The TikTok algorithm may seem a little complicated, and many people were trying to guess how to crack it, and how to go viral. But now, TikTok has finally revealed how their algorithm works.
For creators who would like to increase engagement on their TikTok videos, this is very important to understand, so we’re sharing this information with you, together with some tips on how to use it to your advantage!
How the TikTok algorithm works
If you have ever opened TikTok, you know what the For You page is. The For You feed on TikTok reflects each user’s preferences and is unique, so it is the best place to go and discover new content.
To get more engagement on your videos, you should get your content on as many For You feeds as possible, meaning having your video go viral.
TikTok recently published what information it uses to choose which videos to put on your For You page (so-called content ranking). Here is an overview of some factors:
- User interaction
The algorithm looks at the content you create, the comments you post, the videos you like or share, and the accounts you follow. This represents what is called engagement metrics.
The algorithm will learn what you like and what accounts you follow and show you similar videos on your For You page that it thinks you will find interesting.
Here the video completion rate is crucial. If many users watch a video until the end, it is more likely to be pushed to other feeds.
- Video information
Video information refers to details like hashtags, the sound you use, or your caption.
The algorithm is more likely to push content that a user frequently explores. So if you often like videos with a specific sound or hashtag, you are more likely to see more videos with the same sound and hashtag.
- Account and device settings
This is all about data that users do not specifically mention anywhere, like your location, language preference, and which kind of smartphone you use.
These factors are a little less important but still have an impact on optimizing everyone’s experience.
This means you are highly likely to come across videos from accounts close to you, either from the same country, city, or those who speak the same language as you.
Quality over quantity
We have learned that the number of followers or other videos of yours that might have gone viral is not relevant to TikTok’s algorithm when it decides which videos to show on everyone’s For You pages.
So even if you just started making content or only have a handful of followers, there is still a chance for your video to go viral!
5 tips on how to get your videos on the For You page
- Create short videos
Videos on TikTok are 15 to 60 seconds long, but as we mentioned earlier, the video completion rate is a critical factor for the TikTok algorithm. So, you’re more likely to get your audience to watch the video in full if they are short; make sure they capture attention from the start and make the audience want to watch the whole video.
Work on your video’s opening because unnecessarily long intros are not done. You should introduce an eyecatcher into your video within three seconds, so viewers are curious and don’t scroll past it.
- The right hashtags
You can always use the commonly used For You page hash, including #fyp, #foryou, and #foryoupage. These are widely used, and although there is no proof they will get you ranking, it doesn’t hurt to add one.
Next to that, you have the trending hashtags, which you can look up in your account’s Discover Tab. When something starts trending, more and more people will hop on these trends. If you create an awesome video for trending hashtags, you’re more likely to attract people to your content.
- Trending sounds and songs
Just as hashtags can trend, sounds and songs do the same. This means creating videos with trending and viral sounds will help you to work with the algorithm.
Open your video editor and click ‘Sounds’ on the top, then scroll down to find trending sounds. It is also possible to gather trending sounds from your TikTok Pro account. There you can find out what your followers have been listening to in the last seven days.
- Write a good caption
Your video caption has to be powerful and engaging because there is a 150-character limit, including any hashtags you want to add. The proper caption will encourage the audience to watch your video till the end.
For example, question-based captions will stimulate viewers to leave a comment which is great for your engagement. Captions like “You’ve got to watch this till the end!” will arouse curiosity.
- Pay attention to quality and editing
Make sure you never upload a poor-quality video on any social media platform because good video quality ensures more video views. TikTok also rewards good editing skills, so take a look at TikTok’s editing features like stickers, effects, and filters but do not exaggerate.
Creators also use exciting and cool transitions in their videos, which can create captive content. It can also go viral if other users start using the same transition techniques. Check out what other users are doing, learn more about various transitions, practice, and play around with them!
For TikTok, it is not necessary to build an audience first as it does not pay attention to follower count. So make sure you take care of each video you create. As long as you have great and exciting content, it will find its way to other For You pages.
TikTok Pro account
TikTok does not (yet) have separate features for professionals. But that doesn’t mean you cannot use TikTok for your personal brand.
Get a TikTok Pro account. TikTok Pro is a feature that allows you to see analytics from your TikTok videos, such as the number of video views, followers, profile views, and more. And it also gives an insight into your followers in terms of gender and location.
It is just like an Instagram Creator profile. When you create an account on TikTok, you get a standard account. But you can easily switch, and contrary to what the name suggests, it is for free!