As we reported a few days ago, LinkedIn was looking to refresh its design and just yesterday released a redesigned LinkedIn Today page that included much-needed social features. Today, LinkedIn has confirmed the launch of a simpler homepage, which is suspiciously similar to Facebook’s newsfeed. While LinkedIn is promoting the redesign’s ease of use, what may not be so apparent is LinkedIn’s slow transformation from a resume network to a content sharing platform.
LinkedIn heralds its redesign as a necessary step to simplify the navigation of its homepage and make it easier for users to discover which of their connections are sharing and updating. “We’ve started to roll out a simpler and easier way to navigate Homepage experience that offers quick access to the relevant information and updates that help you be great at your job,” Caroline Gaffney, product manager at LinkedIn, announced.
But when you compare the current design and the soon-to-be implemented redesign, the structure of the homepage in fact has not changed. The placement of “People You May Know,” homepage updates, “Jobs You May Be Interested In” and other features on the homepage are positioned in the same exact position. The only changes that have been implemented that we can see are that the borders around images are absent, there’s an emphasis on larger images, and following the “LinkedIn Today” update, users will be able to engage with updates by liking, sharing, or commenting.
But what’s important to note about the update is what’s going on under the hood. Once LinkedIn launches its redesigned page, you’ll begin to notice that the updates at the top of your LinkedIn Homepage will be comprised of articles and updates that are based on what your network is reading, sharing, and commenting on, much like Facebook’s Newsfeed. Eventually, you’ll see less “So and so made a new connection” and more status updates or shared links.
The homepage and LinkedIn Today redesign coupled with the integration of social features is evidence of LinkedIn’s strategy to become the user curated content and news platform that Facebook and Twitter have been aggressively competing to become. It’s an important move for LinkedIn as it could increase user engagement through its new social features, and increase the time users spend on the site, as we’ve noted earlier.
The update will be rolling out in a few weeks.