In this article, we’ll cover detailed answers to the age-old question “what are the best times to post on social media?” with the help of our panel of marketing experts and examples from popular brands on social media.

High engagement. More conversions. Better ROI.

Isn’t that what you and your clients want from your social media posts? 

Great content and large followings can help, but not everyone manages to get the results they were hoping for.

You might be doing everything right, but one mistake can ruin it all:

Not posting social media content at the right time. ⏰

What do I mean by the right time? 

The time when your audience or clients’ audience is awake, active, and using social media.

GIF of Fry from Futurama browsing Facebook - Best times to post on social media article

Keep reading to discover metrics, tips, and proven strategies that will help you find your best times to post on social media in 2021. You’ll be swimming in likes, tweets, and follows in no time. 🤭

Table Of Contents

Do social media posting times really matter?

Yes!

Firstly, because of increased reach.

When you post at the right time, a time when most of your followers are active, you’re automatically improving your posts’ reach. 

When your post reaches significantly more people, there are high chances some of them will engage with your post, too. And the higher your engagement (especially within the first hour or two of posting), the more your post will get shown to others.

That’s the beauty of social media algorithms.

Reach and engagement are intricately woven together on social media.

Now, this data that you collect, i.e. the days and times when your followers are most active, also helps to shape and optimize your future social media marketing campaigns. 

So it’s essential for businesses to track their best times to post on the various social media networks they publish to. 

What’s the best time to post on social media?

Mr Bean Best Time to Post GIF from Tenor

In short, there isn’t a “best time.” 😅

There’s no one-size fits all approach to this. Every industry and business has different ‘best times’ on social media. There are so many variables that come into play, a few key ones being:

  1. The social network you are publishing to
  2. The target audience you are trying to reach
  3. The geographical locations you’re targeting 
  4. Holidays
  5. Seasonality

However, when you’re just starting out, its time consuming to figure out peak hours for your brand or your client’s brand (and if you’re managing multiple brands, things can get chaotic, fast).

And if you don’t have a lot of followers or a lot of content already uploaded, it can get even trickier to try and make sense of your social media analytics.

So if you’re getting started, the best approach is to post at proven best times on social media networks, and then track your data to see which of these times work best for your audience.

TIP: If you are a HeyOrca Social Media Calendar Tool user, you can use the Best Times to Post Feature to automatically schedule posts at high-engagement times on each of the social media accounts you manage.

Let’s dive right in and see what times generally reap the best results on different social media platforms. 👇

Best times to post on Facebook

Best times to post on Facebook in 2021 - 9AM to 2PM EST for B2B brands and 11AM to 1PM EST for B2C Brands

Whether you’re managing B2B businesses or B2C businesses, Facebook needs to be a critical part of your social media marketing mix. You cannot afford to ignore it. Especially since it has 1.73 billion users visiting it on a daily basis.

But with more and more businesses joining Facebook to promote their brands, it’s essential you post the right content at the right time to take advantage of this massive userbase.

Post at the wrong time, and your post will get no love. 💔

So what does data show us?

Best Facebook Posting Times for B2B Brands

For B2B brands, the best times to post on Facebook are generally between 9AM and 2PM EST on weekdays. 

Brian Robben, CEO of Robben Media, shares, “Being in the B2B space, we find the best time to post is 10 AM EST and 4 PM EST. Reason is most business professionals will check their email and settle into their day for the first two hours, then check social media.”

Posting on Mondays and Fridays is a little risky since it’s the start and the end of a work week and can get a little hectic, but posting on the other three days usually gets good results. 

HubSpot, for example, usually posts on Facebook at 11AM EST. 

When it comes to marketing, _________ is more important than ever.

Posted by HubSpot on Saturday, January 23, 2021

While Slack usually posts between 12 AM EST and 1PM EST.

Does anyone know how many hours are in a year? We’re pretty sure it’s fewer than 9,000, which is the number of hours the Intuit QuickBooks support team has saved by using Slack. 🤯 https://bit.ly/39wvGqH

Posted by Slack on Thursday, January 14, 2021

The worst day to post on Facebook for B2B businesses is typically Sunday, as most people don’t want to be reminded of work on the last day of their weekend.

Unless you’re posting a fun post that doesn’t relate to work, in which case, it’s fine to post on Sundays, too!

Best Facebook Posting Times for B2C Brands

For B2C brands, the best times to post on Facebook are generally between 11AM EST to 1 PM EST on weekdays sees highest reach and engagement. However, posting on weekends is a good bet, too.

Amazon usually posts between 11AM EST to 1PM EST, too. 

UPS delivers their posts at the same time. 😏

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Best times to post on Instagram

Best Times to Post on Instagram in 2021 - 9AM to 11AM EST or 2PM to 4PM EST

With over 1 billion people using Instagram every month, and each user spending an average of 30 minutes per day on the platform, posting at the right time can make all the difference on Instagram.

So when should you post?

According to different studies, the best time to post on Instagram is between 2 PM EST to 4 PM EST, and 9 AM EST to 11 AM EST.

And Tuesdays and Thursdays work best, especially if you’re targeting working people.

As Sharon Van Donkelaar of Expandi.io explains, “From my experience, the best time to post is Tuesday or Thursday afternoon for many reasons.

First of all, Monday is never a good day to post since everyone is catching up on their work and starting the week. The middle of the week is when people are tired and less likely to absorb information or pay that much attention to what you post. Finally, there are Fridays and the weekend, where the attention of most people is away from social media and engaged in other activities that don’t involve the internet.

So that leaves us Tuesday and Thursday as the perfect in-between days where the general consciousness is at rest and has the spare time to pay attention to your posts.”

Best times to post on Twitter

best times to post on Twitter in 2021 - Mondays & Thurdays between 1PM and 3PM EST

With over 500 million Tweets published everyday, there’s a lot of noise to compete with on Twitter!

Seriously. That’s 6,000 Tweets per second! 🤯

Posting at the right time is especially important here.

According to various studies, the best times to post on Twitter (based on the highest average click-through rates) are between Mondays and Thursdays, 1 pm and 3 pm on Twitter. 

So if you’re looking to encourage your followers into taking an action, this would be a great time to post.

And as Chris Von Wilpert, Founder of Content Mavericks, says, “The average lifetime of a tweet is between 15-20 minutes, which means you can post as often as you want on Twitter.”

This emphasizes the importance of Tweeting at the right time. But, it also serves as a reminder to post fresh content constantly and keep a close watch on your audience’s peak times on Twitter – times where you get the best engagement.

Best times to post on LinkedIn

best times to post on LinkedIn in 2021 - weekdays between 9AM and 1PM EST

Studies show that the best time to post on LinkedIn is during work hours on weekdays between 9AM to 1PM EST. 

According to Christina Hager, President of Ovations Digital, “there is usually a spike around lunchtime (11-1), and this makes sense – people are checking in while they transition to or from lunch.”

Try to avoid posting on Sundays and Mondays. 

A lot of people avoid looking at work apps on the weekend, and Sunday even more so. Mondays can get a little hectic because it’s the start of a work week. 

However, experiment with different times and days since some brands see a lot of engagement in the evening too, after work hours. 

Jenny, at Lumino Digital, shares, “Many people assume that LinkedIn, known as the social channel for professionals, posts work best during work hours, but we routinely see evening posts and weekend content perform well.”

Best times to post on Pinterest

best times to post on Pinterest in 2021 - evenings between 8PM and 11PM or 2AM and 4AM EST

Did you know 89% of people on Pinterest use it for purchase inspiration?

If you’re not posting on the right time and reaching all these people, you’re leaving money on the table.

So when exactly should you schedule Pins on Pinterest?

According to Oberlo, the best times to post on Pinterest is outside of work hours, mainly between 8PM to 11PM and 2AM to 4AM. 

Oberlo stats on best times to post on Pinterest in 2021

Since Pinterest is largely an entertainment app, it makes sense to post content when people are sitting down and unwinding from a stressful work day. 

As David Ciccarelli of Voices shares, “Pinterest’s algorithm prefers fresh content, as a result, newly published blogs will be given priority scheduling.

From this research, you too can determine that when it comes to Pinning, consistency is far more important than volume. To start, begin with 3-6 pins shared 2x per week (Tuesday and Thursday).”

How to find the best time to post on social media?

Learning about general best times to post on social media is all well and good. It’s a great starting point.

But here are a couple of other ways you can get a better handle of the best times to post on your brand’s or client’s brand’s social accounts.

Start by understanding your target audience

General stats for posting times can help give you a solid baseline, especially if you’re just starting to build your social following, but every audience is unique.

Let’s say you’re marketing a service that offers B2B software for stock brokers. You need to take into consideration that peak trading times are between 9:30AM EST and 11:30 EST.

Or if you’re marketing a service to independent bar owners. Do you think your posts will get any love on Saturday nights?

In order to boost your social engagements and post your content at the best times, you need to learn more about your audience.

Things like:

  • Their work hours
  • Their social media habits
  • The types of content they engage with
  • The channels they frequent
  • Where they are located

Getting the low-down on your target audience will help you make more informed decisions on the type of content you create, the social channels you publish to, and the best times to schedule your posts.

Looking to streamline your social media and client approval process?

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Analyze your social media metrics to discover best times to post

The best way to find out the best times to post is simple. Start posting.

Post at various times, on various platforms and see what kind of engagements you are getting.

It’s always better to prioritize posting times based on your social metrics rather than using generalized best times.

As Tyler Boyd of Squeeze says, “connecting with the followers you already have will be better for your business than courting the invisible masses.”

How do you find out what is the best time for your and your client’s brands? 

Through social media Insights. Each social media platform offers analytics and insights into your audience’s activity.

Or you can use HeyOrca’s Best Times to Post feature. HeyOrca will automatically dig up engagement metrics from your past posts to determine the most engaging times to post on the various social channels you manage!

How to use HeyOrca’s Best Times to Post feature

Best Times to Post Feature in HeyOrca setup instructions - How to filter engagement metrics

HeyOrca’s social media calendar platform does the heavy lifting for you. It will analyze the metrics from your past posts on each of the social media accounts you manage, give you an overview of the best times to post rated by lowest to highest engagement, and automatically recommend best posting times when you schedule a post.

Each of the brands you manage will have their own unique data and recommended Best Times to Post. HeyOrca will automatically update recommended times based on how your audience interacts with your posts.

How to manually collect best posting time metrics

As Kathryn Schwab, Head on Content at Bobbie, explains, “The best way to find out when they are active is to review your company’s insights. For example, Facebook provides insights specific to your business page that will tell you when your followers are online. It is organized by day and times so you can choose when to schedule your posts.

Another method is to look at your analytics and experiment with different days and times and watch for trends that emerge with engagements with your social media posts.”

The latter method works really well for social media platforms like Twitter and LinkedIn, which provide no insights on when your audience is most active.

For Instagram insights, go to Creator Studio and click Insights.

creator studio screenshot for finding best times to post on Instagram

For your Facebook pages, go to your Facebook Page Insights and click on ‘When your fans are online’.

screenshot of how to tell when your fans are online to determine your best times to post on Facebook
Source: ThriftyDivya

Pinterest’s Analytics offers insights on your audience’s location, which can then help you figure out which time zone to post in.

screenshot of how to use Pinterest analytics to determine best times to post on Pinterest

TIP: You can use HeyOrca’s social media reporting tool to analyze data on social networks like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Tips to help you further hack the social media algorithm in 2021

If you’re looking to further amp up your social media marketing strategy in 2021, read on.

We’ve enlisted help of fellow social media professionals and asked them what tips and tricks you should keep in mind going into 2021.

Participate in engagement pods

“Ultimately, we find the time of day you publish isn’t as important as ensuring that you get engagement (reactions and comments) on your post in the first hour after it goes live. This early activity is so important that we’ve created a “pod” of friends, family, and fans with whom we share new links to hit like as soon as something goes live.

There’s a significant difference in the reach of posts that don’t have that early push and those that do, as much as 50% more views in the feed.” Explains Jenny Karn, Founding Partner at Lumino Digital.

Want to Save Time Managing Social Posts, Client Approvals, and Social Reports?

HeyOrca lets you effortlessly schedule social media posts, collaborate with clients, and report on your results… all from one place.

(no credit card required)

Experiment with posting at the end of work day

“When it comes to timing of posts it always seems to be best toward the end of the work day,” says Steve O’Dell, Co-founder and CEO of Tenzo Tea

“Once the clock hits 4pm people start to fade away from their workday and want to start thinking about the entertainment they will have post work. This begins with their phones. We get a huge bulk of our social media toward the end of the day to make sure that once our customers are clocked out they will be able to see the content they want at the end of the day.”

Canva usually posts at the end of the day on Facebook and sees a lot of engagement.

This might be a hard question to answer… Would your rather give up curved text or animation effects? 🤔

Posted by Canva on Sunday, January 17, 2021

Get crystal clear on your audience

Nick from DataforSEO shares, “In our experience, people are quite active on social media early in the morning, before they go to work. Some time between 8 and 9 am is usually a good time to post. 

The next phase when users show high activity is around lunch break, between 1 and 2 pm. Facebook and Instagram insights show an increase in the social media engagement during this time. 

Finally, there is another peak around 7pm but this largely depends on the audience. 

The younger the audience, the later they will be active online.”

Jack Klauber, founder and CEO of Everyday Dose, also believes understanding your audience should be a brand’s primary goal. 

He shares his experience and says, “When it comes to our product, a lot of our customers come for the energy boost they receive to start the day. The early birds are driven to get an exercise in the morning and before they head off to work we hope to catch them on their breaks. 

If we can get a post up before lunch time then we can catch a lot of customers with their breakfast or have our content appear when they do take their break. Morning posting allows content to be shared and discussed throughout the day. This discussion allows an organic development of our posts.”

Geographical location of your audience is equally important

“Using the social media analytic tools, you have to find where your target customers are located first to set ‘the peak hour’ for your post”. Explains Tal Shelef, Realtor and Co-Founder of Condo Wizard.

“The more you want to make your brand or services popular, the more time zones you’ll likely to consider. Remember, to reach the majority of time zones you have to target to post no more than four of the same messages in different hours in a single day in order to set that peak without overdoing it. You also have to consider which social media platform you are using since each of them have different times that work best for its users. Know your customers and do not be afraid to change.”

Don’t ignore the pandemic

Always keep current events in mind when planning your social media marketing strategy.

As Christina Hager, President of Ovations Digital, explains, “When it came to social media, there were definitely some hard and fast rules on times to post – usually around lunchtime, again at the dinner commute, and then that 7-9 usually found people relaxing and checking in/messaging/playing on social.

When the pandemic hit, social media use looked really different. Firstly, people were on MORE, but how they were using social media was different – and the times they were using skewed much earlier in the day. More like key times between 10-3.

Why?

This might be because SO much of the United States found themselves not in the office, but on Zoom meetings. Many things that happened in person became virtual and then by evening, people found themselves screened out.

Many brands and organization we worked with found that their followers were online and engaging broadly within the hours of 9-7, and that it really tapered off after that.”

Time to Wrap-up

Like a snowflake, every target audience is different. While you can use generalized best posting times to guide your social media scheduling efforts, you’ll get better results with a little more elbow grease.

To truly find your best posting times, you need:

  1. Get to know your audience better
  2. Actively test scheduling social media posts on different days, times, and channels
  3. Leverage native social media engagement metrics or a feature like HeyOrca’s Best Posting Times to automatically analyze your results

Put in the work and reap the rewards!

What are your peak times on social media? When do you see the most engagement and views? Email datis@heyora.com if you’d like to include them in this guide.


Try HeyOrca free for 14 days and see how you can fight burnout by saving time planning, publishing, and collaborating on your social media content.

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