The Weekly Christmas Special

It’s fair to say that 2020 was a funny old year, but has certainly revolutionised the way that we use social media and made us all realise what a key role social media plays for us.

From Brexit to bread making, Tiger King to Trump here’s our round-up of everything that happened this year…

Facebook

As always, it’s been another crazy year for Facebook updates; the social media platform has managed to stay on top of all of the tech changes and has made plenty of interesting developments to the platform, all with a reported 2.6 billion monthly active users, 1.73 billion of which visit the site on a daily basis.

Facebook Rooms

Back in May, when Zoom was taking over the world, Facebook launched its own video conference feature, Messenger Rooms.

The feature allows up to 50 people to video chat at one time and was rolled out with Facebook’s ‘Workplace’ feature, aimed to keep people in the workplace connected (although we haven’t seen many people jumping on this trend just yet!).

Facebook Shops

Facebook has been working hard this year to improve its eCommerce features. Earlier this year, the platform introduced ‘Facebook Shops’ which is aimed to help small business to sell online through the platform.

Businesses can choose the products they want to feature from their catalogue and customise their shop storefront.

Instagram

2020 has been a big year for Instagram, the platform celebrated its 10th birthday back in October and has been busy with lots of new developments for its 1 billion active users. 

eCommerce

This year, Instagram has made strides in its eCommerce features on the platform with a range of shopping features that seamlessly tap into users existing experiences. Instagram’s current shopping features include:

Instagram Shop – Sellers can now sell through an in-app shopping destination where people can discover products and brands they love from across Instagram.
Collections – Businesses can group products into collections, customise their shop and curate products into themes.
Product Detail Page – Businesses can include product detail pages within Instagram, which showcase all relevant information on an item.
Product Tags –  Businesses can now tag products from their Instagram shops in posts, which users can then click and shop.
Checkout – Users are now able to checkout directly through the Instagram app securely using Facebook Pay.
Shopping from Creators – Users can now shop from creators through the shopping tab.
Product Launches – Businesses can now announce an upcoming product launch on Instagram using a Stories sticker.
Live Shopping – users are bow able to shop directly from live streams, with a CTA at the bottom.

With so many options for users to buy and businesses to sell, we’re keen to see where Instagram go with eCommerce and whether we’ll see any new features in 2021.

Reels

This year, Instagram rolled out its own take on TikTok, Instagram Reels

Quickly picked up by 1000s of influencers all of the world (and pretty quickly dropped again for some) Reels has completely changed the way that we use Instagram.

Reels allows users to record and edit up to 30 second clips with audio, a range of effects and creative tools, which can then be shared across the platform.

With Reels being a very new feature on the platform, there’s so much that Instagram can do and we’re keen to see what’s to come of Reels in the future!

Guides

Instagram has now fully rolled out its new ‘Guides’ feature.
Originally intended for well-being content, Guides has so many different uses.

The feature allows users to share resources and can be accessed via either profile or the Explore tab. Guides allow you to curate posts and videos.

There’s so much potential for businesses in using Guides, we think it’s a really great new feature that’s so easy to create but so effective!

TikTok

What would a roundup of 2020 be without a mention of TikTok, the most downloaded app of 2020 with almost 115 million downloads, TikTok has had a big year!

India Ban

What would a round-up of 2020 be without a mention of India’s ban of TikTok?!

The platform was banned in India back in June, with India’s government saying that that Chinese-made apps are a danger to the country.

It was speculated that TikTok’s ban in India would be the downfall of the platform but it has gone from strength to strength in 2020. 

The app was also under threat of being banned in the US, however, after much speculation, the app still remains the countries most downloaded app of 2020!

TikTok For Business

More advertisers dipped their toe into the world of TikTok ads (and we even ran some successful TikTok campaigns for our own clients!)

Self-service ads became available to all users back in July with TikTok’s ‘TikTok For Business’ platform which has seen many advertisers start to use the platform. Although the ad platform is still in its infancy, TikTok is a great way to reach a different online audience that may have shunned other social networks such as Facebook. 

Twitter

It’s been a strange old year for Twitter. The platform has tested a range of different features, many of which never saw the light of day! But with 145 million daily active users, Twitter is still up there with the best of them when it comes to social platforms.

Fleets

This year saw Twitter jumping on the Stories bandwagon with its new ‘Fleets’ feature.

You can Fleet text, reactions to Tweets, photos or videos and customize your Fleets with various background options. Although this was a big launch for Twitter, we’re still yet to see many people making use of the feature.

Replies

Last year we predicted that Twitter would introduce some new safety features and they delivered, with a range of new options for their users.

This year, Twitter launched its Tweet reply option meaning that now, before you tweet, you can choose who can reply from the following three options:
1) Everyone
2) Only people you follow
3) Only people you mention

Tweets that aren’t available for everyone to reply will be labelled and the reply button will be greyed out for users who can’t reply.

Pinterest

Since its launch back in 2010, Pinterest has gone from strength to strength! This year, the platform had 442 million monthly active users worldwide and is a key sales channel for many of its users.

Stories

This year, Pinterest has also launched its story pins.

Story pins can combine multiple pages of images, videos, voiceover and overlaid text. Story pins are designed to show how people are trying new ideas and products.

Unlike other platforms, Pinterest stories aren’t ephemeral and can be found through search. Story pins can  be saved for later and are a great new feature to include some more in-depth content!

Ad Placements

Pinterest has added some new ad placements. Advertisers can now place ads in Pinterest Lens, the ‘Shop’ tab and in shopping matches.

Pinterest has been testing the addition of information to product pins including product ratings and shipping information.

As well as this, Pinterest’s Shopping Spotlights section has been updated with more editorial options which allow publishers to lengthen article descriptions and better organise stories into sections and product types. 

WhatsApp

With 2 billion monthly active users, WhatsApp is key for so many people and businesses for keeping in touch and now more increasingly, for business uses.

Checkout

Following both Facebook & Instagram, WhatsApp has a new shopping feature.

This is aimed at making it easier for users to buy multiple items from businesses as well as to make it easier for businesses to keep better track of order inquiries and message requests.

LinkedIn

A big year for LinkedIn! With over 310 million active monthly users and 55 job applications submitted every second, the platform is a big one for professionals and has been key for so many businesses and job applicants in 2020.

Stories

This year, LinkedIn finally launched its long-anticipated Stories feature!

LinkedIn Stories are now found at the top of the mobile feed and can be up to 20 seconds of photos or videos.
Similarly to other platforms, Stories will last for 24 hours before disappearing and can be formatted with test and customised stickers.

That’s a wrap – so long 2020! All that leaves us is to wish you all a very safe & happy Christmas. We look forward to keeping you up to date with all that 2021 has to bring…

SHC Digital

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