Facebook is one of our favourite social media platforms as it’s a great way to connect with friends, share updates, and promote your business. But with constant updates, it can be hard to keep up to date with the latest changes.
Facebook’s algorithm can be a bit of a mystery to many, so let us explain it. The algorithm helps make sense of the large amount of posts that are shared every day on the platform, and it helps choose which of those posts we see on our News Feed. This is based on several factors so we’ve decided to share some of the recent updates, and our top tips for the platform to help you understand the complex formulas Facebook uses.
According to this 2017 report, every Facebook user has more than 1,500 stories competing for a spot in their News Feed at any given time, but only about 300 of those stories are chosen to appear.
Last year, Facebook produced a handy guide of its news feed values which states that:
Facebook was built to connect people with their friends and family and this is still the driving principle of the News Feed today. Family and friend’s posts will appear at the top of a user’s News Feed and the platform learns from you and adapts accordingly. So, if you like your sister’s photos on a regular basis, you’ll see any photos she posts close to the top of your News Feed.
Facebook’s research showed that, after friends and family, people have two other strong expectations when it comes to their newsfeed; they want to be informed and they want to be entertained.
Facebook says that it doesn’t favour specific sources or ideas, it delivers the types of stories that an individual wants to see, based on feedback received. This is done so that users enjoy their time on Facebook and are therefore likely to spend more time there. Facebook wants its users to feel safe and has Community Standards in place.
Feedback shows that authentic stories resonate the most with the Facebook audience so the social media giant spends time understanding what people consider as genuine, in order to show more of this in News Feeds.
So that users can control what they see, features such as ‘unfollow’, ‘hide’ and ‘see first’ were designed.
Facebook says it is constantly working on ways to make the News Feed better for users, which leads us on to recent Facebook updates.
• Facebook said it will block pages that share false news from buying Facebook ads even if this is done unintentionally. Therefore, always check your sources when posting news!
• If a Facebook post that pretends to be a video is posted, it will be demoted. If your page relies on this, you’ll need to make some changes or you’ll see a significant fall in your post reach
• Facebook will show fewer posts where the links are through to a webpage that takes a long time to load. If your website is slow on mobile, fix this now, or you might see a fall in referral traffic from Facebook.
• An update was rolled out that means you’ll see fewer posts with clickbait headlines in your News Feed. So, if you post these, or link to articles that do, you’ll see a decrease in your posts reach.
• If your post and/or ad links to a website that has a low-quality experience, it may not be as widely shown. This means that if the website contains little substantive content, or has lots of disruptive, shocking or malicious ads, posts that contain a link to it will be penalised. You’ll see a drop in your reach and Facebook referral traffic if you still do this.
• Posts with a lot of likes, comments, and shares, especially if they are received in a short space of time and by the user’s friends
• Post types that are interacted with on a regular basis, or a type that is preferred e.g. photo, video etc.)
• Videos on Facebook that receive a lot of views or extended viewing duration
• Posts that reference a trending topic
• Posts from pages that a user interacts with regularly
• Posts from pages that have completed their profile information
• Posts from Pages where the fan base overlaps with the fan base of other known high-quality pages
• Clickbait, like-baiting or posts that ask for comments and/or shares
• Posts that include spammy links
• Frequently circulated content and repeated posts
• Text-only status updates from pages
• Posts that are frequently hidden or reported as this is a sign of low-quality posts
• Posts with unusual engagement patterns as this is sign of like-baiting
• Overly promotional content from pages or posts that reuse the same text from ads
So, if you’re one of the 65 million local businesses who have a Facebook page, or one of the 79% of online adults who uses Facebook, make sure you stay up to date with Facebook’s updates or you miss losing out.