Instagram Story Duration and Dimensions: A Comprehensive Guide

Instagram Story Duration and Dimensions

Instagram Stories are a popular feature that allows users to share quick, dynamic moments. Each story can last up to 15 seconds. If you upload a video that exceeds 15 seconds, Instagram will automatically divide it into multiple segments, each 15 seconds long. For example, a 60-second video would be split into four segments of 15 seconds each.

To illustrate, imagine a fashion blogger covering a fashion show. Rather than uploading a lengthy video that might not hold the audience’s interest, they could divide the footage into several 15-second clips. The first clip might feature the event venue, the second could show backstage activities, the third might capture a runway walk, and so on. This approach of segmenting content helps maintain the audience’s engagement, as they anticipate each subsequent segment.

Instagram reports that over 500 million accounts engage with Stories daily, with a third of the most viewed stories originating from businesses. This underscores the significance of effectively managing story duration to maintain viewer interest.

Below are some tips regarding the duration and dimensions of Instagram Stories:

1. Pre-Editing

Pre-Edit Your Videos before uploading them on Instagram. If you want more control over how your story appears, consider editing your videos before uploading. This way, you can decide exactly where each 15-second segment begins and ends.

You can install some Video-editing apps like Prequel, VN, Wink and InShot for enhancing and properly editing the Videos. Apps like InShot have been downloaded millions of times, with a 4.8 rating on the App Store from over 1.2 million reviews, indicating their popularity and effectiveness in enhancing video content.


Moreover, You can add Location/Templates/Music and Gifs into Your Instagram Story to give it a descriptive look and add a sense of uniqueness through personalization. 


Example: A travel influencer visiting Paris could use an app like InShot to edit a video of the Eiffel Tower visit. They could start the first segment with a view of the tower from afar, the second segment with walking towards it, and subsequent segments showing close-ups, all while adding music and captions for context.

2. Continuous Stories

For longer narratives, you can upload multiple 15-second clips. This is ideal for tutorials, Q&A sessions, or storytelling. Example: A fitness coach could use continuous stories for a workout tutorial. Each story segment could focus on a different exercise, making it easy for followers to follow along. This format is perfect for step-by-step tutorials or answering FAQs.

Engagement rates for Instagram stories are high, with a completion rate of 70-80%, suggesting that followers are highly interested in content that is well-structured and engaging.

Instagram Story Dimensions

The ideal aspect ratio for Instagram Stories is 9:16, with the recommended dimensions being 1080 pixels wide by 1920 pixels high. This size perfectly fits the typical smartphone screen, allowing your content to be displayed without any unwanted cropping or stretching. These Dimensions matter for 3 reasons:

  1. Quality Preservation: Uploading stories in the recommended dimensions ensures that your content looks crisp and professional. By adhering to the 1080×1920 dimensions, a food blogger can share high-resolution images of their culinary creations, ensuring that the textures and colours look as enticing as possible.
Quality Preservation
  1. Full-Screen Experience: Since most users view stories on their phones, the 9:16 aspect ratio takes up the entire screen, making for a more immersive experience. For Example: A travel vlogger sharing stories of a sunrise hike can use the full-screen format to immerse viewers in the experience, making them feel like they are part of the adventure.
Full-Screen Experience
  1. Avoiding Auto-Cropping: If your content doesn’t fit these dimensions, Instagram might automatically crop it, potentially cutting off important elements of your story. For Example: When a fashion brand launches a new collection, using the correct dimensions ensures that each item is showcased beautifully, without parts of the image being cropped out, thus maintaining the integrity of the visual presentation.
Avoiding Auto-Cropping


Instagram Stories are a powerful tool for digital storytelling. By understanding and utilising the correct durations and dimensions, you can create compelling, high-quality content that resonates with your audience. Remember, the key to a great Instagram Story is not just what you share, but how you present it.