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How Facebook’s Improved Features Are Attracting More Users

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Mar. 1 2016, Published 6:34 p.m. ET

Groups and events

Facebook (FB) is engaging more and more users with its set of features such as groups, events, and pages. Groups is a dedicated space on Facebook where users can share updates, photos, messages, and documents with other group members.

According to Facebook, more than 1 billion people used groups in a single month, which is very close to its monthly active users (or MAUs) of 1.6 billion. The company is trying to attract more users by adding some new features to the groups such as to-do-lists and polls. Groups and events are considered the major communication channels for users after the platform’s news feed and messenger. The company also made it easier for members to share files within groups and for new users to create groups.

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Serving businesses with dedicated pages

According to the company, in December 2015, “more than 1 billion people left about 10 billion comments in Groups, and stamped 25 billion-plus likes on Group posts.” Moreover, for any interaction among group members, people make use of Facebook instead of the standalone Facebook Groups app, which has tens of millions of users.

When it comes to serving businesses, Facebook’s groups feature is already being used by professionals to communicate within their team and across the departments of the company. In fact, Facebook allows small businesses to use pages to engage with their customers by posting news stories or hosting events where customers can post comments about their likes and dislikes. According to the company, more than 50 million businesses use pages on Facebook, and people left around 2.5 million comments on these pages. Companies such as Slack Technologies and LinkedIn (LNKD) are also trying to attract companies and organizations by building a network of working professionals.

Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet (GOOG) constitute 11.6% and 5.9%, respectively, of the iShares U.S. Technology ETF (IYW).

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