Thursday afternoon, Facebook announced their re-designed News Feed. The News Feed, or the “personalized newspaper” as Mark Zuckerberg calls it, which has existed since 2007, has gone through several designs through the years.
Back in 2009, Facebook started to filter the Newsfeed based on a secretive algorithm that the average user never really understood. The update does not change the way Newsfeed chooses which stories to share with you. However, it has changed the way the stories are displayed.
It is quite evident that Facebook made the site redesign based on the way their billion users utilize Facebook. Zuckerberg said during his presentation that back in 2011, photos were approximately 25 per cent of what the content on news feed contained. He said that percentage has grown to nearly 50 per cent today.
Photos, videos, events, check-ins, and articles all have new visuals on the News Feed. The main difference is that these posts are bigger. You can really tell that Facebook has seen how popular other social networks such as Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, etc. are because of their visual content.
One other main reason for the site redesign is to synchronize the way people use Facebook on their desktop and on their mobile devices. Instead of three separate viewing experiences (desktop, tablet, and mobile), there is one easy-to-learn interface that lets users move from one device to the other without having to re-learn where everything is on Facebook.
Users are also able to choose the exact feed they want to see. Besides News Feed and Most recent, there are feeds from photos, music, games, groups and many more. This allows for companies to get their content found easier if the user is looking for it.
Users are able to get on the wait list today and Facebook will begin rolling out the update to all users in the coming months. The new iPhone, iPad and Android apps will be available “soon” according to Facebook.
While Facebook has not said exactly how this affects advertising. However, the emphasis on visual content in the update gives advertisers a way to deliver rich content to target the billion users who use the social network, if Facebook allows it. By decluttering the main home page, it actually gives Facebook more space for advertising on the desktop. And as always, it will be interesting to see how Facebook tackles mobile advertising, something that every company faces difficulties with.
As always, we’ll keep you updated on any new changes to Facebook and what that means for your business.