Google has just created a WordPress plugin to help publishers create Google Stories.
Of course, Google doesn’t make WordPress plugins unless they REALLY want people out there to make content which they can then use to build out more ways to show results to their audience.
What is a Google AMP Web Story?
Google AMP Stories represent Google’s latest push for rich AMP content mimicking the quick, convenient format of a Snapchat, TikTok, or Instagram Story.
Google has also publicly placed some guidelines and best practices to follow, with some highlights being:
- Make your story complete (no click-through required)
- Stories must be 5 to 30 ‘slides’ — or ‘pages’ — long (so no 1-page CTAs)
- Keep your content short and informative (<15-second videos)
- Keep your text below 10 words per page
Why Should You Care About Google Web Stories?
Well, since Google Stories is still very new and in beta, there is zero competition out there — so it’s a complete LAND GRAB for mobile organic traffic, at the moment.
You don’t even have to be the best — just one of the first!
I just got this plugin on Monday, July 20th, and then quickly threw together a rough (and I mean rough) web story for my personal blog. It only took me an hour:
That following day, I received 40,000 impressions, totaling 142 clicks — and then, 30 of those made their way to the website after viewing the entire story!
I linked to my story through a sidebar on my blog, to drive click-throughs to my sales page. Now normally, I’ll see about a 30% CTR from my main organic landing pages to my sales page. Since dropping this link in the sidebar, however, that percentage has grown to 38% practically overnight (a 26% improvement).
I believe these impressions are most likely coming from Google Discover, since we weren’t able to find any stories in the wild in Google SERPs.
So, seeing this uptick in performance, I went back in and made a few adjustments to make it longer, prettier and more informative — and I really can’t wait to see what that brings.
The point is, though, mine is probably the only one out there — and Google always prioritizes (note: anecdotal opinion) early adopters of their content types and features.
Google Stories Can Double as a CTA on Your Website
These don’t have to exist solely on the Google SERP. Stories might be able to rank on their own, but I believe that embedding or pairing stories with actual content would likely perform even better.
Can you imagine telling a short story about how a product works on your webpage, with a nice click-through at the end? And if it ranks, even better! You could create a beautiful cover photo and use that as a CTA on your website, paired with a powerful “explainer” story, and then at the end, point readers to your product or service. And this is great news, too: Google Stories are fully embeddable and shareable on other sites.
Using your story as a CTA is especially effective when you have some long-form content that you’re unsure whether people will read or not. Just remember, your CTA can’t be the first thing that they see, as Google’s guidelines on ‘completeness’ would stop a CTA from appearing on the SERP.
There’s a Low-Competition Opportunity Right Now
We’ve seen this situation before; it has a formula that looks like this: New content type + no competition + early adoption = preeminence.
If you and your brand pride yourselves on being cutting edge, it simply doesn’t get more ‘that’ than ‘this’.
Hop on board, make a story, share your content with the world in a brand new way — and then maybe reap some rewards along with it.
You can get the plugin here. It’s extremely easy to use, and hardly even needs a tutorial, allowing you to upload photos directly from your Google media library and add text directly within the plugin.
If your company gets lots of mobile organic search traffic, this new plugin could very well be the boost in traffic you’re looking for. It’s a tremendous new opportunity to create top-of-funnel or middle-of-funnel content that draws prospects in.
Try it out! Tell a complete story — or completely answer a question with a story — and hey, at the end, it’s totally reasonable to link to a solution.
For Further Reading: