Can I add links to my Instagram stories?

Have you ever wondered, “why can’t I have links in my Instagram stories?” You may have seen other brands doing it…what gives? Originally, the developers of Instagram did not want to allow links on their platform because they wanted to separate themselves from social networks like Facebook, which feels saturated with spam and ads, at times. By keeping the focus on photo/video sharing and engagement between users, they built the interactive and addictive Instagram we all love to burn hours on today.

There has always been the option to include a link in your bio (which spurred the “see link in bio” movement), but more recently, Instagram has added the option to include links in stories.

In case you’re not familiar, an Instagram story is a feature allowing users to post photos and videos only visible to followers for 24 hours. Stories don’t appear as ordinary posts in your profile or the main Instagram feed; instead, viewers can access stories by clicking your profile’s icon at the top of the feed or the top-left corner of a post (see areas boxed in red below).

Stories allow you to include fun additions alongside your posts such as GIFs, polls, music, and quizzes. These features make your account feel more authentic (rather than a generic robot) while opening up the opportunity to be more relatable to your followers and encourage them to interact.

Now, you can add links to your IG stories. The catch? It can be a little confusing, so here’s a quick guide.

There are a couple of ways to do it:

  1. Gain over 10,000 followers on your account
  2. Become Instagram Verified

We believe in your quest to get 10,000 followers, but today we’re going to talk about getting Instagram verified. An Instagram Verified account is marked with a blue checkmark that confirms the authenticity of the user or business.

As we all know, there are lots of fake accounts out there. As much as they’d love to be Beyoncé, they’re not her and never will be. In some cases, these accounts can gather quite a following. To sift through these posers, Instagram introduced the Verification option, so you can rest assured that you’re interacting with the real Beyoncé.

But how do you get one?

  1. In the Instagram App, tap the Menu on your profile
  2. Go to Settings
  3. Go to Account
  4. Request verification

To prove to Instagram you’re legit, they will ask for a government-issued photo ID and may request business documents, such as tax filing. The process of determining which accounts become verified is unclear and there is no specified timeline, but we do know the blue checkmark is instrumental when it comes to increasing followers and brand awareness. Not to mention, it allows you to add a link to your story.

If you’re a) verified, or b) have 10,000 followers, here’s what you should see when you set up your story:

Click the chain icon at the top, and you’ll be able to add a link to the story. Viewers will have to swipe up to access the link, so you may want to include a “Swipe up now!” call-to-action.

The Instagram Verification method will help with your social media aspirations, but if you’re looking for help developing your brand (or reaching that 10k follower count), Copy & Art can help. Email hello@copyandartny.comor call (914) 607-7888 for social media consultation and guidance.

What are your thoughts on Instagram Stories? How do you think brands will use them to promote themselves? How will YOU use them?

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