What Lesson Is Facebook Teaching Us? (Web Design Wise)


Facebook is kind of like that beacon of the online world that we have gotten used to. At this point, the world of the internet without the presence of Facebook seems pretty dark and empty.

Now we know that when we say Facebook, you are going to think of the mobile application. And sure, that is the place where we access Facebook most of the time. However, before the app came into being, there was the website. And that website today serves as a milestone of social media website design for every other social platform (at least for the ones who are still desktop-based). So let’s take a look into the web design of Facebook and find out how they accomplished it.

Is It An Early Bird Gets The Worm Scenario?


Many people argue that Facebook’s overwhelming success was basically another example of an “early bird gets the worm” situation. Surely when Facebook broke into the social media scene there were only a few major competitors, such as MySpace and Twitter. What sets Facebook apart? Its website design and the design intent behind it.

The website developers of Facebook have always created a simplified and straightforward design, which was a necessary thing, considering a large range of features the platform offered. From messaging friends, to search for them, joining and making groups as well as making albums and sharing them with friends. The functionality of Facebook has increased since its humble days back in the early 2000s. But the design principles have not changed. And the recent redesign of the website proves that.

Reflection And Redesign: What Is Facebook Doing Right And What Can We Learn From It?


If we are talking about what Facebook is doing right with its website design, then the first thing that needs to be discussed is how it keeps up with user demands. With almost 2.6 billion daily users all across the world, it would be foolish to ignore the demands of the people. But what else is Facebook doing right?

Here is a list of things Facebook is paying attention to when it comes to their website, and these are the things you need to pay attention to as well when it comes to your website.

1. Easy Navigation, Good Layout, & Intuitive Design: The Holy Grail Of User Satisfaction


Despite what the haters might say, the loyal users of Facebook have always been satisfied with the UX provided by the website, and it is all because of the holy grail of user satisfaction mentioned in the heading.

The layout of the desktop site improved exponentially throughout the years. Here is a side by side comparison of Facebook’s timeline from 2006 (left) and 2019 (right).

This extreme transformation can only be attributed to the Facebook team’s continuous efforts to keep their desktop updated with the latest trends in usability, navigation, and changing demands of the people.

What should you learn from this?

When it comes to web design, keeping up with trends is important, only when it aligns with your goals. Facebook website design has always kept in touch with the user needs, regarding navigation, layout, and the changing behavior of the users, as well as the trends and updated the design layout accordingly. And if you want your website to be as evergreen as Facebook’s, then you need to do the same. Follow the trends, but only as long as it aligns with your user’s needs.

2. Sticking To Visual Hierarchy Best Practices


Visual hierarchy is important, and the team responsible for Facebook’s website design knows that.

And that’s why in the modern Facebook design we have stories right on top because that is what’s fresh, then a chance to update our own timeline, with texts and images, and then we have the other news, timeline posts, etc, right in this order. But why?

Facebook, while designing the timeline page, gives priority to the ‘freshness’ of the posts. In the visual and informational hierarchy of things for a social platform, the ‘most recent’ posts are more important, and therefore placed higher on the page.

Now, what should be your key takeaway from this practice?

The important information goes to the top, the rest belong at the bottom.

And that’s why this is an important lesson you need to take away for a Facebook-like business website design - whatever important message you might have, place it on the top, and the rest goes after that. This way the users will be engaged by the most important text from the get-go and won’t have to search for hours on your website for content that matters. When hiring a design partner for a website, make sure to go with a web design agency in New York or any other city where they are familiar with how to work the information hierarchy of a page.

3. Readability For Better Engagement


If there is one thing Facebook is famous for, it is readability.

Its accurate use of typography, as well as the design choices, makes the entire site readable, and easy to understand. The readability of the site increases engagement levels and creates an inviting space where people are eager to join.

The above screenshot is only the login/signup page, but their policy of readability is quite prominent on it. Use of clear large typography, easy content-language, and placement of CTA buttons make the page pleasant to look at as well as inviting enough to engage. It serves as proof of how important the readability of the content is to make modern web design layout engaging.

And that’s why to help people to engage with the site, improve the content on the page. Check the readability score of the content and ensure that it is not difficult for people to understand what is written, and pay attention to typography. The font style and arrangement on the site are very important to help the people engage with it.

4. Integrate The Crucial Element Of Fun


All work and no play makes jack a dull boy.

And that’s why Facebook always ensures the integration of fun elements on the website. Whether it is the huge array of Facebook games, or the use of fun icons and colors to make the UI interesting. The platform ensures to create a sense of fun and utility for the users through creative Facebook page design.

Source: https://www.theverge.com/2020/3/19/21187118/facebook-desktop-redesign-more-available-starting-today

Despite its simple appearance, the redesigned interface of the Facebook desktop website makes it fun and interesting with the use of colorful icons on the left side, along with flat icons on the top. The outline is simple and functional, and yet, the element of fun is present right there.

This careful integration of fun elements is one of the important aspects of web design. Designers can also integrate various transition effects, micro-interactions, and illustrations to break the boring mundane vibe of the website. Combining functionality and entertainment is the key to maximum engagement, and if a site can achieve that balance, it will be unbeatable in the market.

5. Personalization That Matters


Facebook is well known for its integration of individualization on the platform to give the users a better experience. From optimizing profile security to the kind of posts they want to see on their timeline, everything can be personalized on Facebook. And recently, they have added another feather to that crown of personalization, that is the dark mode.

The dark mode in web design has been an in-demand feature for a long time. Facebook has finally complied with the public demand and introduced the feature on its new and redesigned website. But they have also given the users a chance to personalize this. People can opt-out of dark mode or turn it on if they want to, all with a few simple clicks.

The level of individualization provided by Facebook stands as an example for all other sites. Users love to feel specially treated, and personalization is key to that. So when building a site, do not forget to give the users some individual features. It can be products related to past search results or giving the choice to opt-out of notifications. When it comes to individualization, even the smallest gestures go a long way.

As We Wrap Up: Facebook Lessons For Your Website


There are some serious lessons facebook page design ideas can teach us about site designing and how to keep the flame alive (between the users and site of course) for more than a decade. The key is to listen to the users, keep up with market craze, and set the goal to engage and entertain users while also serving their needs. So for anyone building a site, take a look at Facebook, and see everything it is doing right and then do the same, only with a twist of individuality. And that’s how the site can become a huge success just like Facebook.

#Facebook #WebDesign #WebsiteRedesign