Anyone who uses Facebook and follows a number of publications will more than likely have seen the Instant Article feature before. Instant Articles are basically links inside of the Facebook app that open instantly without any loading times.
A small number of publishers such as the likes of Buzzfeed have had access to the feature for some time and the feedback has been largely positive. Why is something so simple having such a positive effect? We love time. We love time so much that if you can give people more of it, even a few seconds, they will love it.
Think about the last time your internet connection slowed down, the last time your computer froze for a few seconds or if you are on a Mac think of the last time you saw the spinning beachball. Now think about how pissed off you were when that happened. That is how much we love time.
Facebook wants to expand Instant Articles further and from April 12th the feature will be open to everyone including bloggers. In order to try and get people on board as soon as possible and as easily as possible, Facebook is teaming up with Automatic, the company behind WordPress.
The two companies will have a new plugin that will come with a number of tools to help bloggers get their blogs ready for Instant Articles before the feature launches. The plugin will come with tools that will allow users to choose to enable auto-play videos or use tap to zoom photos on their articles to make them more interactive.
WordPress currently powers 25% of websites on the internet so the move to get Instant Articles up and running is a big gain for Facebook.
The company says that all standard templates will support the plugin out of the box, but warns that if site owners have customized their templates, they may need to play with the plugin to get optimal results.