Are you looking to get that blue checkmark next to your Instagram username?
Today, I’ll show you how to make it happen (for free!).
2020 update: Now anyone can request an official verification badge directly through Instagram. Don’t believe anyone selling you verification. I don’t and I never did. I also don’t work at/for Instagram, so won’t be able to help you troubleshoot any of your problems. You can contact Instagram support following this guide.
Before we dive into how to get verified, it’s important that you know who can get verified.
What are the requirements to get verified on Instagram?
Instagram looks at 4 factors to determine whether your account is worthy of the blue badge. These are:
- Authenticity: Your account must represent a real person, registered business or entity.
- Uniqueness: Your account must be the unique presence of the person or business it represents. Only one account per person or business may be verified, with exceptions for language-specific accounts. Compilation accounts or accounts that don’t post original content won’t be verified (e.g. rap videos, funny memes, fan pages, etc).
- Completeness: Your account privacy must be set to public. It should also have a bio, profile photo and at least one post (more posts is better). Your profile can’t contain “add me” links to other social media services.
- Noteworthiness: Your account must represent a well-known, highly searched for person, brand or entity. They want accounts that are featured in multiple news sources, and don’t consider paid or promotional content as sources for review. (see step #1 below)
Now let’s get to the fun part…
2 steps to apply for verification on IG
If you already have significant press written about you, skip to step number 2.
1. Get press written about you
Only select people on Instagram are handed a verification badge as I explained above. Those include celebrities, musicians, actors, and people with large followings and press in real life.
Pro tips to supercharge your press
Instagram will attempt to verify your noteworthiness to see if you are qualified for a blue checkmark.
While their exact efforts are not divulged, it’s likely that Instagram will search your name/username on Google and try to see if you have been covered in many publications.
If you don’t have press, you can get featured on my sites here:
Here are other tips to get on Forbes, Mashable, Techcrunch and others.
2. Apply for verification directly on the Instagram app
Follow the following steps on the IG app to request a verified badge:
- Make sure you’re logged in to the account you’re requesting a verified badge for.
- Go to your profile and tap the 3 horizontal lines at the top right.
- Tap ⚙ Settings > Account > Request Verification.
- Enter your Full name, Known As, Account Category, and provide the required form of identification (example: government-issued photo ID, driver’s license, passport. If you are a business, you can provide tax returns, utility bill, etc).
- Press “Send” and wait for a decision!
What is a verified badge on Instagram?
From Instagram: “A verified badge is a check that appears next to an Instagram account’s name in search and on the profile. It means Instagram has confirmed that an account is the authentic presence of the public figure, celebrity or global brand it represents”.
How much does IG verification cost? Do I need to pay anything?
It’s free. Instagram doesn’t charge or request payment for verification. Please apply directly through IG and don’t use any third party.
How many followers do you need to get verified on Instagram?
There’s no minimum. However, having more followers definitely helps, so read this guide to increase your IG follower count.
What happens after you apply for a blue checkmark?
After you apply for verification, Instagram will let you know in a span of 1-2 weeks whether your account was verified or not.
How does Instagram let you know if your account was verified?
Instagram will send you an in-app notification that looks like this.
Will I know why my verification was denied?
Instagram unfortunately doesn’t provide with any specifics as to why your application was denied.
Can you reapply for verification if you are denied?
Yes, you will just need to wait 30 days since your last decision.
How many accounts can I get verified?
In most cases, only one account per person with the exception of super large brands (think Costco and Costco California) or accounts in multiple languages (CNN, CNN español).
Is the badge permanent?
As long as you follow Instagram’s terms of service, yes.
However, they might remove your verification (or even disable your account) if you:
- Advertise, transfer or sell your verified badge.
- Use your profile picture, bio or name section to promote other services.
- Attempt to verify your account through a third party.
Keep in mind that if you provide false or misleading information during the verification process, we will remove your verified badge and may take additional action to delete your account.
What if you are not able to be verified?
It won’t be the end of the world. For the most part, the verification is just for ego-stroking.
There are also other ways to make sure people find your official Instagram account. For instance, you can add it on your Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, Linkedin, emails, website, etc.
What are the benefits of getting verified?
Your account will gain more trust in the eyes of your followers, helping you fend off any impersonators, cloned accounts, and others. It will also appear higher in searches.
If you want to learn more about Verification Badges, read Instagram’s support page.
That’s how you apply for verification on Instagram.
If you were successful in following these steps, please drop a comment with your username so I can check it out and give you a follow! (while you are here, also follow me @YoungSlacker!)
Keep in mind that even if your account is eligible for verification, submitting a request doesn’t guarantee that your account will be verified.
Here are other posts you should read:
- How to get verified on Facebook
- Guide to get more Instagram followers
- Need to contact IG to get an update on your verification application?