Are you posting a video on TikTok, and are wondering how long it will take before it gets any views?
The truth is, TikTok’s algorithm (and how it decides when to push out videos) is very unique, and there wasn’t anything else like it before TikTok came along.
So, in this article I’ll be explaining exactly how the algorithm works, and the different stages each video goes through that determines when – and how many views a video receives. I’ll also be covering things such as when the views should start, when notifications get sent out to followers, and more!
How Long Does It Take To Start Getting Views On TikTok?
Assuming that TikTok does not detect anything wrong with your video, it should start getting its first views within a few minutes.
Contrary to popular belief, all TikTok videos will get pushed out to at least a few people’s feeds. From there, how far it continues getting pushed depends largely on the performance of the video, and the data that TikTok collects.
However, what many people don’t realize is that videos may be artificially suppressed right after they’re uploaded.
TikTok uses AI to ‘scan’ the contents of the video, in order to ensure that it does not violate any of TikTok’s community guidelines. They are not only tracking the things that you’re saying or the main focus of the video, but the contents of the background as well.
So, if you have objects in your background that aren’t allowed on TikTok – an inappropriate poster on your wall for example, it may not get any views until it’s been reviewed and cleared by a human moderator.
Otherwise, you should start seeing your first views within minutes of your TikTok going live!
Views Come In Surges – How The TikTok Algorithm Works
Although your first views will come within the first few minutes, you’ll notice that they quickly taper off.
This is completely normal, and is part of how the algorithm works. Whether you get 10 views or 200 in the first 30 minutes of your TikTok going live, you can expect the video to slow down, at least for a moment. The bulk of your views will come later.
TikTok sends videos out in surges, or waves.
They first test the waters by showing the video to a small, specific audience of people who are likely to respond well to it, based on all the data they know about their users and your following.
If the video performs according to TikTok’s targets, it will get pushed out to a larger group of people. This is the second wave, and often this consists of more than 100, but less than 1,000 total views.
Once again, TikTok will slow down its reach and evaluate the data that it’s collected.
It will continue doing this, pushing the video out to larger and broader groups of people, over and over again, until the video no longer performs well relative to the other videos TikTok has to show people.
This is why a video’s view count can seem to accelerate as hours or even days go by – TikTok continues pushing it out to larger and larger audiences.
So while the first views may come in minutes, it may take hours or even days before any serious views start rolling in.
Note: Videos can see a ‘resurgence’ of sorts days or even weeks after they’ve been published. Where, after they appear to have settled down, they suddenly start getting pushed out to new people again. So, don’t lose hope if your video is no longer getting views!
When Do Notifications Start Getting Sent Out To Followers?
So far, we’ve talked about views acquired on both the ‘Following’ and the ‘For You’ pages.
Sometimes however, TikTok also sends out notifications directly to your followers sharing that you’ve posted a new TikTok. So, when exactly does this happen?
Unfortunately, there are a number of factors that go into whether notifications will be sent, so it is hard to give an exact answer. However, it rarely happens right after the video is posted – usually, a substantial amount of data is needed before TikTok determines whether to send notifications out.
If you think about it, this makes a lot of sense.
Notifications can be bothersome – especially if you get them frequently, or don’t care about what was sent. So, TikTok has to be very selective about who they send notifications to, and when.
Therefore, somebody is more likely to see a notification for your videos if…
- The video is performing exceptionally well.
- The follower is a huge fan of your content (and watches the majority of TikToks that you post)
- They aren’t following many other people (so there are less competing with you, and TikTok has less options to entice them to return to the app.)
In my own anecdotal experience, I’ve noticed notifications being sent 6 hours to several days after a TikTok was posted – but rarely before that.
Beware Of The 0 / Low Views Glitch!
As mentioned earlier, TikTok automatically scans your videos before they get pushed out. While people can still find them by visiting your profile directly, they won’t appear on anyone’s feeds until they’re cleared.
Unfortunately, videos can get ‘stuck’ at this point, even if you’ve done nothing wrong!
If your video still hasn’t gotten any views – or it seems to be getting a lot less than normal after several hours, you may want to check to see if it’s been affected by the 0 views glitch.
Often times, you are able to fix this glitch on your own, and get your video pushed out as normal.
There are quite a few things to try out, so I’ve put together a complete list in this article:
I highly recommend reading through it if your video still hasn’t gotten any views!
Warning: Past Performance Affects Future Results!
There’s one more factor you should be aware of, that will affect how quickly your video gets views.
Like other social media platforms, TikTok takes your past performance into account when determining how far to boost your video – at least initially.
This means that if your videos have performed well in the past, they are more likely to get a bigger boost right after you’ve posted them. Likewise, if your videos consistently perform poorly, they may be shown to far fewer people – or even suppressed entirely.
This is because TikTok wants to weed out spam account, along with non-serious users who post hundreds of TikToks that nobody really cares about.
Ultimately, this is good for everyone, as it keeps junk content off of our For You pages.
However, you should take this into consideration as well. If you aren’t proud of something, don’t post it.
Because not only will the video flop, it will hurt your other videos later on as well!
As long as your video doesn’t violate any of TikTok’s community guidelines, it should start getting views within minutes of going live.
However, TikTok pushes videos out in waves, so it’s likely to slow down for a brief period before more views come in.
If your video doesn’t start getting views, check to make sure it hasn’t been affected by the 0 views glitch, and work to fix it if it has.
I hope that this article has answered all of your questions. If you have any other questions about TikTok or its algorithm, ask them below and I’ll be happy to get back to you.
Wishing you the best,
– James McAllister