Instagram ads will soon infiltrate more places on the social network. On Wednesday, June 26, Instagram shared an update that will bring ads to the Explore section over the next few months.
The update brings ads to Instagram’s designated section for finding new posts and accounts to follow, using a personalized feed generated from users’ past actions on the platform. The ads aren’t headed for the Explore grid view displaying only a tilework of photos and videos, but ads will be headed to the feed that results after tapping on a photo. Like other Instagram ads, they will be labeled as sponsored posts and may include options like a “shop now” link.
Instagram says that 80% of users follow a business on Instagram and that many users are actively looking to connect with brands on the platform to shop or browse through the latest trends. But with Instagram recently making several advertising changes, many may be annoyed at the ads winding up in more places. An update just a few weeks ago allowed businesses to boost influencer’s sponsored posts to non-followers.
“Brands are an important part of the Instagram experience for people,” Instagram said in a blog post. “Whether it’s shopping, catching up on stories or discovering the latest trends, we see people actively looking to connect with brands they like. That’s why, over the next few months, we’ll be introducing ads in Explore feed.”
Instagram will leave the same ad feedback options for reporting or hiding an ad intact for the Explore ads. The new ads are on a slow roll-out headed to users over the next few months.
For businesses, the new ads mean more opportunities for views from the Explore feed — Instagram says about half of all users visit it at least once a month. Businesses can opt in to have ads placed inside the Explore feed without drastic changes to the advertising process, including using automatic placement.
Last month, Instagram added a navigation bar that allows users to employ the Explore section to shop and filter out categories, along with navigating to IGTV and sorting the results by category. Stories are also headed to Explore, Instagram shared as part of last month’s Explore update.
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