Facebook Instant Articles Publishing Tool – Facebook for Developers
History of Facebook Instant Article:
For many, it may sound new or surprising after listening to the term “Instant Article”. Although Facebook Instant Article was officially launched on 12 May 2015 the first article to be published was by “The Guardian” on 9 June 2015. In the initial years, Instant Article was only available for iPhone app users but in March 2016 The Social Media Giant, Facebook declared that users can implement the facility of displaying native ads and video ads in the published content. Soon after a month in April 2016 again Facebook came up with another announcement that Instant Article will be available with publishing tools like Medium and a few others. Finally at the F8 Facebook Conference Facebook declared that Facebook Instant Article will be available to all publishing users of the Social Media giant.
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What is the Instant Article?
Instant Article is a mobile-oriented application created by social media giant Facebook for helping authors and publishers around the world to publish their content on Facebook so that it becomes more easy and convenient for people surfing through the Facebook Mobile app for searching an article to view or read. In short, it’s a great platform for publishers to build a really engaging piece of content for the user. An Instant Article is basically an HTML code document that loads up very fast as compared to other web-based content. One of the important factors that a user can be happy about is the page loading which is ten times faster as compared to other web page content.
During the launch of Instant Article, Facebook had various issues regarding the loading time of the content, tracking analysis, visual appeal of the app page, functional aspect, monetary problem, advertising offers, and few other agenda, which was keenly looked after by Facebook. So in the below section, we will check out how Facebook overcome all these problems.
Content Loading Time:
At the launch of Instant Article, Facebook announced that this app feature will let the user experience the content with its unique ability to load the searched page in a fraction of the second. To prove this test a firm called Catchpoint System carried out a test that showed that an article takes almost zero to three hundred milliseconds as compared to 3.66 seconds for similar website content loading time.
To counter the tracking and analysis part, Facebook integrated Instant Article with different analysis tools like Google Analytics, ComScore, Omniture Analytics, and a few other analytical tools which made the application even more useful for users.
We as a Digital Marketing Institute strongly believe the analytics integration was a masterstroke by Facebook which completely changed the fortunes for the Social Media giant.
Understanding the need for analytics in Digital Marketing, we have now included basics of Google Analytics in our Digital Marketing course & Advanced Web & Omniture Analytics as a separate course for students joining eMarket Education, a leading Digital Marketing Institute in Bengaluru.
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Visual and Functionality Appeal:
Facebook does not compromise on its visual aspects which can be seen in this Instant Article app as it provides users with different designing tools, templates and even customized designing options which makes a lot of difference not only for the publishers or developers but also for the users.
In Digital Marketing be it any channel of Digital Marketing you focus on as a Marketer it’s very important to focus on the aesthetics & visual appeal part.
Monetary and Advertising Issue:
In order to solve the monetary problem, Facebook started the concept of showing different ads like native ads and video ads in the published which in turn solved the revenue problem. And by implementing this ad strategy method, the publisher and Facebook get benefitted by selling the ads.
Important points that a publisher must keep in mind before starting Instant Article:
An existing website or blog:
The first mandatory requirement to start Instant Article is the requirement of a web URL or also referred as a canonical URL by many.
Access to your website HTML code:
In order to showcase your website published content in Instant Article, there is a two-step registration process to connect your website to the Instant article.
Creation of the logo:
You must have a high-resolution graphic image which is an essential requirement for creating and publishing your logo, basically for your brand purpose.
Mandatory requirement of a Facebook page:
To connect your web page to Instant Article there are two essential things without which it won’t work. First, you should have your own Facebook page and if at all you are working for your company or organization then it is must that you should have the page admin role for that particular Facebook page.
Minor knowledge of development:
Minor knowledge of development with WordPress, Drupal or 3rd party plugins will be an additional benefit while creating Instant Articles in Facebook or else you will have the option of creating the article with the help of Facebook API or RSS feed.
Creation of designing template:
It is a fact that designing factor is very crucial for any page visual appearance and as there is a saying that “a picture counts a thousand words”, the Instant Article app too have inbuilt options and influencing features for helping publishers. Also, the app provides Style Editor Tool for developers to find attractive and stylish templates while creating an article. You can find the style editor tool by going to the Publishing tool and thereby choosing the Configuration which is available under Instant Article on the left-hand side navigation menu.
Downloading of page manager app:
To preview your content in Instant Article before you make it live, download and use Facebook mobile application so that you can feel and experience the same content which would be shown to the user.
Verification of submitted article:
Last but not least is the end step which includes that the publisher must publish five complete content articles (maybe old or a new one) which get examined by the Facebook team. Unless the publisher decides to change it at any particular moment in time it won’t get published.
So this was a small piece of info on the intro and features about Facebook Instant Article. In the Facebook Instant Article (Part – 2) we will cover some interesting and useful topics like how to get started in Instant Article? How to design your article? How to format your article templates? How to import your article? Where and how to implement Call To Action options? How does the monetary option work in terms of advertisement? How do advertisers get started with Instant Article? How exactly the insights and Analytical tools function? And other Frequently Asked Questions about Facebook Instant Article.