Last week the social networking giant announced it is set to change the order of information that will appear on users’ news feeds.
The update is set to come into effect in a matter of weeks, going back to Facebook’s roots by showing posts from users’ closest friends first.
This could mean big changes for publishers and how they use the site, with traffic to their posts expected to continue to fall as users see their friends’ posts above those from businesses and news sites.
Speaking about the changes, Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s VP of News Feed said: “Facebook was built on the idea of connecting people with their friends and family. That is still the driving principle of News Feed today.
“We are not in the business of picking which issues the world should read about. We are in the business of connecting people and ideas – and matching people with the stories they find most meaningful.
“Our integrity depends on being inclusive of all perspectives and view points, and using ranking to connect people with the stories and sources they find the most meaningful and engaging.”
What the update means
The reason for the change comes after multiple complaints that Facebook users were missing out on important updates from their closest friends and family – hidden by a multitude of posts liked and shared by other acquaintances.
The new algorithm will therefore filter posts, putting original photos, videos and statuses above the posts that people’s nearest and dearest have shared, commented on and liked.
Only then will posts from other Facebook friends and the pages they have liked and followed be shown.
This could have massive ramifications for publishers & businesses, who have become used to their pages getting organic traffic and second hand views thanks to likes, shares and comments from friends.
In terms of advice for publishers, Facebook said it encourages those with Pages to post things that their audience are likely to share with their friends, saying:
“For example, if a lot of your referral traffic is the result of people sharing your content and their friends liking and commenting on it, there will be less of an impact than if the majority of your traffic comes directly through Page posts.”
This news comes after the networking giant’s recent update to its bot service, a feature that is proving to be very popular amongst companies looking to take a more personalised approach with customers.
Find out more about the algorithm changes here.