Blog Header
Nevo David

Everything I know about the GitHub trending feed

March 23, 2024

Nevo David

Getting into the GitHub trending feed is the dream, especially in higher places. In Novu, we were trending on the top spot for almost a week and got around 7000 stars. You immediately rush with tons of stars, contributors, and Discord members when you are there. The success of many companies relies on this feed.

Getting there can be a bit harder. Over the last three years, I have gathered as much information as possible on that feed—here is what you need to know.

How to be “chosen” to be there.

I have seen a funny Reddit conversation in which a person talks about how GitHub chooses who to put on the trending feed. Many people say that GitHub chooses only AI repositories—funny and very wrong.

The algorithm has an algorithm. In my taste, it’s super simple compared to what people think.

Here are the things you need:

  • Get a lot of engagement before the trending time - that includes stars, contributions, forks, clones (all in all)

  • Bring traffic from multiple sources. For example, during Hacktoberfest, I sent people directly from Hacktoberfest to GitHub to give me a star. I got almost 3k stars in a week and didn’t trend on GitHub—make sure you squeeze multiple traffic sources into the trending feed.

  • Time the traffic (read the next section)

I did all of the above, got tons of stars, and didn’t get to the trending feed

That actually happened to me many times, and here is my explanation - that’s all theoretical but makes a lot of sense.

The GitHub trending feed refreshes every day at 12:00 AM UTC, sometimes an hour after or before, but you should aim for that. You can also track it very easily in your timezone in the Gitroom platform (it’s free)

What happened to me many times was that I brought a lot of traffic after the trending time, and by the next trending, I already had almost no traffic.

And believe me, it was a crazy launch with many resources.
I assume the trending feed doesn’t measure too many hours before it refreshes (a few hours to a maximum of a day).

So here is what I would do:

  • Do the launch around 4-6 hours before the GitHub trending feed refreshes or 5 hours after. Never be too close to the current refresh, as it might not calculate for the newer one.

  • Make sure you have multiple sources: Reddit, DEV, Linkedin, and X.

  • Avoid aiming for the weekend; you will have less activity on GitHub that day. The core team is probably on vacation.

  • Hold with merging pull requests - do it over the launch.

  • Put some bounties with Algora on super easy bugs to get more GitHub activity—again, aim for the peak of the launch.

Encourage people to help you with stars

I have encountered lately that when people reach a specific milestone and push hard over social media to help them get there, they actually get there faster.

So, if you are at 2000 stars, write some posts on X that say you are trying to get to 3000 stars. This will help you push yourself further. It works wonderfully.

In the following newsletter, I will publish some of my clients' results, what works better, what works less, where the highest CTA is, and where to put most of your focus.

If you want to increase your chances of getting in the trending feed, register for the Gitroom platform. It will help you time everything better and measure the trending feed.

In the meantime, check some of the older resources:

Join our Discord

Our discord is the #1 place to launch your stuff, get visibility, and talk to other open-source founders and maintainers - it’s 100% free. Join here: