Formerly known as AMP stories, Web Stories are a highly interactive and visual format for content creation. Google has emphasized these as standalone features—something that supplements the main content your web page is promoting. This format combines video, image, audio, and even text for a unique experience.
Web Stories can be displayed all over the web, on your mobile phone as a part of a carousel, search result, or even on Google Images.
On 6th October, Google announced they would be introducing Web Stories to Discover. Web Stories Product Manager, Vamsee Jasti, said “The Stories carousel, now available in the United States, India and Brazil at the top of Discover, helps you find some of the best visual content from around the web. In the future, we intend to expand Web Stories to more countries and Google surfaces.”
Discover is essentially a feed that shows you content and topics highly relevant to you. This allows you to get news and updates on your interests without having to search for them manually. Things like how your NBA team performed in their last game or even news about the latest season of your favorite show.
This feature saves users both time and energy, as the content they see in Discover changes on a regular basis depending on new developments and how their interests evolve.
Well, the thing about Web Stories is that you can’t optimize them the same as you would a regular web page. Granted, there are certain rules you need to abide by to make sure your story isn’t banned, or to increase the likelihood of it being featured on the top page. But apart from adhering to basic guidelines, they can’t be enhanced.
In a nutshell, here’s what Google recommends you do:
1. Make sure your story is a valid AMP by checking the inspection tool
2. Verify your metadata; here’s the full list for your referral
3. Check if your story is indexed by using the URL inspection tool
As we previously stated, these are supposed to supplement your existing content, not replace it, because the ranking system appears to be random and you have absolutely no control over it.
However, Web Stories can be a solid additional traffic sources and a great addition to your SEO strategy. You can even track how they perform and use them as a source for some free A/B testing for future landing pages, or to get insight on what keywords to use in your copywriting.
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