Why Can’t I Follow People on Instagram? 9 Effective Fixes

Reading time: 6 min read
Muninder Adavelli
Written by
Muninder Adavelli

Updated · Sep 08, 2023

Muninder Adavelli
Digital Growth Strategist | Joined October 2021 | Twitter LinkedIn
Muninder Adavelli

Muninder Adavelli is a core team member and Digital Growth Strategist at Techjury. With a strong bac... | See full bio

Edited by
Dushko Talevski


Techjury is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Why can’t I follow people on Instagram?” is a common question recently, as many accounts have encountered this problem.

The answer depends on the actual reason for the issue, which may be anything from exceeding your follow limit to being user blocked.

Stay awhile as we cover all eventualities below!

9 Reasons Why You Can’t Follow Instagram Accounts Right Now

Whether you’ve exceeded your follow limit or third-party services are preventing you from following anyone, we cover most, if not all, reasons why you may be experiencing this Instagram issue and provide you with the necessary solutions.

1. You Have Followed Too Many Accounts at Once

To deter bots and spammy behavior, Instagram limits the number of accounts you can follow within a short time period. Based on anecdotal evidence, you can follow around 60 people in an hour or 200 accounts daily.

If you violate these restrictions, you will be prevented from following any more accounts for a while, and you will be warned about your unusual behavior.

What’s the fix?

Keep track of the number of people you have followed to avoid being labeled as a spammer by Instagram, or you will be unable to follow anyone for a specific time frame.

2.  You Have Exceeded Your Follow Limit

Due to a recent change meant to combat spam, Instagram has stopped allowing users to follow more than 7,500 accounts in total. If you attempt to follow new users after that, you will be informed that you have reached your limit. 

Note: Accounts following more than 7,500 users have already increased their numbers before the change took effect.

What’s the fix?

Comb through the accounts you follow and unfollow those with whom you are no longer interacting to create space for new accounts to follow.

3. Your Instagram App Might Be Buggy

Mobile apps may also misbehave now and then for a variety of reasons, the main of which is corrupted cache data. However, low-end phones with insufficient storage or performance issues may also cause apps to freeze or bug out.

What’s the fix?

First, restart your phone to see whether or not the issue persists. If that doesn’t help, navigate to your app settings and clear its data and cache storage. Finally, you can also reinstall Instagram via the Apple or Google app store.

4. You Use Third-Party Services

Like most social media platforms, Instagram allows you to share your data with third-party apps and websites for several reasons, including importing photos from Instagram or simply linking to your account.

However, under certain circumstances, Instagram might consider these associations suspicious, especially if they lead to spammy behavior; therefore, it may prevent you from following other users.

What’s the fix?

Review all third-party services connected to your Instagram account and prohibit access to those that may affect your Instagram activity.\

5. You Have Muted or Restricted Some Accounts

Instagram allows you to limit your interaction with other users via features like ‘mute’ and ‘restrict’. The former prevents the affected user’s content from appearing on your timeline, whereas the latter limits their interaction with you.

If you make these changes but also unfollow them, you may forget that you have done so if and when you choose to re-establish the connection down the line.

What’s the fix?

Keep an eye on the accounts you limit in any way and restore their privileges to default settings before you attempt to follow them again.

6. You Might Have Been Blocked by the User

The main reason why you may be unable to follow someone on Instagram is because they’ve blocked you. In such cases, you cannot interact with the user in any way, including seeing their content, messaging, or following them.

What’s the fix?

You can try deactivating your Instagram account, creating a new one, and following them from there. But, the more sensible solution is to get in touch with the user via other means to sort out the issue and have them lift the block.

7. Your Internet Connection Might Be Sketchy

An often overlooked cause of your Instagram issues might be a spotty or unstable internet connection, which may be caused by any number of things: from faulty wired equipment to bad wi-fi or phone network coverage.

Under such circumstances, you will encounter issues when refreshing your feed, sending messages, or even following someone.

What’s the fix?

Ensure that your internet connection is functioning correctly by resetting your modem and router, replugging all the necessary cables, reconnecting to your Wi-Fi, and resetting your phone network settings.

8. Your VPN Is Affecting Your Instagram

Suppose you are using a VPN while scrolling through your feed. In that case, you may be prevented from following someone if Instagram detects suspicious activities from different IP addresses, which is one of the benefits of a virtual private network.

What’s the fix?

The solution is simple: deactivate your VPN service while using Instagram.

9. Instagram’s Servers May Be Down

The only reason you may be unable to use Instagram properly that does not have a solution is that the platform’s servers are down! In such situations, you have no other option than to wait for Instagram to bring its full service back online. At least you can visit Downdetector.com to monitor the status of Instagram’s servers.

What’s the fix?

Unfortunately, there’s no fix, and you’ll have to wait until Instagram fixes the issue.

Bottom Line

As you can see, the reason for being unable to follow Instagram accounts can be anything from a buggy application to a bad internet connection. Thankfully, as long as downed servers or a user block do not cause your issues, you can quickly restore your Instagram’s functionality by applying one of the above fixes.


What’s the maximum number of people I can follow every day on Instagram?

Instagram allows you to follow up to 200 people per day or up to 7,500 accounts in total. You will see an error message if you attempt to follow more than that.

How long does Instagram’s “Action Blocked” ban last?

In general, your “Action Blocked” message will tell you how long your ban will last, which in most cases, lasts from 24 hours up to a few days.

How to know if my actions are being limited by Instagram?

Whenever you are prevented from doing anything on Instagram, such as liking, commenting, following, or posting, you will be notified about the block via a brief message.

Why can’t I unfollow people on Instagram?

You either unfollowed too many people at once, or Instagram’s services are disrupted for the moment since it’s experiencing server-related issues.

Why can’t I follow people on Instagram with private accounts?

If the account you are attempting to follow is private, the account owner will first have to approve your follow request before you are able to see their content.


Facebook LinkedIn Twitter
Leave your comment

Your email address will not be published.