If you advertise on Facebook you’ve probably heard the rumors about the NEW Explore Feed…
“Facebook is eliminating ads from the News Feed”
“They are taking away our First Amendment rights”
“The company is controlling my life”
Ok, so, maybe not the last two, but you get the point.
People tend to get a little up in arms, sometimes jump to conclusions whenever Facebook announces a change to their platform. And, the game of telephone can get a little out of control. Well, we think before anyone decides to jump off a cliff, you’ll probably want all the details on what the Explore Feed is, and how it might affect you and your business.
Is the Explore Feed the End of Organic Traffic?
The short answer, no. While some people believe this is the beginning of the end of organic traffic for businesses, after digging a little more and learning about what Facebook intends to do with this new tab, it’s pretty obvious that this is just another attempt by the company to further refine the way in which we (Facebook Users) consume our content. It also gives us even more control over what we’re seeing and when.
Now, we can see why this might have some advertisers freaked out a little. I mean, losing all organic traffic would really suck, and for small businesses who rely on the platforms’ organic traffic to generate sales, something like this could be a means to an end.
But, again, the rumors just don’t really pan out like some people assumed they would.
What Exactly is the Explore Feed?
It has always been a goal of Facebook to create a feed in which you are able to view and interact with content that you want to see. But, until now, the content you see in your News Feed has been limited to the pages or groups you follow.
But, with the NEW Explore Feed tab, you’ll now be able to see posts from pages that you may have never come across. The posts in this feed will be determined by your behavior profile that Facebook put together based on how you interact with other pages, and even what your friends might be interested in…
For example: Let’s say you are a HUGE fan of Adleaks and you’re constantly visiting the business page, liking the posts, and commenting on the articles. But, you’re not necessarily “following” the page. Well, if you were to go to the New Explore Feed, Facebook would most likely serve you up posts from AdLeaks and other brands that produce similar content.
The idea is to use the data Facebook has aggregated on your behaviors to predict what you want to see. And the Explore Feed does exactly that. The best part, it’s actually crazy accurate. Don’t take our word for it. Feel free to give it a shot, and be prepared to be amazed.
Now, I know some of you are thinking, “That’s really cool. But, is this actually happening?”
Read on my friends…
Is the Explore Feed rolling out anytime soon?
While some people have speculated that this will be rolling out companywide very soon, Facebook has already put those fears to rest with a recent press release discussing their plan for the Explore Feed in more detail.
“There have been a number of reports about a test we’re running in Sri Lanka, Bolivia, Slovakia, Serbia, Guatemala, and Cambodia. Some have interpreted this test as a future product we plan to deliver globally. We currently have no plans to roll this test out further.” – Facebook
Now, I know there are still some of you who are thinking “why would they even test this if they don’t plan to roll it out”?
Well, that’s what Facebook does. They constantly test new features, tools, and pretty much anything else they think might improve the overall user experience.
“The goal of this test is to understand if people prefer to have separate places for personal and public content. We will hear what people say about the experience to understand if it’s an idea worth pursuing any further. There is no current plan to roll this out beyond these test countries or to charge pages on Facebook to pay for all their distribution in News Feed or Explore. Unfortunately, some have mistakenly made that interpretation, but that was not our intention.” – Facebook
While this test may have inadvertently sent some people into a tailspin, the fact of the matter is, Facebook has no plans to roll this out. And as advertisers, we should be elated that the company we advertise with is willing to put forth this much effort into improving the overall experience on their platform.
In the long run, the knowledge they gain from these tests is only going to benefit marketers and advertisers, even if there is a temporary disruption. We prefer to focus on our long-term goals, and not these temporary short-term changes.
Well, that’s all for now folks. We hope this article helps quell any fears and anxiety over the Explore Feed news. And, that we can all now go out into the Facebook world and educate our tin foil hat wearing friends, and put these rumors to rest.
As always, if you happen to have any questions, comments, or insights on the Explore Feed please feel free to let us know in the comments.