What Twitter needs to do to challenge Facebook. And what it shouldn’t.

Twitter is infamous for its resistance in adding new features. Its claim to fame was the 140 character messages that users could post and so far, things haven’t changed much. The site itself is bare-boned. A user would be hard-pressed to find any big feature apart from posting a tweet. Sure, this has been working in Twitter’s favor so far, but the Internet has a strange way of changing things in seconds. To remain ahead of its competition, Twitter needs to consistently innovate and add new features. Here are a few things we think Twitter should add. We also note how each feature will help you.

Stop the spam

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Sure, you post your own links once in a while. That’s how online marketing works. But with the number of amateurs jumping into social media with no idea of marketing whatsoever, every link is now looked upon by tweeple as spam. This harms your reputation every time you post a link as well. Twitter needs to work out an effective way to weed out tweeple who only visit the site to spam. An easy way to do it is block services like Tweetlater which allow users to post tweets automatically throughout the day. This would be the least difficult, yet the most advantageous, change.

Bulk action on messages and followers

This is one user that Twitter users have been requesting for quite a while. Changes to messages or followers have to be made individually. While this is bad enough for standard users, the situation is worsened for internet marketers. If you are one, you are likely to have more than 3000 followers. Making changes to individual users is, to put it lightly, difficult.

Make a really, REALLY, good mobile app

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Twitter has tried to build its own mobile application, yet most users prefer third party apps. Twitter’s own app falls woefully short of expectations. This might just be blocking Twitter from reaching further. A good app, pre-loaded on mobile handsets by means of tie-ups with manufacturers, should easily help Twitter expand further. This means a bigger user base for you to reach out to.

Don’t try to imitate other networking sites

Marketers and general users alike like Twitter for its simplistic interface and ease of use. The last thing Twitter needs to do now is to try and copy features from other networking sites, such as ability to upload pictures, preview links, etc. These things work well for other sites, but Twitter’s strength is in the very absence of these features. So while there are many features that are lacking in Twitter, there’s no need for it to bring in features that would destroy its simple structure. If it does that and fails, users are going to flock away from it, and your hard-work in building that account with thousands of followers will be undone.

Listen to users

Twitter would do well to bring out a feedback/suggestion box where users can tell it what features they want. This gives users a feeling of importance, automatically resulting in more users. Again, this expands the user base for you as a marketer.

So, if anyone happens to run into Jack Dorsey, can you please direct him here?