'Like' And 'Share' Buttons Get A Facebook Makeover
November 7, 2013

‘Like’ And ‘Share’ Buttons Get A Facebook Makeover

Enid Burns for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online

Facebook, in keeping with its recent strings of so-called improvement, has now made changes to its Like and Share buttons. The new Like button has a streamlined design with the Facebook "f" and the word "Like" on a blue background. The Share button simply says "Share" on the same background. Details of the new buttons were outlined on the Facebook Developers page.

The new button version is a vibrant blue design with Helvetica type. The old version looks pale by comparison, The Verge's Ellis Hamburger writes. The simplified new button ditches the "thumbs up" symbol and gets right to the point.

"Today, we're introducing a new design for both Like and Share to help people share more great content across the web. We're already seeing favorable increases in Likes and Shares with the new design and will be  rolling these buttons out to everyone in the coming weeks," wrote Ray C. He on the Facebook Developers page. Sites that currently use the old Like button will be automatically upgraded to the new design, he added.

New configurations are also available for the revamped Like and Share buttons. Websites can select Like or Share buttons together or alone, and can opt to include the number of Likes and Shares a page or article has received.

Changing such an identifiable image is not one that Facebook takes lightly. The social network hasn't made changes since it introduced the Like button in 2010. Since then the Like and Share buttons have built a reputation. According to a recent report from Shareholic, the Like and Share buttons are viewed over 22 billion times daily on over 7.5 million websites. If the new design is not accepted, Facebook stands to lose a significant amount of traffic.

However, that is not likely to happen.

The buttons will likely stand out more, Gizmodo reports. A side-by-side view of the buttons shows a striking change. The brighter blue provides a bolder button.

Elements of the new button such as the blue color, Helvetica type and the lower case "f" are all identified with Facebook, making it a natural update.

This is one of the biggest changes to have been implemented by Facebook that won't appear on Facebook. The Like and Share buttons are used in an external plugin used by blogs, news sites, businesses and other websites across the internet. Facebook tested the new buttons in select markets beginning in mid-October.

The Huffington Post was among those test sites.

Facebook says the Huffington Post is one of the most popular domains based on the number of links posted back to Facebook. The site capitalizes on the Like and Share buttons by placing the buttons under the headline, and then keeping a persistent left side bar that follows the reader down the page.

As well as the media benefiting from the new buttons, businesses should also find Facebook's Like and Share button revamp useful. Due to friend endorsements via the Like and Share buttons, business websites might get more traffic. The post on the Facebook Developers site states that Hotels.com has seen a huge spike in the number of hotel bookings coming from Facebook.

"The stories that are generated when a customer clicks on the Like and Share buttons are clearly resonating with friends and groups, resulting in high referral traffic and ultimately bookings to the 220,000 plus hotels at Hotels.com," said Hotels.com product manager Iaian Niven-Bowling, on the Facebook Developers page. Facebook also sends Hotels.com more qualified visitors, who convert at higher rates compared to other types of traffic.

The Like button has only been around about three years, yet it has woven itself into the fabric of the internet so deeply. "It's almost hard to remember a time when Facebook wasn't synonymous with 'liking' or 'sharing' something," ABC News's Jon M. Change writes.