Unlike: Facebook loses users to other social networks
After a year of radical changes to the world’s largest social media website, Facebook’s reputation is dwindling, with user satisfaction falling below Twitter, LinkedIN and Google Plus.
With users deactivating their accounts out of privacy concerns and frustration with interface changes and advertisements, Facebook’s endless transformations may do itself more harm than good.
Facebook scored 61 out of 100 in customer satisfaction among active users, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index. While Twitter and LinkedIN scored only slightly higher, Pinterest received a score of 69 and YouTube received 73.
The winners? Google+ and Wikipedia, tying at 78 points.
With the recent launch of Timeline and frequent privacy changes, the company is under heavy criticism.
“Why do people leave?”asked Bianca Bosker, an editor at The Huffington Post,“Lack of trust, mostly – a sense that Facebook can’t be depended on to protect our personal information and will sell us out to make a buck.”
Facebook attracts advertisers and app makers, using information that it gathers about its users’ friendships, interests and activities.
Some users are also heavily irritated by the advertisements that plague their newsfeeds and profiles.
"The advertising becomes more intrusive in the newsfeed,"said Debra Williamson, a social media advertising analyst."Facebook has just started to roll ads out in the newsfeed in the past few months, but the ads look just like any other post on Facebook, they're made not to be blaring or glaring in your face.”
Facebook’s disappointing public offering may also bring insight into its fading reputation. The company’s stock value plunged 26 percent since May, falling from its initial $38 per share to just over $28 per share – a risk that made Facebook appear too financially driven.
But even after a year of continuous transformations, Facebook is planning yet another dramatic change, thereby ruining part of the appeal of “Facebook stalking.” Starting July 11, posts made in Facebook groups are showing which users have viewed each post – making anonymous browsing virtually impossible.
Facebook also plans to feature engagement and wedding announcements in the same area that currently features birthdays – bringing ones relationship further into the cyber spotlight.
Although the company is desperately striving to rekindle user satisfaction through innovative changes, its attempts are simply making it “trendy” to (dis)Like Facebook. More than a third of Facebook users are spending less time on the site now than they were six months ago.
“These days, discontent with Facebook seems more the rule than the exception,”Bosker writes.
While many users rely on the network to stay in touch with their friends, it may not be long before the former king of social media passes on its crown to another platform.
“It’s worth asking how much customer satisfaction matters for Facebook, given its unrivaled 800 million user base,”Larry Freed, president and CEO of ForeSee told Fox News.“If Facebook doesn’t feel the pressure to improve customer satisfaction now, that may soon change.”