On April 21st Facebook rolled out a new newsfeed update, as mentioned on their official website. Fanpage owners still remember that crippling update from December 1st, 2013, where Facebook restricted fanpage reach so drastically it became near impossible to reach your fans. Admins reported a 44% decline on most posts and a 0.2% link reach. So what can we expect now? Facebook has stated that this update came with three significant changes, mainly impacting what you see in your newsfeed.
From their official newsroom:
The first is improving the experience for people who don’t have a lot of content available to see. Previously, we had rules in place to prevent you from seeing multiple posts from the same source in a row. With this update, we are relaxing this rule. Now if you run out of content, but want to spend more time in News Feed, you’ll see more.
This is possibly very good news for fanpage owners. Not every Facebook user has hundreds of followers, some of the modest profiles only average 30-50 friends. Since having fewer friends does not generate too much content, Facebook will now replace that void with (hopefully) liked fanpages / apps / games.
The second update tries to ensure that content posted directly by the friends you care about, such as photos, videos, status updates or links, will be higher up in News Feed so you are less likely to miss it. If you like to read news or interact with posts from pages you care about, you will still see that content in News Feed.
I am getting mixed feelings about this second improvement. The good part about is that fanpages will still show in the newsfeed, however, friends and family posts will now rank much higher. The bad part is that many Facebook users will not keep scrolling down that newsfeed forever, so your content might be buried with wedding / baby photos.
Lastly, many people have told us they don’t enjoy seeing stories about their friends liking or commenting on a post. This update will make these stories appear lower down in News Feed or not at all, so you are more likely to see the stuff you care about directly from friends and the pages you have liked.
As a Facebook user, this did not annoy me at all, and I didn’t realize this was a problem. At first glance, it seems like a good idea, but I would take this update with a grain of salt. Pushing down comments on paid posts is pushing out advertisers, and knowing Facebook this might be more of a PR stunt than a real change.
So how will this affect reach? A few fanpage owners I’ve spoken to reported a threefold increase in traffic on the day of the update, but that spike quickly came down the following day. We will have an update for you once we gather more data, as it is still too early to tell how will this impact fanpage owners. Have you been affected? Help us track this situation by submitting your results in the comment section below.