We’re pretty sure that at some point you’ve tried to add links to your captions on Instagram only to be frustrated by the inability to redirect users to that link. For the longest time this has caused annoyance to users and particularly social media marketers, making this one of the platform’s most requested missing features.
Till now Instagram has only let verified profiles and users with over 10k followers add links to their stories. So, be it a personal profile or more often your brand profile, you would have had to switch to an alternative method with paid story ads or promoting your story which would let you add links regardless of your follower count. Another more common and cheaper alternative which most brands are certain to have used is adding “link in bio” to the caption or stories. However, this could change in the future based on a patent applied by Facebook back in 2016.
Instagram could very well be about to let users add links to captions, at a certain price. As detailed in the patent application, “If the online system detects the text content of the of the caption includes a string of link text identifying an address, the online system prompts the posting user to pay a fee in exchange for generating a link based on the link text.”
In simpler terms, when Instagram detects a link within a caption, a pop-up will appear asking for payment to activate it, as you can see in the screenshot below. Note that although patent application sets the price at $2, but this is unlikely to be the actual price.
While it yet remains to be seen if Instagram would end up rolling out this feature, it has the potential to be a win-win feature for all parties involved; for Instagram as a great revenue driver, for social media marketers to convert leads, and even for users to conveniently visit websites. Watch this space for developments.