Instagram launched Stories in August 2016 as a direct response to Snapchat.
Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom said Stories would solve “a problem for all these people who want to take a ton of photos of an event…but want to manage what their profile looks like and not bomb their feeds.”
At the time the distinction between Stories and the Feed was very clear: the feed was for highlights; Stories were for those moments in-between.
To encourage the sharing of only those in-between moments, Stories had a strict 24 hour limit on what you could post.
In other words, you couldn’t post photos (or videos) older than 24 hours.
For marketers, this was a problem.
Stories were challenging for business users. Most businesses (especially medium/large enterprises) like to plan their social posts ahead of time, and the bigger the company, the more this holds true. Big brands struggled with creating that raw, off-the-cuff content for IG Stories.
In November 2017, Instagram removed the 24-hour limit. And marketers everywhere sighed a collective sigh of relief.
Without the time limit, marketers can use older pictures and videos but that’s not even the best part.
More importantly, marketers can now spend time creating custom graphics and cool designs, gifs, and videos specifically for Instagram Stories. Like this one:
Though this change has been great overall, it’s also left some people wondering:
What size photo should I use for my Instagram Stories?
What about video size?
What’s the maximum file size I can upload to a Story?
You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers.
So we put together this handy little guide to help. It contains everything you could possibly need to know about Instagram Story dimensions, specs, sizes…you name it!
Before we get into it, here are some additional resources:
- Instagram Stories Hacks: 18 Little-Known Features, plus How to Get More Views and Show Up First in the Feed
- The 15 Best Instagram Video Apps Right Now – Tools for Editing, Designing, GIFs and (of course) Stories
- The Instagram Marketing Toolbox – 16 Incredible, Free Tools for Instagram. Schedule Posts, find trending hashtags, design graphics, and those aren’t even the best ones!
Instagram Story Dimensions
Dimensions: 1080 x 1920 pixels
Aspect Ratio: 9:16
Minimum Resolution: 600 x 1067 pixels
Maximum File Size: 4 GB
Instagram is very strict when it comes to the size of your uploaded photos. If you upload a photo or video that doesn’t fit Instagram’s standard dimensions, they will crop or zoom the image so that it fits. Often this will result in low-quality images with important elements missing. Not good!