21 Nov 2019 — 4 min read | Posted in Tutorial | Posted by Solenne Ducasse

How Does the Tiktok Algorithm Works?

How Does the Tiktok Algorithm Works?

Everybody wants to crack the TikTok algorithm. Many theories are growing, but the network platform has confirmed none of them for the moment.


What is TikTok algorithm?

In the social media world, the TikTok algorithm is particularly crucial. Its operation is very different from other platforms. Instagram utilizes users’ engagement to build the discovery page. It takes into account the most liked, commented, shared pictures.


The TikTok platform’s algorithm often highlights anonymous creators with very few likes and encourages you to put a ❤️.

The Chinese company Bytedance has been updating the American dream! Everybody, including you, has a chance to be in the spotlights. Tiktok algorithm is the reason why the network platform is so great. Isn’t it true that everybody dreams of a moment of glory?


How to trick the TikTok algorithm?

Many theories are trying to understand the very well kept secret of Tiktok algorithm.

  • First of all, the famous hashtag foryoupage. According to this theory, if you want to be on the foryoupage (discovery page), you have to write #foryoupage. Perhaps it was true at first, but now each video on Tiktok has the famous hashtag.
  • One other theory from Vice tells that Tiktok shows the videos to a small batch of people to know if they have viral potential. If they get significant engagement, then Tiktok shows the videos to a larger batch of people.

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The algorithm of Tiktok is very sophisticated, and it seems that there are many ways for it to choose videos. We spent time on Tiktok to find some clues. We assume that the platform always switches its way to disturb us in the conquest of the Holy Grail.
So TikTok algorithm 2019 is not the same as in 2018 and will also change in 2020.

tiktok algorithm

TikTok algorithm explained

This is our test :

We have an account and posted one video with a dog and hashtags #foryoupage and #dog. We spent time on Tiktok like an average user. We searched for music, creators, sometimes even likes videos and followed creators.

Then we watched the videos from the TikTok foryoupage :

  • a video with a dog and the #dog with a lot of ❤️
  • one with a song we searched previously with a lot of ❤️
  • with another song we searched previously with a lot of ❤️
  • with a creator we searched previously with a lot of ❤️
  • with a song we searched previously with a lot of ❤️
  • with a cat with a lot of ❤️
  • random with a lot of ❤️
  • random with zero ❤️ from France
  • random with zero ❤️ from France

So it seems that the algorithm is trying hard to understand our tastes.
It begins with something I should love because I created a similar content.
Then the algorithm digs into the research I have already done.
Next, it offers me new content that I may like because a lot of people liked it.
And it ends it with random videos from my country that I can be the first to see. Then, there is a second round.


Here is our theory on the algorithm:

The TikTok platform showed us liked videos in different categories of interest (hashtags, songs, creators) according to our researches or engagement. Then we were in the small batch of people to watch random videos according to Vice idea. And if a random video gets some ❤️, it can be shown in categories of interest for other users, receive more ❤️, and becomes viral.

But if you have many ❤️ and are using famous musics, you have more chances to be viral. Also, if you are an influencer, your videos have many chances to be viral as well, which is quite logical.

But one theory is getting everyone to agree: a video to be viral need good content.


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