message within 15, 30, or 60 seconds, then do it.

Regardless of the messages you plan to convey, try to keep your Reels as short as possible.

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Best practices to get more from your Instagram Reels

Here are additional tips to get more views, shares, comments, and conversions with Instagram Reels:    

1. Analyze your competitors

There’s no one-size-fits-all Instagram Reels strategy, but what worked for your clients’ competitors might also work for your clients. 

Use the built-in search bar to look for similar brands.

Screenshot of IG search tool
Image Source:
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On their profile page, switch to the “Reels” tab and look for their most-viewed Reels. These should be easy to spot since the Instagram app and website displays the number of views in each Reel’s thumbnail.

Screenshot of IG most viewed tool from @mymillennialmoney
Image Source:, @mymillennialmoney

Use a separate timer app to measure the length of their top-performing Reels. Also, pay attention to elements like Reel formats, thumbnails, text overlays, and hashtags. 

2. Schedule Instagram Reels 

Schedule Instagram Reels through Vista Social so you can align your Reels’ publishing time with the activity patterns of your client’s audience.

Vista Social is one of the very first social media management tools that support direct publishing to Instagram Reels. Unlike other platforms that only send notifications to social media managers when it’s time to publish.

Screenshot of Vista Social's Publish Tool

As a bonus, Vista Social also lets you manage your client’s accounts on other social media platforms. It’s the “Swiss Army Knife” for social media marketers who handle multiple client campaigns at once. 

To pick the best posting times for your Reels, Vista Social analyzes user engagement patterns on previous posts. 

These times are easily accessed when scheduling Reels via the Publish tool.

Screenshot of Vista Social's Publish Tool recommended time

3. Make shortness a selling point

Invite more users to view your Instagram Reels by highlighting the shortness of your posts. 

For example, use phrases like “10-second hacks” instead of “easy-to-use tips.” You can also mention the duration of your Reel in the thumbnail or use hashtags like “#5secondhack” to get more viewers.

A few more things you can try: 

  • Get straight to the point. Don’t ruin the experience with a long-winded intro. 
  • Experiment with lines like “in 5 seconds or less” and “the fastest way.” 
  • Provide a link to a more detailed post (if necessary).
Screenshot of IG Reel from @tehreemthefreelancer
Image Source:, @tehreemthefreelancer

4. Create evergreen Reels  

Instagram lets users save Reels so they can view them later. This translates to more views over time, better brand loyalty, and a more authoritative presence on Instagram. 

To encourage users to save your client’s Reels, focus on evergreen topics and video content formats. 

Think of videos that users can repeatedly watch and still be valuable, like checklists, buyer’s guides, and quick tutorials. 

You can also show Instagram users a “behind the scenes” look at your client’s company—or, at least, an interview with the team. These Reels provide evergreen value to prospects who care about company culture. 

5. Combine Instagram Reels with Stories

Watching Instagram Reels allows users to learn more about a company—thanks to the extended maximum length. They’re perfect for evergreen video content that can be published on your client’s profile feed, shared on a website, or saved by users. 

Despite the default time limit of only 15 seconds, Instagram Stories improve user engagement through interactive stickers. Their 24-hour time limit also makes Stories feel more compelling and urgent than Reels or regular Instagram posts.

If you’re unsure about Instagram Reels vs Story, remember that you don’t have to choose one over the other. Use both for their intended purposes to help your clients reach more users and dominate their competitors.

6. Storyboard

Before creating your first Instagram Reel, try to draft a storyboard or outline to help you design your content.

This way, you can plan your content effectively.

Make sure that the length of your Instagram Reels is based on the desirable length suggested by the studies above.

Digestible Instagram content allows your audience to engage and watch the whole video.

7. Include elements to hook the viewer

Have you ever experienced “Love at First Sight”? If yes, the same concept should be applied when creating your Instagram Reels.

Make sure that the intro of your Instagram Reels grabs the attention of your audience.

To grab the attention of your audience, you can use a surprising fact, an intriguing scene, or any eye-catching visuals.

The study conducted by Wistia shows that audiences may keep watching or abandon the video within the first 10 seconds.

3. Use transitions and effects

Transitions and effects are some of the key factors that will make your Instagram Reels catchy.

Instagram’s platform offers functionalities that help you create visually appealing content.

Utilize these tools to design engaging and dynamic Instagram Reels, which will enhance the user’s overall experience.

4. Sound optimization

When creating an engaging Instagram Reel, keep your content understandable and visually appealing even if the user does not turn on the sound.

This will help your audience who wish to play the Reels without the sound or background music.

Adding subtext or text overlays, cues, or captions will also help the audience engage even in silent video Reels. 

5. Hashtags and captions

Learning the power of hashtags and captions will help your Instagram Reels be discovered by users and improve the visibility of your content.

Hashtags and powerful captions will also help your Reels reach a wider audience and increase audience engagement.

What is the best time to post Reels on Instagram?

The best time to post Reels on Instagram is between 9 AM to 12 PM. (From Monday to Thursday.) However, the time could change depending on the dynamics of your target audience. Study your audience engagement to ascertain the best time to post Reels on your IG profile.

Post high-performing Instagram Reels now

Vista Social helps you schedule Instagram Reels at the best times for maximum engagement. 

Automate a posting schedule and track user engagement for sustainable social media growth. Make it all happen today with a free Vista Social account.

About the Author

Content Writer

Jimmy Rodela is a social media and content marketing consultant with over 9 years of experience, with work appearing on sites such as, Yahoo, SEMRush, and SearchEnginePeople. He specializes in social media, content marketing, SaaS, small business strategy, marketing automation, and content development.

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