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New Facebook Instant Articles Are The Future Of Online Publishing

by • May 14, 2015 • Breaking News, FacebookComments Off on New Facebook Instant Articles Are The Future Of Online Publishing6980

There is a new format of posts available on Facebook: Instant articles. This new type of post allows publishers to create articles that load natively inside the Facebook app (iPhone only for now), rather than having to send users to a separate website.

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Only a handful of publishers already have access to the new feature and our guess is that it will eventually become available to all publishers after a test period. For now, you’re likely to come across Instant articles form the likes of National Geographic, Buzzed, NBCm The Guardian, BBC News, The New York Times or Germany’ Spiegel and Bild.

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I think Facebook Instant articles are the future of online publishing, and I can’t wait to get my hands on them for our website. Here is why.

Also Read: Twitter Curator Is Now Available For All Publishers

The new Facebook Instant articles are a small revolution for both users and publishers. They come with awesome new capacities and aim to provide a better user experience.

Faster and More Interactive Content For Users

With Instant articles, publishers can add high-resolution images that can be zoomed in and “navigated” through by tilting the iPhone left and right. Videos will auto-play as you scroll through the articles and publishers can also include interactive maps and audio captions. Plus, with in-line commenting, the experience aims to be completely social for users.

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Another great advantage of instant articles is speed. While it can take more than a few seconds to redirect to and load an external webpage on your mobile, Instant articles open instantly (you get the story behind the name now, right?)

As more people get their news on mobile devices, we want to make the experience faster and richer on Facebook. People share a lot of articles on Facebook, particularly on our mobile app. To date, however, these stories take an average of eight seconds to load, by far the slowest single content type on Facebook. Instant Articles makes the reading experience as much as ten times faster than standard mobile web articles.

It’s Fully Transparent For Publishers

The biggest worry Facebook faced from publishers was (of course) about traffic and ad revenue. Publishers were worried that content that was hosted on Facebook would result in less traffic on their website, in turn leading to less ad revenue.

Facebook answered these worries by handing over 100% of all ad revenue generated on Instant articles, back to the publishers. According to a report from Recode, the articles will only allow for a single banner ad unit, which could still generate good revenue for publishers though.

Now, concerning website traffic, Facebook is offering full analytics that can feed into Google Analytics or Adobe Omniture. So no traffic loss per say for publishers, just another source. Performance data will also be provided to ComScore so that publishers don’t lose out on their advertising value.

And Facebook Promises To Remain Fair To Others

Facebook promised that publishers that have not been selected for now will not be impacted. Facebook says that its algorithm will not push forward the new format over traditional links.

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It’s hard not to see how Paper, the US only app that was launched a few years ago, has been a strong inspiration to the technology behind Instant articles. And I, for one, believe the future of content lies in similar format. What is your opinion?

Introducing Instant Articles, a new tool for publishers to create fast, interactive articles on Facebook.

Posted by Facebook Media on Tuesday, May 12, 2015


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