Every Instagram Stories Performance Benchmark You Need to Know

May 29, 2020

There isn't one single marketer out there who doesn't lose sleep over their brand's Instagram Stories completion rate. That’s why we’ve curated the complete Instagram Stories benchmarks. Understand how your performance compares to the industry standard and craft a winning strategy with these key insights:

  • The metrics that matter most to measuring and optimizing your Instagram Stories strategy.
  • Benchmarks for posting cadence, average daily stories engagements, and average monthly story card engagements for the fashion, retail, CPG, and consumer electronics industries.
  • The best practices and opportunities for each industry and the tools that can help maximize Instagram Stories success.

Instagram Stories is an integral part of any social media marketing strategy. The tool allows businesses to further elaborate on their brand story, enabling them to reach consumers with fresh, innovative, vertical video content. When Instagram Stories debuted in 2016 to rival Snapchat, no one could have predicted how much the feature’s growth and success would eclipse that of its originator. Brands across industries have fully embraced Stories to deepen connections with followers. The challenge? Measuring success.

With little insight into long-term performance trends offered in-app, brands can often only understand performance by measuring their own over time. While it's one thing to know how your own brand is doing, it's another to understand if your KPIs are going to move the needle in the competitive social space. And you can't do that if you have nothing to measure your results against. Enter: Instagram Stories benchmarks.

A Method to the Madness

The time has come to finally learn if your Instagram Stories performance measures up to the competition. To do so, we took a deep dive into the top brands on Instagram and analyzed their Instagram Stories data over a six month period. We looked at the metrics that matter most to give you stories best practices, KPIs to track performance against, and industry specific trends.

First thing’s first, we broke down what each metric means and what you should keep in mind when you’re analyzing the data.

Story Card: an individual video or image posted in a story.

Stories: represents the total number of story cards that have been posted by an individual brand or user in a day.

Reach: the number of unique times a story card or story sequence is viewed.

Impressions: the total number of times a story card or sequence is viewed.

Exit Rate: the percentage of people who exited a story card.

Tap Forward: the total number of times a user taps forward on a story card to view the next
story card.

Tap Back: the total number of times a user taps back on a story card to view the story card again or the story card before it.

Fashion Industry

In the fashion world, more angles are always better, making Instagram Stories the perfect place for fashion brands to showcase their latest looks. Fashion brands were some of the first to go all in on Instagram, so it comes as no surprise that the industry leads the way in posting cadence on Instagram Stories and daily reach and impressions. As a result, fashion brands see a higher daily exit rate than other industries, opening up the opportunity for brands to get a stronger understanding of what content styles resonate most with their online communities to keep their followers tapping for more.

Retail Industry

Instagram serves as a second storefront for brands in the retail sector—and Instagram Stories is a key component to creating a branded digital experience for consumers. Retail brands tap into the Stories feature to strengthen their brand story, share new product launches, and add an extra visual touchpoint to their campaigns. Not to mention, retailers are utilizing the feature to drive conversions, thanks to the swipe-up functionality. Similar to the fashion industry, retail brands maintain a high posting cadence compared to other sectors. In return, retailers see higher daily reach and impressions, but a higher-than-average daily exit rate.

CPG Industry

Instagram Stories serves as a medium to deepen connection with consumers outside of the supermarket aisle (or an Amazon cart). CPG brands turn to stories to show their products in action, and have mastered the art of slicing and dicing their video content. The leading CPG brands leverage their TV commercials, YouTube videos, and ecommerce content to feed their stories strategies. With social marketing becoming more important than ever, brands in the CPG industry have an opportunity to up the number of days they’re posting per month. With a sprinkle of data to back their content strategies, the result would be higher average daily reach and impressions.

Consumer Electronics Industry

Innovative consumer electronics brands are no stranger to captivating visuals that show off their top-notch products. Instagram Stories presents the opportunity for brands to tell a story around new products and initiatives and foster an engaged online community. Consumer electronics brands see the highest monthly story card engagements than any other industry, proving their focus on high-quality, innovative content is winning over Instagram users.

The Story Stats for Success

Now that you’re armed with the industry benchmarks, you have the framework you need to keep a pulse on your brand’s performance across the KPIs that matter most. With Dash Hudson’s content segmentation tool Story Boards, you can dive deep in your performance and understand which campaigns, series, and content styles are keeping your audience engaged and coming back for more. You can view your stories by individual posts or by day, fine-tune time periods to reflect your content calendar, and filter stories by performance to gain insights in seconds. It’s the sidekick you need to outperform those trusty industry KPIs.


Header image: @chanelofficial


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Jennifer Meech

Content Marketing Manager at Dash Hudson.