Instant is a word that we have become very accustomed to with the invention of technology.
And, now, even more so with the invention of social media platforms like Facebook.
Yesterday, Facebook announced its new service: Instant Articles. The benefits of this new service is right there in its name – now, publishers have the ability to create and publish articles onto Facebook. Instantly.
Publishers like the New York Times, National Geographic, and even Buzzfeed must first post content onto their own websites before sharing them to Facebook. So, what’s the problem with that? These articles take 8 more seconds to load than any other content shared on Facebook.
Instant Articles will allow users to read articles around ten times faster than they normally would be able to. With over a billion people visiting Facebook to discover what is happening around the world, this is great news for publishers!
Other Benefits for Publishers
In addition to faster access to articles, publishers will also benefit in other areas as well.
When designing Instant Articles, Facebook decided to give complete control to the publishers. Each publisher will have control over their stories and their monetary opportunities – they can continue posting on their website, solely using Instant Articles, or both.
If publishers decide to sell within the articles, they are able to keep the full revenue earned. If, however, they would like to give Facebook some responsibility to sell their ads, they can do so with a budget (like how Facebook Ads are set up already).
Publishers can also track their own data and traffic through comScore or other analytic tools.
Benefits for Readers
Not only will Facebook news-seekers enjoy a faster search and load time on their mobile device, but articles have the potential to become more interactive. For example, Instant articles can include:
- Interactive maps.
- Zoom in options for high-resolution images.
- Audio capability.
- The ability to like or comment on isolated parts of an article.
Where can I find these articles?
As of right now, Facebook users will have to “like” a separate page (facebook.com/instantarticles) in order to retrieve these articles. Users will be able to see every article posted in that feed, whereas, before, it was only the publishers that they have “liked” individually. A great way to find and explore new content!
Of note: Facebook is currently in the process of launching this service with only 9 publishers (some we have already mentioned above). There is no date set for when other publishers can join, but they are hoping for the near future!
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