You can be forgiven for not knowing that Google has its own version of the stories kind of content (popularized by Snapchat and Instagram). Unlike the ones that social media services are using, Web Stories are created, monetized, hosted, and shared by the creators / websites using Google’s tools but are not really on the Google platform per se. Somehow that is all about to change as Google is now showing off Web Stories in the Discover section of the Google mobile app to boost its audience aside from those that see it in relevant search results.
Web Stories was actually previously called AMP Stories but that also did not gain much traction. But similar to Snaps and Instagram Stories, they are short video clips that lets you show off a product, event, or new content from a creator. It is considered more of an extension of the brand or creator’s website rather than a social media platform. But of course no matter how great that story is, it’s useless if no one sees it anyway.
So Google is putting Web Stories at the forefront of the Google mobile app by adding a carousel at the top of the Discover feed. You just navigate through it just like you would on your IG stories by tapping to move to the next page or swipe to see the next story. Google is also bringing more Web Stories to mobile search results. The carousel will only be available initially for users in the U.S, India, and Brazil.
While search results will be seen globally, creating Web Stories is still pretty limited. Google has partnered with publishers and content creators in the U.S, India, and Brazil like Forbes, Bustle, Nylon, Hollywood Reporter, etc. But they say anyone (well as long as you’re in that country) can create and publish stories on their websites using Google’s tools. There is a new stories.google site where you can learn how to create high quality content.
Will Web Stories be as popular as Instagram Stories? This is still pretty much an experimental thing for Google so it can go either way. Let’s see if putting it on the Google mobile app and mobile search results can help it be a “thing” for publishers and users.