Beginning today, Facebook’s News Feed algorithm is relying more heavily on user feedback and surveys, and not in the form of the traditional signals such as likes, comments and shares. Instead,Facebook says it’s relying more on the data it collects from in-Feed user surveys and feedback from its Feed Quality Panel.
As with any change, some Page owners can expect story distribution to improve, while others will see it decline. But Facebook says today’s change “should not impact reach or referral traffic meaningfully for the majority of Pages.”
The surveys are shown on Facebook every day to “tens of thousands of people around the world,” Facebook says. Users are asked how much they wanted to see specific stories in their News Feed, which gives Facebook data beyond likes, shares and commenting. That, plus the data that Facebook gathers from its worldwide user testing panel, is now being added into the News Feed algorithm.
We saw through our research that people reported having a better News Feed experience when the stories they see at the top are stories they are both likely to rate highly if asked and likely to engage with.
We are making an update to News Feed that combines these two signals. News Feed will begin to look at both the probability that you would want to see the story at the top of your feed and the probability that you will like, comment on, click or share a story. We will rank stories higher in feed which we think people might take action on, and which people might want to see near the top of their News Feed.
Facebook says some Pages may see “declines in referral traffic if the rate at which their stories are clicked on does not match how much people report wanting to see those stories near the top of their News Feed.”