Remember that huge Snapchat update that literally enraged everyone? Well, Snap is pulling a 180, and issuing another redesign, as a way to appease people for their first redesign. I mean, a lot of people complained about the new look, so this kind of makes sense. Although, we don’t normally see social media companies making such sweeping changes to their platforms, but I guess it really was that bad. The latest update, which started rolling out to iOS users, ditches the “Friends” page that mashed up your chats and stories. This content will be made separate, once again. Which means you’ll no longer be subjected to Snapchat’s algorithm to tell you who you might want to talk to.
Once you open the “new” app, you will once again be directed straight to the camera. Conversations with your friends can be viewed by swiping to the left. Stories now have a dedicated page, and you can get to that by swiping right. Stories are also now presented in feeds. You will get four feeds – Friends, Subscriptions, for publishers and people you follow, and For You. The change came as of May 1st, and it signifies that the company is listening to its users… But only sort of.
Snap actually knew that things were going to go poorly, as soon as they made the changes. Complaints immediately started to pour in from every region where they rolled the updates out to. To put this into perspective, more than one million people rushed to sign a petition in order to get Snapchat to go back to their previous platform interface. Not only that, but users started to post scathing reviews. TechCrunch reported that of those reviews 83% were negative and in relation to the new interface. Snapchat was then forced to acknowledge that there were so many upset users, but they decided not to make any changes, regardless.
Here’s where it gets interesting. So, Snapchat decides that they don’t care what all their users are saying – they’re not going to make any changes. This is when they do the 180. Their motivation was not all the complaints that they were receiving, but the fact that the update failed to increase the company’s revenue. Yes – that’s right. They weren’t making any money with this update, so they decided to finally make some changes. That’s a bit shady, in my opinion, and sends a loud message about how they feel about their users. According to their latest earnings report, user growth has slowed since the update dropped. This means Snapchat is losing money and not growing.
Snapchat is a hugely popular platform, but it won’t remain if they can’t grow and make money. Not only that, but their only other idea is a wearable camera. I’m not knocking it, but I think they have a pretty sound business model with their social networking platform. So why not stick to that? This latest redesign isn’t likely going to help save Snap. Especially with Instagram always undercutting them with their new features. Stay tuned on how this plays out with users.