Posted June 19, 2013 4:54 pm by with 2 comments

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facebook insightsClick on the Insights tab on your Facebook Page and you’ll find a wealth of information. There are graphs and grids, percentages and mini bullhorns. So much data! And yet, every time I try to interpret the data, I come away more confused than ever.

I’m a smart girl. I read. I ask questions. And still, Facebook Insights leave me more perplexed than not. I’m being straight with you, so hear me out.

Part of the problem lies the contradictions: I have less “Fans” but more “Friends of Fans.” I have two posts with the same Reach, same Engaged Users but one has a virality score of 1.91%, the other is zero. How is that possible?

A lot of the problems stem from the fact that Facebook can’t just measure clicks like anyone else. They had to make up their own vocabulary to go with their metrics.

In the end, the best thing you can do with Facebook metrics is use them as a benchmark for future stats. If my best virality score is 1.91%, anything higher than that means I’m moving up in the FB world.

Today, Facebook admitted there was a problem:

In recent months, we’ve been gathering feedback about our Page Insights tool. What we heard is that we need to make Page Insights more actionable. It should be clearer to businesses how to use this information to drive the results they care about.

And they finally broke down and agreed to change their silly terms to words we all understand:

So moving forward, we’re including clicks in this metric and renaming ‘virality’ to ‘engagement rate’ to be clearer in our definition.


Next, they’re breaking their People Are Talking metric into its parts so you can see how people actually interacted with the post. Was it a like, a tag, a check-in or did they leave a comment.

They’re expanding that effort with a new data card for all posts. It looks like this:

post details facebook

Right now, you only see this type of metrics on posts you paid to boost. Looks like going forward, it will be available for all. Now this is data you can use.

Finally, they’re adding a level of depth to the People page. Instead of just reporting who saw your page, they’re now giving you details on who interacted with your page. Again, so much more helpful.

page breakdown facebook


I freely admit that I’m not good with numbers. That’s why I need analytics that spell out the correlation between my content, my visitors and which bits of content get them excited. Looking at these upcoming changes, I think I’ll finally get a handle on what’s working and what’s not.

Here’s to clarity in reporting. Thanks Facebook.

  • Good Tips and amazing Update from Facebook.

  • starshiplove

    These are good but there are more improvements that Facebook has to make to make people understand what metrics are really important. The problem is that most people aren’t social media experts and all they see on every page is how many likes a page has. They don’t understand how statistics like the “People talking about” statistic are computed. This is why there are so many companies listed at where people do nothing but buy likes because that’s the only metric that people really understand. Facebook has to make the analytics into a teaching tool that illustrates to people exactly what metrics really matter and how Facebook advertising can help improve that for you.