We analyzed millions of posts on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, Twitter (X), and YouTube to pinpoint the best times and days to post for maximum engagement.
You will learn
- Which posting times tend to get the highest engagement or views on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, Twitter (X), and YouTube.
- Which days are generally best (and worst) on these major platforms.
- How to find your best time to post with Buffer.
At Buffer, we recently embarked on an ambitious project: uncovering the best times to post on every major social network in 2024.
We poured over millions of posts, Reels, Tweets, TikToks, Shorts, videos, and more to pinpoint when the best-performing content was published.
To predict the best time to post on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and X, we looked at the timeslots with the highest engagement rates on each platform. To predict the best times to post on TikTok and YouTube, we looked at reach and video views.
In both cases, we found some clear patterns. Specific timeslots see more engagement than others, which is an important consideration in your social media marketing strategy. Use these times as a starting point to give your content the best possible chance of success.
Before we get into this, an important caveat: posting your content at the ‘right’ time on social media is not the secret sauce for content success.
If there were a secret sauce, it would be engagement — likes, comments, shares, and clicks on your posts.
The algorithms that rank the feeds of every social media site use audience engagement as signals to predict how much their users want to see it. When your content generates lots of engagement, the algorithm says, “This post is excellent — it’s worth showing this to similar people, who will probably enjoy it.”
The more engagement your content gets, the more likely it is to appear in newsfeeds.
However, other factors come into play when the algorithm ranks your posts, though they don’t seem to carry as much weight as engagement.
Post recency (how recently you published your content) is one of them. Newsfeeds are no longer arranged chronologically, but no one wants to see dated content when they open their apps — so when you publish your social media posts is important, too.
This is where social media management tools like Buffer really shine. Experiment by scheduling posts at the recommended times and tracking post performance to see what works best for your target audience.
Is there an overall best time to post?
There are no best posting times that work for all social media platforms. Why? They’re all used very differently.
LinkedIn, for example, is used for professional networking and thrives during working hours. Instagram is more focused on entertainment — so Reels, Stories, and feed posts are more likely to get engagement during typical breaks in the day. Tweets tend to get more engagement on Mondays, while Fridays are far and away the best days for YouTube.
Look at the graphs below. There’s not much overlap, especially across all major platforms. So, while we can't be as specific as we can on a per-platform basis, we can make broad recommendations that are largely common sense. For example, content posted on weekends tends to get less social media engagement, as does content posted in the middle of the night.
With all that in mind, you’re far better off with a digital marketing plan and social media calendar with a unique posting schedule for each platform. Let’s get into our recommendations for all of them.
Best time to post: a quick guide
Here’s a cheat sheet for the best times to post on social media (it’s worth scrolling down for more options, too!)
- Best time to post on Facebook: 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. on weekdays
- Best time to post on Instagram: 7 a.m. – 8 a.m. on weekdays
- Best time to post on LinkedIn: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. on weekdays.
- Best time to post on TikTok: 2 p.m. on Mondays, 4 p.m. on Wednesdays, 8 a.m. on Sundays.
- Best time to post on YouTube: 3 p.m. – 4 p.m. on Fridays.
- Best time to post on X/Twitter: 11 a.m. on Monday and Friday.
The best time to post on Facebook
The best time to post on Facebook is 10 a.m. on Friday. Posts shared on the social network on Monday at 10 a.m. and Tuesday at 9 a.m. also saw high engagement rates and are worth adding to your posting schedule.
The rest of our data followed this pattern. Facebook posts published on weekday mornings get more engagement than the rest of the day, as Facebook users (primarily adults between 25 and 44) arrive at work.
The best day to post on Facebook is Friday when they wind down their workweeks. You’ll find high-engagement slots from 9 a.m. up until 4 p.m.
The worst time to post on Facebook is Saturday, with Sunday just behind.
Read our full guide to the best time to post on Facebook to see the optimal times for every day of the week, plus the best type of content to post.
The best time to post on Instagram
The best time to post on Instagram is Friday at 7 a.m., but posts shared on weekdays between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. tend to have high engagement rates. The pattern is similar to what we see on Facebook, but peak times tend to be in the early morning and will often spike in the late afternoon and evening.
The best day of the week to post on Instagram is Friday, with Monday not far behind.
Again, the worst day to post on Instagram seems to be Sunday, with Saturday in a close second.
Read our full guide to the best time to post on Instagram to see the optimal times for every day of the week, plus the best type of content to post.
The best time to post on LinkedIn
The best time to post on LinkedIn is between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays. The professional networking platform tends to be more forgiving than other social media platforms when it comes to peak times — as long as you post during a workday, you’ve got a great chance of success.
This is common sense, given that LinkedIn is the social network most used for work (rather than peeked at during breaks in the day like Instagram).
The best day of the week to post on LinkedIn is Friday, which sees the most engagement, closely followed by Thursday. Content shared towards the end of the work week likely has a slight edge when it comes to engagement rate, as LinkedIn users are more likely to take their time on the platform as work draws to a close (though this is just an educated guess!).
Unsurprisingly, this means weekends are the worst days to post on LinkedIn, with Saturday seeing a notable drop in engagement and Sunday only slightly better.
Read our full guide to the best time to post on LinkedIn to see the optimal times for every day of the week, plus the best type of content to post.
The best time to post on TikTok
The best times to post on TikTok are 2 p.m. on Mondays, 4 p.m. on Wednesdays, and 8 a.m. on Sundays.
That said, unlike most of the other social platforms we analyzed, TikTok use doesn’t have much by way of predictable patterns, nor any solid chunks of time that are great for posting. Again, TikTok’s demographic can help us make sense of audience behavior on the fast-growing app.
TikTok users tend to be younger — 53 percent of TikTok users in the U.S. are under 25, with 20 percent under 18 — and will have less predictable work schedules.
The best day of the week to post on TikTok is Tuesday (with Thursday, Monday, and Friday not too far off).
The worst day of the week to post on TikTok is Saturday. Videos shared on Sunday and Wednesday also tend to get fewer views on the app.
Read our full guide to the best time to post on TikTok to see the optimal times for every day of the week, plus the best type of content to post.
The best time to post on YouTube
The best time to post on YouTube, according to Buffer data, is 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Fridays. Other promising times for video views are Tuesday at 2 p.m. and Thursday at 6 p.m.
Audience behavior on YouTube is slightly more predictable than TikTok, but you couldn’t set a clock by it as you could with LinkedIn. Broadly speaking, YouTube video views pick up during mid-morning hours, lunch breaks, and late afternoon and evening.
Some late-night time slots may also yield higher video views, like 11 p.m. on Monday and Thursday.
The best day to post on YouTube is Friday, followed by Thursday and Wednesday.
Again, Sunday is the worst day of the week to publish videos, and Saturday is also best avoided.
Read our full guide to the best time to post on YouTube to see the optimal times for every day of the week, plus the best type of content to post.
The best time to post on X (formerly Twitter)
The best time to post on Twitter is 11 a.m. on both Monday and Friday. This late-morning slot is also a safe bet for the rest of the workweek.
On weekdays, engagement rates on the platform now known as X pick up in the early mornings, peak around midday, and then drop off in the late afternoon as the workday ends.
It’s worth noting that of all the platforms, X is probably the best for sharing late-night or early-morning content. Posts shared on Sunday, Thursday, and Friday at midnight and Monday at 4 a.m. tend to see high engagement rates.
The best day of the week to tweet is Monday, with Friday and Tuesday proving solid options, respectively. The worst day to tweet is Saturday, followed by Sunday.
Read our full guide to the best time to post on X to see the optimal times for every day of the week.
How to find your best times to post in Buffer
I can’t promise that publishing your social media content at precisely these times will guarantee your success — if only it were that easy! It’s important to remember that every audience is different. Time slots that work for Buffer’s social media audience probably won’t work for my personal audience, and vice versa.
Using your social media metrics to guide you can be a game-changer here. Some social media platforms, like Instagram and YouTube, will include high-engagement times in their native analytics. For the ones that don’t, you can do a bit of manual work by analyzing your best-performing posts to make some educated guesses on which times will work best for you.
Click on the platform-specific guides I’ve linked above to find step-by-step instructions to help you access them all.
Of course, there is an easier way. Any social media analytics tool worth using will do the hard work for you. Buffer’s Analytics will crunch the numbers of all your historical data and recommend the following:
- The best time/day of the week for you to post
- The best content format to post (image, video, text, or link)
- How often to post per day or week
To find them:
- Ensure the social network you want to analyze is connected to Buffer (here’s a guide to connecting all our available channels). Note that if this channel has just been connected to Buffer, it may take about a week for us to gather all the required data.
- Click on the Head to the Analytics tab at the top left.
- Here, you’ll find your Analytics Overview. You’ll see how your content has performed over the period you set with the date dropdown on the top right.
4. Choose the platform you want answers for in the column on the left.
5. Click on the Answers tab. You’ll find all of the recommendations I mentioned above in this window.
Timing matters — but it isn't everything
As touched on above, timing can help your content performance, but it's not the magic bullet that will have your content going viral.
Posting at the best times on your chosen platforms is an easy box to tick, but your time and energy are best spent on making sure your content resonates with your target audience and will nudge you toward your social media goals.
Not sure where to begin? Here's our guide to building a solid social media strategy from scratch — along with a template to get you started!
What have you found most helpful when determining your best time to post on social media? Let us know @buffer on all our social media accounts!