For months, Facebook’s organic reach has been a concern for social media marketers and page managers. As the algorithm keeps updating, marketers and businesses are forced to shift their efforts to combat these changes. Your posts that used to be your company's bread and butter—drawing hundreds or even thousands of engaged visitors who would interact with it via a comment, like, or share—may now be reduced to a low number with less than 100 people viewing that same type of post.
As a social media marketer, there is nothing more infuriating than believing you’ve put together a highly engaging post that an audience would love, but when you view the metrics that it received, you get a very low amount of likes and reach of less than 50 people.
A recent study conducted by Social Flow shows a 42% drop of reach per organic post. The study was based on 3,000 publisher/media companies’ Facebook pages. The drop was evident as there was an increase in number of posts, but no increase in organic reach.
Facebook has not acknowledged the decline or mentioned a recent algorithm shift, but there is speculation that the decrease in content from brands is due to an increase in displaying content from your Facebook friends.
The drop in organic reach is forcing brands to create better content or to invest more money into their Facebook advertising. However, as a small business owner, increasing your advertising budget isn’t always a viable option. Here is a small list of things you can do as a business owner to combat this decline in reach.
- If your Facebook efforts are not giving you the return that you hoped, consider alternative networks. We recommend looking at your audience demographics and seeing which networks they are most active on. You don’t have to be great at all the social media networks—you just have to be great at 1-2 that your audience is most active on. We’ve seen an increase in merchants venturing to Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, or Snapchat and seeing success from these networks in their monthly sales. Another great place to look is Network Referrals in Google Analytics. This feature will allow you to see which social networks are sending traffic to your website as well as how long these visitors are staying.
- Incorporate more user-generated content into your marketing mix. Some of the highest engagement posts come from your fans! In the past year, we’ve seen a shift in content that’s being shared with brands leaning towards sharing photos from their customers. It’s a great way to showcase your products without including a sales pitch.
- Post when your clients are most likely to be online and to see your post. Facebook Insights allow you to see when people are seeing your posts. To find this feature, log into your business page and click Insights, then Posts. Optimizing your posts for the most effective time can help give them the boost that they need.