Facebook will be clamping down on any “overly promotional” advertising on people’s news feeds in an update to its current algorithms.
The update, which will take place in January 2015, will mean that users will be less likely to see advertorial posts, even if they have liked a page by a company or celebrity.
“We asked hundreds of thousands of people how they feel about the content in their News Feeds,” wrote the company in a blog post. “People told us they wanted to see more stories from friends and pages they care about, and less promotional content.
“Beginning in January 2015, people will see less of this type of content in their news feeds. As we’ve said before, News Feed is already a competitive place – as more people and pages are posting content, competition to appear in news feed has increased.”
This will likely mean that page owners will be incentivised to pay for their advertising to appear with more regularity on people’s news feeds. 92% of the social network's income comes from web-based advertising – around £1.89 billion in the third quarter of this year alone.
Facebook says it will encourage marketers to create more video content for the site and upload it natively – rather than linking them from YouTube. According to the company, videos ads are viewed more than 1 billion times daily on Facebook already.
The network was keen to stress that these changes will not mean more ads will be showing up next year:
“This change will not increase the number of ads people see in their news feeds,” the post continues. “The idea is to increase the relevance and quality of the overall stories – including page posts – people see in their news feeds.
“This change is about giving people the best Facebook experience possible.”