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Instagram Carousel Explained and 8 Situations They Are Better than Single Posts

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Have you seen and admired an Instagram post with multiple images or videos before and wondered how they did it?

Instagram describes such posts as carousels. Carousel posts are not difficult to post at all. The trick is knowing when and why to post them.

In this article, we share everything you need to know about Instagram carousel posts, including why you should use them more often, the ideal dimensions, and how to make them.

At the end of this article, you’ll be publishing high-quality carousel posts that are engaging. 

What is an Instagram Carousel?

Instagram carousels are posts that have multiple images or videos, like a slideshow. You can add up to ten photos to each carousel post. Users swipe right to see the other content.

Instagram carousel posts are great when you want to provide more information or context to your audience in a single post without creating multiple posts that clutter your Instagram feed.

On the Instagram web app, carousel posts have an arrow that users can click to view other images.


Users viewing the same post on the Instagram app won’t see the arrow.

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Why are Instagram Carousel Posts More Engaging?

Per their nature, carousel posts have more images or videos, which means Instagram users will spend more time viewing all the content.

More importantly, carousel posts may appear more than once on your followers’ timelines. Each time it pops up, Instagram shows your Instagram followers a new slide.

So even if they didn’t scroll through the entire slides initially, they would still see some or all the videos and pictures later on.

How to create Instagram Carousel Posts

Creating an Instagram carousel post is simple. Here’s how:

  • STEP 1: Tap on the + icon on the top right-hand side of the screen just before the messenger icon.
  • STEP 2: Select “Post” from the list of options.
  • STEP 3: Click the “multiple pages” icon to select more than one image.
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STEP 4: Select all the images or videos you want to post. You’ll see numbers appear on each image you select.

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Once you’ve selected the content you want to upload, click “Next” and follow the prompts to publish the post.

How to Delete One Image From a Published Carousel Post

Did you select the wrong image or video in the published carousel post? Perhaps, one of the images has an error on it. Aargh, annoying!

Thankfully, you can delete one or multiple images from a carousel post after you’ve published it. The only caveat is that you can only delete an image or video from a carousel with three or more photos or videos.

Here’s how to do it.

STEP 1: Open the carousel post you want to edit.

STEP 2: Tap the “…” on top of the post.

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STEP 3: Click on “Edit” from the options.

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STEP 4: Click the bin icon on top of the image(s) you want to delete. Note that there must be at least two images or videos left after deleting the unwanted content.

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STEP 5: Click “Done” to complete the edit.

Why Should You Use Instagram Carousel Posts?

You can use Instagram carousel posts for many creative needs. So what can you use carousel posts for?

  1. Carousel posts are better for engagements. Users spend more time on them and will see the images pop up on their feed if they don’t scroll through the carousel. Ensure you’re using the best Instagram hashtag for engagement to reach more audiences.
  2. They are great for visual storytelling.
  3. With carousels, you can explain concepts or share step-by-step tutorials.
  4. For monthly or event photo dumps rather than multiple posts for one event.
  5. Carousels are perfect for showcasing product details from different angles or virtual tours of apartments, buildings, and tourist spots.
  6. They’re ideal for sharing the before and after effects of using a product or service.
  7. Carousels work for listicles or the spotlight of event speakers.
  8. They are great for sharing multiple customer reviews for a particular product. 

What are the Dimensions for Instagram Carousel Posts?

Carousel posts can be in three size formats: square, portrait, and landscape.

Note that Instagram shows all the images/videos in a carousel post in the same dimension. The image format depends on the size of the first post in the carousel.

So if the first image is landscape, Instagram will convert other images to landscape format. The aspect ratios for the Instagram feed can be 1:1, 4:5, or 1.91:1. 

  • Square Post Dimensions: A square photo has equal dimensions on the vertical and horizontal sides. Thus, square images have an aspect ratio of 1:1. The ideal size for square carousel posts is 1080 by 1080 pixels.
  • Portrait Post Dimensions: Portrait images are longer on the vertical side than the horizontal side. The recommended aspect ratio for portrait images is 4:5. Instagram recommends dimensions of 1080 by 1350 pixels for portrait posts.
  • Landscape Post Dimensions: Landscape images are longer on the horizontal side than on the vertical side. They have an aspect ratio of 1.91:1 and recommended dimensions of 1080 x 566 pixels.

Other Details to Note About Video and Photo Dimensions

When uploading images and videos to Instagram, note the following:

  1. Videos can only be between 3 and 60 seconds.
  2. The file size of all videos and photos must not surpass 4GB and 30MB, respectively.
  3. .MP4 and .MOV are the best video formats, and JPEG and PNG are ideal photo formats.

Can you turn carousel posts to Instagram reels?

You cannot turn carousel posts into Instagram reels. You can, however, “Remix” a video post into an Instagram reel.

Reels introduce you to new users and are great for increasing your Instagram follower count.

The social media platform notes that when you choose automatic placement for any Instagram carousel ad, the post can be converted to a “full-screen 9×16 skippable video-like ad in Instagram Reels.”

If you’re seeking the kind of engagement reels provide, you can write a catchy Instagram caption to catch your followers’ attention. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Below, we’ve shared some answers to some common questions users ask regarding Instagram carousel posts.

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Should I use a single or carousel post?

Carousels are preferable for passing more information than a single image can provide to users.

Such posts include step-by-step tutorials, before and after, visual storytelling, event photo dumps, and showcasing product details from multiple angles.

If you intend to use a post for the above purposes, a regular post won’t work.

How long should an Instagram carousel be?

Instagram allows up to ten images or videos per carousel. The number of images you add depends on the purpose of the post.

Keep it simple and straight to the point. If need be, use the caption to add more context. 

Wrapping Up

Instagram carousel posts make life easy. Rather than creating multiple single posts, you can capture your thoughts in one carousel post with up to ten videos and or images.

You can use carousel posts to showcase a product from many angles, share tutorials, do event photo dumps, and much more.

Ultimately carousels are fantastic for engagement. You should use them more often when the post calls for it.

If you have any questions regarding Instagram carousel posts or any questions at all, let us know in the comment section. We are more than willing to help.

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