Instagram API troubleshooting guide

Our service utilizes two official Instagram APIs:

  1. Basic Display API for consumer connection
  2. Instagram Graph API for business connection

Occasionally, these APIs may experience downtime or other issues, leading to errors that prevent us from gathering the necessary data to create a widget.

An example of the Instagram API error on our website.

This article provides advice on how to respond when such errors occur.

Method 1 – The most straightforward fix: try again

Often, the simplest solution is to change any of your widget settings, which will trigger another request to the API. Transient errors can sometimes occur, but simply trying again may resolve them.

Method 2 – Check your access token

Ensure your access token (the connection between your Instagram account and our app) is valid. If the connection is inactive, we cannot successfully query the API, resulting in error messages. Please renew your token/connection first and then try again.

To renew the token, please follow these steps:

  1. Click the Accounts link in the menu to see the list of your Instagram accounts.
  2. Search for the Instagram account that results in the API error message. If the token has “Expired” status, please click the Refresh token button to start refreshing the token.

Here is a more detailed guide about refreshing the token: How to refresh the expired access token?

Once you refresh the expired token, the error message about API failure should no longer occur.

Method 3 – Fix for the consumer connection

If your Instagram account uses the consumer connection and your access token is active, but the problem occurs repeatedly, you are likely affected by an issue specific to certain Instagram accounts. There is a bug in the Basic Display API that we cannot fix from our end.

In this scenario, the Basic Display API does not return the links to your photos and video thumbnails, preventing us from successfully creating the widget. Unfortunately, there is no known fix for this problem yet.

The only solution is to switch to the business connection, which uses a different Instagram API where this issue does not occur.

Here are the instructions on how to migrate to a business connection:

  1. Ensure Your Instagram Account is a Professional Account (Business or Creator).
  2. Link Your Instagram Account with Your Facebook Page
    • If you haven’t done this, please follow the instructions in the Connect an Instagram account and your Page guide first.
    • A linked Instagram account and Facebook Page are also mandatory to use the business connection.
  3. Click the Accounts link in the menu to see the list of your Instagram accounts.
  4. Connect a new Instagram account using the business connection button.
  5. Once you connect your Instagram account, ensure you select the Instagram account with the “Business connection” annotation from the dropdown in the Instagram account option while using the widget creator.

Using the business connection should not trigger the API error. For a more detailed guide on connecting the Instagram account using the business connection, please check the instructions here: How to connect a new Instagram account?

Method 4 – Contact our support

If none of the above tips solve the issue, please check the Meta status page before submitting a support ticket. If there is an API outage, please wait until Meta resolves the problem. It usually takes about an hour or two.

If there is no outage, please submit a support ticket and tell us which methods you have tried. Knowing what you have attempted will help us provide more accurate advice.

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