The News Feed Algorithm on Your Facebook Page

By Andrea Vahl, John Haydon, Jan Zimmerman

You want more than anything for your Page to have high visibility and to show up in people’s Top Stories feeds. A Page with high interaction ends up in the Top Stories feed, which means that more people will see your posts.

The algorithm that Facebook uses to determine the visibility of a Page post is based on four factors:

  • Affinity: How often two people interact on Facebook. Affinity scores increase the more often you (or your Page) and a person exchange messages, Timeline posts, comments, and links. The more often a person who likes your Page posts, the better the affinity exists between your Page and that person, and the more likely your Page posts are to show up in that person’s Top Stories feed.

  • Weight: How many comments and likes a post gets. Weight value increases the more comments, likes, and other variables a post has, based on what Facebook is weighing at the moment. Places, video, and photos seem to have the most weight.

  • Decay: How old the post is. Decay weakens the News Feed algorithm automatically as your post grows older in the Timeline; as time increases, value decreases.

  • Negative Feedback: Facebook users can mark any update in their News Feed as being spammy, offensive, or simply unwanted. An increase in negative feedback hurts that posts ability to appear in more News Feeds.

Like and make a comment for each post made on your Page to engage conversation. You can comment as yourself (if you’ve selected that option) or as the Page. Commenting as both is good unless it just feels unnatural to you. One action — commenting — will help increase the Weight value.

If one of your likers clicks the Share link for one of your posts and likes it, too, the shared post has a better chance at showing up in the Top Stories feeds of his Friends (those who have the highest affinity scores with the sharer).

Here are a few proven News Feed optimization strategies:

  • Encourage people to like your posts. Ask them directly, as in “Like this post to show your support for XX.”

  • If you have a Facebook Places Page, consider merging it with your regular Facebook business Page to increase the weight, or relevance, of what is posted.

  • Be sure to post photos, videos, and use Facebook Questions on a regular basis because they have more weight. Even better is having your likers post their photos to your Page’s Timeline.

  • Post when your audience will see the posts. Are they looking at Facebook daily or only on the weekend? Post when they’re online and looking.

  • Ask your closest Friends and key players to make comments on your Page as much as possible, and return the favor to start the conversation rolling and help shy people feel safer about commenting.

Following these easy strategies will help boost your News Feed algorithm and help deposit your posts in your likers’ Top Stories feeds. It may also be helpful to educate your Friends and likers about how this system works. Many people have asked why they don’t see posts from certain Pages and people. The News Feed algorithm is the reason.