Facebook has already had a busy year: In January, the social network announced its new search capability, Graph Search. Last week, CEO Mark Zuckerberg offered a preview of the redesigned News Feed and, most recently, the company revealed a new look for Timeline.
But why so many changes over such a short period? Andreas Pouros, COO at London-based digital marketing agency Greenlight, says it's two-fold: The social network was in need of a design overhaul and it's feeling pressure from investors to capitalize on advertising.
"Facebooks interface was looking tired and dated while its competitors had refreshed their own," Pouros says. "Many of the changes will have a positive impact on its advertising revenues, which is not an accident. The redesigned News Feed mirrors the Facebook experience on mobile, a platform where its advertising has found more success recently. "
Pouros anticipates that Facebook users will be happy with most of the changes, as long as it's strategic about the new ad possibilities.
"These changes are all positive and a much-needed improvement in multiple aspects of the Facebook experience for both users and advertisers," he says. "Whether there is such a thing as too much advertising when it comes to Facebook is still an unknown. If there is, then Facebook must be wary of not going too far as it could end up alienating its own user base."
Here's a look at five of the best changes coming to your Facebook News Feed and Timeline.
1. Sort Your Content Easily
Perhaps the most significant change to Facebook's News Feed is the addition of multiple customizable feeds. When the new News Feed rolls out to users, which Facebook says will happen slowly as it works out kinks, you can sort posts by music, photos and posts from pages you have liked-in addition to customizable feeds based on lists you have set up.
As you follow more brands, more updates, photos and news is broadcast to your feed. Sorting options will make it easier for you to consume content and help make this influx of information more manageable.
Music Feed: Facebook's music feed displays posts from musicians you've liked, information on albums they've released and details on upcoming concerts. You can also see the most popular songs your friends are listening to and discover other suggestions for musicians to follow.
Photos Feed: You can expect to see larger images in your new photos feed, as well as photos your friends share via Instagram. Facebook Director of Design Julie Zhuo says the new photos feed design "looks more like a table of contents," and albums will include a summary at the top.
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