With its acquisition by Microsoft still several months from closing, LinkedIn is wasting no time revamping the Web site and adding new features to help bolster user engagement. The new features include an “Interest Feed,” aggregating content relevant to individual users, a new platform for its online education service Lynda, and of course the inevitable chat bot.
The Web site redesign gives LinkedIn’s desktop profile pages a sleek new look and layout, bringing it up to date with the network’s mobile app, which got an overhaul at the beginning of the year. The new format includes easier navigation from the main feed, with buttons for things like profiles, messages, and updates from their professional connections, all appearing in the top left homepage.
Like similar features on Facebook and other social platforms, the new LinkedIn “Interest Feed” brings together updates with new content from other users including posts, links to articles, and commentary from thought leaders on the site. Content appearing in the Interest Feed will be chosen partly by algorithms and partly by editors, guided by factors like the users’ profession, industry, and location.
LinkedIn is also overhauling its messaging app in order to make it easier to use, getting rid of pop-ups and allowing users to access chat from anywhere on the network through a dedicated chat box in the lower right corner of their homepage. In addition to the smoother interface, LinkedIn is also introducing a new chatbot that can help users schedule meetings, update their calendars, and uncover additional information based on their messaging conversations and past activity.
Last but not least, Lynda, LinkedIn’s online continuing education business, is getting a higher profile with a platform, LinkedIn Learning, that makes customized course recommendations to users from its database of around 9,000 courses, again based on their profile data and activity on the site.According to LinkedIn, most of these changes were already under way before the acquisition by Microsoft, first announced in June.