Facebook Instant Articles were built to solve a particular problem—slow loading times on the mobile web.
Like everything else, there are some advantages and disadvantages of using instant articles on your website.
Pros of Using Facebook Instant Articles
- Faster load time means a significant improvement in user experience.
- Due to speed, users are more likely to share your content.
- Access to monetization options through Facebook Audience Network.
- Boosted Facebook Page Reach.
- Facebook’s massive user base can bring the new wave of traffic to your site.
Cons of Using Facebook Instant Articles
- Users will not see your sidebars. It will hide your useful widgets, email list forms, and everything else that is not part of the article.
- You may witness a drop in advertising revenue, as Facebook instant articles limit the advertisers as well as the number of ads you can show on an article.
- You can use some images and videos in your article, but Facebook instant articles will limit that as well.
- Most shortcodes, custom fields, and other WordPress features will not be displayed in your articles.
Considering the pros and cons of using Facebook Instant Articles, it is a mixed bag for publishers. It actually depends on the type of content you produce and your business goals.
If you’re a news media site, then it makes sense for you to add it. If you’re a business website, then it may not be a huge difference maker.
As with any publishing platform, the value of Facebook Instant Articles greatly depends on your business model and goals.
So If You decided that Facebook Instant Articles are right for you. Let’s Set them Up for your WordPress website.
SetUp Facebook instant Articles On WordPress
Step 1. Sign up
The first thing you need to do to get up and running is to sign up to join the program. You can do this at https://www.facebook.com/instant_articles/signup
Select, Page you want to setup Instant Articles, Accept terms and Click “Access Instant Articles Tools”
Step 2. Connect Your website
Under the tools section, You need to click “Connect Your Site”
You need to verify that you own the website.
To claim your Domain, you need to add a meta tag to your HTML’s <head> tag and then add the URL to your settings. All the information you need to do this can be found in the Instant Articles Settings:
You can add it in your header.php file or You can install use Insert Headers and Footers plugin.
Step 3. Setting up Facebook Instant Articles plugin for WordPress
Good Thing is, Facebook Released their official Plugin for WordPress and other CMS’s. You can Download here.
upon activation the plugin
You will notice a new menu item in your WordPress admin bar labeled ‘Instant Articles’. Clicking on it will take you to the plugin’s settings page.
This plugin requires an App ID and Secret keys for activation.
If You don’t have one, You will need to create a Facebook app for your page to get those keys. Let’s take a look at how you can do that.
(If You already have Facebook App ID and Secret Key, Jump to Step 4)
Create a Facebook App For Your Page
- First, you need to visit the Facebook for Developers website. Click on “Add New App” Button.
- On Next page, You need to enter Your ‘App Name’ and ‘Email Address’ and choose Category.
- After, You create app Facebook will show you many products to add in your app but don’t worry about any of them yet.
- On The left side menu Go to App Dashboard.
- Now you need to choose the platform, means you need to tell Facebook where you want to use this app like a website or Android app. So just click on choose platform
- This will bring up a popup on screen. You need to click on a website.
- The Very bottom of next page adds your website URL, and Click and skip the quick tour.
- That’s It Now you have App ID and App Secret Key to use for Activation of Facebook Instant Article Plugin.
(Back To Facebook Instant Article Plugin)
Step 4. Login with Your Facebook Account
After you’ve to input your App Id and App Secret, click Login with Facebook to connect your Facebook account to WordPress.
Step 5. Customize Your Style
You’ll need to upload a logo and design(or keep the default design) your articles before submitting for review. To access the style editor, go to Publishing Tools at the top of your Page, select Configuration under Instant Articles and scroll down to Styles.
Visit your Facebook page and from the admin bar and click on Publishing Tools. From your left-hand menu, click on ‘Configuration’ under Instant Articles.
This will open up a popup where you can upload your website logo. Facebook requires images that are 690 by 132-pixel minimum.
After uploading the logo, click on Save and then click on Done.
Step 6. Submit Your Instant Articles Feed for Review
In order to begin publishing Instant Articles, Facebook team needs to review manually.
Before you can submit your Instant Articles feed for review, you need to make sure that you have at least 5 articles in your Instant Articles feed.
If you have already published more than 5 articles on your website, but the feed is not showing all of them, then you need to edit your last 5 articles and simply click on the update button.
Once you are sure that you have 5 articles in your Instant Articles feed, you are now ready to submit it to Facebook for review.
Go to your Facebook page and click on Publishing Tools from the admin bar. After that click on the ‘Configuration’ link under Instant Articles on your left-hand menu.
Please, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments. I’d love to hear your views on Instant Articles and whether you’ll be using them for your business or blog?