What happened to the Swipe Up Link on Instagram?


One of the top tools that businesses could use on Instagram was the Swipe Up Link feature for stories. The tool let you link to any URL, which could help users lead to their business or influencers lead to their affiliate accounts. Besides being a great money-maker, the tool could also be helpful for sharing educational posts, spreading awareness to petitions, serving up some funnies by linking to videos, and much more!


With all the love around the Swipe Up, it was a big surprise when Instagram recently removed the feature from the platform. While it’s hard to say exactly why they chose to do it, there is some good news!


The Good News


The Swipe Up IS getting a replacement

Luckily the feature isn’t 100% gone, just reincarnated in a different form. Accounts with this feature will now find it under the stickers section of stories and it will simply be a button to put up on your screen


People are comfortable interacting with stickers

Sometimes a change in a feature can make it completely unusable for people since they have to learn a new motion or system from scratch. With the sticker format, most users will already be comfortable, since we have seen many different features using it, like account tags and post sharing. 


More users (might) get access to the feature

Up until now, only accounts with over 10,000 followers had access to the swipe up. With this announcement, Instagram did state that the goal would be to one day give everyone access to the sticker feature. While a statement like that may not be a sure thing, it does give us some hope that one day small businesses will also get access to this great feature!

Followers can still leave comments when you have a link

Previously, a Swipe Up trumped the comment function. With this update, your followers will be able to press a link AND send you a comment directly on the same story. This can be helpful to see how your followers react, get informed if you posted a broken link or get suggestions relating to the product or page you’re promoting.


The Bad News


Time for users to get used 

IG users have been trained to swipe up for a few years now! All that training isn’t going to leave our muscle memory overnight. This could mean that accounts using the new Link Sticker will see a drop in their click-through

Same goes for creators

Creators have also been trained to use the swipe up for years! It will take some time for people to un-program habits like saying “swipe up to buy” or putting a Swipe Up gif. This will probably make for a strange viewing experience for the first little while.


Swiping up was an easier action

For businesses trying to sell, let’s be frank, swiping up was an easier action. With the link sticker, viewers will have to be a little more committed to seeing what’s in the link since they will have to track down the sticker on your video or photo, and then click in precisely the right spot. If the button is a bit too small or covered by something, people may give up fairly fast and move on. Sellers may also see a drop in click-through due to this. 


It may not look so nice

On of the nicest parts of the Swipe Up was how discreet the whole thing was! You didn’t really need to see it to know that it was there! There was nothing to resize or stylize, it was a bit more of a lowkey feature. With the sticker, creators will have to pay attention that they are putting the sticker in the right spot so that it’s clickable and not covering anything important. They may also want to play with the font and style to make it fit their brand better.


All in all the feelings are mixed up the change, and rightfully so! In the end though, whether we like it or not, this change is here to stay. So, start learning and remember, we’re all in the same boat and just trying to figure out this new version of the feature - you’ll be a pro in no time!


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Michelle Pijanowski

Michelle Pijanowski, better known as PJ, is our go-to girl for all things social. Don’t let her love of gourmet ice cream and appreciation of craft beer fool you! She isn’t your average millennial whose experience starts and ends with an Insta account. A traveller at heart, PJ has always been excited by storytelling and connecting with people from all walks of life. Her passion for content creation started when she accidentally landed an internship in marketing that ended up leading her into the worlds of social media and journalism. Despite not even having a personal Instagram at the time, she immediately fell in love with helping brands grow a community through the power of the internet. She’s worked with businesses of all shapes and sizes, from hotels to restaurants to startups. After years of learning the ins and outs of different social networks and completing her degree in Communication and Media, PJ is stoked to help brands build a human connection with a virtual audience.

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