This article explains how Whatnot uses ranking algorithms to influence the content that users see in their “For You” feed.
On the Whatnot app, every user sees a “For You” feed of livestreams on the home page. We use ranking techniques based on various signals to present each user with a unique, personalized feed.
About the Algorithm
Whatnot has developed ranking across the app to ensure that users see the content they care most about, and give sellers a way to surface their livestreams, products, and more to the users who are the most likely to engage.
Like many other companies, we do not use a single algorithm to determine what users see. Instead, we use a variety of processes and algorithms. Each part of the app uses different ranking techniques, and they are constantly updated to improve both the user and seller experience.
We use signals based on how users interact with sellers, livestreams, listings, and other content across the app. Based on these signals, we predict the type of content users are likely to interact with and find relevant. We use these predictions to rank eligible livestreams to give users a personalized experience tailored to their interests.
Signals can be categorized into a few groups:
- Information about the seller: This helps us understand if the seller might be interesting to the user. For example, we consider how much a user has watched and purchased from the seller in recent weeks.
- Information about the user: This helps us understand the types of content the user is interested in. For example, we consider how much a user has watched and purchased in each category in recent weeks.
- Information about the livestream: This helps us understand at a more granular level whether a user might be interested in a specific livestream, beyond just the seller. This includes signals like the category of the livestream, the listings in the livestream (and their categories), and more.
How often a user sees your livestream as a seller is based on what the user watches, purchases, and even how you set up and describe your livestreams and listings. Some of these tips can make your livestreams more relevant to users and help boost your livestreams:
- Correctly categorize your livestream and listings when setting up your show: We use signals to match your livestream to users who are interested in your product offerings and content. The more accurate information you share on your livestream and listings, the better job we can do finding the most relevant audience for you.
- Include detailed info about your listings: Adding images, descriptions, text, and other information to your listings can improve the relevance of your livestream and listings to users.
- Play to your audience and their niche: More engaging livestreams and products sold means we can identify existing and potential new users that will find your livestreams and products relevant.
- Go live on a regular basis: By going live at least once every few weeks, we can maintain up-to-date signals on users that are interested in your livestreams.
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