What Is Instagram Verification?
An Instagram verification badge, or the blue checkmark, tells users that your Instagram profile is authentic. Essentially, a verification badge says that you are who you say you are and that you are a “notable” (i.e., well-known) entity. For example, Coca-Cola and Oprah Winfrey are two verified accounts that are globally recognized, have massive brand authority, and have high business valuations.
Instagram uses a blue checkmark (similar to the blue checkmark used by Twitter) to show that your account is owned by you or your business.
Benefits of Instagram Verification
Gaining Instagram verification can offer multiple benefits for your brand's online presence.
Some advantages to getting a verification badge include:
- Higher Authority
- Broader Brand Recognition
- Increased Value
- More Followers
It's important to note that each benefit influences and builds upon the others, which will increase the overall value of your brand.
How to Become Verified on Instagram
Instagram has a unique set of guidelines it uses to determine whether an entity qualifies for a verified account on its platform. These guidelines fall under Instagram’s five provided categories: Authentic, Unique, Complete, Public, and Notable.
Instagram assesses each account based on the following questions:
- Does the account represent a real person?
- Is the business registered?
- Does the account represent the entity?
- Does the person or business have only one account?
Make sure the account has:
- A completed bio
- A profile picture
- One or more posts
- Is the account viewable by everyone?
- Does the profile have a high search volume (i.e., is it well-known across other platforms and media outlets)?
7 Steps to Become Verified on Instagram
- Go to your profile and click the hamburger icon in the top right corner of your screen
- Select "Settings"
- Select "Account"
- Select "Request Verification"
- Complete the application form fields
- Enter your legal name
- If applicable, type your “known as” or working name
- Pick your category or industry
- Submit a government-issued ID (driver's license) or business utility bill
- Tap Send
- Wait for approval via your notifications tab (A response should come in less than 30 days)
Recommended: If you want help with guaranteeing your business will become verified, you can use the SiteTrail Instagram Verification Badge service to increase your business's notability.
Tips for Getting Verified on Instagram
Improve your chances of earning a badge by doing the following:
- Use the platform regularly. You'll need at least one post, but keeping your Instagram presence up-to-date and accurate is a great way to show you care about the platform and the way it was intended to be used.
- Become more searchable. The more people that search out your brand online (e.g., your name, company name, etc.), the greater the likelihood you’ll be approved. Instagram’s decision-making process involves auditing how many times and how often people are searching for you. To achieve this, you may want to link to your Instagram from a Facebook account.
- Delete any cross-platform "add me" links. The platform doesn’t want you taking traffic away from them by providing links to your accounts on other platforms (otherwise known as "add me" links). Doing so is a surefire way to get denied.
- Increase your follower count. The largest verified brands have well over 1 million followers. While you don't necessarily need that many followers — especially if you are a small business — you're more likely to get a verified badge if you have a decent-sized following. You can request people follow you in your posts.
- Don’t buy Instagram followers. Besides breaking the platform's community guidelines, buying followers on third-party sites like Fiverr will also prevent you from becoming verified.
- Have a completed bio. Instagram is strict when it comes to its bio requirement. If your Instagram bio is incomplete, you will likely be denied. Make sure you submit a government-issued ID, such as a driver's license. Provide your full name. You'll also want to request others follow you and get your name out there.
- Get verified on other platforms. Verify yourself on other platforms like Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, and other social media sites that have similar badges that prove you are who you say you are. Getting approved on Facebook and these other sites are likely to increase your chances of obtaining a verified badge. Post at least one post on these other sites.
- Boost Your Brand Presence. Building a strong, recognizable name that most people know about makes you more notable, which is one of the five considerations used by Instagram to determine whether you qualify for verification. You don't have to be a public figure celebrity to qualify; anyone can apply for the blue check badge.
- Maintain a single professional profile on Instagram. Your account must have a separate business Instagram account and a separate personal Instagram account to make it far more likely to be approved for verification.
- Keep trying. If you’re not approved the first time around, you can apply for verification every 30 days for another chance. Though reapplying does not guarantee you’ll eventually be selected for verification, you must reapply to push the probabilities in your favor.
How to Keep Your Instagram Verification?
Once you’re Instagram verified, staying verified is the next goal? Luckily, Instagram seems to award the blue checkmark in perpetuity. This means that once you have a verified Instagram account, Instagram lets you keep it verified forever.
However, there are some compliance requirements, which means your account must remain in good standing. Let's look at these:
Maintain a Public Account
Instagram tells you upfront that you must have a public account to get verified. But, you must also keep your account public to keep your verification. Also, you must represent yourself honestly, and you should avoid having multiple Instagram accounts.
Follow Instagram's Rules
What to Do After You're Verified
Verified accounts only require a single post and a profile picture. To keep a verified Instagram presence, post often. Posting often isn't just about staying verified; rather, it's about capitalizing on the perks that come with wearing the blue badge.
Having a verified account affords you many benefits not offered to other accounts. Once verified, you can quickly build more authority around your brand. This is great for public figures who want a unique presence. While this seems obvious for a high-profile celebrity or global brand featured in multiple news sources, it's true regardless of your status as a lower-profile real person, registered business, or highly searched-for public figure.
Simply put, if you have fewer followers on Instagram (i.e., you're a real person or registered business), getting your account verified will make it easier for you to get your paid or promotional content out there.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to be famous to qualify for Instagram verification?
An account must meet the following five criteria to qualify in order to get verified: Authentic, Unique, Complete, Public, and Notable. Accounts that easily meet these requirements get approved sooner rather than later.
While Instagram does not outright say that an account must be for a famous individual or business to qualify for verification, having a high follower count can help satisfy the “notable” selection criteria the platform uses to determine eligibility.
Do I have to pay to get verified on Instagram?
You cannot buy an Instagram badge because Instagram does not change money for verification badges. If a third-party company outright promises to get you an Instagram verification badge after paying a sum of money, it is more than likely a scam.
On the other hand, paying money to a reputable publicist or marketing company to help you build your authority on social media and improve your chances of getting a verified badge on Instagram is highly recommended. The value increase received will far outweigh the cost of hiring an agency. What’s more, even if you never get a verified badge on Instagram, you'll likely have improved your brand's recognition in many other ways.
Do I have to be an influencer to qualify for Instagram verification?
You do not have to be an influencer to qualify for Instagram verification. Many businesses and individuals qualify for Instagram verification simply because they are notable in their respective circles. Being a public figure, celebrity, or global brand with recent news stories circulating throughout various news and social media platforms on the internet will undoubtedly help you earn a verified badge on Instagram.
Can anyone get verified on Instagram?
There are no cut-and-dry answers as to who gets an Instagram badge, as not all accounts get verified. So long as you complete the requirements and meet the necessary criteria when you request verification, you stand just as much chance as anyone else receiving a badge.
Instagram accounts must first meet Instagram's requirements and follow the necessary criteria (i.e., your account must be authentic, unique, complete, public, and notable). Some helpful tips include having only one profile and maintaining a highly searched-for presence. Links to other social media accounts, like your Facebook page, may help fulfill the "notable" requirement and get your Instagram account verified easier.
How much does it cost to get verified on Instagram?
Instagram does not charge money for verification badges. However, it may be worth using a company like Sitetrail to help with the process.
Sitetrail can help you with your bio, profile, and posts, ensure that you only have one account (per Instagram's terms of service), and even verify that your account qualifies after you request verification. Sitetrail also will help you get listed on multiple news sources and help position you as a public figure, celebrity, or global brand.
Can I get verified on Instagram if I am verified on Twitter?
Having a verified Twitter account does not automatically guarantee you will be approved for a blue badge on Instagram. Likewise, despite the two platforms being owned by the same company, having a verified Facebook page will not automatically grant you Instagram verification.
Most social media accounts are branded differently, and Instagram accounts have different qualification requirements than those of Twitter and Facebook.
However, having Twitter and/or Facebook verification may help fulfill part of the criteria for becoming verified on Instagram, namely that your Instagram account is notable. You can request information from Twitter and Facebook to learn what their verification requirements are, verify that you meet those requests, and apply to these social media accounts too.
Do I need an agency to get verified on Instagram?
Using a publicist or marketing agency to obtain Instagram verification is not necessary. However, a reputable company can help verify and make sure that you fulfill the requirements for becoming Instagram verified, such as maintaining an online presence.
When looking for a company to help with your branding, make sure you verify what they offer. Many agencies will write posts for you and can help you with verification on other platforms like Facebook. We found that some agencies even specialize in language-specific accounts. They typically charge per person or business, or they may charge for each account. Some companies may also offer prices based on the number and type of services you request from them.