For many businesses, content creators and publishers, Facebook’s News Feed is a powerful tool and this isn’t surprising when we consider that Facebook has 1.13 billion monthly active users. The new news feed algorithm boosts informative content, making it essential to follow Facebook’s best practices.
We take a look at how the news feed algorithm will affect your business.
Why and what Facebook users view in the news feed
The first step in boosting the position of your content in the news feed, involves understanding why and what Facebook users view in the feed.
Through research, Facebook has determined that users log on to Facebook to find out what is happening in the world around them. The content Facebook users are most interested in could be news about national events, local news and news & views on products and services that interest them.
The new prediction-based algorithm intends to put personally-focused content into the user’s news feed. The algorithm will rank content so that relevant content will show up higher in the user’s news feed.
When Facebook users were asked about what content they rate highly and why, the common theme is that the content makes them feel informed about the world around them.
How Facebook’s news feed algorithm works
Facebook has used its Feed Quality Program to issue global crowd-sourced surveys to the tens of thousands of people who participate in it, each day. Participants were asked to rank content on a scale of one to five and the results have shown that people rate content highly if it relates to their interests and if the publisher engages with people in discussions.
This update adds a new predictive ranking signal to the algorithm and this is then combined with how relevant the content would be to each user, based upon the relationship between the publisher and person and what the person typically clicks on, comments on and shares.
The new algorithm will ultimately lead to businesses seeing an increase or decrease in referral traffic. It is now essential for businesses to create more engaging content that is both informative and topic focused.
This update follows another recent Facebook update that was aimed at reducing the amount of click bait that appears in the user’s news feed. These are headlines that are intentionally misleading and force the person to click through to the content to discover its topic.
Examples includes “You will never guess who fell on the red carpet” or over exaggerated headlines such as “Oranges are actually bad for you”. The new system weeds out misleading headlines by comparing the title against common phrases within the content.
Essentially, the system works like an email’s spam filter and this makes it essential for businesses to avoid creating click bait, to ensure that the business’s visibility doesn’t decrease. This update is an extension to a 2014 update that reduced the amount of click bait appearing in the news feed by monitoring how long people viewed content, before clicking back to Facebook.
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