Toots are, by design, hard to find. Part of the underlying privacy features means there is no full text search. We err on the side of making it possible for you to restrict who can interact with you and your content. This is part of the larger effort to prevent people finding content they disagree with and piling in to abuse the author, or finding content about them and jumping in to self-promote or steal the thread.
The way we approach discoverability is via hashtags. Hashtags can always be searched, and it’s up to each author to decide whether or not to add the tags.
So, to increase your reach, and to allow people on other instances and communities to find you, it’s necessary to use hashtags. For example
solar power is the best power!
can only be seen by people on Tŵt and people who already follow you – whereas
#solar power is the best power!
can be searched and seen by anyone interested in #solar.
For this reason, we recommend using hashtags when you want content to be seen by a larger audience. Some of the obvious ones are #photo and #art, but topics and subject matters are also a great way to get wider exposure to your content, for example #technology, #renewables, #politics – or even more specific like #beer, #cheese, or #monkeys.
When Fediverse members search a keyword, it searches for instances of that hashtag across the federation of instances, and your toots will show up for those users.
The same works in reverse, too. When you search a hashtag on Tŵt it looks for that hashtag across all known communities, so for example if you search #introductions you can see the entire network of content, not just Tŵt – https://toot.wales/web/timelines/tag/introductions
For a list of our most popular hashtags check out https://twtcymru.wordpress.com/2019/01/03/hashtags/