If you’re an active TikTok user or creator who’s trying to stimulate TikTok growth, nothing pumps the brakes harder on that than getting shadowbanned. It can also be tricky to tell if you’re shadowbanned at all since TikTok doesn’t give you an official notice or inform you what you’ve done wrong.
However, if you notice a sudden and significant drop in your views with TikTok analytics, there’s a good chance you’ve been shadowbanned. Some of your followers may even complain that they haven’t seen your content on their “For You” pages lately, which is another sign that TikTok is limiting who sees your videos.
Shadowbans happen when users violate TikTok’s community guidelines, but what kind of behaviors and violations get you in trouble? Here’s what you need to know about avoiding a TikTok shadowban.
Why Am I Shadowbanned?
The first step to avoiding a shadowban is figuring out why you’re banned at all – and it usually comes down to a couple of the same major reasons.
You’ve Posted Something Inappropriate
One of the most common reasons you’ll see someone shadowbanned on TikTok has to do with inappropriate behavior – and there’s an entire list of things that TikTok considers to be inappropriate, such as:
- Nudity (this includes videos where you’re completely naked, but also a bikini or just underwear)
- Sexualized content (besides just nudity, TikTok frowns on people redirecting their followers to adult websites like OnlyFans as well)
- Drug usage
- Hate speech (if you’re making racist, homophobic, or even just hateful remarks towards someone, TikTok views this all as hate speech)
- Copyrighted music (If you’re using music that you haven’t picked from their sound collection and it’s copyrighted)
- Fake news (if you’re intentionally spreading misinformation about an event, organization, or person)
TikTok doesn’t just strive to make their content feel “family-friendly” – they also want it to be a safe, inclusive space for anyone and everyone. If you’re not sure why you’ve been shadowbanned, take a close look at some of your recent content. If it’s violated one of the reasons listed above, that could be why you’re shadowbanned.
You’re Participating in “Spam Behavior”
If you haven’t posted something inappropriate recently, TikTok may have shadowbanned you for “spam behavior.” In this case, it means that TikTok has mistaken you for a bot or a spammer, and they’re limiting who sees your videos.
The best way to get mistaken for a bot or spammer is if you’re following a ton of accounts within a short frame of time. Some creators may use this tactic to see who will follow them back, but if you’re following twenty-five or fifty accounts a day, TikTok may assume you’re a bot.
If this could be your problem, try giving the “Follow” button a rest. Take a week or even a little longer where you only follow a few accounts, if any at all.
You’re Using a “Banned” Tag
In some cases, your content itself may not be inappropriate, but the tag you’re using triggers an automatic shadowban. For instance, if you’re using the tag (#OnlyFans), that’s a great way to get shadowbanned – whether your content is actually inappropriate or not.
While it’s not always easy to tell which tags get you banned, we offer a feature at Statistok that lets you know whether your tags are causing engagement problems – as well as several other tools to help you with TikTok growth.
How to Lift Your TikTok Shadowban
Even if you know what behavior to avoid now, that doesn’t do much to help if you’re currently dealing with a shadowban – so, here’s what you can do to remove your shadowban.
Delete the Inappropriate Content
If you’re shadowbanned because of inappropriate content, your first step is to delete the video or videos that caused the problem. After deleting, some users may log out and log back in just to “refresh” their account.
Uninstall and Reinstall the App
If logging in and logging out doesn’t seem effective, you may want to try uninstalling and reinstalling the TikTok app altogether. This is another way to give your account a fresh start, but once again, you only want to do this after you’ve taken down the inappropriate content.
Take a Short Break
If your content still seems to be lacking in engagement after you’ve taken the steps above, you may want to try taking a short break after you’ve cleaned up your account. Just a few days away could be enough time to get the algorithm working in your favor again.
However, when you do start posting again, you’ll need to stay far away from the content that got you banned. If you go back to posting inappropriate content or acting like a spammer, you’ll only get shadowbanned again.
TikTok may be quick to shadowban people, but they don’t always let you know why you’re in trouble – or if you’ve truly been shadowbanned at all. Following the steps above can help you avoid a shadowban (as well as remove one that’s already in place), so that you can get back to growing your account.