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What is the TikTok For You Page?
If you’ve ever opened TikTok, you have probably experienced at least an hour of life disappearing into the void of the TikTok for you page. This is no accident. The TikTok for you page is strategically designed to keep your attention by providing you with videos that are personally tailored to your interests and personality. TikTok utilizes an algorithm that takes into account your watch time and interactions on the app, so overtime your TikTok for you page is more likely to get and maintain your attention.
How Does the Algorithm on the For You Page Work?
The for you page runs based on a recommendation system. These systems are in place all around us, from searching to shopping to streaming. Recommendation systems aim at personalizing the user experience. As you engage with the app, it notes likes, comments, and follows, to help the system learn what you will watch as well as what you are likely to skip. In addition to user interaction, the algorithm also takes other factors into account like:
- Video information: This type of information can include hashtags, sound and captions
- Account and device settings: These settings include: preferred language, device type and country setting. It is important to note that these factors are ranked as less important in the optimization of the TikTok for you Page
It is also important to know that the algorithm does not take a high number of followers or previous high-engagement as direct factors in creating the FYP. Taking this into account, if you are just starting out on TikTok, it is fully possible for you to “blow up” on the platform.
You might be wondering how TikTok suggests videos for people new to the app without any prior engagement. Well, to begin TikTok asks that you select categories of interest such as comedy, animals etc. This allows for the development of an initial feed. Over time as you engage with the app, it will give you even more customized recommendations that you are likely to enjoy.
If a new user does not select any interest categories, then they will be shown a feed of generally popular videos. The same process will take place and the feed will slowly become full of content you vibe with. The more you interact with the app, the quicker and more effectively it will be able to deliver personalized recommendations.
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With over 2 billion downloads, Tiktok surely has had success in creating a customizable feed based on individual preferences. To do this, TikTok employs a few different strategies to ensure that every user has the best experience:
1. Negative Feedback
The TikTok for you page not only allows you to like, comment on and follow users with content you love, but it also offers the option of saying “this is bad”. If you long-tap a video you dislike, it gives the option of “not interested,” this will refine the algorithm so that you will not see that video or videos similar. You can also hide videos from a certain creator or videos that contain a certain sound. Having negative feedback included in your engagement will allow the TikTok for you page to get a full picture of your video preferences.
2. Diversifying Component
The FYP will also show you content that you might find completely different from your preferences. It could be from a creator with few followers or showcase a topic that you have not expressed interest in. This is a fully intentional move by the algorithm in an attempt to diversify the content you see and love. You might discover a new perspective or subject that piques your interest and can then find even more content relating to that new thing.
4. Interrupting Repetitive Patterns
To keep the FYP varied and interesting, the system seeds diverse content between the content they know you love. Generally, there won’t ever be two videos in a row that are made with the same sound or created by the same user. Duplicate content is also not recommended to you on the FYP, anything you’ve seen before or considered spam will not appear on your feed.
As a safety feature, TikTok will restrict some videos from the FYP. All content is reviewed and things like “graphic medical procedures or legal consumption of regulated goods” will not be recommended. Spam content aiming at artificially increasing traffic might also be ineligible for recommendations on anyone’s FRP.
Users of TikTok hardly ever use the “Following Page” so fully understanding the “TikTok for you page” is critical in the development of a feed that is created just for you. It is a process that is continually being refined and adjusted in an attempt to give users the best experience possible and simultaneously acquire new users. Every time a user engages with the app, it will collect data and then use that data to provide enjoyable content. It is TikToks hope to “inspire creativity and bring joy with every refresh of your For You feed.”