Blog Post

15 December 2013

LinkedIn Enhances Inbox With Message Previews And Better Navigation


photo credit: TheSeafarer via photopin cc

LinkedIn has freshened up its inbox with a smoother interface and information preview as part of its makeover of the platform.

The social network has been adding and tweaking features to its inbox as of late, living up to its theme as the social networking site built for professionals. Now it has added better preview of information and enhanced navigation.

The new LinkedIn inbox allows users to see a preview of messages and the message senders. When you move the cursor atop a contact’s name, a popup window shows key details about that person. And it has an option to connect with that person if it is a cold email since you do not have a shared network. Details from the window also appear when you open a message, showing more biographical data about the sender.

The navigation tabs have less clutter, as LinkedIn shortened the list of folders at the left part of the panel: Messages, Invitations, Sent, Archive, and Trash. Until now, messages and invitations had separate tabs atop the column on the left side. Back then, you had navigation buttons along the vertical and horizontal axes. Advertisements still occupy the reserved space for the top banner and at the right side, like in other LinkedIn pages.

The new changes to the inbox aim to streamline previous changes to the homepage, mobile app, and other LinkedIn services. And it is behind schedule. Other social networking sites such as Instagram now have a direct messaging feature for people to talk in private.

Though LinkedIn started with InMail direct messaging already in place, now it is losing that advantage as more and more social networks implement the feature. But this is open to argument. LinkedIn specifically targets professionals, mostly for employment purposes, whereas most social networks cater to the consumption of digital information of any user.

The changes done to LinkedIn’s inbox offer two plausible conclusions: increase in usage and longer, deeper conversations.

If people used LinkedIn’s inbox more often, LinkedIn may find it lucrative to offer premiums on some aspects of its messaging service, like it does with its other services.

Longer, deeper conversations in the inbox support the company’s larger campaign to encourage user engagement. And it shows ads in the inbox and within messages. The longer the retention time, the more advertisements it can show and the more likely for LinkedIn users to click them.

LinkedIn said changes to the new inbox will roll out gradually across the world.