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Instagram Stories Performance Benchmarks You Need to Know

Danielle Lapierre
October 8, 2021
Lasted Updated On

Instagram Stories are a critical element of brands’ Instagram strategies. 58% of people surveyed say they became more interested in a product or brand after seeing it in Instagram Stories. Additionally, 50% of people surveyed say they visited a website to buy a product after seeing it in Instagram Stories.

Users are doubling down on exposure by sharing Reels in their Stories. The advantage to Instagram is that it is a unified video ecosystem. Strategic marketers ensure that their various forms of content work together to deliver results.

Dash Hudson leveraged its exclusive insight into the data of the top brands in the world to measure and craft benchmarks for Instagram Stories KPIs. The following metrics include the exit rate benchmark for your industry, average completion rate, average daily reach, and average number of posts. Dash Hudson used the 2021 performance of nearly one thousand leading brands as the basis of these insights.

Instagram Metrics That Matter

What does “exited” mean on your Instagram Story? What does “completion rate” mean? We’ve defined every important metric marketers need to pay attention to when using Instagram Stories.

  • Story Frame: an individual video or image posted in a story.
  • Story: the number of story frames in a group—regardless of when they were posted. There can be multiple stories posted in a day, and stories may overlap. 
  • Reach: the number of unique times a story frame or story is viewed by accounts on Instagram.
  • Impressions: the total number of times people watched your story.
  • Exit Rate: the percentage of people who exited a frame. The inverse of Completion Rate.
  • Completion Rate: the percentage of people who watched a frame until the end without exiting. The inverse of Exit Rate.
  • Tap Forward: the total number of times a user taps forward on a story frame to view the next frame.
  • Tap Back: the total number of times a user taps back to view the story frame again, or a previous story frame.

Fashion Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

For the highly visual fashion industry, Instagram Stories are a perfect way to showcase organic, lo-fi content that audiences love. While its posting cadence is roughly equivalent to other industries, Avg # of Story Frames Posted Per Month is higher than all but media. Its completion rate was also high. Completion rate typically goes down as frames posted goes up, and the fact that both remain high on average implies that audiences interested in fashion are highly engaged.

To stay on the cutting edge, brands should focus on content that’s informative and informal, giving users a look at styling, design, and the faces behind the brand.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Fashion Industry


Retail Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

While retail has historically leaned into more traditional marketing mediums, digital and social marketing are becoming increasingly important. The retail industry is heavily invested in utilizing Instagram to drive traffic and convert customers. Its content is more focused on products over people. This explains why the industry has a lower percentage of taps backwards, and a higher ratio of taps forward to impressions, than industries that are more invested in putting people first.

Despite its content being seen as more transient by audiences, the retail industry is nearly tied with the publishing industry for average monthly reach.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Retail Industry


Beauty Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

The beauty industry has put Instagram at the forefront of its strategy, using the social channel as a hype machine for finding viral success. Its strong investment in Instagram Stories is apparent, as its low number of exits and high average monthly reach indicate a highly engaged audience. Followers of beauty brands are engaged, and willing to tap backwards to see any content they’ve missed.

Brands in this industry will want to continue utilizing Instagram Stories as a core part of their content distribution strategy to keep up with their fans’ interest.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Beauty Industry


Publishing Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

Traditional publishers have come a long way since the digital era began, and digital-first publishers are trailblazers in using social media as a method for outreach. Instagram Stories have become a primary means for consumers to discover publishers and stay on top of the latest publications. This explains the high cadence of story frames posted—on average, four per day, and 108 per month.

This industry has the second-highest reach for Instagram Stories, with performance similar to that of the retail industry.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Publishing Industry


Home Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

The home industry is less invested in Instagram Stories than most industries, posting ten days out of the month, at an average cadence of two story frames per day. There is a real opportunity for this industry to excel on Instagram in the future. Millennials and Gen Z will eventually start buying houses of their own as they increase their buying power.

To learn more about how generational shifts will affect the home industry, be sure to check out Dash Hudson’s Global Digital Insights report, titled Decoding Generational Marketing on Social Media

Despite its lower investment in Instagram Stories, the home industry has the second-highest completion rate, comparable to that of the fashion industry, demonstrating how fans of this industry are highly engaged.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Home Industry


Media Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

The media industry has the highest average monthly reach, and highest total number of views, compared to other industries. This can be explained by how social media is increasingly becoming a destination for highlights from linear TV. Generation X and Baby Boomers like to use social media to watch TV-based content, and Stories have a role to play in how all generations consume traditional media.

Notably, this industry posts a large number of story frames (an average of five per day, and 143 per month). It is evident that Instagram Stories are a core pillar in this industry’s video content distribution.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Media Industry


CPG Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

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 strategy.

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.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the CPG Industry

Consumer Electronics Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

Innovative consumer electronics brands are no stranger to creating captivating visuals that show off their top-notch products. The competition for audience attention is growing fiercer by the day, and as of late, the consumer electronics industry has had the highest exit rate for daily stories, at 8.07%. When averaged out across the month, however, the exit rate is only 2.29%, indicating that while some stories may be hit or miss, this industry is still succeeding at engaging audiences.

The biggest opportunity for this industry will be to figure out ways to tell engaging stories around new products and initiatives that keep fans tapping forward.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Consumer Electronics Industry


Luxury Industry Instagram Stories Benchmarks

Traditionally, the luxury industry has kept a distance from its customers. However, modern shoppers expect a closer connection with brands, and building communities has become a core part of having an Instagram presence. Luxury brands are still the least invested in Instagram Stories, posting, on average, only eight days out of the month. However, despite its slower cadence, the industry is seeing a relatively high completion rate, showing that its audience is interested in what it’s being shown.

There is significant potential at this point in time for luxury brands to break the mould, investing in Instagram Stories more than their competition, and outperform these benchmarks.

Instagram Stories Benchmarks for the Luxury Industry


The Instagram 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. Dash Hudson recently released a refreshed Stories interface. This allows brands to see at a glance how each story performs as a whole, as well as how each frame contributes to the performance of the story overall.

Story Boards, one of Dash Hudson’s most impactful features, was also included in the Stories refresh. Story Boards allow brands to group content based on campaign, media type, style, influencer, and more. This is critical as it empowers brands to understand which types of content tend to ladder up to goals—whether it be fun, lo-fi content, or more curated content. Knowing exactly which content pillars impact your strategy empowers you to focus on the media that drives ROI.

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