Instagram Stories, a feature that the photo-sharing app picked up from its rival Snapchat that enables users to share what they are doing with their followers via pictures that disappear after 24 hours, now has 500 million daily active users. The number has been given by Instagram‘s parent company Facebook during its latest earnings call.
We should point out that the number has increased significantly from 400 million daily active users that were reported in June last year. At the earnings call, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that the feature is continuing to grow at a fast pace. He also added that the Stories format, which is now present on Instagram, WhatsApp, Messenger and Facebook‘s own app, will be monetised “at the same levels” as the News Feed.
We should mention that when first introduced on Instagram, the Stories feature was not monetised. However, lately, Facebook has started adding advertisements to it in order to generate some revenue. Going forward, Stories on Instagram will also get a shopping feature so that companies can start selling their products via Stories.
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg pointed out that Instagram Stories helped Washington DC-based online photo frame maker, Framebridge, get more than 25% of new customer sales. She also talked about companies like Cetaphil which have been using the feature on Instagram to increase the sales in their stores. Sandberg said, “Today, we’re also announcing that 2 million advertisers are using Stories to reach customers across our family of apps. We’re making it easier for advertisers to adopt their campaigns for Stories.”
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also said that the company plans to introduce new products that will bring “major improvements to people’s lives.” For instance, WhatsApp Payments, which is currently being tested in India, will be rolled out in more countries in 2019.
He also added that private sharing in Groups and Stories is also set to become more central to the social networking platform’s experience. He said, “We’re going to get to a point soon where people feel like Facebook is about as communities as it – is about communities as much as it’s about your friends and family where almost everyone is in a group that’s meaningful to them and that community is a central part of their experience.”
He also spoke about Facebook Watch saying that its 400 million users accessed the service every month and on an average spent 20 minutes on it per day. Zuckerberg also said that Facebook is also set to start the shipping of its Oculus Quest. Facebook also revealed that it now has a consolidated figure of 2.7 billion monthly users. This number includes users from Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.