It doesn’t follow that when something looks good or when something is new that it can make things a lot better. This is the case for Facebook and its News Feed.
Facebook announced on March 6 that it will be implementing a new design for its News Feed. The changes will happen gradually in the next few weeks for users across the globe.
The social network tested a year ago a new look for its News Feed. The said design featured a new layout that was supposed to make the page look clutter-free focused on stories, and somehow similar how everything feels and looks like on its current mobile app.
Fast forward to today, those changes weren’t implemented. Facebook’s product manager for News Feed Greg Marra told technology blog Recode that the company has spent a lot of time listening to the inputs of users as to what things work and not. With the experimental layout tried by a small chunk of it’s more than a billion users, they got an idea that some of the elements they were trying to introduce was causing some problems for users.
Some of the problems pointed out by Marra included the changes they wanted to make with the subsections of a Facebook page and the columns flanking the page on both sides. The users raised concerns about the navigational problems the changes Facebook was trying to introduce caused. Since they didn’t work, they had to be scrapped, and the News Feed team had to work doubly hard, start from the scratch to come up with a new look that somehow mixes it with the needed basics.
The latest refreshed version of the News Feed will feature the layout and the navigation that Facebook users love, but it comes with bigger photos, images, and even comes with new fonts.
According to Facebook, the changes it made are primarily visual updates that hasn’t affected how the News Feed brings up content to users nor how the stories are ranked by its system. Essentially, the company made the desktop environment of Facebook look and work as its mobile application where the images are larger and the advertisements and the organic stories are of the same size. The new look also features new iconography and kills the dropdown menu seen on the feeds.
Actually, looking at the preview posted by Facebook, the new layout of the News Feed show some hint of Google+ or maybe a tinge of Instagram.
The trend is for companies to point their compass to how mobile works just like what Pinterest did earlier, make its desktop environment look and work similar as its mobile platform. As Twitter has also been experimenting on its looks recently. The trend is clear, when more and more people are switching to smartphones and tablets for their daily computing needs, then the layouts of websites should follow suit.
The dictum in business is basic, give the customers what they want and so Facebook is trying to give what its users want. However, it’s very hard to please 1.5 billion people in one roof. For sure, things will be re-arranged again soon until that ideal look is achieved.