What do Instagram Stories, Facebook Stories, Snapchat Stories and Twitter Fleets have in common? They are all so-called social media implementations of the same stories idea. A story is a series of images or others types of content that belong together, and thus, tell a story. Visual storytelling is huge and now the web has an open story format as well. Launched back in 2018 as AMP Stories, Google’s Web Stories are now available in WordPress.
What are Web Stories?
Web Stories are a swipeable, rich visual storytelling format for use on mobile devices. Web Stories offer a fullscreen experience that can incorporate every type of content imaginable. In contrast to closed formats like Instagram Stories, Web Stories are open and freely distributable. You can make and publish them on your own site. You own your stories.
What’s more, Web Stories get their own place in the Google search results — right at the top. And that’s not all, because stories can also appear on Google Images, Discover and the Google app. All very prominently.
Web Stories give you much more control over what you publish and how you do that. You are free to determine the format, where you publish it and how long you want a story to ‘live’. These stories are lightning fast, offering you a quick and easy to digest type of content.
Keep in mind that, while Web Stories are intended for use on mobile devices, every story automatically also gets a simple desktop viewer. This means that your mobile content is truly available for everyone.
Goodbye AMP Stories, hello Web Stories
Early 2018, Google introduced AMP Stories as a way of quickly building visual stories for the web using open technologies. In May 2020, AMP Stories became Web Stories and by October 2020, launched on the number one platform in the world: WordPress. The Web Stories plugin for WordPress has made it so much easier to build stories on the platform that you own: your website.
Google continues to make improvements to Web Stories, while also pushing the adoption. Earlier this year, announced that some of its other tools like the Rich Results Testing Tools and Search Console can now recognize Web Stories as such. In the settings of the WordPress plugin, you can set the tracking ID for Analytics. This helps you get a sense of how your Stories are performing.
Examples of Web Stories
You can use Web Stories for a lot of things and we’ve seen many big media brands do it. While it seems they are best fit for bite-sized content, you can go a pretty deep with your stories. If you can build an engaging story, people might flock to it. This is just the thing that might make your content go viral.
Here are some cool example of Web Stories (and its predecessor AMP Stories):