If you want your Instagram Stories to make an impression, you need to be sure you know exactly how they will appear on your followers’ screens. (And of course, know when is the best time to post them!)

When you create content outside of Instagram, using the optimal dimensions and resolution for your images and videos will result in Stories that look just like you want them to.

Instagram Story Aspect Ratio

Smartphones come in all kinds of sizes, right? So how do we create an Instagram Story that will appear the same on different sizes of screens?

The answer is to maintain the right aspect ratio: the proportional relationship between the width and height of the image. Since 2010, the standard aspect ratio for smartphone screens has been 9:16.

So for example, an iPhone 7 Plus has a screen resolution of 1080×1920 pixels, while a Samsung Galaxy S6 is 1440×2560 pixels. The screens are different sizes, but the aspect ratio of 9:16 is the same.

Instagram Story Dimensions

The ideal dimensions of an Instagram Story are 1080×1920 pixels.

Instagram Stories are made to be viewed on a smartphone vertically, also known as portrait mode. That means the height of the image should be greater than its width.

Instagram Story Resolution & Format

The term “resolution” is often used interchangeably with “dimensions,” but they don’t mean the same thing. Dimensions are the number of pixels contained in an image, while resolution is the level of detail an image holds.

A high-resolution image has more pixels per inch (ppi) than a low-resolution image. So a low-res image that’s 1080×1920 pixels will not look as detailed as a high-res image of the same dimensions.

JPEG images are lower-res than PNGs, making them better for websites where they need to be uploaded quickly and the quality of the image isn’t as important. But you can use both formats for your Instagram Story.

Videos can be MP4s or MOV files.

Adjusting Dimensions & Converting Files

If you have an image or video you want to upload that isn’t the right size, you can either resize the image or crop it to the right dimensions using a photo editor.

If the image or video isn’t the right format, you’ll need to convert it. You can use the conversion or “Save As” function on your photo or video editor, or an online file converter.

Instagram is by far the most popular story app – be sure to check out our social story maker StoryBoost to make professional and easy to produce stories.