3 Ways to Add Instagram to a WordPress Blog

There are several choices open to you if you want to bring in your photos from Instagram into a WordPress blog: You can add a badge from Instagram, use embedding, or choose from a number of plugins.

How to Add Instagram to Your WordPress Blog

Place an Instagram Badge on Your Site

Sign in to your account on Instagram. There’s a “badges” option in the menu. A badge will put an icon on your site that links to your Instagram URL. It doesn’t bring in any images.

Instagram badges

Select a badge type and copy the code. I selected an icon, copied the code, and pasted it into Text view in a post. What showed up was a nifty little Instagram icon that linked to my feed on Instagram.com.

If I wanted this type of Instagram badge on my blog, I’d paste the code into a text widget in my sidebar, near my other social media badges and buttons. It doesn’t make much sense to put this icon in a post, because it will get buried over time.

Embed a Single Photo

You can put a single Instagram photo into a blog post using the Instagram “embed” option. Find the icon showing three dots next to the comment box and click it to see the embed option.

Embed a single Instagram photo

Instagram gives you the option to embed a single photo. Copy that code and paste it into the Text view of your post, and the photo will show up.

Instagram’s embed feature allows you to embed other people’s photos in your blog as well. The link to the original image on Instagram is included in the embed code, and shows up when you hover over the word “Instagram.”

Having this link included with the image skirts copyright problems by linking directly to the photo on the Instagram feed of the creator of the image.

WordPress Plugins

With a plugin, you get more than just an occasional image to insert into a post. There are plugins to create image sliders, to back up your Instagram photos to your WordPress database, or to place a small gallery of photos in your sidebar; others do even more. Most of the plugins below only require your Instagram username to work. The last one I mention gives you the option to set it up using the Instagram API.

DsgnWrks Instagram Importer, according to its description, “will allow you to import and backup your Instagram photos to your WordPress site. Includes robust options to allow you to control the imported posts formatting including built-in support for WordPress custom post-types, custom taxonomies, post-formats.” This plugin also imports Instagram video. When you first launch DsgnWrks Instagram Importer, you can set up the import to filter by hashtags or by date. There are a number of custom tags you can use to control the title and content of imported images.

Instagram Picture provides a way to add Instagram images to almost any position in your blog. You can use shortcodes, widgets, and PHP to insert images with this plugin. Here’s a screenshot from the developer of one of the widget styles you can choose with Instagram Picture. This plugin also has a feature for adding individual image to posts.

Instagram Picture plugin

Instagram Slider Widget will display a grid of thumbnails like you saw in the image above, but it also has the option to shows up to 20 images in a slider. You can set the number of images to include in the slider and set a time for how often the plugin goes to Instagram to look for new photos. Instagram Slider Widget has an option to insert the images into your WordPress Media Library, which gives you a backup of your Instagram photos.

Alpine PhotoTile for Instagram offers more options than the plugins mentioned above. It retrieves (but does not back up on WordPress) as many as 100 photos. According to the developer, “The photos can be linked to your Instagram page, a specific URL, or to a Lightbox slideshow. Also, the Shortcode Generator makes it easy to insert the widget into posts without learning any of the code. This lightweight but powerful widget takes advantage of WordPress’s built in JQuery scripts.” The lightbox feature on this plugin sets it apart from the others. Alpine PhotoTile for Instagram will insert photos in a page, a sidebar, or a post. Of all the plugins I’ve mentioned, it has the most and best reviews.

The WordPress plugin directory has many, many Instagram plugins; I’ve only scratched the surface with these four. The ones I’ve highlighted all have good reviews. I suggest you look at the number and quality of reviews when you consider any plugin. If you use a plugin yourself, it’s very helpful to the WordPress community (you) if you return to the plugin page and leave a review.

Keep in mind that a widget that doesn’t store your photos in WordPress, but instead reaches out to Instagram to retrieve photos, may experience delays in loading if the Internet is clogged up that day.

Many Instagram plugins allow you to display not only your own photos, but the photos of people you follow or photos with a particular hashtag. If you choose a plugin with that capability, check carefully for the copyright issues involved, and make sure the original creator of the image is linked to the photo. I can definitely see the value of a post with a slideshow based on a particular hashtag, say #blogher14. Enjoy sharing your Instagram photos on your WordPress blog!

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11 thoughts on “3 Ways to Add Instagram to a WordPress Blog”

  1. Hi there, I think you may need to edit your wording about posting other people’s Instagram images on one’s blog. Doing so using the Instagram link back to their page does not protect you from copyright issues! “Since people own the rights to all photos or videos they have uploaded using our service, we ask that you respect their copyright ownership.” https://help.instagram.com/477434105621119/

    Trust me, people are getting bullying threats and fines over this stuff!

  2. Hi, I’ve been trying to embed one of my own instagram pictures onto my wordpress, and the captions come up but the picture itself doesn’t load? Can I have some help? Thanks, Laura

    1. Because of the scripts in the Instagram embed code, it is necessary to work on the post ENTIRELY in the text panel, not the visual panel.

  3. I can’t figure out how to have the images side by side instead of all down the left side stack. I know it is a formatting then but how do i edit the embed code or create my own so they can align differently?

    1. You might be able to apply some style rules to the photos that would make them float:left. I think it might be a bit tricky. You could try adding an inline style to the embed code. The photos from Instgram are so large, I’ve never tried to display them side by side myself, so I’m not sure that world work.

  4. When I paste the embed code of my friend’s photo onto the WordPress edit post page, it doesn’t become a photo, it just remains a huge wall of text even after I hit publish. Please help me! Badges work just fine.

    1. Make sure you are in the text pane, not the visual pane, when you paste in the embed code. And don’t click back to the visual pane. Publish from the text pane.

  5. Hi, thanks for the post. I’m trying to embed the whole profile in a post but I don’t want to install any plugin. Is there a way to get it done via shortcode or so?
    Thanks in advance.

    1. I haven’t done any new research on this since I wrote this several years ago. The techniques I describe above still work for me, but I’m sorry to say I don’t know if new ways to use shortcodes have appeared since.

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