A Comprehensive Guide to Facebook's New Insights
Last month, Facebook began rolling out improvements to Insights and have since been inviting Page admins to give it a try. It appeared on my Pages yesterday and as such, I thought it an ideal time to give you the run down on what’s new.
At the moment, those who are invited to and want to give the new Insights a try will be able to switch back to the old at any time. However, once they have switched back, they won’t be allowed to switch to the new version again until it’s available to everyone.
According to Facebook: “The new Page Insights includes improvements to the way we organize and report metrics to make Page Insights more simple, actionable and focused on people.”
So, let’s have a look what’s changed:
People Talking About This
What’s new: The way that this is broken down has changed to engagement in order to show:
◦ People engaged
◦ Unique clicks (Likes, Comments and Shares)
◦ Other Page activity such as mentions, check-ins and posts by others that appear on your page
This has been brought about by the feedback that Facebook has received from Page admins, as users have wanted more detailed insight into the actions that make up People Talking About This.
Virality has now disappeared, to be replaced instead with engagement rate, which is the percentage of people that interacted with a post by Liking, Commenting or Sharing. Viral reach is now bundled together with organic reach, which is further broken down for total reach into paid and organic.
Previously, the virality metric was used as a way to measure post quality. However, it didn’t measure clicks, which it now does, giving a clearer insight into post quality. This is now called engagement rate in the new Insights.
The idea of this is to “reward quality posts with greater reach” so that marketers and businesses can gauge the reaction to posts by looking at all interactions, both positive and negative.
Score card for posts
This is shown on Insights as a “post-specific score card” and is intended to help identify content that followers interact with. This is intended to give admins a better idea of the kind of content that their fans want to see, so that they can more effectively tailor posts in the future and gain a better reach.
Looking at it in more detail
The new Insights are broken down into four main categories: Overview, Page, Posts and People. The dashboard is actually pretty clean looking and easy to understand, which is something that Facebook were aiming for to help business owners get to grips with using Insights properly.
This shows what’s been happening on the page in the past 7 days and basically summarizes Likes, Reach and Posts, as well as post reach, engaged users and engagement actions and gives more detail for the last five posts made. This can also be expanded by clicking on the “See All Posts” link at the bottom of the page.
This is where you notice that the People Talking About This metric has gone, something that will be welcomed by many marketers, as it missed out a lot of important information such as photo views, clicks on links and so on.
As before, you can see how the page has fared in the past week and whether engagement, Likes and reach have improved, with the usual percentage with a green or red arrow next to it.
Clicking on either of Likes, Reach or Engagement cards takes you to the relevant section on the page tab. The first section is Page Likes which shows the total number of fans, how many have been lost and gained and where they’ve come from. The latter has been altered to show 5 data sources, rather than the 17 seen previously, which makes the whole thing a lot more understandable.
Here, the only criticism I would have is that the colour difference on the chart between “organic likes” and “paid likes” is so minimal that it can barely be seen.
However, saying that you can still click on dips and peaks on the graph to see where Likes have comes from and on which dates. Where your page Likes come from is broken down into another graph that includes mobile, on-page, page suggestions and so on.
Post Reach gives you a summary of the reach of the Page and what helped to boost it, such as the actions taken by fans in terms of positive and negative feedback. It’s worth pointing out here that reach will be reduced for posts that have had any negative comments.
The Post Reach tab allows you to see how interactions have been obtained, either organically or paid. You can also compare post performance over time and see whether a post has been Hidden, Unliked or Reported as spam.
Page Visits allows you to see where traffic to your Page originated, which tabs have seen the most activities and any other user activity on the Page.
Onto the next tab now where page admins find a grid showing post content and how it has performed. You can filter using paid or organic or you can use the filter to show Likes only, Comments only and level of engagement.
This is a big improvement on the old insights as it gives a much better overview of engagement rate, which is now a metric all of its very own! This gives a percentage value and should prove useful for marketers to pin down how much engagement certain types of posts are getting.
The formula for this is: Engagement Rate = Engaged Users/Reached Users x 100 to arrive at the percentage.
When Your Fans are Online gives a graph of peak times and troughs when your posts are seen. Again, this is very useful and will somewhat answer the question of “when’s the best time to post” for many business owners.
The Best Post Types tab in this section gives you an overview of the kind of posts that work the best, such as status updates, photos, links and videos. Again, this is useful for content planning and strategy.
The People Tab
This gives an overview, in graph form, of your user demographics and is similar to the old Insights. It also gives a list of the countries where your visitors originate, as well as the language they speak. The main change here is that it gives you a comparison tool so that you can compare your user demographics with the rest of Facebook, although I’m not really sure why that’s relevant.
People Reached and People Engaged are presented in a similar way and allow you to see if you’re reaching your target audience when it comes to location and age ranges.
The new Insights are very clear and easy to understand, so should help Page admins to really pin down where they are going wrong with content, how they can improve and if they are reaching their target audience.
For the time being, no changes have been made to the API or to the Export feature, but it’s probably safe to say that these too will change once Facebook has had enough feedback on new Insights.
All in all I’d say that it’s an improvement and I’m sure it will be welcomed by Page owners with no real technical ability when it comes to analytics. The Posts grid is extremely useful for seeing the kind of engagement you’re getting with each post and the new ‘When Your Fans Are Online’ feature will be invaluable for many users.
I found, for example, that many of my fans saw my posts in the late afternoon and evenings, rather than early mornings and this gives a good idea of when you can experiment with different times to get the best effect. I also found that my users see my posts pretty uniformly across the week, although mid-week and weekends were slightly higher than the rest of the week.
The paid vs organic features are useful for seeing the effectiveness of paid campaigns against your own efforts too and I’m sure that the new Insights will prove a hit with Page owners and marketers alike. The sheer simplicity of it means that it’s a perfect tool to use when you need a good, quick overview and the ability to see exactly what kinds of posts perform is great.
What’s your favourite new feature of the Facebook insights? Let us know in the comments below.