Demystifying the Facebook News Feed Algorithm

The average Canadian Facebook user has 190 friends, each of which creates an average of 90 pieces of content per month[1]. This means that our Facebook News Feed has to sort through roughly 570 posts a day! Certainly we don’t see all of those posts, so how does it know which ones to show? Well…

In the past, Facebook has been rather tight-lipped about what goes into their News Feed algorithm. All that marketers had to go on was a vague “Edge Rank” formula, which we broke down in a previous post. It seems that Facebook caught wind of the the general confusion that Edge Rank was causing, because today they announced a blog series called “News Feed FYI” which will highlight and explain the thinking behind changes to the News Feed algorithm.

Facebook News Feeds Get “Story Bumping”

Photo courtesy of Doug via Flickr

The major announcement made today was the “story bumping” feature – the idea is that an older post can still rank highly on your News Feed if you didn’t get to see it the last time you logged in. In essence, old news can still be good news! For marketers this is excellent news! If your post from earlier in the morning is still getting a lot of likes and comments an hour later, it can be ranked above fresher content that isn’t as popular.

Story bumping makes sure that your News Feed isn’t only new posts (think Twitter); it makes sure that the posts are new to you. Facebook reports that early testing with this feature has lead to an 8% increase in likes, comments and shares on the organic stories they saw from Pages[2]. This update couldn’t come at a better time, since a recent study reported that consumer satisfaction with Facebook is quite low.

The key takeaway here is that engaging your fans is more important and rewarding than ever. So take the time to make sure you’ve got engaging content, because that post could be sticking around for a while!

References:

[1] http://www.6smarketing.com/images/canadian-facebook-statistics/

[2] https://www.facebook.com/facebookforbusiness/news/News-Feed-FYI-A-Window-Into-News-Feed

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Sarah Rosenquist

Sarah Rosenquist

Account Manager at Stryve Digital Marketing
Sarah is an Account Manager at Stryve. She is a quick learn when it comes to using new technology, and is the resident geek of the team. Her favourite thing is peeling the plastic off new gadgets.