11 Facebook Ads Metrics to Track (and 2 You Should Simply Ignore)
Reporting is a key component to any Facebook advertising campaign.
Which ads have the best CTR? How much have you spent? What's your ROI?
A great Facebook Ads report should answer each of these questions and more.
But it's easy to get lost in all of the metrics Facebook Ads offers. In fact, there are currently 350 different metrics and ad terms in Facebook Ads Manager!
A report that included all 350 would be impossible to follow, and many of the metrics would be completely unnecessary depending on the campaign.
What are the most important Facebook Ads metrics to include in your dashboards and reports?
In this post, we'll go over the top 11 metrics you should pay attention to. Plus, learn which 2 metrics you should simply ignore!
Let's get started.
11 Facebook Ad Metrics You Must Track
First of all, you may be asking, where can I find all of these metrics?
If you go to your Facebook Ads business manager, you have the option to customize your columns here:
In this dropdown, you'll find a full list of the metrics available in Ads Manager.
Once you've determined the most important metrics for your campaigns, save them as a preset in the bottom left corner. (You already have a few default presets that we will go over in a moment.)
If you use AgencyAnalytics, you'll find the top metrics to include in your reports and dashboards for Facebook Ads here:
Facebook Ads dashboard by AgencyAnalytics
You can add any of these metrics to your reports or dashboard for quick, easy updates on your campaign performance.
I've divided the metrics into three groups based on how they appear in Facebook Ads manager. Each of these groups are default column options in your ad account.
The three core groups we'll be looking at are:
Engagement Metrics: These look at how well your ads and creatives appeal to your audience.
Performance Metrics: These look at the results you're achieving and the cost to hit your goals.
Delivery Metrics: These look at the delivery of your campaigns and how much it costs for your ads to be seen.
While all of these metric groups are helpful for every campaign, some are a lot more important, depending on your campaign goals.
For example, engagement metrics are a much more stronger KPI for a content promotion campaign. While for a lead generation campaign, performance metrics are crucial to evaluate the campaign's success.
Now let's dive into each metric.
Results are the total number of times your campaign received its desired outcome.
This is arguably the most important metric of every campaign.
This will vary based on the type of campaign and the goal you have set.
Results will typically be a conversion metric, such as website purchases or leads. However, if you're running a brand awareness campaigns, you may to have traffic or impressions as your target result.
Let's look at a few of the common "Results" types for a campaign:
Website Purchases: Total number of purchases that occurred on your website.
Leads: Total number of Leads acquired on your website.
Form Leads: Facebook now offers "Lead Ads" that allows the user to submit their contact info (which is already pre populated into the form fields) directly within the Facebook app. This result metric counts how many total form submissions occurred.
Custom Conversions (Downloads, Webinar Signups, etc.): You can track any event occuring on your website as a custom conversion using the Facebook Pixel. Downloads for an eBook, webinar signups, or free trials are all possible "Results" you can track for your campaign as a custom conversion.
These are just a few examples. The specific result your campaign is tracking will change depending on what you set as your target. Each campaign will list your result beneath the metric here:
2. Cost per Result
Cost per Result measures how much each desired result (or action) cost.
The formula is: total ad spend / number of results.
On other PPC channels, this metric is most similar to "Cost Per Action" or CPA.
As mentioned before, the result (or action) for your campaign could be a new signup, generating a sale, a form submission, etc. It will differ based on your campaign's goals.
But regardless of your particular campaign's goals, CPA is your most important Facebook Ads metric to measure the success of a campaign.
If a campaign has a CPA of $30 per new lead, but each lead is only worth $15, you know the Facebook Ad campaign has negative returns and isn't performing well.
CPA varies widely by industry. Wordstream compiled CPA data for Facebook showing it range as low as $7.85 in the education industry, and as high as $55 in the tech industry.
3. Result Rate (Conversion Rate)
Result Rate is the percentage of desired results you achieved compared to the total number of impressions.
Result rate is more commonly known as conversion rate across other digital advertising platforms when your "Result" is a lead or action.
The formula for your result rate is: # of Results / Impressions.
Spend is the total amount your ads cost for the selected time period.
This is one of my top metrics to include in a marketing client dashboard, so they can always monitor their PPC budget.
It is necessary to keep an eye on spend to be sure you are in budget, but you also need to monitor other cost metrics (like Cost Per Result and ROAS) to ensure you're generating positive returns.
5. ROAS (Return on Ad Spend)
ROAS (Return on Ad Spend) is the amount of revenue the company receives for every $1 invested into ads.
ROAS is the most telling metric to understand if you have a successful Facebook Ads campaign.
The formula to calculate ROAS is Revenue / Spend.
If you're running an ecommerce campaign and tracking your sales with the Facebook Pixel, you can track ROAS directly in Facebook Ads. For other campaigns, this is something you'll have to calculate based on the value of each result achieved.
Impressions is the number of times your ads were on screen in front of your audience.
The more impressions your ad receives, the higher your brand awareness.
Don't confuse Impressions with Reach. Whereas impressions is the total number of times your ad has been seen, reach is the total number of people who have seen your ad.
One person could see your ad five times. This would count 5 times toward impressions, but only one toward reach.
You also want to look at impressions across publishing platforms to know where your ads are appearing most frequently.
Graph from AgencyAnalytics Facebook Ads Dashboard
7. CPM (Cost Per 1000 Impressions)
CPM (cost per 1000 impressions) is the cost to achieve 1000 impressions.
CPM is a common metric across online advertising. It measures the cost-effectiveness of an ad campaign. It's a great metric to compare cost across different ad publishers and campaigns.
It is also helpful in understanding how pricing is fluctuating for your chosen placement. Remember, Facebook Ads is an auction system. Is your CPA increasing because your target audience is becoming more competitive? Or is it because your conversion rate is plummeting?
Look at CPM to determine if it's your ad placement that is becoming more expensive, as well as compare costs across platforms.
Frequency is the average number of times a person has seen your ad.
This is an especially important metric to measure if you have a very narrow, targeted audience.
While people often need to see an ad multiple times before converting, if they have seen an ad 10+ times, you're likely oversaturating your audience and need to expand your reach.
Keep an eye on frequency, but remember that ultimately if your conversion rate remains high, you probably aren't oversaturating your audience yet.
9. Clicks (Link):
Link clicks is the total number of times people have clicked your ad's link.
The first step to an exceptional Facebook Ads campaign is to confirm that your ad is being delivered by looking at impressions.
Next, you need to confirm that your ad is engaging! If no one is interacting with your ad, you're not going to achieve conversions.
Clicks is one of the key metrics to confirm that your audience is interested.
When you login to your Facebook Ads manager account, you will see a few different metrics related to "Clicks".
The most important one to pay attention to will be Clicks (Link). (Afterall, these are the clicks that are going to lead to conversions!)
One of the options you'll also see is "Clicks (All)". This is counting all clicks on your ad, including clicks over to your Facebook page or other click interactions with your ad.
While "Clicks (All)" does indicate engagement with your ad, it's not the engagement that is going to lead to your next conversion. So I prioritize Clicks (Links) in my Facebook ads reporting.
10. CTR (Link Click-Through Rate)
CTR (Link Click-Through Rate) is the number of clicks compared to the number of impressions.
You may see 100 clicks for your ad and think this is great!
However, if your total number of impressions is 100,000, those 100 clicks won't seem as impressive anymore.
This is where CTR (click-through rate) comes into your Facebook Ad reports.
It is calculated by dividing total clicks by impressions. In our above example, an ad that received 100 clicks and 100,000 impressions has the low CTR of .1%
However, if the total number of impressions was 1,000, that is a CTR of 10%! You can't look at clicks alone; you must compare it to impressions to really evaluate your most engaging ads.
11. Post Engagement
Post Engagement is the total number of reactions, shares, comments and clicks that your post received.
If you're A/B testing multiple different ad types, post engagement and CTR are two of your most important metrics to determine how well that specific ad appeals to your target audience.
You can also choose to look specifically at "Post Comments" and "Post Reactions" to break out the different engagement types. But for a full picture of how often people are engaging with your post, select "Post Engagement."
Metrics You Can Just Ignore
People can get wrapped up in metrics that simply don't matter.
Instead of cluttering your reports with unnecessary metrics, you can simply ignore these:
1. Relevance Score
Relevance Score estimates how relevant your ad is from a range of 1 to 10. One is the least relevant; 10 is the most relevant.
This score is only shown once your ad receives 500 impressions.
The main factor determining your relevance is how well that particular ad is performing (number of downloads, clicks, etc.)
However, you can simply look at the above engagement metrics, like CTR or conversion rate, for much clearer insights on your best performing ads.
I've even seen low relevance scores outperforming high relevance score ads!
My recommendation: ignore this metric and focus on metrics that will give much clearer insight into how your top ads are performing.
Reach is the total number of unique people who viewed your ads.
While reaching 10000 might sound great in a report, it doesn't tell you anything about how your campaign is performing.
You're better off looking at other engagement metrics, like impressions, CTR and interactions. This way you can understand not only how much your ads are being seen, but also how often people interact with them.
Plus, it often takes multiple impressions for an ad to convert or for a person to remember your brand. So simply trying to "Reach" the largest audience possible isn't necessarily going to achieve results.
Understanding your most important Facebook Ad metrics is the key to boosting the ROI of your campaigns.
It's easy to get bogged down in all of the options available in Facebook Ads Manager. However, if you just look at these 11 metrics, you'll be on your way to better optimized, better performing campaigns.
And to make tracking your Facebook Ads campaigns easier than ever, check out AgencyAnalytics for completely customized PPC reports and dashboards.
What metrics do you track for Facebook Ads? Let us know in the comments!
Written by Rebecca Bowden
Marketing Director at AgencyAnalytics. Rebecca is based in Fort Collins, CO. When she's not focused on marketing, you'll find her skiing or hiking in the Rockies.