How Your Facebook News Feed Works … Today
By: June Bachman ~
3/22/2014 9:00:00 AM
If you haven’t already noticed, Facebook determines what will show up in your news feed for you. Furthermore, at the end of last year, Facebook implemented a major algorithm change to the news feed that resulted in fewer business page brand posts reaching user news feeds at all.
Here are a few facts about the Facebook News Feed:
- At any time, each user has about 1500 stories that could potentially be viewed in their news feed.
- Facebook filters the 1500 down to about 300 stories.
- Facebook wants each user to view the “right” stories in their news feed.
- Your engagement influences Facebook’s news feed filter. Facebook considers:
- how often you interact with your friends, pages, pages you’ve liked
- the number of likes, shares and comments posts receive in general
- how you’ve interacted with similar posts in the past
- when you, and/or others, have hidden or reported posts
- Older stories about important events will receive a higher priority than more recent stories.
- Facebook has no desire to speed up the news feed. When they’ve tested this in the past, user engagement drops.
- Small businesses are now competing with big brands for the same spot in the news feed. And, big businesses have deeper pockets.
According to Facebook’s intent, the news feed should be full of posts that users want to see. And, Facebook believes that users do not want to see their news feeds full of updates and posts from brands. At the end of the day, Facebook realized it no longer wants to provide a “free” channel for small businesses to reach their prospects. Facebook is motivated to monetize this channel.
Facebook wants brands to use Facebook Ads in order to continue to use the news feed as a viable marketing channel. Well … it was a great run, while it lasted. Although my gut reaction is to be pissed off – after all, Facebook is taking something away from me that used to be a free part of our marketing strategy. But when I actually stopped to think about it for a minute, I do really get it. I want Facebook to be successful, and stay in business. And even if that means that I’ll need to move some marketing dollars into the Facebook bucket, the ultimate return on my investment far outweighs my anger or frustration with the change.
So, after you take the same breath … if you need some help, or have a few questions about how you can better use Facebook to reach your prospects, fans and clients, give Wendy or me a call. We’ve got lots of ideas to share with you!