How to Design a Grid Takeover for Your Instagram Feed

Want to boost your Instagram profile views and website clicks? Here’s a savvy design trick that could help you do just that! Grid takeovers on Instagram use individual posts to create a larger picture on your profile page. These work well to drive people to visit your profile in order to see the entire picture where they’re more likely to click on your bio link or engage with your Instagram Stories.

We save grid takeovers for special content pieces and promotions, such as this infographic in honor of Women’s History Month or for the slideshow takeover that’s on our feed right now. While an awesome design from our community or mesmerizing photograph may yield higher likes as a one-off, collectively a grid drives deeper engagement per user and proves effective in boosting our website clicks and profile views. Grid takeovers take some design know-how and time, but they’re worth the investment for large promotions, launches, or setting the visual tone of a new account. And if you use your Instagram Stories for regular posts, you can leave your grid up for a while and still reap the benefits of sustained engagement.

Steps to Designing a Grid Takeover in Spark Post

For this tutorial, we’re walking you through how we designed our own grid takeover in Spark from scratch, but you can also use remixable templates to accomplish the same thing. First a few tips: You’ll want to design on mobile so you can see how each post fits together. iPad or tablet work best so that you can see three Posts in a row at once, but it’s possible to do it on iPhone or Android. The easiest way to accomplish this effect is to use solid backgrounds and icons because it’s easier to eyeball, but you can also try your hand at photography. To build the grid, you’re going to start with the lowest left square and then work left to right, row by row.

  1. Create a solid color Post in square aspect ratio. Remember this is your lowest and most left tile.
  2. Tap the plus button and select “add icon.” Choose an icon that is fairly symmetrical. This will make the splicing effect easier and more accurate.
  3. Move the icon to the far right and make sure a portion of it is off screen. Add other design elements as you see fit.
  4. Duplicate the Post to make a copy and build the other portion of the design. Move the icon to the far left to reveal the portion that was previously off screen.
  5. Check your work. Go to your first design and tap “edit.” This will shuffle the designs so it sits in the upper left of your “My Posts” tab. Check how accurate you are by viewing “My Posts.” Make small adjustments to the second design as needed. Remember editing a Post will bring it to the top of your designs, so try to only make edits to the latest design in the sequence.
  6. Continue this process until you have three, six, or nine images depending on how big you want your grid to be.
  7. Make sure each individual square is engaging enough on its own to still earn double taps one each share.

Start from Remixable Templates

Alternatively you can design your grid from a remixable template in the inspiration wall. The best designs for this are fairly symmetrical and collages are especially easy to work with. Once you’ve gotten your master design exactly as you want it, save it to your camera roll. Then use it as the background image for multiple square posts, using the same process as above. The following templates are good examples of designs that will be easy to fit together in a grid.

When Should You Use Grid Takeovers

Posting Tips

Once you’ve designed your content, it’s time to think about distribution. Some people post the grid all at once consecutively, which will flood your followers’ feeds. This is effective in driving curious followers to your profile in that moment and can be useful to drive engagement around a specific launch, but it also may feel a bit spammy to your audience. Chances are Instagram’s algorithm will suppress some of your posts, especially if they’re not  generating traction on their own. That’s why we like to post the content over a few days or even a week. It gives us content (and thus engagement) over multiple days and drives a habit with users. Once the grid is complete, we rely on Instagram Stories to drive to our profile and let the grid stay in tact for a few days.

We can’t wait to see your grids! Tag your Instagram posts with #adobespark so we’re sure to see it!