To start off, do not confuse Facebook analytics with Facebook Insights.
A Google search of “Facebook analytics” produces results filled with the names of software companies eager to sell you a program that will chew up your Facebook user data and spit it back out in reports and graphs and other statistics. For our purposes, none of this is necessary.
Facebook Insights gives you all the information your small business needs about the activity on your business’s Facebook page. Insights lets you keep track of what’s going on with your Facebook page: who visits, who likes your page, who un-likes your page, what time of day people liked your page – it goes on and on. Using Insights, you can track user interaction with your page and allows you to monitor the number of active users to understand and improve your page’s performance.
Facebook Insights is FREE. Insights gives you all the software reporting you will need (at least until your page “likes” reach into the thousands), in a format easy to understand. And the data can be exported to Excel if you want to see the numbers in a different format or if you want to save a snapshot of what happened the week of July 9 and then compare it to what happened the week of July 24.
Facebook reports are updated regularly, in real time. Want to know which of your posts got the most views? Find out using Facebook Insights. Curious about the time of day most of your visitors come to you page? Insights will tell you.
Click on Insights Tab to Open
Insights can be found on the top of your Facebook page. Click on the Insights tab to open.
Once you click the Insights tab, the first thing that appears is the Page Summary for the last seven days. Below is an example of activity from a small business.
Insights gives you data about “organic” and “paid” activity. (“Organic” in this instance refers to activity on your page that just happens, not anything you do to make it happen, like promote or boost the post.) There is no paid activity to report for this page.
When you are inside the Insights section, the menu that appears on the left side of the page gives you all the available options.
Each one of these topics, i.e., “Promotions,” “Followers,” etc., opens a report using data based on your page activity.
You can click through each one and determine the information most important to you.
The PEOPLE Tab
The PEOPLE tab from the Insights menu provides especially interesting information.
Look at this bounty! Number of women fans, number of men fans, what percentage falls into various age groups, what country and city they come from, and what language they speak.
Why is this information useful? It’s good to know where your fans are located and how old they are. In some of our other blogs we’ve talked about the importance of knowing who your ideal customer is. Facebook Insights will tell you if you’re reaching this group.
<<For additional info on determining your ideal customer, see our blog from 5/11/17 "What's a Referral Plan and Why You Need One." >>
The Overview Tab
The Overview tab brings up some intriguing data. We especially like the “Pages to Watch” graphic. You can specify your competitors and Facebook will show you the responses their posts get. Interesting!
By monitoring activity on your page, you can create posts similar to the ones that performed well. You can post at the times of day when your fans are online and likely to see what you’ve put up. You can keep an eye on how your competitors’ posts are doing, and if they’ve done something you like and that has performed well, there’s nothing wrong with borrowing an idea and tailoring it to your business.
Once your fans number in the thousands, you can start to think about buying one of those Facebook analytics programs to help manage the data, but until then, Facebook Insights is all the reporting you need.
And remember – every day is a new day. Keep checking back.