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5 Steps to Understanding Facebook Page Insights

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Facebook logoFacebook Insights is an aptly named tool that provides useful information about a company’s Facebook page. But understanding it can be a challenge.

Page administrators can click on “Insights” at the top of the page above the cover photo to access the product.

The first page is the Overview, which contains five sections: Page Likes, Post Reach, Engagement, Your 5 Most Recent Posts and Pages to Watch.

Although the administrator can click into more details information for each section, a newcomer will find it is better to stay focused on the Overview page in the beginning.

1) Page Likes

The Page Likes box shows two key data points: 1) the total likes and increase or decrease from the previous week; 2) the new likes and increase or decrease from the previous week.

Most active Facebook pages will usually see an increase in the total Likes from week to week.

In fact, some inactive pages also see an increase from people who discover them from Facebook search results or other means. Some pages will get Likes even if they haven’t had a single post in months.

The new Likes is much more variable and may see increases or decreases from week to week.

Last week a great post may have gone viral and spiked the numbers; this week the new Likes will be down because none of them go viral.

Pay more attention to the total Likes number and the growth rate. If the increase is weak, or if it declines, the page requires much more care and attention.

2) Post Reach

Post Reach uses the same type of numbers: 1) total reach for the week and whether it increased or decreased from the previous week; 2) total post reach and the week-over-week change.

Total reach includes post reach and other means of reaching the page such as using the Facebook search box.

One way to understand how well a page is reaching its Likes with new posts is by dividing post reach by the Likes to get a ratio.

Sites with a reach higher than the number of Likes is doing exceptionally well. Facebook has reported that the average post reaches 16 percent of page Likes. Other companies report much lower percentages.

3) Engagement

Great engagement drives an increase in both Likes and reach.

The engagement box shows the number of times someone has Liked a post, commented on it, shared it or clicked on a link within the post.

Some reports put the post engagement rate at less than 1 percent of total Likes. But the engagement rate varies quite a bit by industry. News pages usually have a high engagement rate, while retail pages have a low one.

Pages with more Likes tend to have a lower engagement rate, as do pages that post infrequently.

4) Your 5 Most Recent Posts

The box for most recent posts breaks down the above three metrics on a post-by-post basis.

On the far left, note the date and especially the time of the post. Timing is an important factor in understanding when to post in order to get the highest reach and engagement.

Another factor in getting better reach is the content of the post itself. Note the total reach in the fifth column and compare it to the post type and content to understand why one post may have reached five times as many Likes as another post.

5) Pages to Watch

This report is often the most overlooked one. The default view may not have any pages to watch.

In that case, click on the blue button that says Add Pages and use the popup search box to find pages in the same industry or geographic location.

The result will show total likes and growth rate, number of posts and engagement rate for the week.

If a competitor has more likes, grows faster, posts more often or gets a higher engagement rate, it again means that the page needs more care and attention.

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