Okay, so you have decided to enter the world of Facebook Instant articles. But you’re not quite sure how to get started. If you are still not quite sure what Facebook Instant articles are, check out our Facebook instant articles guide.
If you already have a good idea about what they are and are ready to jump in feet first, our tutorial will guide you through the process. It may seem complicated at first. But once you know what you’re doing, things become much easier.
1- Your Website
Before you can get started with the registration process for Facebook instant articles you need to have your own website in place. This can be your own self-hosted website, a WordPress website or a blog site.
Let’s hedge our bets and assume you’re using WordPress as their CMS. That’s a broad assumption, but let’s face it, WordPress powers 30%+ of all websites on the internet. If you are using WordPress, you need to have the following in place:
- A Facebook page for your website
- The page app for your Facebook page
- A minimum of 10 articles on your website
- The WordPress plugin for instant articles
If you have all four of these things already in place then you are ready to apply for the instant articles program. This can take a little bit of time to do and is not instantaneous. However, once you have been approved for the program, you are well on your way to easier publishing.
2- How to sign up for Facebook Instant articles
The first thing that you are going to need to do is to visit the Facebook instant articles website. From here, click on the “sign up” button.
You will be asked to choose a page for your instant articles. Select the Facebook page that is associated with your website. Then check the agreement box for the terms and conditions and select the button “access instant articles tools.”
You will be directed to the publisher tools section on the Facebook page you intend on publishing with. You will notice that there is now a section for instant articles.
It is now time to confirm that you own your website to by confirming and claiming your website URL. To do this, scroll down to the claim your URL section, copy the snippet of code and then paste it into the header section of your website.
If you are using WordPress, you can use the instant headers and footers plugin instead of editing the header.PHP file of your child theme. Go ahead and activate the plugin, then head to settings, insert headers and footers and paste the snippet of code into the header section.
Save all of your changes and then head back to the Facebook page publisher tool section. Paste your website URL beneath the code that you had to copy earlier. Then click on the button to claim your URL.
3- Add the instant articles RSS feed
Head back to your WordPress website and search for the instant articles for WP plugin. Install and activate plugin to generate the feed for your instant articles.
Switch back to Facebook and had to the production RSS feed section. Click on expand and then insert your website URL followed by:
If you have done this correctly, you will see the success message stating that you have successfully set up your instant articles RSS feed.
4- Creating the Facebook page app
Now you are ready to head over to the Facebook For Developers site. On the drop-down menu, click on the “add a new app” button. When the pop-up screen appears, select your website.
On the wizard, enter the name for your Facebook app. This is purely so that you can identify the app quickly and easily from within the control panel. Hit the button that says “create new Facebook app ID”
Enter your email address and choose your app category. Select create app ID, and your app will be created. You can find information about giving up on start page. Enter your WordPress website URL and then press the next button.
That is everything that you need to enter, and you can skip the quick start tutorial by clicking on the button located in the right corner at the top of the page.
You will now be taken to the dashboard for the app where you can get your app secret key and ID by clicking on the show button. Before copying the keys, it is time to set your app to live and public.
5- Going live with your app
On the app review screen, you will notice that the app is showing as being under development mode. Simply toggle the button to yes. Hey presto, your app is now live.
Head back to the app dashboard and copy the App secret keys and ID. Once you have done this, the next thing to do is to head back to WordPress.
On the settings page for the instant articles WP plugin and paste the app secret keys and ID in the required sections. Once you click on continue, you will be taken to a button to log into your Facebook page.
Agree to all of the permissions. After this step, you will once again be redirected back to WordPress. Select your Facebook page in the drop-down menu, and everything is connected.
6- Create branding and style for your instant articles
Back on your Facebook page, head to the publishing tools section on your admin bar and then select configuration in the instant articles section on the left-hand menu screen.
Locate the tool section and then select the style tab. Facebook will have already added a default style. This is ready to be customized.
Simply click the default style to open the pop-up window. Here you can add your logo, which needs to be a transparent PNG that is a minimum of 690 x 132 px.
You can also select your preferred background color and accent colour from this menu. Once you have made all of your desired adjustments, save your work and click on the “done” button.
7- Submit article feed for review
Before moving on to this step you need to make sure that you have a minimum of 10 articles showing in your instant articles feed.
If you have more than 10 articles on your website and they are not showing in the feed, simply make a minor edit to each article post and then click the save button to update them.
Locate the publishing tools section on your Facebook page and head to the configuration link. You can find this belief the instant articles section on the left-hand side of the screen.
On the configurations setting page, find step two, submit for review. If you have done everything correctly, you will notice that the submit for review button is available. Click on it, and your feed will be sent for review.
And that’s about it. As soon as Facebook has reviewed your feed and approved, it will become available and start working is Magic. Now the hard work is out the way and any content that you publish to your website will automatically be published on Facebook.
No more manual publishing to Facebook. No more slow loading times for your content. No more hassle. While it may seem like a lot to have to do to get it up and running. Once it is, life becomes much easier.