How To: Clean Up Facebook's Shortcuts Bar to Get Rid of Tabs & Notification Dots You Don't Need

Clean Up Facebook's Shortcuts Bar to Get Rid of Tabs & Notification Dots You Don't Need

In the Facebook app for Android and iOS, the shortcuts bar has a few necessary tabs to go home or view notifications or settings. But there are other tabs there that can make the interface feel cluttered if you don't use them often or at all. Thankfully, there's a quick trick to get rid of them for a cleaner navigation bar.

For me, I hated seeing the Marketplace tab in the navigation bar, especially when there were notifications. The version of Facebook I have now on my iPhone omits it, but my Android device still shows it as a tab. But that's not all there is to worry about. There's also Facebook Watch, which houses all of the videos on Facebook; Facebook Groups, which shows the latest from all of your subscribed groups; and Facebook News, which contains news articles and videos suggested for you.

If you never check out Facebook Marketplace, Groups, News, or Watch, there's an easy way to get rid of them. If you do use those tabs but don't want to see those annoying notification labels each one has, this trick will also help you tame them.

Option 1: The Fastest Way to Manage Each Shortcut

In Facebook, long-press (or tap-and-hold) the tab in the shortcuts bar that you want to remove or manage notifications for. On iOS, the bar is on the bottom, while on Android, it's at the top.

An action sheet should appear at the bottom with some of your options.

  • Turn off notification dots: Tapping this will prevent those annoying labels on the tab from showing up, which lets you know that there is new activity to check out. This is a good option if you find the tab useful but don't like the demanding notification alerts.
  • Remove from shortcuts bar: Tapping this will remove the tab entirely, and the remaining tabs will grow more prominent as a result, to fill the space. This is a good option if you never use them.

When you turn off notifications, it takes effect right away. If you choose to remove the tab, after you press that option, you'll be asked if you're sure you want to remove it — tap "Remove" to finish up. When you just disable notifications, you can always long-press the tab again and choose "Turn on notification dots" to revert.

Tabs that you can disable alerts or remove entirely using this way include Groups, Watch, News, and Marketplace. You may not see all of those tabs, though. For instance, News is a relatively new tab and replaces the Marketplace tab in newer iOS interfaces.

Option 2: The Fastest Way to Remove Multiple Shortcuts

If you want to get rid of multiple tabs, there's a fast way to do it all at once, but it works differently depending on your operating system. In the Facebook app for Android, long-press (or tap-and-hold) a tab like in Option 1 above, but this time choose "Manage Shortcut Settings." From here, you can toggle off Groups, Watch, Marketplace, and News.

In the Facebook app for iOS, long-press (or tap-and-hold) a tab, then hit "Remove from shortcuts bar" just as in Option 1 above. As soon as you do that, the tab will disappear, and an alert will pop up to let you know you can find it in Settings later. Tap that "Settings" button before it vanishes, and you can toggle off Groups, Watch, Marketplace, and News.

Option 3: The Slowest Way to Remove Multiple Shortcuts

If you don't like shortcuts for shortcuts, as Option 2 shows, you can get to the shortcuts bar preferences the long way. In either the iOS or Android app, tap the three-lined tab at the right to open the menu. Next, scroll down and tap "Settings & Privacy," then "Settings."

From here, you can search for "Shortcuts Bar" or just scroll down and tap the option. Just like in Option 2, you'll see toggles for Groups, Watch, Marketplace, and News. Turn off the ones you don't want, then exit the settings.

Option 4: The Slowest Way to Turn Off Shortcut Notifications

Option 1 is the best of both worlds since you can manage notification dots and the tab itself, but there's another way to change just your notification preferences.

In either the iOS or Android app, tap the three-lined tab at the right to open the menu. Next, scroll down and tap "Settings & Privacy," then "Settings."

From here, you can search for "Notification Dots" or just scroll down and tap the option. Just like in Options 2 and 3, you'll see toggles for Groups, Watch, Marketplace, and News. You may also see one for the Menu tab. Turn off the ones you don't want, then exit the settings.

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Cover photo and screenshots by Justin Meyers/Gadget Hacks

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