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Basics on Facebook’s Sorting Algorithm

June 17, 2021

When it comes to social media marketing, algorithms are a huge part of the game. No matter which platform or platforms you use, machine learning and data sorting are helping decide what you see based on a number of factors.

As the original social network, Facebook was the first to implement an algorithm feed – and they remain the most influential social algorithm out there. Let’s go over some basic areas of Facebook’s algorithm, and how internet marketing pros need to stay on top of changes that take place here over time.

Basic Engagement Equation Example

Facebook’s algorithm operates with a simple mandate: Showing you the content you’re most likely to engage with. Of course, how they go about doing it is far more complex than that sentence would suggest.

To understand how their equation works, consider a basic example given by an actual Facebook employee at their F8 conference: Say you’re waiting on a guest for lunch at a restaurant, but that person is running late and calls you, asking you to order for them.

At that point, you first have to figure out your options by looking at the menu. From there, you have to consider all the information you know about this guest and what they might like, and about what’s generally good at that restaurant. You actively make those basic predictions in your head to arrive at a final choice.

Applying to Facebook

Take this same process, and then apply it to an algorithm – that’s the bare bones of how Facebook’s algorithm works. It transfers those same core elements into more technical factors like Inventory, Signals, Predictions, and Scores, each of which has a weight. You’ll get a score for each area, and this score will then help dictate what shows up in your feed.

Changes Over Time

Social media experts out there have to stay abreast of the way the details and focus of this algorithm change over time. A recent update puts more emphasis on posts from friends and family, for instance – anytime this happens, the weights within the algorithm shift slightly. Every tweak here can lead to massive change based on Facebook’s overall scale and user base.

For more on Facebook and other social media algorithms, or to learn about any of our SEO services, contact the pros at SEO Werkz today.

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