Instagram is one of the largest social media platforms, with, according to Hootsuite, one billion active users per month. Their constant growth ensures constant changes and updates to make the Instagram experience easier and better for their users.
However, you may not be aware of the changes and their latest features. That's why we've compiled a list of Instagram updates from the last six months – from September 2018 to February 2019 – so you'll be aware of all that's Instagram.
Stay until the end for the features that Instagram is currently testing to get ahead of the game. Now, let yourself be updated! Here are the Instagram updates for the last 6 months.
Request for verification
The verified symbol, a blue checkmark, indicates that a social media account is legitimate and authentic. Previously, the symbol only appeared near celebrity names and Instagram randomly checked accounts.
Now, however, anyone can ask to be checked. Requesting verification does not guarantee acceptance. You must have a wide audience and you must be a personality, a celebrity, a brand or a global entity.
This means that if you're an influencer on YouTube, a big, successful company or a well-known entrepreneur, you can apply.
How to request a verification:
In September, Instagram has expanded its security settings and is working even harder to protect big brands and large corporations. You can now use third-party authentication applications such as Google Authenticator and DUO Mobile for two-factor authentication. This reduces the risk of hacking or hacking your account.
Mike Krieger, co-founder of Instagram, said, "We have been emphasizing the security of our platform from the very beginning. Today's updates are based on our existing tools, such as spam and spam filters, and our ability to report block accounts. "
How to enable two-factor authentication:
More profile information
Users previously only had access to information that a user has chosen to display on their Instagram profile. With this new update, you now have access to more information such as:
- The date on which the user joined
- The country in which they are located (depending on their activity)
- All active ads (feed ads and stories)
- Old user names
- Accounts with shared subscribers (for example, if you follow an actress in a TV show, it is likely that her co-stars will appear here)
How to access this information:
New superzoom effects for stories
Superzoom effects have proven popular, so Instagram released six new options.
- Paparazzi: the Paparazzi camera flashes
- Fire: Fire and Hardcore Music
- Hearts: Fog, hearts and romantic music
- Nope: A big X slamming to the screen
- Bummer: sad piano music, gray screen and falling leaves
Polls added to direct messages
The survey stickers have been available on Instagram posts for some time now, but they have become available for direct messages in particular. Now you create a story and add a survey sticker that can be sent directly to a person or group discussion.
New purchase features
Instagram has rolled out the shopping feature in 2017, but like everything else, they are looking for ways to improve it. Before September, you could only tag products in the Instagram feed. In September, they added the ability to mark products on items. It looks the same as on the main wire, and viewers can simply touch to see the details.
Instagram has also added a shopping channel in the Explore section. According to Ad Espresso, the shopping channel includes "the brands that the user is already following and interacting with and the brands that Instagram's algorithm thinks they can enjoy." In the chain, only publications with images that can be purchased appear.
Identification tags have been invented to allow users to quickly track their friends and family. In this way, they should not type a username in the search bar, it is likely that many other users with similar usernames will appear.
The nametag works like a QR code. To display your name tag, go to your profile page, click on the menu (three bars) in the upper right corner, then click on 'Nametag.' After, show it to someone to scan. You scan a name tag in the label section, where it says "Scan a name tag" or you can scan it with your Instagram camera.
In addition, according to later, "If someone sends you his identification badge by SMS, simply save the image on your filmstrip, open the attribution editor" 39; name assignment from your profile, press the "Analyze an identifier" button, then press the Photo button at the top right corner of the screen. "
If you want more followers in your business account, you can add this screen capture to a business card, to your website, or to any other place in which you want to promote your Instagram account. People will be able to scan directly from Instagram to follow you.
Quick replies in direct messages (DM)
The quick answers are a miracle for businesses. If you run a business, you will find yourself too well. How many times have you been asked the same question? How many times have you had to type the same answer over and over again?
Suppose you sell posters on your website and people always ask you if you're making custom prints. You answer yes, you make personalized prints and give them your prices. It's tiring if you're constantly asked, so here's where you can add a shortcut for quick response.
A quick response means that you create something short to type in the text box that can turn into a long message. For example, you can create a shortcut called "mycustomprints". So when you type that, the message can turn into "Hello, yes, yes! The price for a custom print is $ 100.00 for one person, $ 200.00 for two people and $ 250.00 for three people. "
When you type, "mycustomprints," a blue bubble conversation appears to the right of the input box. Click on it to make the shortcut the complete message.
There are two ways to create quick answers, and these are the ways, explained step by step later.
Stories Continue Instagram
The stories on Instagram, for a long time, would cut you off after fifteen seconds. However, this month, Instagram came out with a feature that allows you to continue a story.
For example, suppose you record a story. If, after fifteen seconds, you hold down the record button, your story continues to record and create another fifteen second story. Thus, the story is continuous but cut into fifteen-second segments. You can continue recording for a full minute.
GIF in messages
GIFs are very popular and you can use them to respond to DM directly from Instagram. If you enter a direct message, a microphone, an image option, and a plus sign are to the right of the text field.
If you click on this plus sign, three other options will be available: a quick response option, a heart and a GIF tag. If you click on the GIF option, you will be able to search for GIF files via GIPHY directly in the application. You type your search in the same text box and, with one click, the GIF file will be sent.
Reduce inauthentic activity
Instagram has become stricter with an inauthentic activity. They remove fake likes, followers and comments purchased through third-party apps and websites. They can identify which accounts buy a non-genuine commitment and then inform the user that they will delete the preferences and follow-ups that they have purchased.
In the same notification, they ask the user to change their password and give him the opportunity to do so immediately. Instagram shares: "These new measures will be permanent and accounts that continue to use third-party apps to increase their audience can see their Instagram experience affected."
Instagram states that this update is "another step in ensuring that Instagram remains a dynamic community where people can connect with people and things they love."
(Note: StormLikes gives you real real people's tastes.)
IGTV insights into stories
Instagram allows IGTV users to share previews of their IGTV videos with their Instagram stories. When you share a preview of a story, your viewers have the opportunity to click to watch the entire video.
Here are instructions on how to share your IGTV video with your story, as shared by AdEspresso.
More buying features
When you click a label in a Shoppable article, you now go to a new page where you can see:
- The price
- The opportunity to go to their website
- More articles that they sell on Instagram
You can also share a product with your story or send it through DM and bookmark it. The bookmarking feature has been around for some time, but when you save a product in a bookmark, it does not save the publication to a default folder, as it usually is. It saves the product in a folder called "Shopping", for an easier shopping experience.
Finally, if a user has purchaseable items, there will be a tab above them in the profile page stating "Shop". All their products (not their buyable items) will be displayed with easy access to a bookmark.
The vignette counts down
You can use the Countdown sticker in your story and for countdowns. It's a brilliant use for release dates, launches, announcements, etc.
How to use it:
When you download your story, the countdown begins and your subscribers see it count down in real time. You can then save it as a highlight so that it does not disappear. If your subscribers tap the sticker, they will be asked if they want a reminder of the countdown or if they want to share it on their own account.
Alternative text on Instagram
Visually impaired people usually have a screen reader on their phone. An alternative text, a description of the image on the main thread, is what the screen reader would read if anyone was on Instagram. There is an automatic alternative text reader, but there is also a custom alternative text option: "So you can add a richer description of your photos when you upload a photo," said Instagram Press.
How to add alternative text:
- Select your photo for Instagram as usual
- Before downloading, click on "Advanced Settings".
- Under "Accessibility", click on "Write an alternative text".
- Write text, up to 100 characters
Voicemail in direct messages
Voice messages in DMs can be sent either individually or in group discussions. They can last up to a minute, but you can send more. Once you have listened to a single voicemail message, the rest is played in a loop. Unlike Facebook, these voice messages are permanent and do not disappear after a few minutes.
Here's how to use this feature (from the Instagram Information Center):
Close stories list of friends
A "close friends list" is the group of people you have selected to receive Instagram stories that you do not want to share publicly. The feature is available in the side menu of your profile. You scroll through a list of people you follow and select the ones you want from the list.
"Instagram Stories has become the place where you can express yourself and share everyday moments, but our community has grown and sometimes what you want to share is not suitable for everyone," said Instagram in its center. d & # 39; information. "With Close Friends, you have the opportunity to share more personal moments with a smaller group than you choose.
You can post on multiple Instagram accounts at once
You can now share the same feed publication across multiple accounts at once. How do you do that? You do the same thing as usual: choose your content, write the caption, but do not share it yet.
Under the "Add a location" box, you will see a section called "Publish to other accounts". The accounts you're signed into on your phone appear there and you have to switch between the ones you want to download. at. When you download, the post will be shared on the accounts you have selected.
"This 'automatic regression' could help Instas and Finstas companies, influencers and regulars to simultaneously publish the same, a promotional image or other content on their profiles instead of having to publish one by one," he said. declared Techcrunch. .
An update for the sticker questions
The Issues sticker was released in July 2018, but this year they have updated it. The Questions sticker, previously only available for stories, has been made available to Instagram lives. Viewers can comment in real time during their life, so that questions get lost between them.
With this new update, you can specifically organize a live Q & A session. Here's how:
Instagram allows third parties to program videos
Instagram has allowed third-party apps, such as Hootsuite, MeetEdgar, Loomly, etc., to program images for Instagram, but it was not until January that they also allowed video scheduling. As more and more users download videos, this is a huge gain for brands and businesses that use planning applications to manage Instagram.
IGTV previews in the main feed
As we talked about, you can download previews of your IGTV videos on Instagram stories, and now you can also share them on the main thread. When you scroll down the main thread, if you follow who chooses to share, you'll see a one-minute overview of their IGTV video. In the lower left corner of the video you will find a button saying "Watch Full IGTV Video". If you click on it, you go directly to the full video.
Variety shared a quote from an Instagram representative: "With the IGTV previews in Feed, we make it even easier to discover and watch the latest video content of your favorite follow ups."
Self-injury images removed
Instagram does its best to handle the images of self-injury. They work to protect vulnerable people from these images while ensuring that they do not isolate self-injurious people. They share that they have never encouraged self harm and that they are working with experts to find the best way to handle the situation and rebalance it. The Instagram Information Center said, "It will take time and we have the responsibility to do it right."
Instagram features being tested
Title Option for Instagram Live
According to Social Media Today, Instagram is testing a new option to include a live Instagram feed. They said: "This week, some users have spotted a new title option for Instagram Live, which appears on the pre-launch screen and could help add more content to your viewers."
In this way, your viewers will know what you are going to talk about and they will be more likely to stay because they will not have to stay for five minutes to understand what you are going to cover.
Direct messaging on the web
Applications researcher Jane Manchun Wong told Verge that "Instagram is testing its direct messaging function for the web, mobile and desktop." Instagram has always been a restricted application to mobile. You can not download stories or images from a desktop computer. Therefore, web-based DMs could be "a huge step forward," said The Verge.
Facebook launched a donation button in 2013 and now, it is testing a donation sticker for Instagram stories. Techcrunch released this information: "New code and new images from Instagram's Android app reveal how Fundraiser stickers will help you search for nonprofit organizations and add a Donate button for them. to your Instagram story. "
Mashable said that Instagram was testing a monitoring feature. The feature would be available in the DM Instagram for group chats.
The rumor started with Jane Manchun Wong, who announced this feature on Twitter. She told Mashable in a Twitter account: "I will find it useful to have something interesting and worth watching with a friend abroad. I cross my fingers, I hope that they will make the IGTV videos co-watchable. "
There you go! You're aware of Instagram updates from the last six months, as well as features being tested, so you're ahead of the game. If you want to stay informed, Instagram updates its information center, Ad Espresso provides monthly updates and Instagram usually loads an Instagram story in which it reveals and explains a new feature. We of course also share new features and explain how they work. For example, we have deepened the algorithms of IGTV and Instagram.
Make an effort to stay on top of social media for the sake of your brand or business. You want to know the new features and how to apply them to promote and grow your business.