TikTok Algorithm:
How It Works and 7 Tips to Hack It

Released in 2017, TikTok’s global reached 800 million MAU (monthly active users) in less than 4 years. To achieve the same figure, it took 6 years for YouTube, 7 years for Instagram, and 12 years for Facebook. What’s more worth mentioning is that TikTok’s user base is still growing rapidly. According to overseas application statistics, people spend 52 minutes on TikTok every day. In contrast, users spend only 26 minutes, 29 minutes, 37 minutes on Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook. People get addicted to TikTok so easily with its short and countless catchy videos on For You page. It seems like TikTok knows everyone’s taste, how could it be able to do so? The advanced algorithm system of TikTok is unignorable.

1.What is the algorithm?

The algorithm we are talking about here refers to a recommendation mechanism. The mechanism is simply understood as a shopping guide in the store. We see this happens a lot in life: As soon as you enter a store, shopping guides will start to estimate your identity, status, and your potential purchase needs, so that they can take different strategies to boost consumer demand.

The TikTok algorithm is just like a shopping guide. It serves all TikTok users. What it recommends is not the product, but the content, which is the videos you watch on TikTok. Its purpose is to lead you to spend your time, attention, and money willingly.

2.How does TikTok recognize your preference?

TikTok’s algorithm uses machine learning to determine the content that users are most likely to participate in and provide them with more content by finding similar videos or videos that people with similar user preferences like.

When users open TikTok for the first time, they will see 8 popular videos with different trends, music, and themes. After that, the algorithm will continue to provide users with 8 updated videos based on the things that users do while watching the former ones, like lighting the like, commenting, and sharing.

The algorithm identifies videos that are similar to the video watched by the user based on video information (which may include details such as subtitles, tags, or sounds). It also takes into account user device and account settings, including data such as language preferences, country/region settings, and device type.

When TikTok collects enough user data, the app can map user preferences based on the preferences of similar users and group them into “clusters.” At the same time, it also groups videos based on similar themes, such as “basketball” or “rabbit”. Using machine learning, TikTok’s algorithm can provide users with videos based on their proximity to other user clusters and their favorite content.

3.How do TikTok recommend content?

On some social media like Instagram, if you have no fans, the content you post will not be seen and will not be liked. However, on TikTok, as long as you post a video, there will be a certain amount of views, called traffic.

TikTok has traffic pools. Generally, in the first pool, TikTok gives 10-500 traffic to each video. After that, if your video is proved to be good, it will enter a second pool, TikTok will recommend your video to 1000+ people, and then the third pool of 5000+. The subsequent flow pool will become larger and larger, which means the excellent video will be viewed by more and more users naturally. In other words, if we need our short video content gets to be seen by more viewers, we need to make it good and attractive enough with high quality.

4.How does TikTok define good?

From the above, we know that TikTok’s traffic pool is divided into different levels. The factors which decide whether a video can enter the next pool are the number of likes, the number of comments, the number of reposts, and the broadcast completion rate.

Even if you register and get a new account with 0 fans, you still will get dozens of page views. So whether you are a celebrity or not, as long as your videos have high-quality content, your account can easily go viral.

7 Tips on how to make your videos go viral:

1. The quality of the video is always in the first place.

2. Focus on the completion rate of the video, and use various methods to guide users to watch the video entirely and watch it multiple times.

3. Strengthen the guidance of user interaction and allow users to participate.

4. Create IP or vertical accounts to increase user interaction stickiness and make account operations more effective.

5.Cater to the tastes of users, and continuously output content that users are interested in.

6. Make good use of elements such as titles, tags, subtitles, etc., so that the algorithm can better identify your content, and then better recommend your content to interested people.

7. Any new video needs to break through the traffic pool limit to get recommendations. So even if you are a popular TikToker, you are on the same starting line with newcomers, fans only represent the past.