TikTok is restricting hashtags in Creative Center


TikTok marketers can no longer search for specific hashtags within the platform’s Creative Center tools.

Why we care. These restrictions will make it harder for you to explore and gauge the popularity of trends on the platform, which is essential for effective campaign planning.

What’s changed? Links for hashtags related to the Israel-Hamas war and U.S. politics no longer work within Creative Center. TikTok has also removed the search button in Creative Center.

According to TikTok, the tool has shifted its focus towards providing data on the top 100 hashtags within diverse industries, such as pets and travel, instead.

Why now? TikTok has restricted its hashtag search feature due to concerns that the data was being used to uncover potential platform censorship. This decision comes after researchers and lawmakers scrutinized content related to geopolitics and the Israel-Hamas war using the tool’s results.

What is TikTok Creative Center? The Creative Center is a tool designed to assist advertisers in monitoring trend popularity on the site. Accessible to everyone, it provides data on the number of videos associated with a specific hashtag and details about the audience that viewed those videos.

What TikTok is saying. TikTok spokesperson Alex Haurek tolf the New York Times (which is paywalled):

  • “Unfortunately, some individuals and organizations have misused the Center’s search function to draw inaccurate conclusions, so we are changing some of the features to ensure it is used for its intended purpose.”

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Deep dive. Read our guide on how the TikTok algorithm works for more information on how to create successful campaigns.


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About the author

Nicola Agius

Nicola Agius is Paid Media Editor of Search Engine Land after joining in 2023. She covers paid search, paid social, retail media and more. Prior to this, she was SEO Director at Jungle Creations (2020-2023), overseeing the company’s editorial strategy for multiple websites. She has over 15 years of experience in journalism and has previously worked at OK! Magazine (2010-2014), Mail Online (2014-2015), Mirror (2015-2017), Digital Spy (2017-2018) and The Sun (2018-2020). She also previously teamed up with SEO agency Blue Array to co-author Amazon bestselling book Mastering In-House SEO.



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