The site is testing a new “related videos” feature on the mobile News Feed which will prompt users to watch another, similar video after the one they are watching ends. It’s comparable to the experience one might find on YouTube.
Though the feature is not yet available to all, it is one of several signs of Facebook’s increasing interest in videos. The claim is that this focus will help better identify content that users are interested in and give them a more enjoyable, efficient way to consume videos. Obviously, this will keep them on the site longer, too.
In a Facebook Newsroom blog post, Product Manager Brett Welch claims the “related video” addition is doing well, saying, “In our early tests, this improvement resulted in more people watching more videos that are relevant to them.”
However, this doesn’t mean Facebook is going to start flooding everyone’s newsfeed with videos. Welch said, “People who tend to watch more video in News Feed should expect to see more videos near the top of their Feed. Conversely, people who tend to skip over videos without watching them should expect to see fewer videos.”
This change comes as Facebook toys with implementing in-feed video advertisements. By finding and targeting users who watch, like, and share more videos on their newsfeed, the company has a better idea of who to gear potential video ads towards.
The “related video” feature is being tested from user-generated videos by a small group of Facebook users, but there is a high likelihood of sponsored videos from a brand or advertiser making their way into the mix soon.