Advertisers Can Now Add Website Links to Snapchat Lenses and Filters

This could help brands track sales

Snapchat is hoping to make money off its new "context cards."
Headshot of Lauren Johnson

Snapchat is adding a feature to its ads that will allow brands to direct consumers to websites after playing with a sponsored lens or filter.

Dubbed context cards, the feature launched last month and lets users view more information about a Snap tagged with a location. Swiping on a Snap geo-tagged with a location pulls up information like tips, directions, reviews and booking rides through Snapchat’s partnerships including Foursquare, Goop, Lyft, TripAdvisor and Uber.

Now, Snapchat is hoping to make some money off the feature. The company is adding similar tools for advertisers who purchase Snapchat’s wacky lenses and filters that overlay graphics on top of Snaps. U.S. advertisers can attach a context card to their campaigns for free that links to a website. Users who view a friend’s Snap with a sponsored lens or filter can swipe up on the screen and click to open the website within the Snapchat app. In the coming months, brands will be able to plug in a website that deep links to their own mobile app.

Lionsgate, for example, is using the feature for its movie Wonder to link its sponsored lens with a website where consumers can buy tickets and learn more about the film.

Up until now, brands haven’t been able to directly track what someone does after viewing a sponsored lens or filter, though they can target someone who uses a sponsored lens or filter with follow-up ads.

With context cards, brands will be able to drive sales and web traffic directly from the platform, which could be a boon for ecommerce, retail and entertainment brands that lean heavily on sales to justify ad spend. A retailer, for instance, could link to a coupon to buy the product advertised in the lens.

Advertisers are privy to three metrics with context cards: Impressions, clicks and click-through rate, according to a spokesman. The app has steadily added sales and metric tools for advertisers over the past year after marketers complained that they weren’t able to effectively measure campaigns within the app. According to data from Nielsen Brand Effect, the average lens and filter campaign drives a 16-point lift in ad awareness, increases brand awareness by eight points and lifts action intent by five points.

Snapchat also recently rolled out its long-awaited pixel, which allows marketers to analyze if their ads drove traffic to their websites.

@laurenjohnson Lauren Johnson is a senior technology editor for Adweek, where she specializes in covering mobile, social platforms and emerging tech.