Can LinkedIn Justify removal of Product & Services Page feature?

linkedin-showcase-pages

LinkedIn announced last week that, starting April 14, 2014, Company Page Products and Services tabs will be removed from all LinkedIn company pages. The update hasn’t gone well with many smaller product companies and we’re on that list too.

The product & service page use to be a hub for listing down different products or services & embed videos. When clicked on a product, a separate page devoted to that particular product opens, where followers of that page can recommend and share that product. A company could also add customer review videos if required.

There are many speculations revolving around the reason of change for such feature in LinkedIn, as it’s still not clear to users why such change is taking place. Although this is what LinkedIn says:

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LinkedIn also informs us how only a Showcase Page can help you portray your company products or services in an extended way.

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But here is why we think the recent update isn’t going to be of much help for companies-

Product/Services Description

Before the update

LinkedIn currently allows the page admins to describe their products and services in a detailed way.

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After the update

The Showcase Page allows only 200 characters which is insufficient to describe the products/services in detail.

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Followers

Before the update

The followers can see the Products & Services tabs by visiting the company page

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After the update

The followers have to follow the showcase page separately. Currently the showcase page is displayed at the right hand corner above the ads. Visibility-wise the display location isn’t that great.

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Visit Website and Other Contact Us CTA

Before the update

Product Page has a Visit Website link and Contact Us Function to direct LinkedIn messages to Selected People (Pre Sales/marketing) of the Company.

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After the update

The Showcase Page has Visit Website link but other CTAs are missing.

User Defined Section

Before the update

Product Page has a User Defined section where companies can add Banners/Videos related to their Products.

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After the update

There’s no option to add videos or banners in the Showcase Page.

Recommendations

Before the update

Recommendations mean credibility. The Product Page can be recommended by the Product Users/Resellers, and recommendations are seen by followers as well non-followers. Visitors can also can check the recommender’s LinkedIn profile – all of it builds trust and instill confidence in prospects.

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The Company Page admin can send ‘Request for Recommendation’. Customers and Partners can send their feedback/experience related to that Product’s Business Usage, Implementation Cycle and other Techno-Functional details.

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After the update

There’re no options for recommendations on Showcase Page yet.

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