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Facebook has recently begun beta testing updated page analytics with a swanky new look.

I’ve been playing about with the new system over the weekend, and while there’s plenty to be said for the new aesthetic, is there really any more useful insight on offer here?

Let’s take a look...

The new looks starts in the admin panel, with a snapshot update of your current performance:

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5750/1-blog-half.png

As you can see, The Econsultancy Page's reach is down this week.

However, Facebook has a rather odd habit of updating on different days, so this figure may have fallen because I looked at this on a Monday.

Less happens on our page at weekends (although typically more happens on most pages, so make sure you know which type of page you are) so the figure drops.

Benchmark this on the same day every week. 

Clearer overview data

When you click through to analytics, you’ll be presented with a much clearer overview of recent activity:

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5751/2-blog-full.png

The date range is highlighted, and there’s some simple graphs showing how you’ve done week on week.

Remember that if you carry out campaigns on Facebook then week-to-week benchmarking only provides a cursory view. Make sure you compare this over extended periods.  

There’s also a snapshot of your recent posts, showing engagement, Likes, and a useful breakdown of fans/non-fans, allowing you to check your organic outreach (clue: it’s probably not a lot): 

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5752/3-blog-full.png

Note the highlighted ‘boost’ buttons, continuing Facebook’s crazed hunt for revenue.

Moving on, we’re still limited to a 90-day date range, but there’s a simple slider and some clearer graphs showing page growth: 

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5753/4-blog-full.png

People interacting with your page

There’s also a section highlighting when you received Likes, and where they came from. Extremely useful for mapping campaigns and checking what worked and what didn’t: 

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5754/5-blog-full.png 

Facebook has also made benchmarking easier, adding automated ‘compare over time’ dividers. Just click on ‘Organic’ or ‘Paid’ to track how well you’re doing: 

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5755/6-blog-full.png

Measure Tab and App performance

A range of graphs show which tabs visitors hit on your page, who referred them, and activity and mentions of your page by others within Facebook:

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5756/7-blog-full.png

Unfortunately the information is presented in a counter-intuitive way. The smaller numbers hover at the top of the graph. In the picture above, the light grey and purple represent much smaller figures than the blue. 

The best time of day to post

Next up we've got some seemingly useful charts showing when  fans are online: 

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5757/8-blog-full.png

Unfortunately this is a bit convoluted, and not nearly as revealing as you might think.

The figures displayed are the number of your fans who saw any post on Facebook on given days/hours.

Based on this, it would appear that around 4pm on a Thursday is our best bet, but as these are figures for any posts, your content could still be overwhelmed by updates from friends, promoted posts, or just standout content from competitors.

If you’re going for the rush hour, make sure you use content that really pops, otherwise you could easily be buried. 

We’ve also got a chart showing the best performing types of content, but as we never post just a link on our page, I’m going to assume this is also averaged across all of Facebook, something which should be made clearer: 

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5758/9-blog-full.png 

Every page is different. What works for Coke isn’t going to work for Econsultancy, or Jeyes Fluid, so don’t rely on platform averages. 

Finally we have ‘people’ graphs, showing us a slightly tidied-up version of existing analytics:

https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/5759/10-blog-full.png 

These kinds of demographics do have their uses for some pages, but they lack the required detail to be insightful (We are apparently very popular in South Korea, despite a lack of content targeted at the market. Maybe it’s my stylish K-Pop good looks.)

As always all of this can be exported to CSV. 

Overall this is an improvement on Facebook's existing analytics, but there are still too many average figures and a lack of click-through without downloading.

Page analytics give you a good overview of how well you’re doing, but for more granular detail you must make sure you have tracking attached to all your content, and utilise a variety of analytics tools to gain a clearer insight. 

Matt Owen

Published 30 July, 2013 by Matt Owen

Matt Owen was formerly Head of Social at Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or hook up on LinkedIn.

203 more posts from this author

Comments (9)

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Edwyn Raine

Edwyn Raine, Digital Strategist at Evolution 7

No surprise that the do not want to show YoY comparisons haha

over 3 years ago

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Nick Stamoulis of Brick Marketing

I'm still waiting for the perfect analytics tool from anyone. I wish I could merge Google Analytics, Moz, Facebook and a bunch of other software into one so I could get the real, real picture in one go. Someday!

over 3 years ago

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Nikki

I might be wrong, but I think the 'best post types' is somehow a reflection of your own posts, simply because the data that I'm seeing is very different to yours. (e.g. rank is: Status, photo, link, video). As I say, though, I might be wrong and some explanation from FB on how this is calculated would be incredibly useful! I'd assumed 'average reach and engagement' was an average taken for our posts, but it'd be good to know as - like you say - pages can be v different and what works for one won't work for the other!

I found the 'people reached' tab on 'people' useful, though - it showed us that although our page demographics are skewed towards the upper age brackets, we do still reach a fair few in the younger brackets - definitely food for thought when planning content.

over 3 years ago

Matt Owen

Matt Owen, Head of Social at Econsultancy

Hi @Nikki - you may well be right, sorry, should have been clearer in the article. I'm unsure, as we never post just links (or haven't in about two years at any rate - everything we've posted has an image attached, hence slight confusion. Thanks for the comment :)

over 3 years ago

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Gale Davy

I would love to try the new Facebook insights, however this happens when I try.
Click on Try the New Page Insights. Get a screen that says "Try the New Page Insights"
Click again on Try the New Page Insights. Get a screen that says, "You are using Facebook as Scientists in School
To access this page, you'll need to switch from using Facebook as your page to using Facebook as yourself."
Click on Continue as (myself). Takes me to the Scientists in School homepage.
I've been on this loop several times. Not sure what it means. Thinking it means that FB has a vile sense of humour.

over 3 years ago

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Rebecca

Nick - I work for an arts organisation in London and currently SumAll (https://sumall.com/). It's currently in beta and is free to use - I haven't been using it for that long but so far it has been great. It combines all social media analytics, google analytics, ad words, moz and it looks nice too!

It's helping with our current online media evaluation and I'm sure it will be useful to others too. It would be good to hear if anyone else is using it and how it compares to the individual product stats offers from their point of view.

over 3 years ago

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iain martin

I think this is another wasted opportunity from Facebook. Poor data visualisation and still lacking the key info:

1. Data further back than 90 days
2. Engagement as a % of fans rather than in absolute terms - PTAT is irrelevant in itself

over 3 years ago

George Cole

George Cole, Digital Marketing Manager at TN

I like the fact you can now see how many fans you've gained organically, versus paid. I had assumed most of our fans were coming via the small amount of paid impressions we pay for, but actually - most of our fan base growth is still organic, which backed up the fact that we're doing the right things in advertising our social comms channels in our outbound correspondence thankfully!

over 3 years ago

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Jason

It is interesting to note that Facebook is growing in terms of the data that is presents to its users. What started as a fun game in high school has turned into a great conversion point for businesses. Great post!

over 3 years ago

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