After announcing a new feature titled Fleets, Twitter eight months later decided to remove it. The feature consisted of a row of visual tweets at the top of the app’s mobile version that expired after 24 hours, much like Instagram’s Stories feature, or Snapchat. The reason behind the decision was the new Tweet format didn’t have a lot of people using it.
Twitter will now begin featuring another new addition to the platform: Spaces. This is Twitter’s attempt at live audio chat rooms, similar to what the app Clubhouse became known for last year. However, some of the features that were introduced with Fleets will remain, but they’ll be incorporated into the traditional Tweet composing element, and include additional camera editing features and the option to add stickers in a GIF format over photos.
The decision to remove the Fleets feature wasn’t simply due to the fact that Twitter hadn’t attracted its user base to utilize it, but it’s also because the company itself has been struggling with getting new users to regularly share content instead of simply looking at other people’s tweets. The feature was intended to lower the pressure many users faced when sharing tweets themselves, as these allowed the content to disappear. However, the company didn’t note an increase in the number of people sharing their own content and tweets like the feature intended to do.
The company took a great step in removing a feature that wasn’t widely used, as all businesses should be looking to innovate and evolve their business operations and remove certain features users don’t find useful or beneficial. Listening to user or consumer feedback is important in the way many companies operate, as it’s a great way to learn more about what the consumers want from a business, which can then lead to an increase in conversion rate.
Although the Fleets feature from Twitter wasn’t deemed as successful in that regard, the company itself is consistently showing that it cares about its users and the way they experience the platform itself.
After Snapchat rose in popularity several years ago, plenty of other platforms followed suit in introducing their own similar features with photos or videos that disappear after 24 hours. Not all of them have seen the same success that Instagram Stories have had so far, but Facebook and LinkedIn have also added similar features to their platforms. The most likely reason why Twitter’s feature didn’t get popular with its users is the wide variety of options that people already have for sharing content on that platform.
In fact, most of the time and for many users, the entire bar never ended up getting filled with different users sharing their Fleets. Although plenty of users are still disappointed that the bar at the top of the app isn’t going to go away completely after the feature is removed, perhaps once the Spaces feature takes over, it’ll prove to be a more popular choice.