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How to Setup Facebook Instant Articles for WordPress (Step by Step)

Have you heard about Facebook Instant Articles and want to add them to your WordPress site?

Instant Articles are excellent for delivering content quickly to Facebook users. They load 10 times faster and use a mobile format. This helps provide an exceptional user experience and increases your followers.

In this article, we will show you how to easily setup Facebook Instant Articles for WordPress.

How to set up Facebook instant articles for WordPress

What are Facebook Instant Articles?

Instant Articles is a Facebook feature that allows you to load your content 10 times faster by using a customized mobile format. It is based on the same technology used in Facebook apps for mobile devices.

Instant Articles load up to 10 times faster than a normal web page. This incredible boost in speed provides a better user experience for mobile users.

Many popular media sites like BuzzFeed, TechCrunch, Mashable, and countless others are using it on their websites. You can easily spot instant articles in your Facebook feed by the lightning bolt icon.

Pros and Cons of Facebook Instant Articles

Like everything else, there are some advantages and disadvantages of using instant articles on your website.

Pros of Using Facebook Instant Articles

  • Faster load time means a significant improvement in user experience.
  • Due to speed, users are more likely to share your content.
  • Access to monetization options through Facebook Audience Network.
  • Boosted Facebook Page Reach.
  • Facebook’s massive user base can bring a new wave of traffic to your site.

Cons of Using Facebook Instant Articles

  • Users will not see your full WordPress website layout including sidebars. It will hide your useful widgets, email list forms, and everything else that is not part of the article.
  • You may see a drop in advertising revenue, as Facebook instant articles limit the advertisers and the number of ads you can show on an article.
  • You can use some images and videos in your article, but Facebook instant articles will limit that as well.
  • Most shortcodes, custom fields, and other WordPress blog features will not be displayed in your articles.

Considering the pros and cons of using Facebook Instant Articles, it is a mix bag for publishers. It actually depends on the type of content you produce and your business goals.

If you’re a news media site, then it makes sense for you to add it. If you’re a business website, then it may not be a huge difference maker.

What Do You Need to Enable Facebook Instant Articles in WordPress?

There are a few requirements for setting up Facebook Instant Articles on your WordPress site. You need a:

  • Facebook page for your WordPress website.
  • At least 10 or more articles on your website.
  • Instant Articles for WP plugin (We will show you how to set it up later in this article).

Having said that, let’s get started by applying for Facebook Instant Articles.

Signing up for Facebook Instant Articles

First, you need to visit the Facebook Instant Articles website and click on the ‘Start earning’ button to get started.

Get started with instant articles

Next, log in to your Facebook account or create a new one if you don’t have an account.

After logging in, you’ll see the Creator Studio. Facebook will now ask you to select a page under the ‘Monetization’ tab.

Go ahead and select your Facebook Page for your website and click the ‘Set Up’ button.

Set up instant articles

After that, you’ll need to complete setup tasks and submit your page for review.

First, you’ll need to agree to the terms and conditions.

Next, click the ‘Begin’ button to Add 10 production articles for review.

Complete set up tasks

When you click the button, more options will appear.

You need to prove the ownership of your website by claiming your URL. Go ahead and click the ‘Claim’ button in front of the Claim domain option.

Claim your domain

Facebook will show you a code snippet that you’ll need to add to your WordPress website.

You can add up to 10 websites for Facebook Instant Articles.

Copy the meta tag

You need to copy the code and insert it into the <head> section of your WordPress site.

There are two ways you can add this code to your website.

You can edit the header.php file in your child theme and paste the code just before <head> tag.

However, if you are not using a child theme, then you can use Insert Headers and Footers plugin. For more details, see our step-by-step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

After activating the plugin, go to Settings » Insert Headers and Footers page from the WordPress dashboard and paste the code into the header section.

Insert code in the header

Click on the Save button to store your changes.

Once you have added the code to your website, you need to switch back to the Creator Studio tab and click the ‘Claim URL’ button.

Click the claim URL button

A popup window will now appear.

Simply enter your domain and click the ‘Claim’ button. If your site is still under development, you can enable the ‘This is a development URL’ option.

Enter your site URL

Next, you’ll see your domain under the ‘Approved domain URLs’ field once it’s approved.

Go ahead and click the ‘Confirm’ button.

Confirm your domain

The next step is to add an Instant Articles RSS feed for your website.

To do that, scroll down to ‘Add production articles’ and simply click the ‘Add’ button.

Add production articles

On the next screen, you’ll see a dropdown menu where you can select how you’d like to add production articles.

Go ahead and click the ‘Add articles’ dropdown menu and select the ‘Add with RSS feed’ option.

Add with RSS feed

A popup window will now appear with production RSS feed information.

Here, you’ll need to enter the RSS feed URL.

Enter production feed URL

To create an RSS feed URL, you can head back to your WordPress website dashboard and generate an Instant Article feed.

First, install and activate the Instant Articles for WP plugin. If you need help, then please see our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you can head over to Instant Articles from your WordPress admin panel and enter your Facebook Page ID. You can find the page ID in the Claim domain section in Creator Studio.

Enter your Facebook page ID

After entering the page ID, don’t forget to save the settings.

The plugin will generate an instant articles feed for your WordPress site.

You can find the feed by adding /feed/instant-articles after your site’s URL, like this:

https://www.example.com/feed/instant-articles

Copy your instant articles feed URL and switch back to your Facebook Creator Studio tab. Next, enter the RSS feed URL and click the ‘Save’ button.

Enter production feed URL and save

Facebook will show you a success message that your feed is added.

Setup Style and Branding for Your Instant Articles

Next, you can edit the style of your Facebook Instant Articles.

Simply go to the ‘Configure article styles’ option under Add 10 production articles for review and click the ‘Configure’ button.

Configure article styles

After that, you can change the look and feel of your articles.

Go ahead and click the ‘Add style’ button.

Add article style

This will open up a popup where you can customize the default style of Instant Articles.

There are options to upload your website logo and edit the style of your title, body text, byline, subtitle, and more.

The best part is that you can see a live preview of the change you made in the window on your right.

Customize your instant articles

After making the changes, don’t forget to click on Save and then click on Done.

Submit Your Instant Articles Feed for Review

Before submitting your Instant Articles feed for review, you need to make sure that you have at least 10 articles in your Instant Articles feed.

If you have already published more than 10 articles on your website, but the feed is not showing all of them, then you need to edit your last 10 articles and simply click on the update button.

Once you are sure that you have 10 articles in your Instant Articles feed, you are now ready to submit them to Facebook for review.

Submit for review

If there are no errors with your Instant Articles feed and you’ve completed all the required tasks, then you will see a ‘Submit for review’ button. Go ahead and click on this button to send your feed for review.

That’s all, Instant Articles will become available for your website once the Facebook team has reviewed and approved your feed.

Bonus: Track Facebook Instant Articles in Google Analytics

Now that you’ve successfully setup Facebook Instant Articles in WordPress, you should also see how they’re performing.

By tracking their performance in Google Analytics, you can see which articles get the most traffic and how users interact with your content.

The easiest way of tracking Facebook Instant Articles is through MonsterInsights. It’s the best Analytics solution for WordPress and let’s you set up Google Analytics without editing code.

Do note that you’ll need MonsterInsights Pro version because it includes the Facebook Instant Articles addon and other advanced tracking features. There’s also a MonsterInsights Lite version that you can use for free.

First, install and activate the MonsterInsights plugin. For more details, please see our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you’ll see the MonsterInsights welcome screen in your WordPress dashboard. Go ahead and click the ‘Launch the Wizard’ button to connect your WordPress site with Google Analytics.

Launch setup wizard

You can follow our step by step guide on how to install Google Analytics in WordPress for more information.

After that, head over to Insights » Addons from your WordPress dashboard and navigate to the ‘Facebook Instant Article’ addon.

Install Facebook instant articles addon in MonsterInsights

Next, click the ‘Install’ button and the addon will automatically activate.

That’s it, there’s no need for additional configuration. MonsterInsights will now start to track your Facebook Instant Articles in Google Analytics.

Facebook Instant Articles Troubleshooting Tips

Facebook requires that your Instant Articles feed to match the specifications described on their developer website. Instant Articles for WP plugin handles that part for you.

However, depending on the theme or plugins you are using on your site, you might see some errors or warnings. An easier way to troubleshoot those errors is by editing a post and scrolling down to the Facebook Instant Articles meta box below the post editor.

Instant article warning in WordPress

Most of the errors are caused by plugins or themes adding content into your posts that are not supported by transformer rules used by Instant Articles for WP plugin.

You can create your own custom transformer rules. Refer to the plugin’s documentation to learn how to add your custom transformer rules.

However, we feel that it would be difficult for most beginners to do that on their own, so you may need a developer. You can try to configure your other plugins and themes and stop them from adding content blocks to your posts.

Incorrect URLs

If you are continuously getting an Empty Feed error when submitting your Instant Articles feed, then check the URL you are trying to add.

http://www.example.com/feed/instant-articles

http://example.com/feed/instant-articles

These are two different URLs, and depending on your WordPress setup, entering the incorrect URL may result in a 404 error.

If you are still seeing the empty feed error, then try updating the last ten posts on your site. This will change their time modified and will add them to the feed.

We hope this article helped you set up Facebook Instant Articles for WordPress. You may also want to see our list of 40 useful tools to manage and grow your WordPress blog and how to start an online store.

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Reader Interactions

106 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Hi!

    First of all, thanks for this article! :-)

    But, I’m with a problem when you say:

    Simply install and activate the Instant Articles for WP plugin. Upon activation, the plugin will generate an instant articles feed for your WordPress site.

    In my case, my RSS url doesn’t work:

    Do you know why?

    Thanks a lot, dude!

      • I did that and one more thing…

        I went to my Facebook Page > Publishing Tools > Published Posts at the top of the sidebar.

        From there, I located my most recently shared blog post and clicked on it to open the Post Details box.

        Then under the little down arrow that is your normal edit button on a post, I clicked on ‘Refresh Share Attachment’

        That was the thing that made it all work. :)

  2. Hi Admin. Thanks for nice step-by-step tutorial. I just want to ask, how to add related articles at the bottom of instant articles. it is automatically show only for visitor or need some code to make them appear?. Thanks.

  3. Thanks for this great post. I followed your steps and i managed to set it up on my fb page. But I have a problem.

    I have customize the styles in with facebook style editor and everything was okay when I review it with fb pages apps. But the problem is, when i share the articles, the published post used ‘default’ style instead of the other one. Please help me.

  4. In my WordPress account under every post its written that your article is being submitted with 0 warning but at facebook publishing tools I still can’t press the submit button it says
    We have automatically detected one or more common errors that need to be fixed before you can submit for review.
    Missing Logo
    All articles must include a logo, which you can upload in the Style Editor.
    Examples
    and list of my posts
    Hope You Could Help me out

  5. No matter what changes I make, I cannot submit articles.There has to be a better plugin than this one. It;s always buggy or not compatible with “this version of WordPress” I got it right the first time with a client;s site, but after I cannot publish any other new articles. Tried to set up my site, I can’t submit articles at all.

    My head hurts.

    • I am replying to my own comment (weird) because I fixed the problem I was facing. Missing logo. My articles were fine, but no matter how many style editors I created, I couldn’t fix the ‘missing logo’ error. What I did was go back to the ‘default’ or ‘preset’ style editor and customized it. Voila! Articles were submitted. Problem solve. I am still looking into it though. Maybe it’s me, but I find this plugin a wee bit buggy

  6. Hi, I am running multiple lingual website. I want to run the instant article both of the above domains. How is it possible? Do I need to merge two rss feeds. Need your suggestion.

  7. Hello, WB Team.

    Great and detailed guide on Facebook InstantArticle.

    Sir, I am also using this tool for my website. My posts have been submitted to InstantArticle with some errors. I fixed some of those. But, I can’t find solution for this,

    “no rules defined for in the context of InstantArticle”.

    Sir how to fix this problem. Please help me.

  8. Hi, very helful guide but my blog begins with https not http. after i insert the code given by facebook in header, i could be claimed the url but when i tried tu insert the url begin with http it’s fine

    i accessed my url http://example.com/feed/instant-articles but it said that the url was not found because my blog automatically direct http to https

    how to solve this, thanks :)

  9. All the links that I share are being converted into instant articles. I want only selective articles to be published as instant articles. I use affilate links in some posts which dont wirk in instant articles. Please help!

  10. Next, log into your Facebook account
    Log in with Facebook to finish connecting the Instant Articles Plugin to your account.

    Login with Facebook

    after This, it is not logging in just it reloads nothing happens
    sir can You Guide me Please regarding this problem

  11. This is by far the most useful resource I’ve found for adding FB Instant Articles.

    One question, do you have a tutorial for excluding certain post categories from your Instant Articles feed?

    Thanks!

  12. on this step “The plugin’s settings page will now show you a login with Facebook button.” when i click on login with facebook the page reloads and nothing happens please help me asap

  13. hello team,
    great material, thks. I hv created everythg and it all seems well however on the post page this error:
    *This post will not be submitted to Instant Articles due to a rule created in your site.*
    How can i go over this thks.

  14. hi thanks for this article but the instant article cant recognize short code because i use it to embed my videos is there a way around this pls

  15. hi i have done all the processes but i keep getting this error at the final stage : Permissions error pls how can i fix this

    • You can check what causes this issue if you look at Instant Articles settings on Facebook. For me, the page logo was missing. Once I uploaded that, the Permissions Error went away.

  16. I’ve just been approved for Facebook Instant Articles. I’m using the “Instant Articles for FB” Plugin to publish my Instant Articles. I just published blog Post and it shows up as Live in Instant Articles. How do I get the Instant Articles link? I don’t see it anywhere and I don’t have any idea how to access it. Any help you can provide would be appreciated.

    Thank you,
    Garland Smith

  17. Hi and thanks for the post. I keep on getting doubles to my production feed? Any idea how to prevent this?

    • Aaand I just figured it out. It was due to the URL-structure change we did for the site. A lot of work deleting the duplicates after…. Take notice ;)

  18. Hi there! I have some problems with this plugin. How can I log out the app form this plugin because this plugin can’t connect with facebook anymore. When I first installed it, I couldn’t select my fb page because it wasn’t showing them at all so it just redirected to the first step. I tried deactivating, deleting the plugin and I installed it again but it is stuck again at that that state. I also tried deleting the app, but it just doesn’t work! Anybody had these problems?

  19. Great tutorial, i want to ask you how can i fix Facebook comments and related articles in instants articles. Thank you for your feed back

  20. Thanks for this article! It was super helpful with the step by step instructions. I’m about halfway through and the plugin won’t show the settings page in wordpress. When I click Instant Articles on the left sidebar, it’s just a blank screen. When I try other ways to get to the settings page, it remains a blank screen. It says it’s compatible with WP 4.6.1 which is what I have…any ideas why I can’t get to the settings page in WP?

  21. I had created an app Id using different email id now As he is not there so I want to transfer all things through my id…I have created a new app Id but m getting an error to submit the articles as “articles cannot created using this page please create and update it from the original page’
    Please help me on this

  22. Hi

    Thats one helluva post…Thanks a ton for doing this one. However, I am facing one issue – I have added the fb tag to my site’s header, but under tools, it is just not allowing me to add my URL (that part remains non-highlighted). What could be going wrong?

  23. I have installed the instant articles plugin in my blog. but when I try to open the instant article rss feed link I am getting an error message “ERROR: This is not a valid feed template.”. Any suggestions on what I have done wrong?

  24. Hello Team,

    Thank you for the detailed guide on FB instant article. Everything is fine but I would like to ask one question:

    We all know this renders the page and boost loading speed by making some adjustments in the site design and structure, like you mentioned in the cons.

    So I just want to know will it render the articles for people visiting from FB only or for everyone visiting my site via an source (organic or direct)?

    Thank You,
    Karan

  25. Hi thanks for this helpful guide. I think I have followed the instructions but when I try to Login to Facebook from the WordPress plugin I get the following messaege:

    Can’t Load URL: The domain of this URL isn’t included in the app’s domains. To be able to load this URL, add all domains and subdomains of your app to the App Domains field in your app settings.

    Any idea what I have done wrong?

  26. Why my url not claiming. it shows this kind error

    “The fb:pages tag on the url doesn’t contain this page’s id. The url has fb:pages tag but they don’t have this page’s id. Please work with your developers / webmaster to add this tag to your website.”

  27. Hey ! I’m having issues with my photos on Instant Articles. They are pixelised. However, they have a high resolution on my wordpress and look good on my website. What am I supposed to do ?

  28. Hi, about using AMP and Instant Articles in the same time, any problem?? They can be used together without problems, especially in SEO??

  29. Great article. But I am stuck. The feed seems to work fine but no articles ever get submitted.

    They all say: This post was not yet submitted to Instant Articles.

    I am really stuck and need help.

  30. Hi!
    Great article, but I’ve got a doubt. Doing that will decrease the pageviews on my website? Or everytime someone sees the article will count as a pageview on google analytics?

    thanks

  31. This primer is great….but stops right where I needed help. Is there a follow up on how to set up Facebook ads on these Instant Stories?

      • Any chance you can also cover a bit of more advanced features? I set this up and it works well, but I would like it to automatically set up images for Facebook likes and comments. I believe this can be done with the Transform options somehow. I would also like it to pull in related posts, which it seems to skip.

        • Our audience is mostly beginner level WordPress users so we tried to keep it as simple as possible. We will try to cover the topics you mentioned in separate articles soon.

    • Hi BoB,

      You can setup from Audience network from tool section in setting and follow the setups. I have written detailed guide on this and it quite simple.

  32. Thanks so much for this. :) I was wondering, once you have IA set up – if you post a link to a blog post in Facebook, do you need to use a specific IA link? Or does FB automatically detect that there’s an IA version of the link?

      • Is that a “yes you have to use a custom link” or “yes Facebook will automatically detect there is an Instant Articles version to serve”? For example I use Edgar and have hundreds of posts cycling through, so once I have Instant Articles setup do I need to adjust those links or will they post the same way and Facebook itself simply decides what version to serve? Also, will users on desktop see the Instant Articles version or will they still be taken to the full website page? Lastly, to Instant Article views count as page views on your website or are they essentially served from a cached version on Facebook’s servers?

        Thanks, great tutorial as usual.

  33. Maybe you write some information about other ways of sharing WordPress-content with FB?

    Like Facebook Autopublish for example?

    that would be of great value… I use this plugin and it works well

  34. How do I disable it? Facebook won’t tell and I have searched everywhere.

    They started showing on my FB page even though only 1 step of the process was done.

    I need people to go to my website and it’s causing a huge mess when there are giveaways on my blog.

    • You can undo the steps you have taken. For example, remove the feed from Production RSS in publishing tools of your facebook page. Remove URLs from Claim Your URL. Remove Meta tag you added into header. Delete the App you create for your page.

      Admin

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