This weekend Facebook made a simple but possibly very important change to the way “liked” links are displayed on users’ profile pages. They now function similar to shared links and display chronologically within the timeline with a large headline, short text description, and thumbnail image. Previously they only displayed a small text link grouped with other minor informational notices.

This change means that visitors to your website or blog who take two seconds to click the “Like” button are now prominently promoting your content on their Facebook Wall. This is a much lower barrier than the previous sharing functionality which required users to click a link, interact with a popup window, enter comments about the link, and then submit the form to share a link.

While a “Like” button takes up more space on the page than a share link, the updated functionality and ease of use mean that in most scenarios it is the preferable solution to including a share link. It completely eliminates the need to ever have both a Facebook “Like” and “Share” on the same page and may mean the end the use of the share functionality altogether.