Google Web Stories are now prominently featured in the Discover section of the Google app, which reaches over 800 million people per month.
A dedicated Google Web Stories carousel now appears at the top of Discover for users in the US, India, and Brazil.
There are plans to expand Web Stories to additional Google products in more countries as well.
Prior to being added to Discover, Web Stories have been featured in search results since 2019. Web Stories will continue to be shown in search results, as well as Discover.
This change creates more visibility for Web Stories, which is still a relatively new product, and offers more incentive for publishers to create them.
Viewing Google Web Stories
Browsing Google Web Stories in Discover is much the same as browsing stories in other apps.
A preview of each Web Story is shown in the carousel, which users can tap on to view in an immersive full screen experience.
Users can tap to move forward through each slide in a story, or swipe to move on to the next story in the carousel.
Although Google Web Stories are functionally similar to stories on apps like Instagram and Snapchat, that’s where the similarities end.
Unlike stories on those platforms, creators of Google Web Stories own the content.
Web Stories are hosted on publishers’ own websites, which gives the creators full control over adding things like links and advertising.
Publishers can even share Web Stories with a URL, just like sharing any other web page. So Web Stories can be seen outside of the Google app.
Google notes that early adopters of Web Stories are showing them off in unique ways.
Because Web Stories are an extension of a website, some publishers are adding them to their home page, social channels, newsletters and more.
Given that a Google Web Story is virtually the same as a web page, it can remain on the web for as long as a publisher decides to keep hosting it.
“For creators and publishers, Web Stories are entirely under your direction, just like any other content on your website. Story authors are in full control of monetization, hosting, sharing and adding links to their Stories.”
Google says publishers are already seeing strong results with Web Stories. The most successful stories are showcased at stories.google.com.
A number of publisher partners are helping to get this feature off the ground, but Google Web Stories can be created by anyone.
Here’s more on how to create your own Web Stories and potentially have them featured in Search and Discover.
Creating Google Web Stories
Whether you are an individual creator or a large publisher, anyone can create Google Web Stories.
Despite anyone being able to create Web Stories, only a small number of sites have.
Web Stories are still in the early adoption stage, with only 2,000 websites having published stories so far.
To increase the adoption of Web Stories, Google has released easy-to-use tool to assist publishers with creating them.
The WordPress plugin offers a simple drag-and-drop interface, which allows users with minimal coding experience to create Web Stories in minutes.