Meta has been on a journey to turn its platforms, including Instagram and Facebook, into metaverse-enabled Web 3 spaces, now it looks like that process is in the fast lane as Instagram is being turned into an actual NFT marketplace.
Not only will Meta enable creators to mint and sell NFTs on Instagram, but Meta won't be charging gas fees - the cost to register an NFT on a blockchain - which could really shake up NFT marketplaces. Currently the best NFT marketplaces charge gas fees, so this could make them rethink how creators use these platforms to launch NFT art. If Meta is serious about making NFTs work, this is a good start.
According to NFT Now, the site that broke this news, Meta is fast-tracking NFT integration in Instagram and you'll be able to buy NFT art in-app, in iOS and Android, just like normal purchases. This means along with being able to display NFTs, creators will be able to make, sell and buy NFT art on Instagram.
NFT Now believes top US NFT creators have already been onboarded and are using the new tools, including Amber Vittoria, Refik Anadol, Isaac ‘Drift’ Wright, Eric Rubens, Jason Seife, Vinnie Hager, Sara Baumann, Olive Allen and Ilse Valfre.
The Digital Collectibles feature has already been launched in 100 countries, and enables users to connect their crypto wallets and display NFTs, but now a new set of tools offers an 'end-to-end toolkit' of features to enable artists to mint, sell and buy NFTs. Importantly users can sell their NFTs both on and off Instagram and some will drag in metadata from OpenSea. The new NFT Instagram feature will also now support Solana, especially for video NFTs, and the Phantom wallet.
The option to actually create and mint, buy and sell NFTs on Instagram goes even further than expected. This is a bold move, particularly as NFTs have seen a downturn in the last six months, but it does position the social platform for any future rise in non-fungible token collection.
Speaking with NFT Now, creator and photographer Dave Krugman said: "In the age of interconnected creative communities, the name of the game is incentive alignment. If the things that benefit my audience also benefit me, we are able to create a social symbiosis."
Instagram has long been the place where artists and creators can expand their audience and grow their business. It unlocked publishing to many artists who were able to create prints, photos and books and sell their products directly to a dedicated artistic audience. It's fitting, then, that Instagram is the mainstream platform that could unlock the potential of NFTs for many creators.
NFT creators minting and selling art and video on Instagram will be able to set their royalty percentage between five percent to 25 percent.
The suggestion Instagram may not charge fees is interesting, especially given Meta is losing money on its Web 3 investments and has already stated it plans to charge fees on its metaverse platform, Horizon Worlds. I'd expect Meta to offer early adopters a no fee / no gas fee deal and perhaps while it stress tests the platform. So, get in early.
If you're still new to the world of NFTs, read my guide 'What are NFTs?' to discover how they work. Or take a look at our how to make and sell an NFT guide, or my tutorial 'how to create an NFT for free' to learn more.