As technology continues to evolve so does our UX (User Experience). Where change is often considered to be a positive step in the right direction, we seem to be living in an era where individuals are susceptible to change, especially when it comes to updates in their favourite applications. As social media conglomerates consistently strive to at the forefront of the competition, they’re also quick to release updates to keep their users engaged. Snapchat in particularly recently changed its user interface and it’s fair to say it left a lot of its users confused about how to navigate around it! In fact around 1.2 million users have actually signed a petition on Change.org to take back the latest updates, in order to make the ‘app more accessible for the mainstream audience’.
The platform has tried to appease the ‘annoyed’ users by promising more new features to enhance the UX, stating in its official response that “This new foundation is just the beginning, and we will always listen closely to find new ways to make the service better for everyone.” However that isn’t Snapchat’s only concern! Last Thursday the ‘Snapchat Queen’ Kylie Jenner put out a tweet that turned into a detrimental blow to the media giant, and ultimately led to the biggest drop in its stock price.
sooo does anyone else not open Snapchat anymore? Or is it just me… ugh this is so sad.
— Kylie Jenner (@KylieJenner) February 21, 2018
The Keeping up with the Kardashians star is one of the most followed celebrities on Snapchat, so when she tweeted that she had stopped using the app following the aforementioned interface update,Snap Inc. lost 6% of its market value, and its stock price plummeting by about $1.5 billion. She soon after tweeted “still love you tho snap … my first love” to reduce the effect of her snub. However,by this point the damage was already done. Clearly, this tweet was the tipping point for the recent downfall for Snap, but its foundation was in the deeper realms of the apps’ basics. This instance proves how vital user experience is, even for giants like SnapChat, who presumably set trends defining the expectant UI for the other similar applications.
Another takeaway from this instance is about the growing prowess of influencers on social media. In its earliest days the online social networking hubs were working with celebrities to create a mutually beneficial concept. Whilst the celebrities were bringing more users to the platforms, the platforms were also becoming the main source for celebs to connect with their followers increasing their influential powers. However, it appears that on the other side of the scale the celebs’ prowess is out weighing the functionality and features of each platform.
As if it couldn’t get any worse, it appears that it is not only the influencers that are questioning their loyalty to Snapchat, as even advertisers have begun to consider their choice in using the platform, raising a real red flag for the social media giant. Soon after the tweet from Jenner, Maybelline, a major cosmetic brand, asked its user base on Twitter, if they should or should not stay on SnapChat? The tweet that was later deleted was posted in the subsequence of its survey that showed that the company’s views have declined dramatically on the platform.
It is indeed tricky times for Snap since its most significant rival Instagram and other budding platforms like musical.ly, are giving rather great performances. It is therefore, unclear whether the promised updates will bring back what Snapchat has lost in such a short period of time. All we can say is, users are the most important component of any app, and Snap should not underestimate that.