If you’re using Stories as part of your Instagram marketing mix, you’ve probably wondered: Can you schedule Instagram Stories?
Well, great news — the answer is yes! You can now create, edit, and schedule your Stories in advance using the Instagram Story scheduler in IXLCenter.io or Facebook Business Suite.
In this post, we cover the benefits to scheduling Instagram Stories rather than publishing them on the fly, like:
- saving a ton of time
- making it easier to customize Stories with editing tools and templates
- avoiding typos and autocorrect mistakes
We also walk you through the exact process of how to schedule Instagram Stories.
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Is there an app for scheduling Instagram Stories?
You can’t schedule Stories ahead of time directly within Instagram. But you can use the IXLCenter.io mobile app or desktop dashboard to schedule Instagram Stories. As of May 2021, it is also possible to schedule and post Instagram Stories via Facebook Business Suite.
How to schedule Instagram Stories using IXLCenter.io
Head to your IXLCenter.io dashboard and select Create → Post from the left-hand side menu. Then, follow these 4 simple steps to schedule an Instagram Story:
- In the Composer window, select the account you want to post your Story to.
- In the Content section, switch to the Story editor.
- Click on the upload icon to add your image or video.
Videos must be between 1 second and 60 minutes long, and images must be less than 30MB. Both have a recommended aspect ratio of 9:16. You can only add one file per Story.
Note: If you want to include text or stickers in your Story, make sure they’re part of your image or video file. Text included in the caption field of Composer will not be included in your Story.
You can easily edit your images using Canva without leaving your IXLCenter.io dashboard. To get started, click on the Canva icon in the bottom right of the Composer window. Then, select Instagram Story.
Once you’re done editing your image or video, simply click the Add to post button in the top right corner of the screen, and your file will be attached to your post draft.
- Preview your Story and click Schedule for later to select a time for it to go public. Then, click the yellow Schedule button — and you’re done!
You can now view, edit, or delete your scheduled Story in your IXLCenter.io calendar.
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How to schedule Instagram Stories using Facebook Business Suite
If you have a Business account on Instagram, you can use Facebook’s native Business Suite to craft and schedule Instagram Stories.
Facebook Business Suite is a handy tool if you’re only posting to Facebook and Instagram — but most social media marketing pros can save a lot of time and energy using a social media management tool and handling all social channels from a single dashboard. A tool like IXLCenter.io will help you schedule content to Facebook, Instagram (including posts, Stories, and Reels), TikTok, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Pinterest from one place.
If you choose to schedule your Instagram Stories using Facebook’s native solution, sign in to your account and follow the steps below.
Step 1: Navigate to Business Suite
Go to your Page and pick Business Suite from the menu on the left side of the screen.
Once you’re in, select your account from the drop-down menu in the top left corner of the dashboard.
Step 2: Start drafting your Story
You can do this from 3 spots in the dashboard:
- the Posts and Stories item in the menu on the left side of the screen
- the Create Post button in the menu on the left side of the screen
- the Create Story button in the center of the dashboard
Once you click on one of these options, a Story creator window will pop up. Here, select the account you want to share your Story to, and upload an image or video to start working on your Story.
The Story editing options in Business Suite are quite limited compared to what you can do in the Instagram app or IXLCenter.io. You can only crop your media file, and add text and stickers.
Step 3: Schedule your Instagram Story
Once you’re happy with your creation, click the arrow beside the Publish Story button for scheduling options.
Click Schedule Story. Then, pick a date and time to post your Story.
Once you save the date and time, click Schedule Story, and you’re done! Your Story will be automatically posted to Instagram at the specified date and time.
You can confirm that your Story has been scheduled by navigating to Posts and Stories, then Stories, then Scheduled.
This is also where you can manage your post — reschedule it, publish it immediately or delete it from your pipeline.
6 reasons to schedule Instagram Stories
1. Save time
Learning how to schedule Instagram Stories saves you a ton of time and makes sharing Stories much less disruptive to your workday. Instead of having to create and post Stories on the fly multiple times per day, you can sit down and prepare your Stories for the week all in one go.
When it’s time for your scheduled Stories to go live, you can push them out with just a couple of clicks.
Of course, you can also share live Stories in between your scheduled ones if you want to update your audience on something happening in the moment.
2. Upload Instagram Stories from your desktop or laptop
How many times have you had to send a photo or file to your phone just to post it on Stories? And then dig around in your camera roll trying to find the right posts in the right order?
When you use an Instagram Story scheduler, you can eliminate this step. You can upload your Stories files directly from your desktop or laptop. When it’s time for your Story to go live, the components automatically appear in the right order at the top of your camera roll, ready to go.
3. More editing options
When you use IXLCenter.io to schedule Instagram Stories, you gain access to all the editing tools built into the IXLCenter.io dashboard. That means you can create Stories with fonts, stickers, and frames that are not available within the Instagram app. You can even upload your own stickers to give your Story a unique look and feel.
And, as we mentioned in the last point, you can do this editing on your desktop or laptop. You can use a full-size keyboard and monitor to fine-tune your edits, giving your greater creative control.
4. Cultivate a consistent look and feel with templates
Using Instagram templates is a great way to create consistent Story posts that align with your brand’s overall look and feel. Templates are especially useful when you’re sharing non-visual content like text, quotes, or links to your blog posts.
The challenge is that many Instagram templates require you to use a computer-based software program like Adobe Photoshop to create your posts. And getting your finished posts from Photoshop to your phone for posting is a tedious process.
The ability to upload your posts directly from your computer makes it much easier to work with templates. That means you’re more likely to incorporate these valuable tools into your Instagram Stories posts.
New to templates? We’ve created a whole post on how to use them that includes a set of free Instagram Stories templates to get you started.
5. Avoid typos and broken links
Typing with your thumbs is not the best way to create pristine content. Never mind when autocorrect gets involved.
Scheduling your posts in advance gives you the chance to plan your text and links more carefully. Type your captions on a proper keyboard. Run them through a spelling and grammar check program. Test your links. See what other posts are being shared for the hashtags you plan to use.
It’s always a good idea to give yourself time to walk away from your content for a minute and then read it again with a fresher set of eyes. (Or even get a colleague to have a peek.) That’s tough when you’re posting on the fly. When you’ve scheduled Stories, you can review them in the IXLCenter.io planner at any time before they go live.
6. Encourage engagement
Once you’ve mastered how to schedule Instagram Stories, you’ll likely find you’re posting more Stories, and more consistently. When your audience knows what kind of content to expect from you, and when to expect it, they’re more likely to watch your Stories and engage.
Ready to start scheduling Instagram Stories and save time? Use IXLCenter.io to manage all your social networks (and schedule posts) from a single dashboard.
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