On November 7th, YouTube, one of the largest social media platforms, launched an update for the desktop and tablet app. Changes will provide clarity and control for users.
The most visible changes will be fewer rows of content. This will make each thumbnail bigger and clearer with higher resolution for the previews when users hover over the thumbnails.
Updates will allow users to see more information about a video through the thumbnail on the Homepage. There will be no more clicking on a partial title only to learn that the second half was the more descriptive half. YouTube extended the length of titles. In their attempt to provide users with more upfront information. YouTube will also add the channel icons next to the thumbnail on the homepage. Users will instantly know who created the video. Your favorite content producers (or least favorite) will be easier to identify.
YouTube will continue to recommend videos, and there will actually be more rows of recommended videos. However, YouTube now provides a way to turn off recommendations for desktop and tablet users. This feature was released on phones earlier in the year. The “Don’T Recommend Channel” feature seems to be designed to address some issues YouTube users had regarding conspiratorial, age-appropriate and extremist content. Now users will have more control over what shows up on their recommended list. To find this feature, just click on the three dots that appear under each thumbnail.
Please note that adding a channel to the do not recommend list will not stop a user from being able to search for the video. It also will not stop it from showing up in the "what's trending" section. It just will not appear in the recommended section of the user's Homepage.
In addition to having control of what appears on your recommended list, users will now be able to see why a video appears on that list. Prior to this update, the YouTube algorithm was not ascertainable. Now, underneath the recommended video it will say why it was selected. In YouTube’s Official Blog they stated, “Our goal is to explain why these videos surface on your homepage in order to help you find videos from new channels you might like.”
An exciting feature, especially for those who listen to music through YouTube, is the queue feature. YouTube created a function that allows users to queue up videos for a more seamless transition. The best part is users will be able to work on their queues while watching a video by hovering over the video and adding to the queue. However, once users log off, the queue is lost. Users can still add videos to their Watch Later list.
YouTube will have more desktop updates that will allow you to select topics to refine your Homepage and Up Next Videos, in the near future. The changes were released earlier in the year on the Android app.
While the updates on November 7th were not drastic and may not affect much regarding your marketing, they do add some ease to using YouTube and will give users more control.
Just a few days before this launch, YouTube also released Super Stickers. The exciting news must have been lost in all the excitement over larger thumbnails. Now users can interact differently with content creators. The stickers are not only adorable but are meant to enrich engagement. The added feature also will help creators generate more money. The Super Stickers will not be available to all channels. In order to purchase Super Stickers creators will have to have a monetized channel of 1,000 followers, be over 18 and be in one of the 60 approved countries. YouTube is hoping the fun stickers will help build engagement during live streams and Premieres. And more importantly, it helps creators connect with their international audience.