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This Secret Hack Helps You Find Better Stuff on Netflix

The Netflix algorithm pales in comparison to this trick.

Shelby Brown Editor II
Shelby Brown (she/her/hers) is an editor for CNET's services team. She covers tips and tricks for apps, operating systems and devices, as well as mobile gaming and Apple Arcade news. Shelby also oversees Tech Tips coverage. Before joining CNET, she covered app news for Download.com and served as a freelancer for Louisville.com.
  • She received the Renau Writing Scholarship in 2016 from the University of Louisville's communication department.
Shelby Brown
3 min read
Netflix streaming service

Before Netflix's password-sharing fees kick in for US subscribers, you may want to stream the latest (or classic) titles on the service. It's true that Netflix's list of recommendations for movies and TV shows can lead to some gems, but it's not always the best way to find something new to watch. You could be passing up other niche genres that you'd enjoy.

But guess what? There's a secret trick for filtering Netflix's catalog by genre to find exactly what you're searching for: Netflix codes. Learn how to use Netflix codes to choose your own next binge-watch instead of accepting the algorithm's suggestions. 

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What are Netflix codes?

Netflix codes are based on a number system that corresponds to a different genre or subgenre, which the algorithm uses to categorize and serve up recommendations. For example, instead of scrolling through Romance, search for movies using 8883, or 5475 (romantic comedies) for more specific results. You can also get into the hype surrounding code 9875, which will take you down a rabbit hole of true crime.

So far, Netflix has about 36,000 codes. Note that codes can only be used on Netflix's website and not in its apps. 


This is what you'll see when you visit the Netflix codes website. 

Screenshot by CNET

Where do I find Netflix's secret menu?

Check out netflix-codes.com for a full list. There are about 20 categories like anime, foreign movies and classic movies. Those categories are broken down into more specific subgenres. For example, horror movies -- coded 8711 -- houses 12 more codes like deep-sea horror movies, zombie horror movies, teen screams and more. 

How do I use Netflix codes?

The easiest way is by installing the Better Browse for Netflix extension for Chrome. Here's how:

1. Go to the Chrome Web Store and search "Better Browse for Netflix."
2. Click Add to Chrome.
3. Click Add Extension
4. Log into your Netflix account in a new tab.

At the top of the Netflix home screen, you should see a new option -- Browse All -- next to My List. Click that to search manually or scroll through the subgenres available. 


Use the code 5475 and you'll unlock a trove of romantic comedies on Netflix. 

Screenshot by CNET

Another way is through the Netflix codes website. Here's how:

1. Visit netflix-codes.com in your PC or mobile browser. 
2. Find the genre or subgenre you want to explore. 
3. Tap the code next to the genre or subgenre you want.
4. If you're on a device that has the Netflix app installed, the app should open and take you directly to the genre or subgenre you chose. If you don't have the app installed, it'll open Netflix through the browser and you can view the specific movies and shows available. 
5. Tap the title you want to watch. 

You can also use the Netflix codes manually in your browser. Here's how: 

1. Visit netflix-codes.com in your PC or mobile browser. 
2. Find the genre or subgenre you want to explore. 
3. In another tab, type in <http://www.netflix.com/browse/genre/INSERTNUMBER>, but replace INSERTNUMBER with the specific genre or subgenre code.
4. You'll be taken to Netflix to peruse the titles available in that section. 

From there, you can either make a mental note of the movie you want to watch and go back to the app on your preferred device, or log in to watch in your browser.