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Facebook Changes its Algorithm to Put Friends Posts Above Publishers

     
4:01 pm on Jun 29, 2016 (gmt 0)

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With previous suggestions that Facebook was concerned over the decline in posting, perhaps this is the move it's making to help tackle the issue. Here's the news that Facebook has tweaked its algorithm to put friends posts above publishers in its "News Feed Values" update. The other thing to consider is if you are a publisher on how it will impact your traffic on Facebook. According to the social media giant, there will be some impact, but it encourages publishers to posts messages that are likely to be shared. Errrr, weren't' we doing that already! hehehe

Overall, we anticipate that this update may cause reach and referral traffic to decline for some Pages. The specific impact on your Page’s distribution and other metrics may vary depending on the composition of your audience. 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. We encourage Pages to post things that their audience are likely to share with their friends. As always, Pages should refer to our publishing best practices. Facebook Changes its Algorithm to Put Friends Posts Above Publishers [newsroom.fb.com]


I'm certain that this change is the result of this earlier concern. Facebook Challenged to Reverse Personal Posting Decline [webmasterworld.com]
10:08 pm on June 29, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Facebook jumped the shark when it ceased to be a purely social network by adding business pages IMHO. They may have taken it a bit too far in that direction.I think they're starting to see the backlash of normal users who are finally getting sick of that.
11:21 am on June 30, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I agree with that, and it's facing up to the pressure with this change. Importantly, if you're a publisher, you're going to find it tougher to get your story seen.

This reminds me of the change to Facebook Pages where, in effect, you have to pay to get to an audience. Will publishers start getting concerned? I'm sure they will be after this.
Likes and shares from individuals have never been so important to publishers.
9:26 pm on June 30, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Live by..., die by...

If a web enterprise is counting on traffic from a third party–Facebook, Google or a local directory even–then it needs to take a hard look at their business model. Sure, exploit what's available when it's available, but a business needs a direct relationship with it's customers. A publisher of news and information should know this better than anyone. If you're a publisher and your audience is coming from a third party, then you're not a publisher. Real publishers own their audience.
4:32 pm on July 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

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If you still want to give selected users more profile, or to see publishers that may be buried, or others of your choice, use the settings "see first" to control your facebook newsfeed. Go to the page or person you're following and select the "following" button to get a menu, select the "see first" option, and you're done.

[newsroom.fb.com...]
7:08 am on July 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I'm going to stretch the language in this analogy a bit... I hope not too much... but Facebook's new approach strikes me as somewhat analogous to Google's not wanting followable self-links from guest blog articles. It wants readers of those blog posts/articles to visit your site and then link from their own sites or blogs to the articles they care about.

Similarly, Facebook doesn't want publishers to "self-link" from their FB Pages. It wants your Friends to read news stories or features, 'care about them', and Share them. Shares are Facebooks "followable" links.

Both Google and Facebook want the user to be the intermediary. This is back to the links as votes model, and they don't want you to vote for yourself.