It’s clear that organic Facebook reach is declining, and it’s become an intense battle to reach user’s organically. Especially since the average user spends 40% of their time on their News Feed and only 12% of their time on profiles and pages.
Facebook has a complex method of determine which posts appear to which users. According to Facebook there are upwards of 1,500 posts that Facebook could show to a given user whenever they visit Facebook, so the platform needed a way to decide what should appear and what shouldn’t.
The goal of the algorithm is to show you stores that you are interested in seeing, and limit what isn’t interesting or isn’t relevant.
Edgerank was the original way Facebook decided what users see in their News Feeds. While it no longer exists, it’s main components are still important factors today.
The three factors are:
- Affinity: the score Facebook gives depending on how close you are. This includes things like the frequency of interactions (including likes and comments), number mutual friends, and relationship.
- Weight: According the social media site different types of content carry different weight. For example status updates carry more weight than a like.
- Time Decay: As time passes stories become less important because they have already been seen or are less relevant.
The Algorithm (2013 – Present)
Similar to Google’s search algorithm there are thousands of variables that determine what appears in one’s News Feed, and few know exactly what those variable are. The new algorithm focus more on individualizing the News Feed focusing more on what individual users interact with most.
Here are a few things to consider:
- Photos: People tend to like photos and tend to engage with them more heavily. Also, photos take up more real estate in your News Feed and are more likely to be seen.
- Time spend on content: Facebook tracks how long a user spends on a shared linked before they return to Facebook. The longer someone spends on the site the more relevant the content likely is. Focus on creating content that ads value.
- Don’t be overly promotional: Facebook can recognize this and will likely decrease your reach.
- Know when to post: Time is still an important factor, know when your audience is most likely to engage and post around these optimal times.
A lot of how Facebook decisions what to shows is related to engagement. The more comments, likes, and shares a post has the more likely it is to be shown. When posting on social media sites be conscience to post engaging and relevant stores.