Netflix is adding a new feature that will rank the 10 most popular programs on its service in your country, the company announced today. Its top 10 Overall list will display the most popular programs from across all Netflix content, including both movies and shows. In addition, separate top 10 lists for just movies and shows will be available when you switch over to either the Movies or TV show tab in the app.
These lists will be updated daily, says Netflix, and are intended to help users find out what titles everyone is watching. Before, Netflix had rows featuring both popular and trending content — but these didn’t rank content in order.
The shows and films making the list will also receive a special “top 10” badge wherever they appear on Netflix. That means if you’re searching for something to watch or browsing through your recommendations, it will be easier to see if a top 10 program is among your search results or personalized suggestions.
Netflix says this is the first time it’s ever rolled out a top 10 ranking system. But the company has been experimenting with the top 10 feature before today in markets including the U.K. and Mexico. Users responded well to those additions, which is why the company decided to roll out its top 10 lists worldwide, the company says.
The Top 10 list will appear on your Netflix homescreen, but the list’s actual position will vary based on how relevant the shows and films are to you. For example, if you only watched documentaries and horror, a top 10 list filled with teen rom-com’s and comedies may not appear as high on the screen for you as it would for others.
The list itself is also designed in a way that makes it stand out from the other rows of recommendations. Instead of just displaying image thumbnails of the titles, it includes big numerals to show how those titles are ranking.
“When you watch a great movie or TV show, you share it with family and friends, or talk about it at work, so other people can enjoy it too. We hope these top 10 lists will help create more of these shared moments, while also helping all of us find something to watch more quickly and easily,” explained Netflix in a statement about the launch.
The feature arrives at a time when Netflix is feeling the pressure from increased streaming competition. User growth in the U.S. has been falling short, at the same time that rights holders pull back their content for their own rival streaming services, like NBCU’s Peacock and AT&T/WarnerMedia’s HBO Max, for example. Netflix is producing more originals than ever, but many of these are now of middling quality or are cheaper-to-produce reality programs. It hasn’t yet won a series race at the Emmy’s and its big bet on Scorsese’s “The Irishman” was one of the bigger snubs from this year’s Oscars.
The company has never been fully transparent about viewership metrics. It only releases numbers when a show or film breaks a milestone of some sort — like “The Witcher” and the 76 million households who “chose to watch” the series (meaning they watched for at least 2 minutes, indicating an intentional choice). The company also dismisses third-party estimates, like those from Nielsen, as undercounting its true viewer numbers.
The top 10 list doesn’t offer any hard metrics, but can at least help point to popular programming and other breakout successes Netflix may have in the future.
The top 10 lists are rolling out now to users worldwide, so you may not see your list just yet. The above photos only sample lists, not the current top 10 in a specific market, Netflix notes.