Posts from friends will carry even more weight than posts from pages in the latest update to Facebook’s News Feed algorithm, and stories about friends liking or commenting on posts will be de-emphasized.
Product manager Max Eulenstein and user-experience researcher Lauren Scissors detailed three changes to the social network’s News Feed algorithm in a Newsroom post, stressing that the moves were made in response to feedback from users.
The three changes to the News Feed algorithm, as explained by Eulenstein and Scissors, are:
We get a lot of feedback from people and recently started asking people to rate their personal News Feeds to tell us how we can improve. Based on this feedback and our ongoing understanding of how people use News Feed, we are making three updates. The first is improving the experience for people who don’t have a lot of content available to see. Previously, we had rules in place to prevent you from seeing multiple posts from the same source in a row. With this update, we are relaxing this rule. Now if you run out of content but want to spend more time in News Feed, you’ll see more.
We’ve also learned that people are worried about missing important updates from the friends they care about. For people with many connections, this is particularly important, as there is a lot of content for them to see each day. The second update tries to ensure that content posted directly by the friends you care about — such as photos, videos, status updates or links — will be higher up in News Feed so you are less likely to miss it. If you like to read news or interact with posts from pages you care about, you will still see that content in News Feed. This update tries to make the balance of content the right one for each individual person.
Lastly, many people have told us that they don’t enjoy seeing stories about their friends liking or commenting on a post. This update will make these stories appear lower down in News Feed or not at all, so you are more likely to see the stuff you care about directly from friends and the pages you have liked.
As for whether the most recent changes will impact pages, they wrote:
The impact of these changes on your page’s distribution will vary considerably depending on the composition of your audience and your posting activity. In some cases, post reach and referral traffic could potentially decline. Overall, pages should continue to post things that people find meaningful and consider these best practices for driving referral traffic.
Readers: What do you think of the latest round of changes to Facebook’s News Feed algorithm?