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Reddit is a major player in the world of social media, with over 500 million visitors each month. But even the biggest and best platforms need a refresh every now and then. For Reddit, that came in early April 2018, when users began to see a new look for the largely text-based site. Read on as we take a closer look at the changes and what we can learn from the rebrand…

First, what is Reddit?

Comprising news, content rating and discussion, Reddit is far more than a social media site to some of its users. Despite employing just over 200 staff, the platform is home to some 234 million unique users and ranks as the sixth most visited site in the world.

On Reddit, members submit content – including text posts, links or images – which can be voted up or down by other members. This content is organised into subreddits – user-created pages – covering a wide range of topics. Content that receives more up-votes eventually moves towards the top of its relevant subreddit. Simple enough, right?

The big redesign

With such a simple concept, Reddit has mostly been able to get by with its simple layout and branding. In recent years, however, it’s become more apparent that the design is dated and even hindering function. As a result, they put together a five-strong team to begin their redesign.

Now in use, the redesign gives users three options – Card, Classic and Compact:

  • Card view gives each post its own ‘card’, much like the appearance of other sites like Facebook
  • Compact view puts posts closer together making it easier to scroll through
  • Classic view is similar to the traditional layout, for users who aren’t keen on change (because nobody likes change…)

What we can learn

Unlike the backlash for Twitter’s character increase or Kylie Jenner’s Snapchat disapproval, feedback on the Reddit redesign has been mostly positive. So, what can we learn from their overhaul?

1. Everyone is different

A key aspect of Reddit’s redesign, particularly compared to other social media sites, is the fact that users can choose between three options.

 

The lesson? Not every customer is the same. It’s important to consider every part of your potential customer base rather than just the primary target market when making changes to branding.

2. It’s never too late for change

Reddit was founded in 2005 and has used practically the same branding and design for over a decade. That hasn’t made their redesign counterintuitive. Even for established brands, like Reddit, some changes in design can be hugely effective.

This can be extended to businesses in any sector. While your original branding may have been effective for a number of years, your business goals or target market can change over time and make a redesign almost essential to success.

3. Stay true

When changing an established brand and design, it’s essential to focus on your customers. Rebranding your business into something it’s not is likely to end in failure – a loss of existing customers, a lack of new customers and less growth in the long run.

Just look at Reddit’s example. They kept in place what users enjoy about their site – text-based content, voting up and comments – while making small tweaks to improve the overall experience.

4. Get expert help

To tackle their redesign, Reddit put together a team of five web design and branding experts. The approach should be no different for businesses in any industry. Branding and web design are complex areas, which are impossible to get right without expert input.

Can we help?

Bing Digital provides expert brand development services to businesses of any shape and size. With a team of specialists, we can add serious value to your business, putting our expertise, experience and distinct creativity on your side. Contact the team today to talk more about how we can help you.

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