Following my previous post about why I think Google+ is heading in the right direction, I can’t help but go into why I think Facebook is on a downward spiral.
So there are the obvious points of failure that I mentioned in where Google got it right, just to recap the primary elements:
1) New & innovative technology - we’ll see where Graph Search leads… But it seems like all Facebook has been good at lately is snatching up good technology companies (Instagram & others) and doing nothing exciting with them. I even think the primary selling point behind Graph Search is cleaning up their messy UI.
Where in the interim Google+ has hit the jackpot once again with auto-awesome and other new features - something Facebook totally should have thought of first with Instagram.
2) Terrible mobile apps. Nuff said.
(Since writing this, they also came out with Facebook Home. Which is a good idea - but I didn’t like the app itself. It isn’t seamless and is a “one click too many” launcher. A launcher needs to provide quick access to the most basic functions - and Facebook Home does not. But that’s an entirely different post, and off on a tangent).
I don’t know about Apple devices, but Facebook has been smartphone cancer for all of my Android devices - eating up CPU and draining battery, so much so that I’ve uninstalled the app, and only use the mobile version (which too has its limitations).
3) Loss of control. From being unsure how or just simply being unable to control interaction on Facebook, it becomes a burden to actually use. I also have an issue with buggy apps that don’t remember default settings - especially security settings - and Facebook is #1 with that.
Aside from doing the comparison thing - I do believe that Facebook has distinct & unique #fails that I’ve only found with this platform.
It doesn’t learn anything about its users.
I have to constantly update which notifications/invites/groups/emails I’m not interested in receiving. Every time there’s some new and stupid game that has Facebook login, I get disruptive notifications on my phone - and for other stupid apps too. If I have said once, I’m really not interested in these - respect it.
The same goes for all of the stupid prompts and such you get all the time about providing your phone #, activating Facebook email and more. Enough.
You need all kinds of stupid hacks and workarounds for basic functionality - like editing posts (well at least until recently - I believe Facebook has fixed this in the interim since starting this post - but this has been a major fail until now). See this video.
Really buggy PPC. (Not to mention other functionality).
I have had so much trouble running PPC campaigns with Facebook that I have opted not to run them on the platform in the end. This is a major monetization weak spot for Facebook - I’d suggest they fix this immediately.
There is other basic functionality that is just plain buggy that Facebook doesn’t seem to want to fix too - even simply uploading pics - sometimes only works once in three tries (and then I have the same status update without the pic three times), or sometimes double posts. Unknown what the deal is.
I have never encountered an issue on Facebook that was quickly resolved or even resolved to my satisfaction, and the user forums are such spam.
I’m sure there are a million other issues - but these are just off the top of my head. There are also a million features that are missing from uploading GIFs, to linking out to external events - but we won’t even go there. Facebook was once the pillar of innovation - and they’re lucky they have the buy-in and market penetration they’ve achieved, but nothing gold can stay. If they don’t step up their game, they may find themselves a has been - a la MySpace.