Some publishers rely on using misleading or exaggerated information in Facebook posts to solicit a click, much to the frustration of users.
A Facebook study found that 80 per cent of users wanted to see headlines which helped them decide whether or not they should click through to the page.
Facebook said that posts with links in them will now be analysed for how long users spend away from Facebook after they click on the link, to determine whether it will be classified as clickbait. Those which are will suffer in Facebook’s ranking system meaning your followers will be less likely to see it.
This means that you need to make sure that your Facebook posts are honest about where they link to, and that the content users reach when they click through needs to be engaging.
Facebook will also penalise posts which receive a large amount of clicks in relation to the number of shares, comments and likes they get. So it would be useful if your content is provocative, stirring debate and attracting attention beyond just getting people to click.
The social media giant also announced today changes to how posts with links will be ranked. Some companies and media organisations have taken to sharing a link above a picture to make sure the post stands out as much as possible.
In response, Facebook changed it so that when you share a link the picture displayed alongside will be much larger. The company said that people prefer to click links which are not posted as a picture caption, so those links will be prioritised in peoples’ newsfeeds as a result.
If you want to maximise the number of people who see your post then it’s best to share a link on its own, rather than as a picture caption.