How the smart VK feed works: ranking posts in VK

The news feed of the social network Vkontakte includes records of friends, groups and communities to which you are subscribed. Previously, all posts were displayed in chronological order – that is, the first places were occupied by new posts, and the old ones gradually sank down. In the summer of 2016, the social network introduced the smart Vkontakte feed and the ranking of posts. Now the posts that you like appear in the feed, and they are not displayed in chronological order.

You can turn off Vkontakte smart feed. In the feed settings, uncheck the “Interesting first” line, and you will return to the usual chronological version of the feed.

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Read also: Promotion of the VKontakte group

How smart feed VKontakte works

The VKontakte smart feed is a complex algorithm that is constantly being trained. It evaluates your reaction and the reaction of other users of the social network to certain posts and shows those to which they react positively. Posts that you have treated negatively are not shown in the smart feed.

The smart feed contains:

  • records of communities and groups in which you are active – like, leave comments;
  • posts of accounts with which you often interact – write messages, leave likes and comments on the wall;
  • posts that have been commented or rated by your friends, provided they have good social proof;
  • posts in the format you like – for example, video compilations, long text, pictures.

Let’s take a closer look at each of the examples.

Group and community entries… The more often you are active in the public, the more his posts will appear in your feed. The posts of groups that you hardly visit will gradually disappear from the news.

The posts of the accounts you interact with… If you turn on the smart feed, there will be no posts from friends with whom you hardly communicate. And vice versa – if you actively interact with the user, you will see his posts.

Posts that friends interacted with… This is where the social proof rule works. The more a post that your friend has liked, reposts, comments and ratings, the more chances he has to be in your news feed.

Posts of your favorite format… The smart feed continually evaluates your actions. If you like the collection of tracks the most, she will give priority to such records in the future. If you like long articles, they will gradually rise in the feed above other formats.

It is interesting: How to use Stories in VK

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How to get to the top of Vkontakte feeds

We’ve prepared some tips to help you improve your post reach.

Publish unique content

June 1, 2018 appeared on the social network algorithm “Nemesis”… It protects unique content from being copied. The principle of the algorithm is simple – it finds the original source, that is, the group in which the post was first published, and prefers it when publishing. All other things being equal, the records of the original source will rank higher in the smart feed.

To consistently publish unique posts, create a content plan. Describe what and when you will tell what add-ons you will use – photo, video, GIF-animation. If you have to use non-unique content, dilute it with your own preview, announcement, description. Completely copied posts will also appear in the feed, but much lower than unique posts.

Recommendations from the Vkontakte blog, an article about the exit of Nemesis

Encourage your followers to be active

It happens that people like the content and read it with pleasure, but do not like or comment on the posts. In this case, posts in the feeds of subscribers will appear less and less, even despite the large number of views.

To avoid this, motivate your followers to be active. This can be done in different ways:

  • Ask to like it if you liked the post at the end of each post.
  • Asking an easy question that will take a couple of minutes or seconds to answer.
  • To touch on “hype” topics that are expected to cause a lot of discussion – for example, tell about the flayers of a suitable target audience.
  • Conduct contests for likes, reposts or comments with valuable prizes – the better they are, the more people will take part.

Be careful with hype topics. If subscribers react negatively to them and hide the post, you could lose reach.

VK activity
A post from a follower with questions is a great way to get more comments.

Another way to create activity in a group is contests and sweepstakes in VK

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Evaluate statistics

Study group or account statistics – they are available from the moment the page is created. Several parameters are important here:

  • Activity Hours – See what time your followers are most active and post new posts at their peak.
  • Post format… Try to publish posts in the format that fits best – popularity can be determined by likes, reposts, comments.
  • Target audience characteristics. Study them and publish posts that suit your target audience. For example, if the majority of subscribers are people under 18, it is appropriate to use youth slang.

Emphasis on quality over quantity

Previously, posting frequently was enough to increase reach. It didn’t matter what quality they were. Now, according to the statements of Vkontakte representatives, infrequent but interesting posts receive more coverage. “Infrequent” in their understanding are publications that come out every 2-3 hours: this is clearly seen in the screenshot.

By posting less frequently than usual, you get extra time to prepare. This will improve the quality of the content, which means it will indirectly push you to the top of the updated smart feed.

Screenshot from a post on the Vkontakte blog – more rare posts will get more coverage

Look for the latest news

Do not touch on topics that were relevant a week, a month, a year ago. The “fresh” the topic for the news, the better it will be perceived by the target audience and the smart VK feed. This is due to the algorithm: all other things being equal, posts published later are shown above. That is, if you and your competitors publish the same posts and get approximately the same number of likes, but you publish the post a little later, it will be shown higher in the feed: the chronological order is preserved here.

Another tip is to use hashtags from the Trending Topics section if appropriate. Posts with relevant hashtags tend to garner more reach than posts without hashtags, even though the content is the same.

Publish the latest news
A vivid example – a group with 21 members published a post with relevant hashtags and received 47 views, one like and one repost, 2 comments in 13 minutes

Use promotion tools

The younger your page or group is, the less people see it. And to get to the top of the news feed, you need to show the posts to many subscribers. It turns out to be a vicious circle. Therefore, you can use paid promotion tools – for example, targeted advertising, sponsored posts, recording in large communities. This will help you grow your followers and generate social proof, which will affect your feed rankings.

And what will you do, or are you already doing, so that the smart VKontakte feed helps in promotion? Share with us in the comments!

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