Here's How To Add Friends Using Snapchat's New Profile URL Feature

Snapchat, the popular mobile app that allows you to send and receive timed photos, videos, and text messages, just added a potentially game changing feature—URL profile sharing. That's right, this simple feature addition could turn out to be huge for a social app that has big aspirations of generating billions of dollars.

The developers at Snapchat have been working to make it easier to share and link accounts. In the old days, you had to type in someone's username and hope Snapchat would find them. Since then, Snapchat's added the ability to use QR Snapcodes, sift through your phone contacts, and a location-based "Add Nearby" feature. But none of them  have the same impact that URL profile sharing might. More on that in a moment, but first, here's how to use it.

If you're a Snapchat user, you now have a profile. To view and share it, load Snapchat, tap the icon in the center of the display at the top, then tap Add Friends. In addition to the options you're used to seeing, there's a new one that says Share Username. Tap that and Snapchat will give you the option of sharing your custom URL through apps and services like email, text messaging, Facebook Twitter, and so forth. Easy cheesy, as it's meant to be.

So, why is this a big deal? Back in 2013, Snapchat famously turned down two separate buyout offers from Facebook, one for $1 billion and a second for $3 billion. The founders had the guts (or gall) to reject the offers because investors had them convinced Snapchat was and could be worth more. Much more.

Fast forward to today and Snapchat's founders don't seem as crazy as they did a couple of years ago. What was once thought to be a sexting app is a real social media tool, one that's gone on to receive various funding valuing the company as high as $19 billion, according to a Fortune article from a year ago.

Snapchat is still figuring out ways to generate revenue (it brings in money, but isn't yet profitable), but in the meantime, it continues to add users and retain existing ones with feature upgrades. Towards the latter, URL profile sharing makes it easy and less awkward to gain followers, which in turn makes Snapchat a more popular app than it already is. Think about all the places you might see a link to a Facebook or Twitter account. Those same places can now add a link to their Snapchat account. In an era where every celebrity and pseudo-celebrity is trying to grow their brand, that's a big deal.
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