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Facebook loses to Google in traffic for publishers

New data from analytics company Parse.ly reveals Google has overtaken Facebook in becoming publishers’ most productive source for gaining external views.

Changing of the times

The latest information, gathered from some 2500 publishers, tells of Facebook’s strong start and gradual decline as 2018 progressed.

After starting the year with promising numbers, Facebook has plummeted from holding 40% of publishers’ external traffic; down to 26% in just four months.

Meanwhile, Google has risen from holding 34% of publisher traffic up to a robust 44%. Google’s move to accelerate mobile pages with “Top Stories” is also driving reach further, and helps explain the climb.

Where Facebook went wrong

Facebook’s constant news feed algorithm updates may have soured the waters with publishers, after releasing an update to prioritise posts of friends and family ahead of publishers.

Facebook’s “Instant Articles” feature has lost some of its steam as well, where they had been hosting publishers’ content designed to send readers to the source site.

Finally, Facebook’s shift to prioritising native video over written posts could lead to an unbalance in how stories reach users.

What do you think about Facebook’s shift to more family and friend orientated content? Are you surprised at Facebook’s shift with Google? Let us know in the comments below.

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