The social media website Facebook (FB) is making changes in its look, adding new features to improve the experience in their site. According to an Engineer Manager at FB, “it will be easier to keep up with the people in your life no matter how frequently or infrequently you´re on FB”. New feeds will act more like the own user’s newspaper. All this changes really look like improvements, from the new design, more applications for the customers, technical inter-phases, and new algorithms to make a better user experience.
But this major site changes are coming with outcry and complains of the consumers about the new utilities and if they really need them or like them, nobody asked. According to AllFacebook.com, a FB tracking blog, the complains appear to go up as public status updates at least once every 10 seconds.
If we review the “Biggest Mistakes in Web Design” of Vincent Flanders, this new “webpage” practically meets all the 16 topics that a perfect site must be. But if we look closely, what visitors care about is solving their problems or satisfy their needs, not what FD think the users want. Could this be a transcendent problem, will the fans go away, or will the improvements really work?
I don´t think user are going to leave, because the site doesn´t commit mistakes at all, and the new features and designs are really improvement for the costumers, the problem is that nobody ask them if they wanted changes.
Finally, there´s a company that is asking the same questions: Google with their new social media networking sit Google Plus. Who is going to win? Maybe the one that will match in a better way the needs of the consumers and the technology improvement, like the application “Hangout” form G+, that consist in a live video group chat. For the records FB has more than 800 million users and G+ in a couple of months is reaching almost 30 million. Time will say.
Flanders, Vincent (2010). Biggest Mistakes in Web Design 1995-2015. Retrieved on October 4, 2011 from http://www.webpagesthatsuck.com
Ostrader, Susan (2011, 9). Google vs. Facebook: Who´s winning? The Huffington Post. Retrieved on October 4, 2011 from http://www.huffingtonpost.com
Dubois, Lou (2011, 9). Facebook Changes: Did users deserve a say? NBC Philadelphia. Retrieved on October 4, 2011 from http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com
Potter, Ned (2011, 9). Facebook changes look – and everyone hates new ticker. ABC News. Retrieved on October 4, 2011 from http://abcnews.go.com