LinkedIn Takes the Wraps Off Its First Major Visual Redesign in 5 Years

The professional network also rolled out Stories and updates to search, messaging

LinkedIn called its redesign the next step in the update to its corporate branding that it unveiled in June 2019. LinkedIn
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LinkedIn introduced its first major visual redesign in five years, for both desktop and mobile, along with the official rollout of LinkedIn Stories and other new features today.

LinkedIn, which has seen a surge in use amid the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic that put more employees working from home, wanted to create a “warmer and more human experience,” chief marketing and communications officer Melissa Selcher said in an email.

And, among other goals, the redesign aimed “to help people navigate and more easily find the people, jobs, skills and content they want; and to bring our community to the forefront and highlight the members who are helping, informing and inspiring each other every day,” she continued.

The professional network said the redesign was led by several teams across the company after users reported the site lacked “a sense of emotional belonging,” Selcher said.

The new look represents the next step in the update to its corporate branding it unveiled in June 2019 and in a moment of change as it pivots to cater to employees and job seekers in virtual work settings, said LinkedIn corporate communications manager Jasmine Boaler.

LinkedIn turned to a warm color palette with foundational canvas hues, accented by blue and green to signal action and selection, and more rounded shapes were incorporated for a softer, friendlier tone.

More white space was added, and there is reduced emphasis on the traditional LinkedIn blue, putting less focus on the platform and more on its members.

“It’s less about us and more focus on you. This allows us to save the blue color to be a clear affordance to take action, which makes it clearer how to navigate and use the application,” vice president and head of design Sarah Alpern explained in an email.

LinkedIn also took steps to make navigating its site more intuitive, and added illustrations to reflect a wider range of professional fields and industries, as well as ethnic backgrounds, to make its experience more inclusive.

“These new illustrations capture a wide range of different professional fields and industries beyond tech, and represent people with different abilities and from different ethnic backgrounds, bringing to life our vibrant community and the diverse perspectives that exist on LinkedIn,” Alpern said.

The redesign meets the professional network’s accessibility standards, and LinkedIn said a dark mode option will be added soon.

On the features side, LinkedIn Stories are now available for mobile users in Canada and the U.S.

LinkedIn Stories are available for 24 hours and allow members to share feedback through private messaging.LinkedIn

The professional network began testing its take on the popular format internally in February, eventually expanding those tests to Australia, Brazil, France, the Netherlands and the United Arab Emirates. Stories officially rolled out in those countries, as well.

Much like versions of the format on other social platforms, LinkedIn Stories are full-screen and ephemeral, available for 24 hours and enable other members to share feedback via private messaging.

The search experience on LinkedIn was revamped to be more intuitive and streamlined, and to deliver more relevant and organized results.

A single blended search results page gives members access to companies, courses, jobs, schools and other elements, as well as making it easier for them to discover content, events, groups and people so that they can expand their communities.

LinkedIn’s updated search experience is more intuitive.LInkedIn David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.