Mark Zuckerberg presented the new newsfeed design yesterday. Designers and developers did not only focus on changing colors but brought some new functions to the stream:
- Aggregation of shared content
If many of your friends share the same picture or the same video, the faces of all those friends will be shown next to one post. It looks quite nice and will replace the old mess that has arisen so far below a post when it was repeatedly shared. If the users said different things about the post, you can see the message by clicking on the users icon. That’s a bit hard to find and might lead to confusion. Especially, if users did express contrary opinions about a post. Important to know, that it will always the last one to share the post who will be shown at the top of the face pile. That might motivate some to share older posts just to see their face on top of all.
- Menubar on the left hand side
One goal of the redesign was to align the experience of Facebook on computers, tablet and mobile. It is Facebook’s motto “Mobile First”. So with the new design, the browser version of Facebook gets the same, black menu bar at the left edge of the screen. It replaces the previous menu bar that hung always somewhere in midair. The menu bar can be opened and also features – to our surprise- even the ticker. This means one needs to have a big screen to be able to use the ticker. Many users could never get used to the ticker. For those they have chosen the right course: It almost disappeared.
New and above all very prominent are the Newsfeed filter. They let you filter all messages in your stream to show only certain content. For example, only photos, to look at the latest photo albums of my friends, or groups, to follow the latest news in my groups. Certainly a useful feature for all users. For those who use Facebook as a marketing channel, this innovation also brings a dangerous turn. Besides all the options, there is the filter “All Friends”. With one click, the user sees only the news of his friends. Or put in another way: It has never been so easy to hide all messages from pages. One can easily imagine what it means when more and more Facebook users long for peace from “Happy Weekend” posts. One click and all Facebook Pages are gone. By hiding all pages, also these pages are being punished, that post interesting and relevant content. We are curious whether the reach and especially the interaction with fans will decline after the introduction of the new design. Hopefully, users will avoid the extra click often and get the complete stream as usual with all contents.
Overall, one can say that the redesign is a good step forward. The page will look crisper and there are some interesting ideas here. Whether Facebook has the brands and therefore its revenue source a favor, is open. What say you? Will the new newsfeed change the reach of Facebook pages?