Earlier this year Instagram announced their latest algorithm change, telling us they’ll be updating their algorithm in order provide content in more chronological order, something users have been demanding be returned since it’s initial change in 2016.
This month that update has finally come into play and Instagram has now fully released how this new algorithm works, explaining just how photos and videos will be used and put to bed any rumours that may have been spread over the last few months.
According to Instagram their latest update tries to predict what photos and videos are the most likely to appeal to the user, using three main factors: Interest, time and relationship.
So how does the Instagram algorithm work?
Interest: This is how Instagram predicts what you care about and what you want to see, based on your past behaviour and Instagram use. The more Instagram think that you’ll like a post, the higher it then appears in your feed. For example, if you like a photo of a dog or someone’s pet, Instagram will know that this is content you enjoy and want to see more of, therefore changing their algorithm so that this content is more prominent on your feed.
Time: The time frame in which photos are posted is now going to have a large impact on how Instagram’s algorithm works, prioritising recent posts, meaning you shouldn’t see too many posts that are over a week old. This comes as good news for users, given complaints in the past from Instagram users seeing posts from Christmas time, well into the new year.
Relationship: If you comment on or like a lot of photos from specific people, this notifies Instagram that they’re probably your friends or family. By predicting the closeness of users depending on past interactions, Instagram will prioritise this content within your feed, meaning you’re likely to see content from people you actually care about and want to see more of, rather than just celebrities, influencers and promoted posts.
While there are other factors that are taken into account with the new algorithm, such as how much time users spend on Instagram, how many people they follow and how much they post, it’s clear that Interest, time and relationship are going to be significant factors in the structure of feeds.
Despite not fully bringing back chronological order, this latest change is a step in the right direction for Instagram and we can’t wait to see where it goes next!