Facebook just announced another change to how it distributes posts in the news feed.
And immediately everyone is proclaiming "Facebook Edgerank is Dead!"
Facebook didn't say Edgerank was dead.
In fact, Facebook has rarely (if ever) referred to the news feed algorithm by name since announcing it at the 2010 f8 conference.
What Facebook did do was introduce a new concept called "Story Bumping" which will affect the order of news feed stories:
Now organic stories that people did not scroll down far enough to see can reappear near the top of News Feed if the stories are still getting lots of likes and comments.
Early data shows this improves the experience of News Feed:
- In a recent test with a small number of users, this change resulted in a 5% increase in the number of likes, comments and shares on the organic stories people saw from friends and an 8% increase in likes, comments and shares on the organic stories they saw from Pages
- Previously, people read 57% of the stories in their News Feeds, on average. They did not scroll far enough to see the other 43%. When the unread stories were resurfaced, the fraction of stories read increased to 70%.
The data suggests that this update does a better job of showing people the stories they want to see, even if they missed them the first time. For Page owners, this means their most popular organic Page posts have a higher chance of being shown to more people, even if they're more than a few hours old.
The goal with algorithm updates is to keep improving News Feed. We’ll continue to keep you posted on the updates we make in response to people’s feedback. Stay tuned for more.
Notice in that last paragraph the mention of "algorithm updates".
Facebook isn't saying your news feed is now 100% in reverse chronological order.
Not at all.
They're just saying that they've tweaked the algorithm again.
In the past "Edgerank" was mostly determined by something called "Time Decay" -- which meant the older a post was, the less likely it would show in the news feed.
According to studies, most posts died after 3 hours.
With this new change, older stories will have a better chance of showing up regardless of how long ago they were posted -- but I'm still betting within a reasonable period of time.
Facebook also announced something called "Last Actor".
In the past the algorithm (Edgerank) was based on your previous and long term interactions -- meaning if you have commented on posts from XYZ biz page in the past then their posts are likely to show up more often, even if that interaction was weeks ago.
With Last Actor Facebook is keeping note of your last 50 interactions so that posts from those you most recently interacted with will show up on the top of your news feed -- this will be interesting to see for someone like me who (easily) comments on 100 posts per day!
What Does This Mean for Facebook Page Owners?
If you've been posting awesome content... then nothing really.
What I'm gathering from this change is that more importance will be put on recent interactions with posts -- and if a user happens to miss a post that should have been important to them, it will be "bumped" back into the top few stories to be consumed.
As a page owner this means you will want to be a part of those last 50 interactions of your fans in order to show up in the news feed when you post your next update.
This re-enforces my statement that "The Secret to Edgerank is Posting More Often"
But you still need to make sure you don't overdo it -- if you aren't getting engagement, you could just be annoying your fans.
So continue posting quality content that gets people's attention & causes them to interact/engage with your posts.
For tips on how to write great and engaging posts check out these articles: