Updated: Sep 18, 2021
If your business is using Facebook, you need to be using your insights. It’s packed full of data that can help you get the most from the social network.
When using Facebook for business, you need a structured approach that links your social media efforts to real business goals.
Analytics give you loads of valuable data that can help you track & measure your results, allowing you to refine your strategy and measure what's working for your business.
Understanding how and when people interact with the content you post on Facebook is also an important way to make sure the Facebook algorithm works for you, rather than against you. This starter guide to Facebook Insights will help you understand how and why each metric is important to your overall social media strategy.
1. Overview | How your page is doing
Apart from showing the key metrics of your page (page summary) it also shows key metrics of your most recent posts as well as a comparison of your page with other similar pages.
It's great for a quick assessment of your page performance at a glance. This section shows you the key metrics of your business page for the last 7 days, such as page likes, post engagement, and post reach. It'll also tell you the % change from the previous period & graphs for the period if you prefer visuals.
You can easily see if your efforts are paying off in the way you want, whether it's growth (page likes & reach) or driving engagement (comments & shares).
Here's a rundown of the page summary sections you might see:
Actions on page: combined total clicks for your contact information & call to action button.
Page views: total views of your page, including people not logged in to Facebook.
Page previews: number of times people hovered over page information to see a preview.
Page likes: number of new likes.
Post reach: number of people who saw your posts in their news feed.
Story reach: number of people who saw your stories.
Recommendations: number of people who recommended your page.
Post engagement: combined total of post likes, comments, shares & other engagements.
Responsiveness: evaluation of how often & how fast you respond to messages.
Videos: number of video views of 3 seconds or more.
Page followers: number of new followers in specified time period.
Orders: orders and earnings for those who use shop features.
5 most recent posts
This shows the key metrics of the 5 most recent posts, date & time of publishing, caption, post type, reach & engagement. This section is great for seeing which of your recent posts are performing well, so you know what's working. If one post has outperformed the others, you can experiment with more posts like that.
Pages to watch is one of the features I have sworn I need to try using! It gives a quick comparison of your page with other pages you want to keep an eye on. Choose the pages you want to watch and when you click, it'll show you their top performing posts of theirs for the current week. See how you're performing among your competitors and stay in touch with what's trending in your industry. It's a feature I keep forgetting to set up as you can see, but it's on my list for this week!
TIP: If you want to analyse your data further, you can export data with the button at the top of your page summary as a spreadsheet.
2. Likes | Where your page likes came from
The likes tab allows you to see beyond the number of likes your page has, it shows growth, average and even the source of your page likes.
i) The first graph shows you the overall trend of your page likes. If the graph is showing a plateau or a downward trend, try to dig in to it and understand the cause. This example shows a quarterly graph and 40 new likes in that period - not great, Metamorfosis - this has shown me just how much my page suffered while I was off sick!
ii) This second graph shows you the daily growth of your page likes and breaks down the proportion of organic or paid likes/unlikes your page gets. While it’s great to have positive net likes, we should monitor the unlikes trend, too. Don't focus too much on that though, anyone unliking the page may be deactivating their account, and if they don't like your page any more, it's unlikely that they wanted to be a customer anyway, and we always want quality likes that want to see our posts and engage!
iii) This last graph tells you where your page likes came from, e.g. directly from your page, from your paid ads, or page suggestions that Facebook shows to users. For example, if you are running Facebook page likes ads, you should see the “ads” portion increasing.
TIP: Set your date range: at the top of the page, you can set the date range you are interested in - drag the indicators on the graph, select “1W” (for 1 week), “1M” (for 1 month), or “1Q” (for 1 quarter), or even set specified start and end dates.
Know your like and unlike sources:
If you click or drag to select a date range on any of the graphs, it will show you the like and unlike sources for that selected period.
Compare your averages:
If you click on any of the metrics on the right of the graphs, you’ll get two averages for that metric - the average for the last period and your average for the current period.
3. Reach | What's your reach & what affects it?
The reach tab tells you about the reach of your page & posts, and the factors than are increasing or decreasing your reach.
Post reach: This graph shows the number of people your posts have reached (organically or through paid promotions). It can be a quick way to assess your organic reach over time, or if your ads are working.
Reactions, comments & shares: When a post has engagement, Facebook will show it to more people as the engagement implies that people are interested in the post. More engagement, higher reach.
Hide, report as spam & unlikes:
Hide posts, hide all posts, report as spam, and unlike page are considered as negative feedback. They are the ways users tell Facebook that they don’t want to see your posts. Facebook will accordingly show those posts to fewer people. As you’ll want to keep this negative feedback low, it’s a good idea to monitor this graph.
Total reach is the number of people who saw any activity from your page such as posts, posts to your page, ads, mentions & check-ins. Just like post reach, it’s a great way to see how both organic & paid reach has grown. For example, the graph below is my total reach for the past quarter, and you can clearly see where I was off sick!
4. Page views | Who viewed which page section
Total views is the number of times people viewed your page. If the same person visits your page twice, it’ll be counted as two views.
Total people who viewed is the number of people who have viewed your page. If the same person visited your page twice, here it’ll be counted as one as opposed to the total views section This figure should be equal to or less than your total views.
Top sources will show the top five traffic sources that have directed people to your page. Knowing this allows you to increase your efforts on those sources if you want to increase your page views. You may see things like Facebook, Google etc here.
TIP: Breakdown the data: You can break the page views section metrics down by certain characteristics. For total views, you can break it down by section of your page) as shown above. For total people who viewed, you can break it down by section, age and gender, country, city, and even device! This can help you understand more about the people who are interested in your page and then you can target even more effectively.
5. Page actions | What people did on your page
The Actions on Page tab shows you what people do when they are on your page. The few 'actions' that Facebook considered are clicking on 'get directions', clicking on your phone number, website or action button.
The graph below shows the number of actions people have taken on your page. If you are a local business, you might pay more attention to the number of times people want to get directions to your business or call your phone number. If you are an online business, you might be more interested in the number of website clicks. Your action button is the big blue one on your page - if you've not configured that yet, go do it!
You can break down this section by the number of people who took the respective actions on your page. My action button is Whatsapp and directs people straight to sending my business a Whatsapp message, but there are several options to play with depending on your business and needs.
6. Posts | How well your posts are performing
The posts tab contains all the information about your posts, such as reach and engagement.
When your fans are online. Others will disagree, but I firmly believe that there isn’t a 'universal best time' to post on Facebook, but there is the best time for your brand to post on Facebook. That's where this section comes in handy, it tells you how active your Facebook fans are, on average, on each day or the week and each hour of the day. You can see my fans dip offline between 3pm & 9pm.
Post types will show you how each type of post (e.g. link, photo, or video) works in terms of average reach & engagement. You can tell which type of posts works best on your page, and you can adjust your strategy from there. E.g. if you find that videos have the highest average reach & engagement, you could try posting more videos.
All posts published section lists all the posts published on your page & the relevant information, published date & time, caption, post type, targeting, reach & engagement.
TIP: Sort your posts: You can sort your posts by published date, reach, or engagement (post clicks or reactions) by clicking on the title of the column
7. Videos | How videos are performing
The videos tab shows how well your videos are performing.
Video views: Facebook considers 3 seconds or more as a video view
10 second views: shows the number of times videos were viewed for 10 seconds or more. If you video is less than 10 seconds long - Facebook counts a 10 second views when someone watches 97% of it. While this numbers tends to be lower than 3 second video views, it is generally considered more indicative of engaged views.
Top videos: here you can see the top 5 videos viewed for 3 seconds or more and which were viewed the most. It will give you an idea of which video content is performing well.
8. People | Who liked, saw or engaged with your page
The people tab shows an overview of the people who liked your page, saw your posts or engaged with your posts or page.
Your fans are people who have liked your page. This section is brilliant and shows you who your fans are by age, gender, location & language. You really get to know who your audience is from this section and it enables you to understand what they like.
People reached & people engaged
People reached are the people who saw your posts in the past 28 days and people engaged are the people who liked, commented on, or shared any of your posts or engaged with your page (e.g. sent a message) in the past 28 days. You can toggle between the two at the top of the graph.
I hope this has been useful in helping you to understand your Facebook page insights and how you can use them to both set and reach your business goals.
My recommendation would be to set aside some time either weekly or monthly, to sit and decode the relevant insights and compare to the previous insights data. This will show you how you're getting on and what is working to help you towards your goals.
As always, if you need me, I'm here!