Snapchat is now giving publishers the option to add a ‘share to Snapchat’ button to their desktop and mobile websites in a bid to better integrate with media owners.
In the US, BuzzFeed and Vice are among the first to test the feature. Pink News will trial the button for UK audiences.
The new option removes some friction for Snapchat’s 210 million daily users, who previously had to take a screenshot of a web page and upload from a camera roll to share articles or videos from publishers’ sites.
Via a product dubbed Creative Kit for Web, Snap will open the tool up to developers to give them free distribution inside Snap’s walls, in turn handing them the ability to drive traffic back to their own platforms.
If a reader shares a desktop page, a new window will open with a scannable code (or a ‘Snapcode’ in Snap speak) along with the article’s headline and the site name. Snap users can then use the app to process the code and the link will attach a sharable URL to Snapchat.
If a mobile reader taps on a publisher’s ‘share to Snapchat’ option then the page will be deeplinked into the app, along with its headline and picture – users can then add their own URLs, stickers or GIFs to the image. If the publisher is one of Snap’s Discover partners, then users will also be given the option to subscribe to its account with one tap.
Those who click on the button without having the app will be prompted to download it via the Google Play or App store.
Benjamin Cohen, chief executive of PinkNews said: "With tens of millions of our readers and viewers on Snapchat, we've been keen to connect the dots between our website and our Snapchat activities and so we're really excited that for the first time our web users will be able to share stories with their friends on Snapchat."
Snap claims the new feature has been built with privacy in mind, saying that it won't share identifiable information, such as demographic information (age, gender, location) or friends lists, with developers or publishers.
As well as bringing the app into line with other platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, the update from Snap could make the platform more appealing to publishers; a group it's been trying to prove its value to since its launch seven years ago.
During its earnings report last week, the business highlighted how its Discover hub — which hosts ad-supported channels and shows from publishing and entertainment partners including BuzzFeed, The Sun and MTV in the UK — now counted over 100 channels, drawing audiences of more than 10 million each month.
Behind the scenes Snap has been busy bulking up its ad arsenal, launching a dynamic ads product targeting retailers and direct-to-consumer brands earlier this week.
The company posted healthy third-quarter earnings on Monday (22 October) of $446m in revenue during the period, beating Wall Street estimates by $11m.
The 50% increase in revenue from the previous year’s mark was accompanied by a 13% year-over-year increase of daily active users to 210m.