"The only constant is change," said the Greek philosopher Heraclitus. We can't prove it, but we're pretty sure he was talking about Facebook updates.
Sometimes its changes enjoy (see: Introduction of Messenger). Sometimes they cause mass crimes (see: literally every time the interface is redesigned). One thing is certain, however: Facebook never rests on its laurels.
There is always something new in the works, which means there are always new ways for your brand to stand out from its competitors.
For this reason, we will update this page regularly and highlight the most important Facebook updates every month. Make sure to check back often (and maybe even bookmark this page?).
Bonus: Download a free guide Here's how to use Hootsuite to convert Facebook traffic into revenue in four easy steps.
Top Facebook Updates You Need To Know In 2020
August 2020 Facebook updates
Obviously, in a pandemic, the usefulness of Facebook's "Events" feature has decreased. Even if an amazing poop emoji themed birthday is planned for your child, it is not exactly a good time to get together.
That's why Facebook smartly rotated its events pages to help businesses host online events … and even make money in the process.
Business owners can set a ticket price, advertise their online event, collect payments and host a digital event on one page. Previously chargeable events included interesting facts, meet-and-greets, fitness courses and lectures. No disgusting / cute birthday parties that we know of.
At this point, Facebook does not charge any fees for tickets sold on web or Android devices. This is likely to scare all other ticketing and event platforms. We look at you, Eventbrite.)
However, the social media platform is in a dispute with Apple's App Store over tickets sold via the iOS app. When making purchases via an iPhone app, companies can only collect 70 percent of their ticket sales due to Apple's 30 percent App Store tax. If we're allowed to do editorial work for a second: ouch.
The new feature has been introduced in 20 countries. Check here that you are qualified to access. Or, read more about Facebook's launch for online paid small business recovery events here.
Different business categories for Facebook business pages
Facebook made $ 100 million in grants earlier this summer to support nonprofits, businesses, and black-owned developers. The commitment to raise black voices is now being continued with new diverse business labels for business pages.
With this self-applied label, a company site (along with other diversity categories) can identify itself as black-owned, so users can easily find it using the "Companies Nearby" feature.
To be considered a diverse company, your company must be at least 51% owned, operated and controlled by one or more people of a certain diversity category. (In addition to the Black Owned Tag, you can choose from a variety of other races, including female, veterinary, LGBTQ, or disabled ownership.)
This designation is not displayed on a company's Facebook page or assigned to the administrator. Site administrators can skip this optional tag or edit or remove diversity information at any time.
The "diversity categories" function will be introduced gradually. So if you don't see them in your page settings yet, try again. While you wait, some of Facebook's money can be put to good use.
More information on different business categories can be found here.
Facebook Portal will soon announce new apps for home conferencing
Facebook's video calling tablet, portal, gained new relevance in the COVID-19 era as people were anxious to see family and friends from afar. Honestly, my new favorite show is watching my nephew use the cowboy filter.
With the introduction of Workplace for Portal a few months ago, the tool should also help the business world and enable meetings, live streams and remote one-on-one calls.
To build on Portal's new enterprise applications, Facebook is adding a number of business-centric video conferencing apps. These apps include Webex, Zoom, BlueJeans, and GoToMeeting. They will be available on Portal, Portal Mini and Portal + in the coming weeks. (Portal TV is planned for the future.)
For apps with whiteboard applications (like Zoom and BlueJeans), you can even draw directly on the portal screen with your finger. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any adorable cowboy filters involved right now.
You can find more information about the latest updates from Portal here.
Facebook Messenger takes over the direct messages from Instagram
The day the Facebook oracle predicted: The great news merging is here.
Facebook announced its plans last year to combine WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram Direct messages to use the same platform. This month, Facebook is starting this transition as Messenger takes over Instagram's private messaging tool for some users.
With this change, the icon for direct messages on Instagram is now that of FB Messenger. The merger enables mutual communication between Instagram and Facebook users as well as emoji reactions and swipe-to-answer functions.
No word on when WhatsApp will join this messaging super-service, but when it does we will see a 3.3 billion user network under one roof. It's an opportunity for some damn good group chat.
Music videos come on Facebook
In the US, you can now find a "Music" button on Facebook Watch. In the future, official music videos will be shown here on Facebook – basically MTV 2.0.
The platform has big plans for some global music video premieres. Over the next few weeks, artists I've never heard of (caliber 50? J. Balvin? I'm sure they are very nice) will post exclusive premieres on the social platform.
On Facebook Watch, you can explore videos by genre, artist, or even mood (what do they recommend for "Hungry"?). Thematic playlists will also be available.
Some artists schedule Facebook Live events in advance of dropping their videos and sharing countdowns and music stickers in stories and fan groups. Links to these official music videos will now also appear on the artist pages.
Similar to other video content on Facebook, users can comment, respond to, and share the website. Maybe first let me know your favorite J. Balvin song so I can catch up with the rest of the world.
Read the full Facebook Music Video Press Release here.
Facebook launches its US 2020 Voting Information Center
Facebook has set itself the admirable goal of attracting four million voters to this year's US election. Of course, they use their own platform as a starting point.
The U.S. Election Information Center for 2020 Elections will provide updated information and official government resources to help Americans prepare for the November presidential election. It's available on Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger.
In the Facebook press release, the non-partisan center was referred to as a "one-stop shop" for voting registration. It also includes a tool that allows users to sign up as an election worker.
A complementary new feature is Facebook's Voting Alert, which both state and local electoral authorities can use to reach voters with updates as we approach election day. (Only government sites are eligible for this system.)
All in all, why wait for Facebook to remind you to register when you can do it now and exercise your democratic rights? Go Go Go GO!
Read more about the Facebook Voting Information Center here.
Redesigned Facebook ad settings are being introduced
A redesign of the Facebook ad settings will be introduced over the next few months.
The revised settings are divided into three tabs: Advertisers, Ad Themes, and Dates. They offer more transparency and control. It is also a reminder that the internet watches everything you do and knows all too well that you love both "hip-hop music" and "shorts".
Users can change what information is shared with advertisers or which advertisers they prefer to hide all together, as you can see in this tweet from Facebook's Director of Product Management.
We'll be rolling out redesigned ad settings over the next few months. None of the transparency and controls go away, but navigation is easier now. It's divided into three tabs: Advertisers, Ad Themes, and Dates (1/2) pic.twitter.com/3h0vWsft7M
– Rob Leathern (@robleathern) August 18, 2020
July 2020 Facebook updates
Take action against hatred
In response to feedback from the civil rights community, Facebook is making changes to policies and communications to reflect more transparent – and hopefully fairer – systems.
As part of this, Facebook took part in a civil rights review and published a diversity report.
They have also expanded their voter suppression policy, banning ads that disturb or intimidate voters, and put in place a strict policy on interference from censuses.
Facebook also promises to surpass existing hate speech protections with more specific anti-hate advertising bans.
Find out the full scope of Facebook's ongoing anti-hate efforts here.
Expanded markets for the launch of Instagram Shop and Facebook Pay
Following the launch of the Facebook Shops in May, businesses in supported markets (the full list can be found here) can now sell products directly on Instagram using Instagram Shop.
Integrate your existing e-commerce platform or create a catalog in Facebook Business Manager. When you've linked your products to your Insta account, submit your shop for review and wait with your thumbs up.
Once you've enabled shopping, you can use shopping labels or stickers to highlight your goods in your feed or in your stories. Let the shopping spree begin.
You can find detailed information on setting up your shop here.
New emoji upgrades in Messenger
In honor of World Emoji Day (July 17th), Messenger has redesigned its standard sticker pack (Moodies).
The little faces you know and love – the cool one, the barfing one, the whole gang – have a sleek new look and bubbly, animated flourishes.
Is it a big update? No, but it's cute.
App Lock for Facebook Messenger
To keep your group chats secure, Facebook is introducing the option to add another layer of security with fingerprint or face authentication via App Lock.
Even if your phone is unlocked by itself and the app lock is on, Messenger will appear illegible – with some sort of frosty overlay – until you use your face or fingerprint to unlock it.
This provides some level of assurance that when your brother flips through your phone to pick a cute road trip song, he won't get a glimpse of the messages your sister sent you about him.
This feature is now available to iOS users and should be available for Android this fall.
Screen sharing now available in the Messenger mobile app
In an age of social distancing, we've never been more grateful for the technology that brings us closer – and with so many video chat apps available right now, everyone is trying to offer the best possible connection options.
That's why Facebook added the "Screen Share" option to its mobile and web messenger apps.
Now formal activities can be broadcast side-by-side on the screen while you continue chatting. Search an online shop together, scroll through recipe options, or look back at travel photos from those glorious days when we could leave the house.
Screen sharing is available with the latest update to the app.
Choose your layout for posts with multiple images
The next time you upload a batch of photos, you may have the option to choose their layout as Facebook is slowly rolling out new options for photo mail.
The platform has been testing this visual tool since October, but it looks like this new Composer functionality will be massively rolling out at this point.
That being said, it doesn't seem to have popped up for Pages users (yet!) So you may have to save your layout creativity for your personal account for now.
Facebook will soon give you layout options when posting multiple images. Pic.twitter.com/8K23afZ9bp
– Matt Navarra (@MattNavarra) July 14, 2020
Create custom audiences from prospective or past customers
In Facebook's ad manager, you can now target ads specifically to people who have viewed your products or made purchases.
Click the "Custom Audience" option. A “Shopping” category will appear. Below you will find people who viewed your products, people who added products to their shopping cart, or people who made a purchase.
With this information, you can target the audience of buyers who are most likely to follow or return to your page and increase engagement.
Make live video calls with up to 50 participants
Do you have a group video call that you want the world to see? Facebook is on the fall. By combining the video chat capabilities of Messenger Rooms with the live stream services, users can now make video calls with up to 50 participants.
Think of this as a combination of video chatting and live streaming, and it's clear the possibilities are pretty intriguing for a brand. This could mean interesting opportunities for TV show meetings, networking, interactive live tutorials or courses and beyond.
These calls can be sent from a single profile, on a Facebook page, or within a group. The originator of the call can allow or block participants, or block calls all together.
Zoom is already shaking: When Messenger Rooms hit the market in April, inventories fell 5%. So who knows what this advanced feature could mean for the video conferencing brand?
June 2020 Facebook updates
Financial support for gamers
To attract players from Twitch and Youtube, Facebook is expanding its streaming subscription options.
Fans can now help players live streaming with tips and donations, and players can also access in-stream commercial breaks. These ads can be pre-roll, mid-roll, or an image below the stream.
All streamers who watch at least 250 regular weekly viewers can register with the Level Up program to access these features (and the cute paydays that come with them).
Find out more about these fan subscriptions and Level Up here.
Facebook collections can now be shared (at least in the US).
The collection feature on Facebook allows users to archive links, photos, pages, and posts for later access. This month, Facebook announced a new sharing feature that can be used to publish these lists. This could offer some interesting business partnership opportunities. (Unfortunately, this is a feature that is currently only available in the US market.)
Look out, Pinterest. Influencers could create sponsored lists to share with followers ("My Favorite Mexico City Restaurants"), or companies could share branded content (like "Best Cocktail Recipes" for a vodka company).
Maybe our first list should be a list, how practical will lists be?
New -. @ Facebook shared #facebookcollections. Can share links, photos, posts, etc that can be followed. #curatedcontent pic.twitter.com/Oah4eXW9dz
– whimchic (@whimchic) 13. June 2020
Setting data protection makes it much easier to comply with the CCPA
Any company that sells to customers in California is likely already familiar with the California Consumer Privacy Act (CPPA), which gives residents the right to control their personal information.
Facebook's new "Restricted Data Usage" feature makes it easier to comply with the CPPA. By enabling this feature, companies that send data to Facebook can restrict Facebook's actual use of this data.
Once applied, Facebook technically acts as a service provider to a company while processing information about California customers, complying with the state's unique privacy laws, and protecting both your business and consumer information.
New Email Marketing Tools Now Available for Small Businesses
A small number of small businesses are testing Facebook's new email marketing tools.
If you're one of the lucky few who was ripped out of the dark to be an FB guinea pig, you can send group emails and track performance – all on the Facebook platform.
Upload subscribers' contact information (with permission, of course), then tweak the demographics of your target audience and customize your design.
If the test runs prove useful to businesses, the option may be rolled out further. However, with so many other marketing email solutions, it is not certain that this tool will stand the test of time.
Sending marketing emails from your side? What new wizardry is this Facebook ?!
Have you seen this new feature that now allows us to send emails straight from Facebook? This is definitely new to me and so far only available on one account. pic.twitter.com/aSIkSx1uDo
– Meg Coffey (@TexanMeg) June 1, 2020
Facebook warns if an article is older than 90 days
In yet another attempt to fight fake or out of date news, Facebook announced a new popup feature to warn users when a story is older than three months.
The aim is to highlight the timeliness (or rather the lack of) news sources in an attempt to contain non-contextual stories that could interfere with understanding current events.
The context button Facebook added in 2018 may not have done much to suppress the spread of hoaxes. However, we hope this addition will have an impact.
May 2020 Facebook updates
Facebook launches mobile-friendly native shops
This may not be the first swing Facebook has made in in-platform shopping, but Facebook Shops is definitely the best yet.
As in previous iterations, you can upload product images and descriptions to your digital boutique, but now users can convert and check out right from the app.
With Facebook Shops you can chat with customers via WhatsApp, Messenger or Instagram Direct Messaging to offer support or personal shopping advice.
In addition, companies can customize the appearance of e-shops with branded fonts and colors. Fancy!
The group chat app "CatchUp" is started for group calls
At a time when it is more difficult than ever to stay connected, CatchUp wants to help bridge the distance. Think of it as a language-only version of Messenger Rooms that enables one-on-one or group discussions with up to eight people.
Unlike other group chat apps, CatchUp indicates when users are available and "Ready to Speak" (similar to HouseParty). It's an attempt to overcome people's hesitation with the old-fashioned phone call: they don't want to interrupt.
Facebook will be testing the app in the US for a limited time. We have to see if it stays.
April 2020 Facebook updates
The Ads Manager Status Tool was introduced to track outages
By adding a new ad status page, ad buyers can see if there are any issues on the platform itself.
This is also where all major changes to key tracking metrics are reported (from impressions to when the amount is reached) so you can stay up to date on every little optimization.
The ad reporting tool will also be updated
Facebook announced updates to a variety of ad reporting tools – all the better for brands to measure campaign performance.
Access cross-account reports, custom metrics, and conversion paths to see how your campaign is doing in graphical detail like never before.
Messenger comes to the desktop
If chatting in the browser or on the mobile app isn't a convenient option for you, the new Facebook Messenger desktop app enables group chats and videos right on your computer desktop – it doesn't even require a Facebook account.
"Quiet Mode" introduced
The recent introduction of Quiet mode on both the browser and the mobile phone allows all notifications to be muted in one fell swoop, similar to the iOS "Do not disturb" feature.
Keep the things and pings to a minimum so you can actually get some work done.
Improved accessibility for live streaming
While video live streams were certainly popular on Facebook, the real-time broadcast format has created a barrier to entry for those who rely on screen readers or have a hearing impairment.
To combat this problem, Facebook announced the release of a new audio-only live mode with the option for automatic subtitles.
Automatic subtitles aren't always perfect, but they're better than nothing and hopefully allow the hearing impaired users to follow your content.
March 2020 Facebook updates
New Facebook will be launched worldwide
While the new Facebook redesign – the fifth major redesign in the platform's history – was rolled out to mobile users in late 2019, we can finally see it on desktops this month.
There are big aesthetic changes here: the modern layout is a cleaner, more minimalist design, with the option to switch between pure white and dark modes.
The user interface is also being redesigned with this redesign, giving preference to group activities and events over newsfeed content. The Groups tab has also been redesigned to make it easier to find new groups to join.
Certain communities benefit from additional functions: for example, a new chat option for game groups or improved interactions with Facebook Live.
To bring the new Facebook design to your desktop, simply select the "Switch to new Facebook" option in the "Settings" drop-down menu. And if you don't already have it on your phone, just update your app.
COVID-19 is delaying ad review
An announcement from Facebook earlier this month revealed that staff reductions and changes to the moderation process could result in errors or delays in the ad review process.
The platform has also banned advertising or ecommerce product posts that attempt to harness fear of the virus to increase sales. There are no magical cures for sale here.
Not only is Facebook discouraging advertising campaigns, it's also testing tools to reduce the spread of misinformation about COVID-19 on WhatsApp and Messenger. If a rumor about a miracle drug pops up in your chat, it will also ask you to review and confirm your sources.
New "Mood" frames are coming to Facebook Stories
Repeat these feelings with the new mood feature in FB Stories, which uses the power of GIFs for self-expression.
Change the frame and background color to further personalize what Michelle, eating her body weight in spaghetti on Full House, really means to you.
Source: Screenshot of the Facebook app
Express yourself with custom avatar stickers
Facebook is following in the footsteps of its Bitmoji ancestors and is now introducing personalized humanoid stickers for use in comments, messengers, stories and posts.
Options for customizing hairstyles, outfits, skin tones and accessories offer a wide range of representations, from headscarves to side-buzz.
To create yours on the Facebook mobile app:
- Tap the three-line menu
- Scroll down and select "See More".
- Select "Avatar" and follow the instructions
Source: Screenshot of the Facebook app
Convert photos to 3D images
Any 2D image can be turned into a 3D masterpiece using Facebook's latest photo tool. The technology simulates the depth within a normal photo so that users can "tilt" similar to a 360-degree image.
It's an opportunity to pop a boring old product photo and draw attention to the news feed – no 3D glasses required!
February 2020 Facebook updates
The Facebook Clear History tool is now available worldwide
It's been in test markets for a while, but the Clear History option is now available to Facebook users worldwide. If prompted for a privacy review, you will have the option to delete all of your off-Facebook activity.
This is finally an opportunity to see all of the data Facebook has stored and tracked related to your other internet activity and delete it from their servers if you wish.
One-time notification API available for Facebook Messenger
To protect Facebook users from spam, company pages are only given 24 hours to reply to messages. Sending messages to anyone outside of this area is not allowed (unless you are using advertising campaigns).
However, a new one-time notification API is the exception to the rule. Users can choose to enable one-time notifications through Messenger for relevant messages, such as: B. Product availability or notification of a future sale.
Facebook is partnering with Reuters for enhanced fact-checking services
To curb misinformation and propaganda that has been rampant on the social media website in recent years, Facebook is partnering with Reuters to expand fact-checking efforts.
The news organizer helps Facebook identify and correct bogus news when it is posted so that users can more easily identify biased or bogus sources.
Learn more about Facebook's fact-checking program here.
Creator Studio Mobile App Released
Das mobile Tool unterstützt die Verwaltung von Seiten unterwegs und bietet dieselben Funktionen wie das vom Browser unterstützte Creator Studio in einem App-Format.
Über ein vereinfachtes mobiles Dashboard können Benutzer Inhalte hochladen und veröffentlichen sowie mit dem Publikum in Kontakt treten.
Mit diesem neuen Tool können Sie Ihre Erkenntnisse und Analysen auch unterwegs überprüfen.
Hier für Android oder iOS herunterladen.
Quelle: Google Play Store
Januar 2020 Facebook-Updates
Aktualisierung der Richtlinien für politische Anzeigen
Die Menge an politischen und sozialen Problemen, die auf Facebook und Instagram auftauchen, kann offen gesagt anstrengend werden, und Facebook weiß dies offensichtlich, da die Einstellungen für die Anzeigeneinstellungen kürzlich um ein Steuerelement erweitert wurden, sodass Nutzer weniger Anzeigen mit politischem Inhalt sehen können.
Seitenverwaltungsverlauf jetzt verfügbar
Für Seiten, die von mehreren Personen verwaltet werden, kann das neue Tool "Seitenverwaltungsverlauf" hilfreich sein.
Es ist eine brandneue Funktion, die jede Aktion anzeigt, die jemals auf Ihrer Seite ausgeführt wurde, wer sie ausgeführt hat und wann … perfekt, um sowohl Fehler als auch intelligente Bewegungen zur Quelle zurückzuverfolgen.
Hier erfahren Sie, wie Sie es anzeigen.
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