Facebook recently announced that they’re updating their algorithm again, prioritising content posted by friends and family in the news feed over content posted by pages and this has struck fear into many business owners and marketers who rely on their organic reach.
Many questions have been asked since the announcement, including: Why? What does it mean? Does it impact my page? How do I make the most of it?
This is yet another update to Facebook’s algorithm as the social media platform ultimately looks to increase its lifespan and generate more money from advertising. Before we can explain how to make sure your Facebook page doesn’t lose any of its organic reach, we need to look at the reasons behind this algorithm update.
Why did Facebook change its algorithm?
Facebook is a social media and publish platform, and much like any other business, its aim is to make money. The way it makes its money is through advertising, but to make sure its product is worth spending money on, it needs to be sure that its users continue to stay engaged with the service, therefore it must constantly adapt to any issues that come up.
Click baiting has grown recently, with may publishers looking to drive Facebook users to their websites through enticing headlines linking to articles. This is likely to be a concern for Facebook as not only is there a risk of news feeds becoming full of click bait posts, and annoying users, but it also drives users away from the social media service and onto external websites.
Click baiting is still something that is likely to happen, but Facebook is making it more likely to happen with sponsored posts, rather than organic posts. Therefore, posts simply posted by pages and clicked are less likely to be seen.
Does this impact my Facebook page?
In a word: yes. The impact may not be obvious at first, but if you post click bait or posts that require action away from Facebook, you may see your reach drop. Facebook wants its users to stay on Facebook, so you are more likely to be able to gain reach through posts that don’t drive your page’s followers to your own (or another) website.
Through this algorithm, Facebook will prioritise posts by friends and family members, including shares and like. So as a page manager, you are more likely to get organic reach if your posts are shared, commented on or liked. In theory, posts that take users to another website are less likely to be commented on, liked or shared in Facebook.
How do I avoid the algorithm change damaging my page reach?
Engage with your followers when posting organically. This is what you should have already been doing with your Facebook marketing, but this algorithm update reinforces the need to create like-worthy, share-worthy and comment-worthy content on Facebook.
If you wish to drive users to your website for sales or other activity, it is likely that you’ll need to use advertising in order to gain a strong reach.
For your organic posts, it is worth learning about the science behind viral content, as content that is shared by your followers will gain organic reach.
As well as this, you can also invite your Facebook followers to see your posts first in their news feed. To do this, ask them to hover over the ‘like’ button on your page and click ‘See First’ as shown below.