Facebook is home to around 2.45 billion active users making a 9% increase year over year which no wonder also makes it a great platform for businesses to advertise their brand. There are more than 7 million advertisers on the platform some of which work no less like a plowing bull to promote their content, but are they getting the audience that they deserve?
Here we will discuss what algorithm does Facebook use to show a post to the user and how can a business page owner increase the organic reach of their content.
There are various factors that decide the posts that users see. The factors that determine the order and the importance of these different factors change very often. These include ranking signals, off-Facebook activity, user-location, etc.
Ranking signals are the data points about the user’s past behavior on the platform. For instance: are people sharing the post with others? How often do you like the post of your boss or a post of your wife? What do you like to watch on live videos? Which group content do you read the most? How new are they? All these data points collectively say what video you would be most interested in and thus you see what you like.
Facebook mentions four major categories of ranking signals:
1.Who a user typically interacts with
2.The type of media in the post (eg., video, link, photo, etc.)
3.The popularity of the post
4.When & Where it was posted
Now talking about the in-trend factor: Off-Facebook activity. Off-Facebook activity is a summary of activity that businesses and organizations share with them about your interactions, such as visiting their apps or websites. They use their business tools, like Facebook Login or Facebook Pixel, to share this information with them. Now with this information, they show you more posts, relevant ads, suggest groups, events, or marketplace items you might be interested in. It’s been a hot topic for debate for the last couple of months now but we’ll stick with what we were talking.
You get the idea. The algorithm weighs a lot of factors before it decides to show you that puma cub video. Facebook uses all these answers to update the algorithm with the patterns they extrapolated. For instance, the Pages and Groups that people identified as most meaningful were often the ones that they’d followed for a long time, the ones they engaged with often, and the ones that had a lot of posts and activity.
Facebook Algorithm has always been a mysterious thing. You must have heard horror stories of brands watching their organic reach take a nosedive. The story you know the reason you don’t. Let’s explore the reasons why the organic reach of the brands dipped off and how as a business page owner you can still survive with the new Facebook algorithms.
Why Facebook Organic Reach is declining?
Facebook’s Organic Reach has been declined from the very starting of 2014 when Brian Boland, Facebook’s VP of Advertising Technology (at the time) said that Facebook is managing more ad content than it used to thus giving us two reasons to talk on here:
• More Ad Content for Newsfeed Space:
With the increase in the number of users, year by year Facebook news feed space is getting reduced for the contents posted which in simple words means more content is being published than the newsfeed space.
• Facebook Algorithm for relevant posts:
To optimize the user experience and increase engagement on the platform Facebook has been continuously updating its algorithm to show you relevant posts in your feed. This, in turn, reduced the organic reach of the business pages and marketers.
“You’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media,” Mark Zuckerberg said at the start of 2018. “And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard — it should encourage meaningful interactions between people.” As a result of these, marketing content was poised to the backseat for contents from family & relatives.
Facebook has been open about this that if you want your content to show on people’s newsfeed you’ll have to buy the space. After all, Facebook is a business with a single goal in mind: Profit.
Now that you have got a better understanding of how Facebook surfaces content, let’s explore some tips for dealing in decline with organic page reach.
• Build your own presence
- You need to build your own name in the field. Growing your presence is not about the page likes. It’s not about the quantity but the quality of the users engaged with your posts. Build a network of people who have the same business interest.
• Publish unique content
- Don’t post the same thing on different platforms. All platforms have a different objective and so your posts need to have.
• Use organic post targeting
- Targeting is not just limited to Facebook ads. Make sure that your content reaches the right people. Serve the post to the right people based on gender, age, location & even interest.
Enable targeting on your page and dig into your Facebook Insights for data about your audience and choose targeting parameters based on your goals.
• Post on right time
- This has always been a debate topic as to what time can be said as perfect for posting. Now it depends on your user, your location, your content, etc… Dig your Facebook insight to know about the best time that your audience got interacted with you.
• Publish quality content consistently
- Publish your quality content consistently to have your users engaged with your posts. Consistent posts make you a part of your users’ experience and expectations.
• Ditch engagement-bait and click-bait
- Avoid linking to websites with poor webpage experiences, and limit linking away from Facebook whenever possible.
• Friendly reminder
- Remind your fans & audience to update their feed preferences by choosing “See First” from the “Following” tab on your page.
• Broadcast live
- Start broadcasting on Facebook Live. Users spend more time watching live videos than the traditional ones, So start experimenting with your live content if you are concerned about organic reach.
• Interact with users
- Interact with users through Facebook groups or live sessions to engage them more on your page and thus on your posts.
• Use Facebook like Ad-platform
- If you’re going to pay-to-play, get your targeting right. Once you have built the audience of relevant fans, focus on content assets that you have created.
• Analytics at its full
- Never underestimate your data insights. Track how your posts perform and adjust your content when needed.
Facebook is the most widely used platform for marketing. It is great for businesses and marketers except for the organic reach which is declining year by year which means all those thousands of fans and page likes are useless now. Facebook wants you to reach them via advertising instead.
Be sure to share your best of the contents for the advertisements for your higher rate of engagements. Don’t forget to use the ‘Invite to like’ tool to bring new fans that are already engaged in your content.
Bringing your organic reach back may take some work but with these steps, you can survive with the new algorithms.