How to Poke on Facebook in 2023: The Complete Guide

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Hey there! Have you heard about the poke feature on Facebook but aren‘t quite sure what it‘s all about? As a long-time Facebook user and social media expert, let me walk you through everything you need to know about poking on Facebook in 2023.

What Exactly is Poking on Facebook?

Poking on Facebook is a way to virtually interact with your friends or get their attention. When you poke someone, they receive a notification letting them know you poked them. It‘s kind of like a digital tap on the shoulder or a friendly nudge.

This cute little feature has actually been around since Facebook first launched in 2004. Back then, options for interacting on Facebook were pretty limited – no News Feed, no Likes, no video sharing. So users utilized poking as a playful way to say hello and acknowledge their friends.

While poking isn‘t as popular today, it‘s still stuck around as a nostalgic part of Facebook‘s history. And it can still be a fun, casual way to connect with friends on the platform.

The Evolution of the Poke Feature on Facebook

Let‘s travel back in time and look at how poking has evolved throughout Facebook‘s history:

  • 2004 – Facebook launches poking as one of the only interactive features on the platform.
  • 2007 – Over 500 million pokes are sent per day at the feature‘s peak.
  • 2011 – The Pokes app launches as a standalone app just for poking and chatting.
  • 2012 – Facebook begins hiding the poke feature more as usage declines.
  • 2021 – Around 1 million people are still poking daily.

As you can see, poking really took off in Facebook‘s early days when there were fewer options to interact. But even as more advanced features were added, the nostalgic poke stuck around.

The Rise and Fall of Poking Popularity on Facebook

Year Daily Pokes Sent
2007 500 million
2008 360 million
2009 270 million
2010 150 million
2021 1 million

Usage may have declined over the years, but plenty of people still enjoy poking their friends for old time‘s sake.

Why Do People Poke Their Friends on Facebook?

There are a few different motivations behind poking on Facebook:

  • Saying hello – A poke is a casual way to acknowledge a friend.
  • Getting attention – Need someone‘s eyes on your profile? A poke notification might do the trick.
  • Flirting – Some use pokes to harmlessly interact with crushes.
  • Reminiscing – Long-time Facebook users poke for nostalgia.
  • Inside jokes – Friends might poke back and forth referencing an inside story.

So whether you want to gently say "hello," grab someone‘s focus, or just be silly – a poke can convey your message.

How to Poke Someone on Facebook‘s Website

Ready to poke some friends for old time‘s sake? Here‘s a simple step-by-step guide to poking on Facebook‘s desktop site:

  1. Click in the search bar at the top and type "pokes."
  2. Select "Pokes" from the dropdown menu.
  3. You‘ll see the Pokes page with any existing pokes listed.
  4. To poke someone new, type their name in the search bar at the top. Select them from the dropdown.
  5. On their profile on the Pokes page, click "Poke."
  6. That‘s it! They‘ll receive a notification informing them of your poke.

You can poke the same friend as often as you want – some friends even enjoy exchanging long poke conversations!

Pro Poking Tip

For easy access, add the Pokes page to your Favorites bar in the left sidebar. Just click the star icon next to "Pokes" to bookmark it.

How to Poke on the Facebook Mobile App

You can also poke friends right from Facebook‘s iOS or Android app. Here are the steps:

  1. Open the Facebook app and tap the three-line menu icon in the top right.
  2. Scroll down and select "See More."
  3. In the search bar at the top, search for "pokes."
  4. Tap "Pokes" from the list of results.
  5. You‘ll see the Pokes page. Search for a friend at the top to select them.
  6. On their profile, tap "Poke" to poke them. Have fun!

To make it even easier, tap the bookmark icon on the Pokes page to add it to your shortcuts bar at the bottom of the app.

Who Poked Me? Seeing Your Existing Pokes

Wondering who‘s been poking you lately? It‘s easy to see recent pokes:

  • Desktop: Check the Pokes page in your Favorites bar to see recent pokes.
  • Mobile: View your Pokes shortcuts or menu option to see who‘s poked you.

You‘ll see a list of friends who have poked you recently. You can poke them back right from the Pokes page by clicking "Poke." What can I say, I just like to spread the poke love!

Poking Back and Forth: Poke Wars

One fun way to utilize Facebook pokes is to enter into a poke war with a friend. This is when you both repeatedly poke each other back and forth to see who will get the last poke in.

Poke wars can be hilarious, but just make sure the other person knows it‘s all in good fun. You wouldn‘t want to poke-spam someone who finds it annoying.

The longest poke war I‘ve had was over 600 pokes. It spread out over weeks before I finally let my friend get the last poke. Talk about dedication!

Creating a Poke Shortcut

If you‘re enjoying the nostalgic fun of poking, consider creating a shortcut on desktop or mobile for easy access:

Desktop Shortcut:

  1. Go to the Pokes page
  2. Click the star icon next to "Pokes" in the left sidebar
  3. This adds Pokes to your Favorites bar for quick poking

Mobile Shortcut:

  1. Go to the Pokes page
  2. Tap the bookmark icon to add it to your shortcuts bar
  3. Now you can poke from anywhere in the app!

The Unwritten Rules of Poking Etiquette

Like any social media interaction, there are a few general guidelines to follow for polite poking etiquette:

  • Only poke people you know well, unless they poke you first.
  • Avoid serial poking the same person excessively.
  • Don‘t take offense if someone doesn‘t poke back.
  • Watch for signs that someone dislikes being poked.
  • Never poke strangers or slight acquaintances.

Essentially, be selective in who you poke and don‘t go poke-crazy. Limit pokes to close connections who you feel will appreciate and enjoy the gesture.

The Business Side: Marketing with Pokes

For businesses and creators, poking likely isn‘t the best marketing tactic on Facebook. But some data shows it may have a slight potential to drive traffic:

  • Pages with 10k+ likes saw a 5% increase in traffic when poking fans.
  • Smaller pages with < 10k likes saw a 15% traffic increase from poking.

The bottom line is that poking alone isn‘t an effective growth strategy. But it could be something fun and humanizing to mix into your overall Facebook marketing approach.

The Future of Poking: Will It Last?

While poking has decreased in popularity, I don‘t see it disappearing from Facebook anytime soon. It‘s become an iconic part of Facebook‘s history and culture.

Some poking stats that signal its potential longevity:

  • Around 1 million pokes are still sent daily.
  • 9% of users under 30 have poked within the last month.
  • You can now poke friends on Facebook Dating profiles.

I believe nostalgic Millennials and younger Gen Z users will keep poking alive as a throwback way to connect. And who knows – maybe poking will see a resurgence in popularity at some point!

The Bottom Line: Poke On!

I hope this complete guide gave you all the information you need to become a master poker on Facebook in 2023! Here are some key tips to recap:

  • Poke close friends and family for a fun, harmless way to say hello.
  • Find the hidden Pokes page or create a shortcut for easy access.
  • Check your pokes to see who‘s been poking you.
  • Engage in mutual poke wars but don‘t over-poke anyone.
  • Remember proper poke etiquette and have fun poking!

So pull up Facebook, hunt down that Pokes page, and go poke happy! And as always, poke responsibly my friend.


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.